I'm partially finishing my basement, and I want to enclose furnace, pressure tank (well) and hot water heater by putting up walls.
Obviously, if something breaks, it'd be nice for a HVAC tech to be able to get at it / fix it without tearing down the walls, so I figured here would be a good place to ask how much space you need, around the furnace in particular (I don't think access to the hot water heater / pressure tank would be a problem).
The manual for the furnace basically says the clearances to the side/front of the furnace can be 0, except for the side with the access panels, and the top. However, I'm not sure how workable that is.
Here is a rough plan, there'd be about 28 inches between pressure tank and wall, which I think would be enough to replace the furnace if need be?
Also, here's pic (sorry, very blurry) of the furnace / return / plenum, to give you some rough idea.
Per International Mechanical Code 306.2 Rooms containing appliances requiring access shall be provided with a door and unobstructed passageway measuring not less than 36" wide and 80" high. Exception: Within a dwelling unit appliances installed in a compartment, alcove, basement shall be accessed by an opening or door and an unobstructed passageway measuring not less than 24" wide and large enough to allow removal of the largest appliance in the space, provided that a level service space of not less than 30" deep and the height of the appliance is present at the front or service side of the appliance with the door open.Also make sure there is openings for combustion air into room.
... that helps a lot. So basically, access to the service side (+ enough clearance) is good enough, no need to be able to get to all sides of the furnace, I take it. I guess I'll take another look to make sure one would be able to disconnect the return and plenum, but sounds good
Call in your heating contractor and plumber and ask them for suggestions.
Use the biggest hammer you like, pounding a square peg into a round hole does not equal a proper fit.
While you "could" go tight on the back and one side, someone will thank you in the future if you could leave an extra 2-4" on the sides/back of the furnace when it needs to be changed out.
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