Do I Need a Furnace Installation Inspection?
Whenever a new furnace is installed, it must be inspected, no matter the type or brand. Obtaining a permit ensures it’s properly examined/tested and is required by law. You can schedule a furnace installation inspection with your city or county or have the contractor work with local authorities to meet all requirements.
What Does a Furnace Installation Inspection Entail?
In general, all furnaces must be checked to ensure they’re installed per the requirements of the manufacturer and your municipality. The inspector will also verify whether electrical connections meet all current code requirements. Whenever applicable, they’ll inspect the plenum and connections to existing ductwork as well.
Beyond these essentially universal inspection standards, different inspection requirements apply depending on the type of furnace. We’ll look at these below:
Gas Furnace Inspections
Gas furnaces have perhaps the strictest inspection requirements, given the potential for an explosion or carbon monoxide leak if there’s a problem. In addition to determining if the unit is operable with no error codes, the inspector will check the sequence of operation and run down a checklist that includes the:
- Furnace and Its Location: The furnace’s heating method and energy source will be noted as well as whether it’s in a safe location that’s accessible and unobstructed.
- Thermostat: The inspector will verify the thermostat is working and describe its location in the inspection report.
- Ventilation: On exterior surfaces of the vent exhaust system, the technician will look for signs of condensation, corrosion, damage, cracks, or blockages. Vent connector pipes, outlet and inlet exhaust pipes/connections, pipe fastening, insulation around plastic vent pipes, and clearance between vent connector pipes and combustible materials will be inspected.
- Gas Line Hookup: The shut-off valve must be placed within 6 feet of the furnace, according to the International Association of Certified Home Inspectors.1 A technician will take a measurement and also check the location of the sediment trap, whether the union is properly installed and accessible, and whether gas pipes are solid and not flexible. The gas valve assembly will be inspected and tested as well.
- Disconnect/Emergency Switch: This should be installed at the furnace. The inspector will check the switch, its wire, plate cover, and electrical box. If the switch must be placed at a distance, the safety of this location must be assessed.
Other components that must be inspected include:
- Furnace Cabinet and Panels
- Service Shut-Off Switch
- Blower Door Switch/Control Board
- Inducer Motor
- Burners and Manifold
- Igniter and Flame
- Pressure Switches
- Limit Switches
- Condensate Trap and Drainpipe
- Light and Electrical Receptacle
- Protective Barrier
Electric Furnace Inspections
Electric furnaces don’t have gas or oil lines so have fewer inspection requirements. That’s not to say they must not be inspected, because every electric furnace installation requires a permit. In the case of an electric unit, the inspector will primarily look at the installation and electrical connections. All should be tight and secure. The panel boxes, disconnects, and circuit breakers will be checked thoroughly and evaluated for any performance issues such as shorts, overheating, corrosion, or improper installation.
Oil Furnace Inspections
Most homeowners prefer gas or electric furnaces. However, oil-burning boilers and forced air systems still exist in many buildings. Building codes require the oil tank and oil line connections to be inspected. Flue lines and intakes must be examined to verify proper operation. Boilers with closed loops must be inspected to ensure all connections are secure and that there are no leaks.
Cost of a Furnace Installation Inspection
A furnace inspection can cost anywhere from $75 to $200 (depending on where you live).2 It is included in the cost of a permit. The overall cost of the project can be affected if an inspector determines you need an updated electrical panel or new gas line, ductwork, or exhaust flue installed. These secondary repairs and updates can significantly add to the overall cost of furnace installation.
Call Waldrop to Learn More
At Waldrop, we specialize in gas, oil, and electric furnace installation in Upstate South Carolina. Our technicians are trained in the latest standards and best practices. We ensure honest estimates and pride ourselves on integrity and timeliness. Discounts, financing, and service plans are available to help you save, even after your furnace is installed and inspected. Schedule furnace installation today by booking a service appointment online or calling 864-536-0887.