What are the combustion air requirements for fuel-burning appliances?


Quick Answer

The 2015 International Energy Conservation and International Residential Codes require a combustion appliance zone test to verify compliance with the manufacturer's operational parameters for venting by-products of combustion from a fuel-burning appliance in a tightly sealed structure. The new code also mandates the isolation of fuel-burning appliances from basement and exterior walls, floors, roof or any element of a building that encloses or separates a conditioned space from an unconditioned space.

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Full Answer

Codes require the locating of fuel-burning appliances outside or in a separate room, either insulated or sealed off from the conditioned space, if open combustion air ducts supply the appliance. The codes also address the source of air for combustion, ventilation and dilution of flue gases of fuel-burning appliances, stating that openings that provide outdoor combustion air should not be greater than 3 inches as of 2016.

With two such openings, placement should be 12 inches from the ceiling and 12 inches from the floor, and the openings should connect directly with the outdoors, by ducts or by spaces opening directly outdoors. When only one opening connects to the outdoors, recommended placement is 12 inches from the ceiling.

Additionally, codes specify the minimum requirements for the amount of free area in square inches according to total BTUs of all appliances in the space.

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