Sample Wood Smoke Nuisance Restrictions

Posted by Earth Stove on January 29, 2015 with No Comments as , , , ,
This outdoor wood boilers in Morgan
County Utah was somehow found not
to be a nuisance by a County Judge. 

Many jurisdictions in the Western US have “burn bans” that disallow the use of wood or pellet stoves when air quality is very poor, often in conjunction with weather inversions.  Nuisance regulations, on the other hand, apply when one person is creating excessive smoke that bothers an immediate neighbor.  That person may be using an EPA certified stove, an old stove or an outdoor or indoor boiler.

The purpose of this paper is to show the range of standards by which excessive smoke is measured.  Lack of resolution between neighbors is all too common, due sometimes to a lack of a clear nuisance standard for that town or county, or simply due to a lack of the ability or willingness to enforce a nuisance standard. 
If a jurisdiction has no written standard or regulation, the sample provisions below offer an excellent starting point for the jurisdiction to adopt.  Most jurisdictions use “opacity” as a measure of smoke – meaning the ability to see through it.  An opacity of 20% or lower is often listed as acceptable, but not always.  In some regulations, a specific amount of start-up time is exempted, ranging from 6 to 20 minutes in these sample regulations. However, many wood stove experts say 20 – 30 minutes is often the time needed to get a fire without visible smoke.

The Ringellman chart or scale was developed in 1888 and is still sometimes used and referenced today.

The Ringellman scale was adapted by the US Bureau of Mines.
The Alliance for Green Heat has noticed an increase in complaints about wood smoke.  We know that in many cases excessive wood smoke results from burning unseasoned wood, caused in part by the shortage of seasoned firewood this year.  Too many people with wood stoves wait until the fall to order wood and too many firewood distributors try to pass off unseasoned wood as seasoned.

The proposed ban of stoves in Utah has also brought the issue of “responsible burning” to the forefront, with industry calling for EPA certified equipment to be exempt from any ban.  These nuisance provisions, with a few exceptions, make no distinction between the kind of device that is being used, and focus solely on how well the operator is using it. 
STATES
No person shall cause or allow the emission of smoke exceeding twenty-percent opacity from any flue or chimney, except for a single fifteen-minute period for cold start-up. Any emission in excess hereof is hereby declared to be a nuisance and is prohibited.
A person who operates in a densely populated area an outdoor wood-burning device that produces visible emissions, measured as any opacity, totaling 12 minutes in any hour that cross onto land or buildings immediately adjacent to a dwelling or commercial building not owned by the owner of the outdoor wood-burning device creates a nuisance.
Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP) regulations limit visible smoke (or “opacity”) and prohibit air pollution that places people at risk, interferes with property uses, threatens natural resources, or creates nuisances, such as excessive odor and soot.

* Existing sources outside special control areas. No person may emit any air contaminant for a period or periods aggregating more than three minutes in any one hour which is equal to or greater than 40% opacity.
* New sources in all areas and existing sources within special control areas: No person may emit any air contaminants for a period or periods aggregating more than three minutes in any one hour which is equal to or greater than 20% opacity.

* A nuisance is anything which is injurious to health, indecent, offensive to the senses, or an obstruction to the free use of property, so as to interfere with the comfortable enjoyment of life or property. A nuisance may be the subject of an action.
* A nuisance under this part includes tobacco smoke that drifts into any residential unit a person rents, leases, or owns, from another residential or commercial unit. [There is no mention of wood smoke or opacity in the nuisance provisions of the Utah Code.]

MODEL ORDINANCE
No person shall cause or allow a visible emission from any wood-burning device in any building or structure that exceeds No. 1 on the Ringlemann Chart or 20 percent opacity for a period or periods aggregating more than three consecutive minutes in any one hour period. Visible emissions created during a fifteen-minute start-up period are exempt from this regulation.
CITIES AND COUNTIES

* Certified wood heaters may be operated during a no-burn period provided that no visible emissions are produced after a twenty (20) minute period following start up or refueling.
* During a period in which the Director has not declared a no-burn, no person shall operate a solid fuel heating device in a manner which produces emission into the atmosphere if the emissions exceed 30 % opacity twenty (20) minutes or longer after ignition or refueling of the solid fuel burning device. Visible emission opacity shall be determined by an observer certified by the Director.

Smoke shall not exceed an average of 20% opacity for any 2-minute period during an hour or average of 40% for 6 minutes after start-up.
The emission into the open air of visible smoke from any residential indoor non-wood pellet-burning appliance or any non EPA-Phase II certified wood burning appliance or fireplace used for home- heating purposes in such manner or in such amounts as to endanger or tend to endanger the health, comfort, safety or welfare of any reasonable person, or to cause unreasonable injury or damage to property or which could cause annoyance or discomfort in the area of the emission, is prohibited.

* During a green or yellow advisory, no person in charge of property shall operate or allow to be operated a solid-fuel space-heating device which discharges emissions that are of an opacity greater than 40 percent. This provision does not apply to the emissions during the building of a new fire, for a period or periods aggregating no more than ten minutes in any four-hour period.
* Upon a determination that a person has violated section 6.255 of this code, the city manager may impose upon the violator and any other person in charge of the property, an administrative penalty not greater than $ 500.

Fort Collins, CO
* After the first 15-minutes of start-up, smoke from the chimney must be at or less than 20% opacity (smoke should be barely visible looking at it with your back to the sun).
* Violation of City Code can result in a summons to appear in municipal court resulting in a fine of up to $ 1,000 and 180 days in jail.

No person may operate a solid fuel-fired heating device in such a manner that visible emissions reduce visibility through the exhaust for more than 15 minutes in any one hour by 50% opacity or greater.

* No person shall discharge into the atmosphere from any source of emission whatsoever any air contaminant greater than 20% visible opacity as determined by Test Method described in subsection A, for a period in excess of six (6) minutes in any consecutive sixty (60) minute period.
* Any emissions from portable, stationary, or motor vehicle sources in excess of 40% opacity, regardless of length of time, are considered excessive emissions.

