How Much Space Should I Leave Open Around My Furnace?

November 05, 2019

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

Your furnace can get too hot if it doesn’t have enough clearance. It also makes it difficult for our specialists to accomplish furnace repair.

Annual furnace maintenance is essential to keep your unit operating smoothly. A routinely serviced furnace may run more efficiently, which could lower your heating costs.

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

Maintenance often helps us notice problems before they start. This could help lower future repair expenses and likely lengthen the life of your furnace.

So how much area should your furnace really have?

How Much Space Does My Furnace Need?

If you’re updating your basement or sealing off your furnace room, you should take a look at manufacturer directions and Moline statutes for clearance rules.

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

You also need to check the room has plentiful airflow and ventilation, especially if you have an outdated furnace with a metal flue.

Related: Furnace Service or Furnace Replacement: What to Consider

This kind of furnace needs combustion air from the surrounding location. If there’s inadequate air, hazardous gas fumes and toxic carbon monoxide could flow back into your home.

If your furnace is positioned in a small room with a gas water heater, you may need to install extra openings. This could consist of a fully louvered door or vents in the walls.

Uncertain if your furnace or water heater has proper ventilation? We can assist you!

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

Keep Combustible Materials Away from Your Furnace

Although furnace rooms function as laundry and storage space, you should keep yours free of clutter 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, situate your litter box in another room. Cat urine contains ammonia, which could corrode your furnace’s heat exchanger. Plus, the furnace could spread the unpleasant odors throughout your home.

You should also routinely sweep by your furnace to prevent dust from accumulating.

Related: Is it Time for Furnace Service or Replacement?

Request Expert Furnace Service 

Whether you need furnace replacement or regular maintenance in Moline, J.L. Brady Company LLC can expertly take care of your needs. Our highly trained technicians can repair any heating equipment model or brand.

Call us at 309-517-7511 or use our online scheduler to set up an appointment today.