The furnace room is a place that many people don’t think about often. It houses the furnace, which heats your home and keeps it warm in the winter. It also contains all the ducts and vents in your home that bring air from the outside into your heating system.
Furnace room safety is a major concern for many homeowners. Whether you have a basement, crawlspace, or another area where you keep your furnaces, it’s important to take all the necessary precautions.
Here are some furnace room safety tips to consider for you and your family.
1. Ensure there is Enough Ventilation
Just like any other electronic item, your furnace needs fresh air to cool while it functions. Lack of fresh air circulation in the furnace room may cause the whole system to start using oxygen in your house. This can cause an oxygen shortage for you and your family. Poor fresh air circulation can also cause uneven overheating of your furnace. An overheated furnace uses more electricity and may lead to a rise in electricity bills.
To ensure your furnace gets enough fresh air, keep the furnace room door open or closed at intervals. However, the best solution for overheating could be getting a vented door for the furnace room.
2. Keep Combustible Items Away
If your furnace room also serves as a storage room, keep flammables away. Storing paint in your furnace room is a ticking bomb that might explode anytime. Other items to keep away from this utility room include cleaning solutions, paper, gasoline, and sawdust. Lastly, avoid hanging your laundry in your furnace room. Besides being a major fire hazard, these items interfere with your equipment’s airflow.
3. Install Carbon Monoxide and Smoke Sensors
The first way to avoid the extreme effects of accidents is to have alert systems that can warn you of any forthcoming dangers. Therefore, install and maintain carbon monoxide and smoke alarms in different rooms of your house. These devices will signal you of any fire outbreaks or carbon monoxide poisoning coming from your furnace room.
4. Keep the Room Clean
Your furnace room should be clean from dust and clutter. At least vacuum this section of your house monthly. Otherwise, dust buildup around your furnace may cause dangerous overheating that can lead to fire outbreaks. Besides vacuuming your utility room, ensure there is the recommended two feet clear space around your furnace. Keep kitty litter and laundry products away from this equipment.
The floor of your furnace room should be easy to clean, and scratch resistant to prevent your utility room from looking like a dumpsite. Ceramic tiles and vinyl are the most suitable materials to make the best flooring for a furnace room.
5. Schedule Regular Maintenance
Taking early precautions could save you a lot of losses. Therefore, check your furnace regularly, and replace malfunctioning filters. You can also schedule regular maintenance with an HVAC expert.