* State law limits the density of smoke from indoor fires to ensure that people use clean burning techniques. This requirement is called the 20 percent smoke opacity limit. Opacity means how much your view through the smoke is blocked.
* 100 percent opacity means you can’t see anything through the smoke. 20 percent opacity means there is very little smoke and you can see almost perfectly through it. If you use dry enough fuel, the right equipment, and give your fire the right amount of air, there should be no visible smoke from your chimney or stove pipe–only heat waves.
* There are two exceptions to the opacity rule which allow you limited time for denser smoke:
• Starting the fire. You have up to 20 minutes every four hours.
• Stoking the fire. You have up to six consecutive minutes in any one-hour period.

Heated Up!

As Utah debates seasonal stove ban, Salt Lake County adopts stricter guidelines

Posted by Earth Stove on January 23, 2015 with No Comments as , , , , , , , , ,
The proposed state seasonal
ban affects 75% of the Utah
population. 
As Utahns debate a seemingly doomed proposal to ban seasonal stove use,  Utah’s most populous county enacted its own rules banning stove use on both mandatory and voluntary air actions days as of Jan. 1, 2016. In other counties, voluntary air action days continue to be voluntary.

This will impact about half of all wood burning appliances in the non-attainment counties and could contribute significantly to reducing wood smoke.  Salt Lake County has nearly 102,000 wood burning appliances, with fireplaces accounting for a majority of that with 60,000 units, according to EPA figures.  There are nearly 20,000 uncertified wood stoves and about the same number of pellet stoves and certified wood stoves.  

This stove inventory was provided by EPA who use a variety of databases and sources to estimate the deployment of wood burning devices.
The governor’s seasonal ban proposal that would impact 7 counties in and around Salt Lake City is drawing intense and sustained criticism from Utah residents, with only a few people speaking up in support of the ban.  It’s also drawing national attention from the wood stove industry that wants a 2-stage system, where EPA certified stoves could be used in stage 1 and all stove use banned in state 2.
On the other hand, Salt Lake County, which has a more than a third of the state’s population and nearly half of the population and half the stoves in the Wasatch front non-attainment area, went the opposite direction, including all stoves, certified and uncertified, in both stages of air action days.  “This is a significant measure and with more enforcement could achieve a quarter to a half of the reductions that the Governor’s plan sought,” said John Ackerly, President of the Alliance for Green Heat.

The issue has become an emotionally charged debate about individual rights vs. government control, striking a nerve within a deeply conservative part of the country.  In the public hearings, many people have testified about not being able to afford any other fuel than wood, and not wanting to be forced to use fossil fuel when they can use a cheaper renewable. 
But for air quality officials, the issue is simply about cleaning up the air and meeting federal air quality goals that are tied to highway funding.  The discussion quickly becomes about what the state can enforce and what it can’t.  The problem is that the state compliance capacity is already overstretched, with little ability to take on wood stoves.
However, that is different in Salt Lake County, which is moving ahead to enact stricter rules.  The County has decided to undertake the investigations of wood burning on mandatory no burn days itself, instead of leaving those to the state, which now only issues the fine.  Typically the initial warning is viewed an education process that leads to compliance, so that while many $ 25 fines have been given, rarely has the maximum of $ 299 been imposed. 
The new Salt Lake County rules, which take effect on Jan. 1, 2016, were not a reaction to the governor’s proposal or a rejection of the stove industry’s recommendations.  The County’s process began before the state’s process and ended before the stove industry got involved and helped set up the advocacy group Utahns for Responsible Burning.
According to officials at the Salt Lake Country Health Department, there was virtually no support for exempting EPA certified stoves from the county rule.  Both certified and uncertified stoves can produce excessive smoke, depending on operator behavior and moisture content of wood, with uncertified ones performing worse, on average.  While most EPA certified stoves produce 2 to 4.5 grams of particulates an hour in the lab when they are tested with specially prepared dry wood, they often produce far more in the real world.
The Alliance for Green Heat is urging Utah officials to consider phasing out uncertified stoves, since reducing the number of wood stoves will have the biggest impact.  “It may be that only about half of wood burners are really burning responsibly, whether they own a certified or uncertified stove,” Ackerly said.  “The uncertified stoves made before 1988 are now obsolete and most should not be used in densely populated areas,” Ackerly continued.

The current debate over wood heating comes less than 2 years after the outdoor wood boiler industry fought against Utah regulations that would prevent the installation of wood boilers on the Wasatch Front.  That debate also brought national attention of industry who hired lobbyists in Utah.  The industry effort to keep the market for outdoor boilers open in the non-attainment area was partially based on an argument that outdoor boilers were cleaner than wood stoves.

That case, like the current debate, involved questions of emissions data from test labs vs. emissions in the real world, and the likelihood that operators would be burning responsibly.


Heated Up!

Clearing the Air in Utah: A Wood Stove Compromise

Posted by Earth Stove on January 18, 2015 with No Comments as , , , ,
Republican Governor Gary Herbert
directed his air high quality workers to prepare
a draft rule banning wintertime stove use.
Utah Governor Herbert’s proposal to ban wintertime use of household wooden and pellet stoves commenced a discussion on the incorrect foot.&nbsp But it is essential that something is done and there are several techniques that wood smoke can be lowered on the Wasatch Entrance around Salt Lake Metropolis.
First, a stage out of all uncertified wooden stoves is equally reasonable and effective.&nbsp A section out would suggest that stoves created ahead of 1988 could not be lawfully used right after a specific date, such as January 1st, 2017.&nbsp Before that day, the state could offer a tax credit history to folks who flip in their aged stove and update to an EPA-certified pellet stove or fuel stove.&nbsp This would protect the investment decision of anybody who acquired a new EPA-accredited wood stove in the very last 25 several years.
A sequence of public listening to on the
proposed ban have elicited above-
whelming common opposition.
Second, all present stoves could be grandfathered, but there also could be a ban on putting in new fireplaces or wood stoves in homes in the non-attainment location.&nbsp Pellet stoves could even now be set up as they can not spew extreme smoke like wooden stoves can if they are not operated appropriately. Numerous towns and valleys with poor inversions have stopped the new set up of fireplaces and wooden stoves.
3rd, as extended as folks can still acquire and install wood stoves and fireplaces, Utah could call for that they be amongst the cleanest in the country.&nbsp Up coming year the national normal will be 4.five grams an hour for wooden and pellet stoves.&nbsp On the Wasatch front, you could demand new stoves not to emit more than 3 or even two grams an hour.&nbsp&nbsp
No make a difference what approach Utah chooses, the state need to commit more methods to implement and enforce it – even in the not likely function they pick a total seasonal ban.&nbsp There will want to be qualified compliance officers dependable for educating property owners, inspecting houses, issuing warnings and, as a last resort, fines.&nbsp Typically there will be a minority of people who produce the most smoke.&nbsp If these individuals cannot or won’t work their stoves in a way that doesn’t create too much smoke, fines should be imposed, just as fines are imposed for excessively loud audio or any amount of other nuisances.&nbsp
In mountain valleys, wooden smoke can
make up more than 50% of PM for the duration of
inversions. &nbspIn the Salt Lake region, its
much less than ten%.
There is a lot of chat about “rights” in this discussion, and there is anything about regulating the use of a wooden stove in one’s home that triggers the sensation of rights getting violated.&nbsp But what “rights” are those?&nbsp No 1 has the proper to generate a automobile that spews smoke out the tailpipe in Utah and most other states.
Most appliances are only regulated at the position of manufacture.&nbsp Soon after we purchase them, we are cost-free to use a refrigerator or washing machine as prolonged as we want, and abuse them in any way if we so choose. &nbspBut for big emitters like vehicles and stoves, some steps to make sure ongoing air pollution reduction can be warranted. For better or worse, many wooden stoves final even more time than the greatest-made refrigerators or washing devices.&nbsp Shoppers are likely to want to up grade all sorts of appliances much sooner than they want to upgrade their wooden stove.&nbsp But the rewards of upgrading to a new stove are related in that customers are getting a significantly more successful and cleaner gadget.&nbsp And some very good, new wood stoves expense as little as $ seven hundred at huge-box components shops.
We think the answer to reducing wooden smoke includes phasing out outdated stoves and issuing periodic
Salt Lake Town, throughout one particular of their
regular wintertime inversions.

