How Much Space Should I Leave Open Around My Furnace?

November 05, 2019

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

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

Routine furnace maintenance is essential to keep your equipment working well. A regularly serviced furnace may work more efficiently, which could lower your energy bills.

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

Maintenance often helps us notice issues before they start. This could help lessen future repair expenses and potentially extend the life of your system.

So how much room should your furnace really have?

How Much Space Does My Furnace Need?

If you’re updating your basement or closing off your furnace room, you should research manufacturer specifications and Ronkonkoma ordinances for clearance requirements.

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

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

Related: Furnace Service or Furnace Replacement: What to Consider

This kind of furnace draws combustion air from the nearby location. If there’s inadequate air, dangerous gas fumes and deadly carbon monoxide could back draft into your home.

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

Unsure if your furnace or water heater has enough ventilation? We can take a look!

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You don’t need to think about airflow and ventilation as much if you have a newer, 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 function 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, put your litter box elsewhere. Cat urine contains ammonia, which could corrode your furnace’s heat exchanger. Plus, the furnace could move the smelly odors throughout your home.

You should also regularly vacuum around your furnace to stop dust from building up.

Related: Is it Time for Furnace Service or Replacement?

Request Expert Furnace Service 

Whether you want furnace replacement or annual maintenance in Ronkonkoma, Cool Power LLC can expertly handle your needs. Our highly trained technicians can fix any HVAC model or brand.

Call us at 631-246-4029 or use our online scheduler to get an appointment right away.