How Much Space Should I Leave Open Around My Furnace?

November 05, 2019

Natural gas furnaces need adequate space and airflow to work correctly.

Your furnace can overheat if it doesn’t have enough space. It also makes it difficult for our specialists to complete furnace repair.

Routine furnace maintenance is crucial to keep your unit working well. A regularly serviced furnace may work more efficiently, which could reduce your energy bills.

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

Maintenance often helps us spot issues before they become expensive. This could help lessen future repair expenses and likely extend the life of your furnace.

So how much room should your equipment really have?

How Much Space Does My Furnace Need?

If you’re remodeling your basement or sealing off your furnace room, you should consult manufacturer instructions and Plover laws for clearance guidelines.

As a general recommendation, your furnace should be 30 inches away from furnace room walls on all sides. This lets our service technicians to easily work on it.

You also need to make sure 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 type of furnace needs combustion air from the nearby area. If there’s inadequate air, dangerous 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 put in supplemental openings. This could include a fully louvered door or vents in the walls.

Unsure if your furnace or water heater has adequate 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 furnace uses one pipe as an exhaust vent and the other to draw in air.

Keep Combustible Materials Away from Your Furnace

Although furnace rooms double as 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 move the stinky odors throughout your home.

You should also frequently vacuum by your furnace to prevent 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 Plover, Point Heating & Cooling can expertly meet your needs. Our highly trained technicians can work on any HVAC model or brand.

Call us at 715-504-0533 or use our online scheduler to get an appointment right away.