fines to men and women who can’t work their EPA accredited stoves in ways that do not make them belch excessive smoke.&nbsp A compromise of limiting the seasonal ban to much less counties in Utah and 50 percent the length – Jan. 1 to Feb. 15th, as an alternative of Nov. 1st to March 15th – is an selection, but not a well-liked 1. &nbspIt could not be an effective a single, possibly.

As a culture, we need to stimulate the liable use of renewable strength and help house energy stability.&nbsp Pellet stoves are presently an environmentally responsible way to warmth homes.&nbsp Wooden stoves can be, but are more challenging, specially in densely inhabited locations with inversions.&nbsp A wooden stove is a much greater emitter of air pollution than a auto, and we need to begin pondering about them as such.&nbsp Just as a lot of states call for emission screening when a 2nd hand automobile is marketed, Oregon has started demanding the removing of an previous stove when a home gets bought.&nbsp These are the sorts of remedies that can also work in Utah.
Governor Herbert is prepared to make some tough conclusions in purchase to attain one thing every person wants – cleaner air. This proposal goes also much, but there are several other steps that can function, whilst respecting the potential of dependable stove owners to use a renewable source to warmth their residence.&nbsp Irrespective, Governor Herbert demands to present that he is prepared to give some a lot more funding and sources to enact and enforce adjustments.&nbsp In any other case, all of this controversy just amounts to very hot air.

*******

You can post remarks to the Utah Air Quality Board until February nine. &nbspFor a lot more data, click on right here.

For media protection of the Utah public hearings, simply click right here.

For the AGH position on the business reaction to the proposed ban, simply click on this&nbspFb submit.

Heated Up!

How to claim the $300 stove tax credit rating

Posted by Earth Stove on December 25, 2014 with No Comments as , , , ,
President Obama signed into a law a package of tax credits including the one for wood and pellet stoves.  The stove credit is for $ 300 for stoves purchased between Jan. 1, 2014 and Dec. 31 2014, making it almost entirely a retroactive “incentive.”
To take the credit, taxpayers need to use IRS Form 5695. A biomass stove purchase would be claimed in line 22a of form 5695. The form can be confusing because it never specifies biomass heating equipment, even though its included in the tax break.  Taxpayers do not have submit receipts with their taxes.  They just have to keep the sales receipt and the declaration from the manufacturer stating the stove is eligible, in their records.
There is a $ 500 limit is a lifetime limit for all energy efficiency property, including insulation, doors,
windows or other wood or pellet stoves. So, if a taxpayer has claimed $ 300 in previous years, for example, they could only claim $ 200 on the 2014 taxes for a qualifying stove.

The tax credit can also apply to wood and pellet boilers.  For outdoor boilers, check this EPA list for efficiency levels. Of the 39 qualified outdoor wood and pellet boilers on the list, only 13 appear to qualify for the tax credit.  (Industry uses the European lower heating value (LHV) to qualify for the tax credit, but American HVAC products use the higher heating value (HHV).  The EPA list uses HHV values and anything on the EPA list that is under 68% efficiency HHV, is not likely to be 75% LHV. If a manufacturer, claims a unit on this list qualifies for the tax credit, but has no efficiency rating or is listed at 67% or lower, you may want to contact the EPA to confirm.)

Since this is almost entirely retroactive, stove retailers may want to contact customers from 2014 and notify them that they may now be eligible for the tax credit.  
The credit is available to qualifying stoves that are 75% efficient or greater.  Industry used a loophole so that virtually every EPA certified wood stove, and every pellet stove (certified and uncertified) qualifies as 75% efficient.  Stove manufacturers were allowed to self-certify their efficiency, using a variety of efficiency calculations and choosing whichever test came out highest.  For more on this topic, click here.
Other heating and cooling equipment had far stricter qualification standards to ensure that consumers got a tax credit for a genuinely more efficient appliance or item.  With pellet stoves especially, consumers could have bought a 55% efficient stove, but calculated their fuel savings at 75%, based on manufacturers assurances. Experts believe that 75% (LHV) may be about the average efficiency of a wood or pellet stove.  Despite claims from industry and many other source, pellet stoves are not necessarily any more efficient than wood stoves.  
Natural gas, propane, or oil furnace or hot water boiler with an annual fuel utilization (AFUE) rate of 95 or greater: $ 150
Split system air source heat pump that meets or exceeds 15 SEER/12.5 EER/8.5 HSPF: $ 300
Split system central air conditioner that meets or exceeds 16 SEER and 13 EER: $ 300
Natural gas, propane, or oil water heater which has either an energy factor of at least 0.82 or a thermal efficiency of at least 90 percent: $ 300
Electric heat pump water heater with an energy factor (EF) of at least 2.0: $ 300
The 2014 tax break cost taxpayers about $ 42 billion.  The tax credit for stoves alone is not likely to cost more than $ 50 million and that’s if a majority of people who bought stoves learn about the credit and take it on their tax return.
By re-enacting the extenders only for 2014, lawmakers have effectively forced themselves to consider the temporary breaks again next year and have opened the door to ending or refashioning some.  Experts say it is highly unlikely that the current batch of tax credits will be extended again in 2015, but some other legislation will be crafted that will selectively extend some, possibly permanently, but at least for multiple years.

