Legal Question in Environmental Law in Pennsylvania

Neighbors outdoor wood burning furnace causing problems.

I am having a problem with my neighbors outdoor wood burning furnace. We live in a neighborhood where most lots are between .25 and .33 acres. The furnace was installed about 8 feet from the property line and about 18 feet from our house. The chimney on the furnace stands about 7 or 8 feet from ground level. The furnace may be running all year round since it also provides hot water. The amount of smoke coming from the furnace is unbearable. We can no longer even go in our yard because the smoke burns our eyes and is very irritating to breath. Inside of our house smoke seeps in through our windows and doors even when they are closed. We are scared of developing health problems relating to the smoke. There are no local regulations regarding the furnace. We are afraid we will never be able to sell our house because of smoke problems. I would prefer to solve these problems privately with the home owner but I'm not sure that this approach will work. Is there any hope of forcing our neighbor to install a taller chimney by taking them to court?

Asked on 11/14/05, 10:16 am

1 Answer from Attorneys

Peter Dolinger Law Office of Peter M. Dolinger

Re: Neighbors outdoor wood burning furnace causing problems.

You could bring up the matter of a need to regulate such furnaces at your township board. If that does not work, you could consult a local attorney about suing the neighbor for nuisance.

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Answered on 11/14/05, 5:33 pm

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