How Much Space Should I Leave Open Around My Furnace?

November 05, 2019

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

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

Regular furnace maintenance is essential to keep your equipment running trouble-free. A regularly serviced furnace may run more efficiently, which could decrease your energy costs.

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

Maintenance often helps us spot problems before they become expensive. This could help lessen future repair bills and possibly lengthen the life of your furnace.

So how much room should your system 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 directions and Chatsworth statutes for clearance requirements.

As a general suggestion, your furnace 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 room has enough 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 nearby space. If there’s insufficient air, hazardous gas fumes and deadly carbon monoxide could back draft into your home.

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

Uncertain if your furnace or water heater has proper 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 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 double 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, put your litter box somewhere else. Cat urine contains ammonia, which could corrode your furnace’s heat exchanger. Plus, the furnace could spread the smelly odors throughout your home.

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

Related: Is it Time for Furnace Service or Replacement?

Request Expert Furnace Service 

Whether you have to have furnace replacement or annual maintenance in Chatsworth, True Temp Heating & Air Inc can expertly meet your needs. Our highly trained technicians can repair any furnace model or brand.

Call us at 706-695-7492 or use our online scheduler to set up an appointment today.