While re-instating the tax credits helps many homeowners and businesses, simply extending them to the end of the year offers little certainty going forward for various clean energy sectors.  For the stove manufacturers, the tax credit can give a small boost to sales but the production tax credits for the wind  industry can be vital to whether large scale projects move forward or not. 

Heated Up!

20 Beautiful Wood Fired Hot Tubs from All around the Planet

Posted by Earth Stove on December 20, 2014 with No Comments as , , , , , ,
Wood fired baths are an historic tradition, relationship again at minimum to Roman instances when baths known as hypocausts had been built by working sizzling flue gases below a stone tub. &nbspThose Roman tubs have been also off the grid, as are these. &nbspSome are quirky, some passionate, some sensible and some just downright hedonistic. &nbspWhich is your favored?
See our other picture essays: Wooden Stoves from Close to the Globe, and and Firewood Assortment and Stacking from about the entire world.&nbsp

Heated Up!

Outdated-timey wooden stoves want to get new-timey if we really want to make use of them

Posted by Earth Stove on December 9, 2014 with No Comments as , , , , , ,

Monday, December 8, 2014
Nashua Telegraph
by David Brooks

Tom Butcher from Brookhaven Lab,
second from right, tests an automated
stove from New Zealand. Ben Myren,
left, did R&D work on it.

I don’t think very hard when I light up the old wood-burning stove in my basement. Turns out, that might be a problem.

“Combustion technology is incredibly complex. Numerous chemical engineers, combustion engineers, mechanical engineers around the world are constantly trying to understand the intricacies associated with combustion. It is absolutely not what you and I would think – just light a match … especially when you want to get clean combustion and use wood efficiently,” said Rob Rizzo, manager of the Renewable Thermal Program for the Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources.

Rizzo was among the organizers of the 2014 Stove Design Workshop held in November at Brookhaven National Laboratory in New York, the latest in a number of attempts to add some high-tech wizardry to that staple of New England life, the wood stove. (For details, see forgreenheat.blogspot.com/2014/11/rookie-wood-stove-makers-get-highest.html)

Why tinker with something as well-established as wood stoves?

Because, like me, most people don’t think too hard when using them, which makes them inefficient and polluting.

We use green wood or wet wood, and we fiddle with the damper in the wrong way, causing partial combustion and thus more pollution.

The Stove Design Workshop, like a national Stove Design Challenge in 2013 that featured two New Hampshire entries, wants to find technology that can better cope with our stupidity.

The five finalists in the design workshop used a variety of techniques to work around people, including oxygen sensors that control fuel-to-air ratio, a common emission-control technique in cars, and a New Zealand stove that has a “barometrically operated variable choke venturi tube” to control the amount of combustion air entering a stove, particularly at lower burn rates.

“The whole concept with the design challenge is to come up with solid-wood stove that eliminates the human interface. Basically hit a start button and walk away; that is the concept we’re aiming at,” he said.

This already happens with pellet stoves, of course, which is why pellets has led a wood-burning renaissance for building heat.

The drawback is that they burn pellets made of compressed sawdust rather than the wood I can snag for free off my property, especially after the Thanksgiving snowstorm knocked down so many big limbs.

The lure of free fuel means that a lot of people still burn non-pelletized wood for some or all of their heat, although it’s not clear how many.

I have never been able to find good data about people who use cordwood (a.k.a. “roundwood”) as their principal heat source, partly because it’s hard to pin down. I, for example, use it only as a minor supplement of the pellet stove in the living room and our oil-fired furnace.

Rizzo said he didn’t know any data either, but he said that wood stoves remain important, especially in western Massachusetts.

Just as important as convenience is cleanliness. Wood stoves can produce a lot of pollution, particularly fine-particle soot, that is a health hazard. This is particularly a problem around Keene, which has a lot of wood-burning stoves and a geography that traps air in certain weather conditions.

New Hampshire has used rebates to get people to turn in their old stoves for cleaner versions, although with limited success.

But those cleaner stoves aren’t all that great; they’re little more than old stoves with catalytic converters in the stovepipe. Hence the push to build a better mousetrap, so to speak.

“It’s exciting to see new ideas coming forward. We have some educated guesses but we need to do better,” Rizzo said.

“We need to collect more data, about efficiency, emissions, consumption volumes, and also source of wood, sustainability of wood source, quality of wood source. Because rural America is always going to be burning round wood.”

More info:

Heated Up!

Ideal Procedures in Wooden and Pellet Stove Incentive Applications

Posted by Earth Stove on December 1, 2014 with No Comments as , , , , , ,
A report prepared for the University of Maryland Extension Woodland Stewardship Education program
By John Ackerly & Melissa Bollman

Alliance for Green Heat
October 31, 2014
As more and more states are beginning to provide incentives for modern wood and pellet stove installations, an array of criteria are being used to guide which stoves should be eligible and what other requirements should be included. This report looks at environmental, economic, energy efficiency, social equity, and consumer values and suggests ways to maximize program impact.
The federal wood and pellet stove incentive program that lasted from 2009 to 2013 is widely regarded as a particularly poor model. It allowed consumers to claim a $ 300 tax credit for the purchase of any new wood or pellet stove provided it was EPA certified (non-exempt) and at least 75% energy efficient. The energy efficiency requirement was quickly rendered meaningless as stove manufacturers were allowed to self-rate efficiency using any number of available methods. The EPA certification requirement, while it eliminated the highest polluting and most inefficient stoves, was similarly not sufficient for ensuring the best available technology was appropriately incentivized. Also, the federal program did not take important criteria such as professional installation and location into consideration. Thus, a new stove that emitted 5.5 grams of fine particulate matter (PM2.5) emissions per hour could be self-installed in a densely populated urban area and still be entitled to the tax credit.
A table summarizing all statewide incentive programs can be found at the end of this essay. Click here to download a pdf version of the report.

