A louvered vented door contains openings that allow air to freely travel in and out of an enclosed space. This is especially ideal for a room containing a furnace, but is it necessary to purchase?
Yes, your furnace room needs a louvered vented door for proper ventilation and the prevention of mold and mildew. With vents in the door, heat can properly escape and will eliminate uncomfortably hot rooms, fires, and explosions. You can purchase vented doors for furnace room at Home Depot, Lowe’s, and Amazon for an average of $150.
Your furnace is an important component of your HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) system. Read on for an explanation of why a vented door is needed in this space and how you can keep your household safe with this solution.
Why Does a Furnace Room Need a Louvered Vented Door?
There are many reasons why a furnace room needs a louvered vented door, including improved ventilation and mold and mildew prevention. Below is an in-depth explanation of each.
A louvered vented door on a furnace improves ventilation in the unit. Specifically, it prevents the buildup of carbon monoxide gas.
This is a dangerous gas for humans to breathe in. Carbon monoxide exposure can cause serious health consequences or even death with prolonged exposure. As a result, proper ventilation is a necessity, and a louvered vented door can provide this.
Allows Heat to Escape
Furnaces radiate significant heat when working to regulate the temperature in your home. This can cause nearby living areas to become uncomfortably hot while your unit is running. With a louvered vented door on your furnace, heat will be able to freely escape, avoiding high temperatures in certain areas.
Prevents Mold and Mildew
Mold and mildew also pose significant health risks to the people living in your household. These dangerous contaminants thrive in spaces with excess moisture for long periods of time.
When your furnace doesn’t have proper ventilation, moisture from the steam can build up inside. With nowhere to escape, mold and mildew can begin to form in and around your unit.
Can a Furnace Ever Be in a Closed Room?
In general, a furnace should never be placed in a closed room. There are exceptions to this rule that depend on its ventilation and whether or not it runs on electricity.
If the furnace is directly vented outside, it can be installed in a closed room. With all heat and moisture escaping to an outdoor space, there is less concern for the above-mentioned risks of mold, mildew, and uneven heating in the home.
Similarly, furnaces that run on electricity as opposed to gas may be placed in an enclosed space. In the absence of gas and an open flame, there is less risk of fire, an explosion, or harmful fumes in a closed room.
Where to Buy Louvered Doors for Furnace Rooms
Fortunately, there are many louvered doors for furnace rooms available on the market that can be purchased from a wide variety of retailers. Below, we have complied a detailed buyer’s guide that will walk you through where you can get a louvered door for your furnace.
Home Depot is one of the most trusted brands for home hardware. For louvered furnace room doors, they offer a total of 12 options online. Their website features models from Veranda, Pinecroft, and Kimberly Bay, to name a few.
The prices range from $120 all the way up to $500, depending on your desired size, features, and brand. The products are available in single or double panel and sliding varieties to suit your space.
Lowe’s is another place to look for a large selection of louvered vented doors. They have a total of 28 products listed for online purchase in multiple sizes and styles.
Some of the most popular brands available are EightDoors and ReliaBilt. When purchasing a louvered furnace door from Lowe’s, you can expect to pay $100 on the low end, or $300 on the high end.
As with any other product, Amazon has hundreds of options for louvered vented doors. You can find most of the popular brands offered by Lowe’s and Home Depot from different sellers at discounted prices.
Due to the competition between storefronts on Amazon, you’re likely to find a deal at an average of $100-$150 for your new door. On top of multiple options and discounts, you can enjoy fast shipping to your home to speed up your project.
How to Install a Louvered Door
If you have some skill, tools, and motivation, you can install your new louvered door all by yourself. Follow the steps outlined in this section for a DIY door installation.
The first thing you will need to do before jumping into the installation is measure the door. This is important to ensure the product you purchased will actually fit in the doorway. Use a tape measure to confirm the dimensions on the packaging matches the space it will be installed into.
Install Door Hinges or Tracks
Next, you will need to install your door hinges or tracks, depending on the type of product you purchased. If your door has hinges, use a pencil and tape measure to mark where your hinges should be placed.
