Attic Furnace Walkway & Platform, is your post applicable in all states, I’m in Texas?

Home Maintenance Questions and AnswersCategory: Attic AreaAttic Furnace Walkway & Platform, is your post applicable in all states, I’m in Texas?
Question by Kim Tucker

I read your post, “Attic Furnace Walkway & Platform”.  I would either like to diy this myself, or make sure whoever I hire does it right.  Do you know if your dimensions are applicable in all states, or who I should ask to find out.  I am in Texas.  I just found your page and it looks great!  So helpful!  Thanks!  Kim

1 Answers
Dariusz Rudnicki Staff answered 10 months ago

Hi Kim,
Thanks! 🙂 This was based on IRC (International Residential Code), I just looked up and located one document from Austin TX which confirms pretty much everything. I copied one section of it below and you can access the whole thing here – http://www.austintexas.gov/edims/document.cfm?id=109741
You can call your local building department and ask to speak with a building inspector, or call some HVAC contractors and ask them a few questions to verify requirements in your place. 
M1305.1.3 Appliances in attics.

  • An upright furnace may be installed in an attic or furred space that is more than five feet in height if the required listings and duct Page 20 of 24 clearances are observed. The clearance between a warm-air furnace and combustibles shall comply with Section Ml307.1 (General) of the Residential Code.
  • An access opening shall be provided. The opening shall be of sufficient size to remove appliances but the clear finished opening shall have dimensions of not less than 20 inches by 30 inches. Approved disappearing stairs comply with the Residential Code.
  • A passageway shall be provided from the access opening to appliances and shall be of sufficient size to remove appliances. The dimensions of the passageway may not be less than 30 inches by 30 inches.
  • The distance from the access opening to an appliance shall not exceed 20 feet measured along the centerline of the passageway.
  • The passageway shall be unobstructed and have a continuous solid floor not less than 24 inches in width from the access opening to an appliance.
  • A level working platform not less than 30 inches in depth and width shall be provided in front of the entire firebox side of the warm-air furnace.
  • If the furnace temperature-limit control, air filter, fuel-control valve, vent collar or air handling unit is not serviceable from the firebox side of the furnace, a continuous floor not less than 24 inches in width shall be provided from the platform in front of the fire box side of the furnace to and in front of the equipment.
  • Exception: A working platform is not required when the furnace can be serviced from the required access opening. M1305.1.3.1 Electrical requirements.
  • A permanent electric outlet and lighting fixture controlled by a switch located at the required passageway opening shall be provided at or near the furnace. A permanent electric outlet and lighting fixture shall be provided within five feet of the appliance.
  • The light shall be controlled by a switch located at the required passageway opening or on the nearest wall leading to the access opening.

Please let me know if there’s anything else I can help you with.

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