Summary of recommendations:
At a minimum, we believe programs should only incentivize wood and pellet stoves that are certified by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and meet a stricter emission limit than the EPA’s minimum requirement. Energy efficiency is another important criterion that should be considered in stove incentive programs, although lack of reliable, independent data makes accounting for efficiency too difficult as of Fall 2014. To ensure new wood and pellet stoves work as cleanly and efficiently as they are designed, and to protect consumer safety and minimize the risk of fire, incentive programs should require subsidized stoves to be installed by certified hearth professionals. To ensure taxpayer funds for new stoves are spent in an efficient way and limit the negative environmental effects of wood smoke in urban areas, we recommend that new installs of wood stoves should be limited to rural areas, or that programs only make pellet stoves eligible for incentives. We also recommend that programs better target low- and middle-income residents.
There are several examples of state stove incentive programs that contain innovative and “best practice” features, but all programs have opportunities for improvement. We hope this report provides a resource for all programs.
1. Certification of equipment
Wood Stoves
Limiting the eligibility of wood stoves to EPA certified models is a basic feature of stove incentive programs.  The federal tax credit did not mention EPA certification, as it was supposed to be primarily an efficiency incentive.  Several unregulated boilers claimed to be eligible, but we are not aware of any uncertified stoves that claimed the credit.
The EPA provides a list of certified wood stoves available for download on its websitewith other useful information such as the stove manufacturer’s name, model name, emission rate, heat output in BTU per hour, and estimated or actual tested efficiency. Wood stoves certified by the EPA are independently tested to ensure they meet a particulate emissions threshold, which currently is 7.5 grams per hour for non-catalytic wood stoves and 4.1 grams per hour for catalytic wood stoves. Consumers can identify EPA certified wood stoves through a label affixed to the back or side of a stove as well as a hangtag, pictured below.
         EPA began certifying Phase II stoves in 1990, so some certified stoves are nearly 25 years old and need to be retired almost as much as some uncertified ones need to be. Stoves certified in the past 5 years are considered much cleaner and more effective than older, certified stoves.
Pellet stoves
            Pellet stoves are generally perceived to be cleaner and more efficient than wood stoves as a class, and few stove incentive programs have restricted pellet stove eligibility to those certified by the EPA. However, independent test data shows that this widely held belief about pellet stove efficiency may be incorrect. Some pellet stoves on the market are as low as 40% efficient, and many are in the 50% and 60% range, when they easily can be in the 70s given available technologies. We believe that households should not be subsidized into unwittingly buying a low-efficiency pellet stove that will saddle them with much higher fuel costs overtime. The list of EPA certified pellet stoves can be found on the same list as certified wood stoves. EPA certified pellet stoves are usually more efficient than their uncertified (exempt) counterparts because exempt pellet stoves often use the 35 to 1 air to fuel ratio loophole to avoid certification, at the cost of lower efficiency.
This issue will be obsolete at some point in 2015, when all new pellet stoves will be required to be certified under new EPA stove regulations.
Masonry heaters
Masonry heaters are such an expensive, niche product that they almost do not need discussion in these programs.  However, we encourage programs to make certain masonry heaters eligible, even though they are not certified. The EPA is currently considering a method to certify masonry heaters that may be released in the next year. In the meantime, Washingtonand Colorado maintain their own lists of certified masonry heaters approved for sale. These lists can be a useful reference for designing new stove incentive programs inclusive of masonry heaters. Coloradodoes not set a specific emissions limit, but maintains a list of over 30 approved masonry heaters by manufacturer. Washington sets an emissions limit of 7.3 grams per kilogram of masonry mass, which may be more useful to policymakers creating incentive programs. Washington may be setting the bar low, considering that the EPA has proposed a limit equivalent to 1.8 g/kg for future regulations.
2. Stricter emission limits
            While stove incentive programs in Montana, Idaho, and Arizonause EPA limits to set emissions criteria, several other stove incentive programs set stricter emission limits for eligible appliances than the EPA’s 7.5 and 4.1 grams per hour for non-catalytic and catalytic stoves. Setting stricter emission limits for wood stoves can help identify which stoves can perform best under optimal conditions. Some of the cleanest stoves by EPA emission standards may perform better in the real world. Equally important is using dry fuel and operating the stove correctly to obtain good real world performance. Pellet stoves, which operate in the field much more like they do in the testing lab as compared to wood stoves, should be held to 2 grams per hour, as in Maryland and New York’s program, or 2.5 grams per hour at the most, as in Oregon, Maine and the federal Housing and Urban Development (HUD)’s PowerSaver low interest loan programs.
The state of Washington has been a leader in establishing stricter state-wide limits. Currently they are 4.5 grams per hour for non-catalytic stoves and 2.5 grams per hour for catalytic stoves. Washington’s list of approved wood heating technologies, including masonry stoves, provides an easy standard policy makers can build into incentive regulations.
A state of Oregon incentive program requires stricter limits of 3.5 grams per hour for non-catalytic stoves and 2.5 grams per hour for pellet and catalytic stoves, which was adopted by Efficiency Maine’s stove incentive program. To take it a step farther, Maryland’s current limits are 3 grams per hour for wood stoves and 2 grams for pellet stoves. As the EPA continues to refine its certification criteria, we suggest that stove incentive programs adopt Maryland’s approachof limiting the eligibility of incentives to a certain grams per hour cutoff according to the data on the EPA’s certified stove list.
The argument against using stricter emission limits for wood stoves has some merit, but on the whole we and many other independent experts think it’s worthwhile.  It’s true that the test labs often know exactly how to test a stove, and can hit the stove’s sweet spots to get a low number of emissions that a consumer never will. Manufacturers that hire a test lab to do R&D on a stove before testing it may be likely to get even better numbers, because the lab is that much more familiar with the stove. The new EPA stove regulations are changing the test protocol, which may require stoves to burn cleaner on all test runs instead of averaging the test runs.  This could give emission numbers more relevance in the real world.
3. Efficiency
There is still no easy way to use efficiency in stove incentive programs, and as a result stoves are excluded from scores of state, local and utility incentive programs that are rooted in energy efficiency. Despite the benefits of having them included in incentive programs, industry has been reluctant to disclose efficiency numbers, much less agree to schemes where some stoves would get incentivized and other not.    
Pellet stoves are ideally suited to be part of many energy efficiency incentive programs, if they would release their tested efficiency values. Their continued exclusion may contribute to the perception that this technology does not fit into the mainstream energy efficiency movement, or worse, that it is not “green” enough to be included. Since one company, Hearth & Home Technologies, makes a very large percentage of the pellet stoves sold in the US, including many very efficient ones, they could significantly move the market by taking leadership and disclosing their actual, tested efficiency numbers.
Efficiency has become a thoroughly muddled, confusing, and controversial issue as they are several ways of measuring efficiency and results can be misleading. One of the greatest problems with this approach is the lack of third party tested efficiency data. The EPA list has verified efficiency data for only about two dozen units comprising mostly of the highest performing catalytic stoves. By only using stoves that have actual third party efficiency listing, a program would be basically limiting the selection to one non-catalytic Jøtul stove and a variety of large catalytic stoves. Only one pellet stove company, Seraph, has provided real efficiency data to the EPA thus far.  
Setting efficiency as an eligibility requirement would help encourage manufacturers to provide third party efficiency data to the EPA, which most have been reluctant to do in the past. The proposed new EPA stove regulations will require all stoves to be tested and listed for efficiency, but there is widespread concern that the EPA will not require, or even have the capacity to make, efficiencies available to the public within the first year or two after promulgation.