Cut out the wood on the side of the door and drill the pilot holes. Lastly, attach the hinges to the doorway using your drill.
If you purchased a sliding door with a track, begin by attaching the backer board and slider to the wall above the doorway. This will require using a stud finder to locate the correct placement. Once this is complete, the door can be hung on the track.
Install the hardware on your new door before hanging or securing it into place. For a sliding door, this will include the handle and hooks. Traditional doors on hinges will only require the handle or knob to be attached prior to completion.
Install the Door!
Finally, install the door by hanging it on the tracks or drilling the hinges into the side of the wood. Test the door by opening and closing it a few times before you complete the process.
How Close Can a Furnace Be to a Louvered Door?
A furnace should be placed at a distance of at least 24 inches from the louvered door. This is the general recommendation for a few reasons, with the most important being maintenance and safety.
When repairs or inspections need to be completed, professionals must be able to easily access your unit. By installing it at least 2 feet away from the door, you can provide accessibility to the full front side of the furnace when necessary.
There are separate clearance requirements for safety purposes that determine how far the furnace should be from the door. To prevent fires, there is a minimum clearance recommendation of 18 inches between a furnace and louvered door.
What Else Should Be In a Furnace Room?
Along with just the furnace itself, you should have other helpful components in the same room, from a fire extinguisher to carbon monoxide detector. Read on for an explanation of each.
Carbon Monoxide Detector
As previously mentioned, carbon monoxide is a dangerous gas that can become fatal to the people and pets that reside in your home. It’s possible for a furnace to emit this harmful substance, which is something you must be aware of. With a carbon monoxide detector in your furnace room, you will be alerted when any traces of this invisible and odorless gas are emitted into your space.
In addition to carbon monoxide, you need to be aware of any fires around your furnace. Open flames can cause an explosion. This can easily go undetected when you’re sleeping or away from home, which makes this an essential gadget.
In the event of a fire, you should have a fire extinguisher readily available to put it out quickly. By being prepared with the correct supplies to fight a fire, you can prevent dangerous explosions and expensive damages to your home.
First Aid Kit
Furnaces present the opportunity for injuries during checks, repairs, and in the event of fires you have to quickly extinguish. As a result, it’s best to have a first aid kit handy. Be sure to include bandages, ointments, and disinfectants in your kit in case you get hurt.
Emergency Contact Information
Lastly, you will need emergency contact information available in your furnace room. If a fire, explosion, or carbon monoxide leak occurs, it will be crucial to contact a professional right away. It’s doubtful that you have your contractor’s phone number memorized, so having it written down on the back of your unit will help you out in a pinch.
Things to Keep Out of a Furnace Room
Similar to the items you should have in your furnace room, there are other things that should be kept out. The following supplies should not be present in your furnace room under any circumstance.
Cardboard is a flammable object that can easily catch fire in the event of a spark or extreme heat emitted from your furnace. Keep boxes and any other paper products away from this area for increased safety.
Electronics can contribute to fires and explosions in your furnace room. As a result, it’s a good idea to remove any loose wires, cords, and devices from the furnace room.
Cleaning supplies should not share a room with your furnace to avoid combustion. Instead, store your cleaning sprays, powders, and solutions in a separate closet away from the extreme heat of your furnace room.
Rubber & Plastic
Rubber and plastic can melt and contribute to a dangerous fire in your home. Anything made of similar materials should be kept far away from your furnace.
Similar to cleaning supplies, paint contains harmful chemicals that don’t mix well with heat. This can release toxins into the air of your home or contribute to an explosion.
Flammable liquids should also be kept out of your furnace room for obvious reasons. These can include bleach, nail polish remover, and gasoline.
In conclusion, when installing a louvered vented door and furnace, be sure to always follow local building codes. While it is possible to do this yourself, it’s recommended to contact a professional for assistance if you’re unsure how to proceed.
Ruben has a diverse background in the home services industry, with experience running a construction company, a kitchen and bath showroom, and a moving and relocation company. This breadth of experience has provided him with a wealth of knowledge and expertise in various areas of home improvement in general and specifically in the heating and plumbing niche.