Can I Install Any Brand Furnace In My Manufactured Home?

You can install most any furnace for manufactured homes, but it’s important to check with your local building department to know if they have any restrictions or guide lines regarding mobile homes. Some counties require HVAC equipment to be rated “Mobile Home Approved”

Whether you are wanting a gas, oil or electric furnace the mobile home approved sticker is very important. Clearances in mobile homes are limited and each furnace has a label that states the clearances to combustibles that need to be followed.

You will discover that most counties will require a permit to change out your furnace. They like the money and like to think they are keeping you safe.

Seriously, the most important part of obtaining a permit next to safety is that when you sell your home you will be asked in the disclosures of the closing documents of the sale if their are any improvements that were not permitted that should have been.

If you make improvements that require permits and did not do so, you may have to then get a permit and have the inspection. I emphasize the word “may”.

Enquirer with your local building department. They are used to this type of call and they won’t arrest your or chastise you.

What Furnaces Fit In Mobile Homes?

There’s a lot to consider when thinking about your manufactured home furnace replacement.

You can’t go wrong if you stick to the label that says mobile home approved. The cavity or closet built for mobile or manufactured homes easily accommodates a 20 inch wide furnace be it gas or electric.

This is a mobile home approved electric furnace with a shelf kit holding a heat pump coil above the blower.

I love to give my customers little add on’s like this.

Notice the filter grill above the furnace. There is a 2″ pleated filter behind that grill and it’s really easy to access. Meaning you will change it more regularly.

With the furnace door on and a nice looking paintable board that covers the entire furnace cavity you now have a quieter system and much better filtering.

With this system in place the coil and blower stay cleaner longer and repair bills are lower.

Some mobile homes have furnaces installed in a more open area like a utility room next to washers and dryers.

The height can vary and is easily customized to fit applicable brands. Room to include a heat pump or air conditioning coil is even provided with a what is called a coil pan kit or shelf.

Some Hints On How To Wire An Electric Furnace

The next consideration is using the proper BTU’s or KW to fit your particular manufactured home. Since mobile homes come from the factory with furnaces installed, you’re probably reading this because you’re considering a replacement furnace.

You need to know what size breaker for your electric furnace, locate the breakers in the panel and take note of the breaker size or sizes. There could be two or maybe three.

Most of the mobile homes in my area are electric with 15 KW, one 60 amp and one 30 amp breaker feeding the furnace. I’ve run into a few gas furnaces and no oil.

single point connection it

Some panels have one breaker. For a 15KW furnace that would be one 90 amp breaker. In that case you would need a wiring kit. Search for SPW-01 single point wiring kit.

Connecting these kits is pretty straight forward. Very important to understand the wiring and safety instructions related to splitting on circuit into two.

Best to consult a licensed professional before attempting to make these connections. You may even have them make the connections.

If you are unfamiliar with electricity or at all reluctant, hire a professional.

Always use caution when working with electricity. Never work alone. Double check to make sure the power is off at the main panel. Keep dry and use all safety precautions.

One of these single point connection kits I installed was fed with copper wire from a 90 amp breaker in the main panel. When doing the start up of the new furnace the 90 amp breaker tripped.

The wires from the furnace in the main panel were loose. The breaker was very warm to the touch. You shouldn’t sleep too easy if any of the breakers in your panel run warm. Get a professional to examine your wiring and panel. Especially if your’s is an older mobile home.

Aluminum Wiring In Mobile Homes

The possibility of aluminum wiring in mobile homes still exists, even though aluminum wiring for manufactured homes was discontinued in 1971.

Given time, aluminum wire reacts to the oxygen in the air and forms a layer or coating over the wire that forms a resistance to the flow of electricity. Resistance to electricity creates heat. Aluminum expands and contracts more than copper wire.

Aluminum wire that heats up and cools down will work loose in the connections and get even warmer or hotter. Aluminum wire will also oxidize more easily than copper and is more of a fire hazard.

An electrician can make aluminum wiring safe. Proper connections are critical and need to be done properly and inspected.

The International Association of Certified Home Inspectors says aluminum has several properties that make it potentially dangerous as an electrical conductor.

Securing Your Furnace To The Duct Work

With the old furnace out of the way, now is a good time to do some cleaning and sealing of possible leaks in the duct work where the furnace attaches to the floor. This is an area that mobile home manufacturers are really sloppy in.

Reach inside the duct and feel the connections. Careful of the sharp edges, wear gloves. Streamline the fitment as much as possible and apply a duct mastic to make proper seals.

This is a place where mice and rats are very interested in. They love the warmth and the easy access. Don’t make it easy for them. The skeletal system of a mouse is very flexible and they can squeeze through the tiniest crack. Seal it up good with spray foam or something the won’t chew through.

A combustible floor base will make the installation very sanitary. They are available at Home Depot or Amazon. Select the right size combustible base for your furnace and secure it to the floor and set the furnace.

Because of the close tolerances of the furnace to the wall, you may have to feed the power wire into the furnace before setting into or onto the base.


Information is king. Now you know something about manufactured home furnace brands and the processes to install a furnace in a manufactured home. By learning of these examples you know the scope of work that even a professional will have to perform to complete your job.

Knowing is part of being a good customer when you have expectations of what it takes to get a good installer/contractor. The wool will not be so easily pulled over your eyes as you see the job progress.

You don’t have to be constantly looking over someones shoulders to know if a good job is being done.

Just naturally participate in a conversation as to what you know and your expectations will be met because the installer will know you understand more than his or her usual customer.

Chad Peterson

Chad Peterson is a veteran of the HVAC industry since 1977. "I like to explain heating and air conditioning problems in a way the average home owner can understand. "

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