            The State of Oregon’s residential energy tax creditfor wood and pellet stoves is the only one that has put the effort into a workable and innovative system to incentivize the purchase of more efficient stoves without excluding inefficient stoves from eligibility. The more efficient the new stove is, the higher the tax credit the consumer receives. If the stove does not have an actual measured efficiency on the EPA list, the amount of the credit varies by stove type. Non-catalytic stoves are worth the least credit, catalytic stoves the second least, and pellet stoves the most. If the stove has an actual reported efficiency, then the consumer receives a tax credit based on how much more efficient the stove is than the minimum Oregon has established. The maximum rebate is $ 1,500.
 Both Massachusetts and Maine have attempted to use stove efficiency as an eligibility metric but the metrics were not clear or feasible and it had to be dropped.
A local utility program in Fort Collins, Coloradooffers homeowners zero-interest loans if they upgrade their wood burning appliance or fireplace to a more efficient class of heater, according to the default efficiencies provided by the EPA. For example, homeowners can upgrade an uncertified stove to a certified stove, or a wood stove to a new pellet stove, but not the other way around. This unique method of incentivizing the purchase of more efficient wood appliances has the potential to help consumers save money, but only if the EPA provided more accurate efficient data on pellet stoves. 
We find it is a good practice to include efficiency in the criteria, but we must acknowledge that the managers of these programs are struggling with some unintended barriers and consequences. Oregon is fixing one problem, which had led the tax credit calculation to favor non-catalytic stoves over the cleaner catalytic or pellet stoves. This put the agency in charge of the program, the Oregon Department of Energy, at odds with the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality. The Oregon tax credit amount is based on the efficiency improvement over the EPA’s default efficiency. So a non-cat tested at 70% would have a 7% improvement over the 63% default. A pellet stove tested at 75% would not have any improvement over the 78% EPA default efficiency. The program thus unintentionally puts pellet stoves at a disadvantage because the EPA has set unrealistically high default efficiency for pellet stoves.
4. Rebate amounts
Providing a higher rebate amount for pellet stoves than wood stoves is another common “best practice.” Maryland provides $ 700 for pellet stoves and $ 500 for wood stoves, steering households who may be on the fence towards a pellet appliance, which will be cleaner. With lower install costs for pellet stoves, the higher rebate may also be a reason more than 70% of consumers use the rebate for pellet stoves in Maryland. 
Right-sizing the rebate amount is also something that all programs must grapple with.  Funding that goes too quickly, or not quickly enough can sometimes cause problems. One money saving incentive that more jurisdictions are employing is bounty, or paying consumers $ 200-$ 400 to remove an old stove from circulation without replacing it with anything. For areas with excessive wood smoke pollution, this may be a far more effective per dollar of investment than a change out program.
5. Professional Installation
Requiring professional installation is standard for virtually all incentive programs. Wood and pellet stoves are potentially dangerous appliances and must be installed with the utmost concern for safety. Hundreds of homes burn down every year due to poor installations and lack of attention to clearances.
 Homeowners seeking to avoid the added cost of a stove installation are often tempted to self-install. In some cases, installation can be greater than the cost of a stove itself. State codes vary about permits and installation requirements for wood stoves, so state incentive programs that require professional installation can play a large role in helping to address this safety issue. Pellet stoves, which do not require a full chimney system, tend to entail less problematic, unsafe installs. However, with any appliance that presents a fire hazard, a professional installation by a hearth professional is a good practice.  
Options for incentive programs include requiring that stoves be installed by hearth professionals that have Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) http://www.csia.orgor National Fireplace Institute (NFI) http://www.nficertified.orgcertifications. Another option is simply to require a certified contractor, or someone who has been approved to do specialty energy efficiency or weatherization work, install the stove. An added benefit of requiring hearth professional stove installation is that CSIA, NFI, and MHA would also be more likely to help advertise the incentive program if they are involved.
Most current state incentive programs, if they require professional installation at all, do not limit the eligible installers to hearth professionals. For example, Maine’s program initially required stoves to be installed by contractors with a solid fuel license, but did not provide for hearth professionals to do installations. In New York, a Energy Star professional is required.
Maryland’s program also initially required professional installation, but later waived the requirement after receiving a number of consumer complaints. Maryland began accepting self-installations provided that the owners provided documentation that the stove has been inspected post-install by either a county inspector or an insurance adjuster. While we believe requiring professional installation is the best practice, requiring inspection at a minimum can be a good compromise.
6. Low-income considerations
Some incentive programs offer higher rebate amounts to low-income families. This tends to be very common in change-out programs, and less common in non-trade out incentive programs. In New York, however, change-out of an old one stove is required to receive a rebate for a new one, unless the household is low-income, when the rebate is offered without a change out.
Change out programs tend to have limited budgets, but are usually very popular among consumers. Whether it’s a change out, or a straight incentive program, it is best if taxpayer funds are spent on consumer who need it most and not wasted on “free riders” who would make the purchase anyway without the incentive. When rebates disappear in a few hours or even a few weeks, it likely means the rebate was too generous and a lesser rebate could have resulted in a more installs.
To ensure stove change-out program funds benefit low-income consumers, the programs can be opened to them first and heavily advertised in low-income regions.
            Maryland considered a higher rebate for low-income families, but was dissuaded by added bureaucracy it involves and lack of data to demonstrate that it would be successful. 
            The use of income to qualify households for incentives or subsidies has had little support in renewable energy programs, even though it could be done relatively easily. Incentive programs for solar or geothermal rarely, if ever, disqualify families with high household incomes of $ 250,000 per year or more. Wealthy people like subsidies as much as low and middle-income people and it’s often very unpopular to steer taxpayer subsidies away from the richest families, who often have oversized homes.
As long as professional installation is required, incentivizing more affordable stoves from big box stores can make funding go much further and enable more low-income households to participate. Good quality EPA-certified stoves start at $ 700 and one of the most popular stoves in the country sells for $ 900. If stoves could be bought at a deep discount in bulk, program administrators may also get CSIA professionals to establish a discounted fixed price for a certain type of installation. Professional installation can be done by CSIA accredited chimney sweeps if local NFI trained staff at specialty hearth stores will only install their own products. Such a fixed price would be possible for pellet stoves and for wood stoves on single or two story homes where the pipe is mounted on the exterior of the house. If larger rebates are not provided to low-income families, this is a vital way to help them overcome high upfront costs.
7. Minimizing Free-Riders
A perennial problem with all rebate and incentive programs is that some people who take the rebate or the incentive would have made the purchase anyway, and so the funds serve little purpose.  Determining whether a program has a high or low number of “free-riders” is also difficult. 
            This is regarded as a cost of doing business for many rebate programs, such as those for purchase of Energy Star appliances. For stoves, the number of “free-riders” is far higher if consumers don’t learn about the incentive until they are making a purchase in a showroom.  However, if only the cleanest stoves are incentivized, and professional installation is required, programs can have the impact of resulting in cleaner, safer installs. They can also reward those manufacturers who invest more in R&D and produce cleaner stoves, spurring more innovation.
8. Household/area eligibility:
