Enclosing a boiler with walls


Old 01-05-18, 03:21 PM
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Enclosing a boiler with walls

Hey folks,

In the dead center of my basement I have my gas boiler (for my hot water radiator heating system) and my gas hot water heater. I'd like to put walls around it, but have been told that if you enclose it that you need to install an air exchange system and that can get pricey.

I'm wondering...Let's say I hung floor to ceiling curtains (which I have elsewhere in the basement) around it to create faux walls, could I then just do something really simple like put a fan or two near the ceiling above a curtain just to get some air circulation? Or is it not as simple as that?

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Old 01-05-18, 04:00 PM
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There is a standard issued by the National Fire Protection Assoc (NFPA 54, section 9.3) that applies to combustion air for gas-fired appliances. There are some formulas involved, and it comes down to so much free area of openings, screens, or louvers. Curtains aren't covered.

The other thing to check is the installation instructions for your particular boiler.

I have a hunch that you won't find anybody with authority to sanction what you propose. You can look at the code and maybe come up with an acceptable way way to enclose the boiler with solid walls and provide sufficient louvers or slots to achieve the necessary opening area. Good luck.
Old 01-06-18, 04:27 AM
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Why don't you build the walls as you want and for access doors for servicing and replacing these units use full louvered doors? Make sure that you check to see what are the required minimum dimensions from combustible materials and maintain these dimensions. Check the code requirements to see if the room has to be fire proof or fire retardant. I enclosed my gas fired water heater and forced air furnace with adequate clearances and 2 -30" full louver doors giving me a 60" wide opening .
Old 01-06-18, 04:54 AM
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The rules relating to your boiler when it was installed are not what exist today.
The regulation below is what is required in our area and can assume similar regs apply where you are

Except as permitted by Sentences (2), (8), (9) and (10), fuel-fired appliances shall be installed in service rooms separated from the remainder of the building by fire separations having a fire-resistance rating not less than 1 h

You could try curtains but I would suggest you research your regulations surrounding that because any change could affect your house insurance in a negative manner.
A furnace room would be a great idea and I see them in most new construction houses and you only need to build it to code and have a permit.
Old 01-08-18, 02:27 PM
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Thanks everyone! Going to see the plumbing inspector tomorrow. It hadn't occurred to me that it might be possible to avoid it with louvered doors. That would be ideal. Thanks again

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