How Much Space Should I Leave Open Around My Furnace?

November 05, 2019

Natural gas furnaces need enough space and airflow to run correctly.

Your furnace can shut down if it doesn’t have enough clearance. It also makes it challenging for our specialists to complete furnace repair.

Regular furnace maintenance is important to keep your system operating trouble-free. An annually serviced furnace may work more efficiently, which could decrease your utility expenses.

Related: How Does Furnace Maintenance Impact the Energy Efficiency of Your Home?

Maintenance often helps us spot problems before they start. This could help reduce future repair costs and potentially lengthen the life of your system.

So how much room should your equipment really have?

How Much Space Does My Furnace Need?

If you’re remodeling your basement or enclosing your furnace room, you should consult manufacturer instructions and Central Point statutes for clearance requirements.

As a general rule of thumb, your furnace should be 30 inches away from furnace room walls on all sides. This lets our service professionals to easily replace it.

You also need to ensure the area has ample airflow and ventilation, especially if you have an aging furnace with a metal flue.

Related: Furnace Service or Furnace Replacement: What to Consider

This model of furnace draws combustion air from the surrounding space. If there’s not enough air, unsafe gas fumes and deadly carbon monoxide could back draft into your home.

If your furnace is positioned in a tiny room with a gas water heater, you may need to add supplemental openings. This could involve a fully louvered door or vents in the walls.

Not sure if your furnace or water heater has enough ventilation? We can take a look!

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You don’t need to assess airflow and ventilation as much if you have a modern, high-efficiency furnace with PVC piping. Your system uses one pipe as an exhaust vent and the other to pull in air.

Keep Combustible Materials Away from Your Furnace

Although furnace rooms are often also used for laundry and storage space, you should keep yours free of things that could be fire hazards.

This includes:

  • Clotheslines
  • Cleaning or laundry products
  • Gasoline, paint or paint thinner
  • Rags and papers
  • Wood scraps and sawdust
  • Used filters

If you have a cat, place your litter box somewhere else. Cat urine contains ammonia, which could create wear on your furnace’s heat exchanger. Plus, the furnace could circulate the unpleasant odors throughout your home.

You should also frequently vacuum by your furnace to stop dust from developing.

Related: Is it Time for Furnace Service or Replacement?

Request Expert Furnace Service 

Whether you have to have furnace replacement or annual maintenance in Central Point, Titan Heating & Air Conditioning can expertly handle your needs. Our highly trained technicians can repair any furnace model or brand.

Call us at 514-600-5499 or use our online scheduler to request an appointment right away.