While pellet stoves can be acceptable in rural and more densely populated neighborhoods due to their more consistent low emissions, there are legitimate concerns about programs that encourage or subsidize the installation of wood stoves in densely inhabited or urban areas from a health and nuisance perspectives. Maryland’s program, for instance, is only available to homes that do not have access to natural gas, a backdoor way of limiting installs to more rural, sparsely inhabited areas where available heating fuels are expensive and residents can benefit the most from energy cost relief.  Initial data from the program shows there have been more wood and pellet stove grants awarded per capita in the more rural and less affluent counties than the more populated central region of the state, indicating there has been some success in this method.
A Woodstove Change-out Program in parts of Connecticut, Massachusetts and Rhode Island provided a $ 3,000 voucher to households who receive Medicaid, Low-income heating assistance, or the Women’s Infant and Children’s Nutrition Program.
Incentive programs can also work closely with low-income heating assistance (LIHEAP) programs, to ensure that families who receive LIHEAP are aware of the program and can access it.
Instead of using access to natural gas as an indicator of housing density, zip codes or counties could be designated as areas where an incentive may be appropriate. Another option would be to limit wood stove installs in more densely populated areas to only when an old, uncertified wood stove is being removed and recycled.
8. Energy Audit:
Energy audits are rarely used even in programs to incentivize modern, bulk fed pellet boilers, much less stove programs. But increasingly, incentives for stoves are available as part of a deeper energy retrofit that starts with an energy audit. Auditors can educate homeowners about the importance of upgrading to safer, more efficient equipment, spot dangerous installations, and assist in removing dangerous stoves. The Building Performance Institute (BPI) is taking the lead in developing guidelines for energy auditors to inspect wood stoves. Requiring energy audits in conjunction with professional installation would assist in states providing a more holistic energy service to consumers when incentivizing wood stoves. The Alliance for Green Heat and University of Maryland Extension produced a draft of steps to inspect a wood stove as a resource.
9. Dedicated outside air:
Several incentive programs in Oregon, Maine and in some HUD Power Saver programs require a dedicated outside air supply, but the requirement is far from accepted in hearth professional circles. In very tight homes, which are still relatively rare in the United States, outside air supply is important, but to require it for all homes not only adds a potentially unnecessary cost, it could even be a drawback.  If a home were found to be very tight, and has competing venting needs, such as a vented kitchen hood, a wood stove may compete for indoor air which could even reverse the flow of air down the chimney. In such a case, a dedicated outside air vent may be recommended for the stove. In Oregon, the requirement could mean simply a $ 35 vent that provides air within several feet of the stove. Many leading experts question the use of outside air.
10. Education:
Any program incentivizing new wood burning appliances should be coupled with educational materials on correct stove use and efficient burning practices. New appliances used incorrectly can negate the benefits of a new stove, contribute to more air pollution, and turn public opinion against wood burning and the program. It is well known that in terms of achieving ideal efficiency and cleanliness, choosing the right stove is only half the battle; the other half is the fuel and the operator. No matter how modern or clean a wood stove is, it is crucial that the operator use dry, split wood and give their stove enough air to maintain a clean burn. The EPA Burn Wise program, is a great resource for consumers that should be promoted by incentive programs. Consumers could even be asked when they receive an incentive to sign a pledge promising to only burn dry wood.  
11. Partners and Outreach
A “best practice” for virtually any incentive program is building a network of engaged partners who are committed to the particular goals of the program. For instance, if benefitting lower income populations is a goal, partnering with a local or state low-income heating assistance program can help get the word out to that population. Conversely, we found one incentive program in Alabama, where even the local hearth retail stores did not know it existed.
If the program is run by a state energy office, bringing in the expertise of the state air quality office is also important to ensure that agencies aren’t working at cross-purposes, as what happened in Oregon.
12. Reducing emissions
            Using a rebate or incentive to steer consumers toward the cleanest wood or pellet stove has some positive emission benefits on its own. Some states, such as Idaho, have for years required people to turn in an old, uncertified stove to get an incentive for a new one.  This resembles an ongoing, state-wide change-out, more than a stand alone incentive program, as it is not open to people who do not already have an old stove. Possibly the oldest continuously operating stove incentive program is in Arizona, where the state gives an incentive to put a EPA certified stove in a fireplace, to reduce the use of fireplaces for heating. And, in New York, the return of an old stove is waived for lower income families who want to buy a new pellet stove and do not have access to natural gas.
13.  Providing moisture meters and subsidizing wood sheds:
Moisture meters are effective yet inexpensive tools for ensuring homeowners only burn dry wood. One option is to provide a free ($ 10) moisture meter to every home that has a stove installed. One major woodstove manufacturer has begun to include a free moisture meter with each purchase of one of its wood stoves. States have the option of teaming up with the EPA’s Burn Wise program, which is promoting voluntary efforts like this to help wood stove owners burn cleaner and more efficiently.
Incentive programs could subsidize, prioritize or even require homes to have or build woodsheds. This would help ensure that subsidizing a new stove will result in reduced smoke from the home, or homes with woodsheds could receive a higher rebate, which incentivizes proper storage and educates people about its importance. An even more ambitious and more innovative concept would be to provide a firewood shed with every project. The EPA Burn Wise has a modular woodshed plan that cost $ 217 in materials and can be built off site or onsite.  Some experts question if a $ 150 rebate to help build a wood shed to keep wood dry may produce similar or more air quality benefits as a $ 1,000 rebate for a stove. The logistics of this is not necessarily easy, but it is something worth considering.
14. Monitoring and Evaluation
            Assessing the effectiveness of the program using agreed upon method is important. Many renewable energy incentive programs, including those that involve solar and geothermal, struggle with accurate and meaningful assessment often because the agency in charge of the programs wants to show it as a success.  Meaningful third party assessments can be expensive and may not be worthwhile unless the program is ongoing and there is an opportunity to change the program, something that outside interest groups may oppose. But tweaking program requirements is almost always necessary, and key stakeholders play a vital role in this. 
            For wood and pellet stoves, assessing the success of a program can be especially difficult because there is no easy way to meter heat output or fossil fuels avoidance. Particulate emission testing can be done in smaller, valley settings, but is difficult to monitor in state-wide settings.  Surveys of all participants via mail and email could be very useful and are an underutilized tool for gaining insights into program results. Surveys of hearth retailers can also be important.
Conclusion:
“Best practices” in stove incentive programs are likely to be increasingly important as more options for smart deployment become possible. States with more expertise and more background in wood heat are more likely to have ability to incorporate more best practices into their programs. Trying to include too many best practices can make programs too complicated for both consumers and the implementing agency, so it’s important for program designers to tailor the requirements to the program goals. Using a state’s program requirements for a solar incentive program is often a good starting place when developing wood and pellet stove incentive programs.
At this point in the evolution of stove technology, we feel that pellet stoves are particularly ready to be part of more incentive programs. However, public disclosure of efficiencies by manufacturers will make this process much quicker.
 Almost all programs have had to make adjustments after establishing requirements that did not work as planned.  While this is a normal part of the learning curve of establishing a program for any appliance or technology, we hope this short report may lead agencies to ask the right questions and consider effective options.



