How Much Space Should I Leave Open Around My Furnace?

November 05, 2019

Natural gas furnaces need enough space and airflow to work properly.

Your furnace can get too hot if it doesn’t have enough room. It also makes it difficult for our technicians to complete furnace repair.

Regular furnace maintenance is important to keep your system working well. A regularly serviced furnace may heat more efficiently, which could reduce your heating bills.

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

Maintenance often helps us discover troubles before they begin. This could help lessen future repair costs and possibly prolong the life of your system.

So how much room should your furnace really have?

How Much Space Does My Furnace Need?

If you’re remodeling your basement or enclosing your furnace room, you should research manufacturer instructions and Circleville statutes for clearance guidelines.

As a general recommendation, your heater should be 30 inches away from furnace room walls on all sides. This allows our service technicians to conveniently repair it.

You also need to check the space has enough airflow and ventilation, especially if you have an outdated furnace with a metal flue.

Related: Furnace Service or Furnace Replacement: What to Consider

This model of furnace pulls combustion air from the nearby area. If there’s insufficient air, unsafe gas fumes and toxic carbon monoxide could back draft into your home.

If your furnace is placed in a small room with a gas water heater, you may need to put in more openings. This could include a fully louvered door or vents in the walls.

Not sure if your furnace or water heater has adequate ventilation? We can assist you!

Contact us

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

Keep Combustible Materials Away from Your Furnace

Although furnace rooms function as laundry and storage space, you should keep yours free of items 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 deteriorate your furnace’s heat exchanger. Plus, the furnace could move the stinky odors all over your home.

You should also routinely clean near your furnace to prevent dust from developing.

Related: Is it Time for Furnace Service or Replacement?

Request Expert Furnace Service 

Whether you need furnace replacement or routine maintenance in Circleville, Stephen Hurst Pack Heating and Cooling, Inc can expertly meet your needs. Our highly trained technicians can fix any heating equipment model or brand.

Call us at 740-474-5940 or use our online scheduler to request an appointment today.