A Comparison of Eligibility Requirements for Stoves Incentive Programs
October 31, 2014


* This efficiency level was not measured or enforced in any meaningful way.
** This program only allows upgrades from lower to higher efficiency using the EPA default numbers.
*** MD and ME allow for professional inspection in lieu of professional installation.
**** No efficiency minimum; higher efficiency stoves get higher rebate amounts.

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Rookie Wood Stove Makers Get Highest Score in Style Workshop

Posted by Earth Stove on November 27, 2014 with No Comments as , , , , , , ,

Taylor Myers and Ryan
Fisher with the Mulciber,
the greatest rating stove.
A stove developed and constructed by graduate engineering learners acquired the&nbsp
greatest score in an global Stove Layout Workshop focused on automated wooden stove technology.&nbsp The purpose of the occasion was to evaluate modern systems that can support stoves decrease true-entire world emissions that end result from very poor operation by the customer and use of unseasoned wooden, the two of which are widespread difficulties.&nbsp

10 judges scored the stoves dependent on emissions, effectiveness, innovation, marketplace attractiveness and basic safety.&nbsp The highest scoring stove, the Mulciber, tailored emission control techniques that are in cars, these kinds of as an oxygen sensor that controls the gasoline-to-air ratio, a continuously engaged catalyst and an exhaust fuel fan. &nbspThe Mulciber was also tested with unseasoned, fifty% humidity content material wooden and done really nicely. &nbsp&nbspThe team, who experienced by no means developed a stove just before the 2013 Wood Stove Decathlon, overhauled their first prototype and have now shaped the firm&nbspMF Fireplace&nbspto bring the stove to industry. &nbsp

The Workshop was held at the DOE’s Brookhaven Nationwide Laboratory in New York and introduced jointly a assorted assortment of&nbspstakeholders – learners, professors, industry, regulators, air good quality authorities – who invested a week collectively analyzing the issues and remedies to household cord wooden emissions.

Five stoves competed in the function, which is portion of the ongoing Wooden Stove Layout Challenge run by the non-profit team, Alliance for Eco-friendly Warmth. In 2013, the Design and style Challenge hosted the Wooden Stove Decathlon on the Countrywide Mall in Washington DC, a substantial profile event modeled following the Photo voltaic Decathlon.&nbsp This yr, the occasion was at a lab so that stoves could be tested more rigorously and test info could be shared with the participants.

The core issue is that most buyers do not work wooden stoves nicely and numerous use unseasoned wooden.&nbsp In addition, EPA certification screening for wooden stoves do not simulate how wood is burned in people’s houses.&nbsp For&nbspdecades, producers have been constructing stoves to pass that check, but not always to burn cleanly in homes.&nbsp This workshop resolved that by screening with cordwood that was not totally seasoned, capturing some start off-up emissions in the test and evaluating how automation can decrease operator error.&nbsp At Brookhaven, stoves were analyzed at four areas of their melt away cycle: heat begin, steady condition one, very hot reload and constant state two. The present EPA stove certification examination makes use of seasoned 2x4s and 4x4s and only checks for emissions following the start-up interval, once the stove is sizzling.

Automatic stoves, in which computer systems, not consumers, adjust the air-to-fuel ratio, are not able to be examined by EPA check strategies so they are not in a position to enter the US market.&nbsp&nbsp A key goal of the Workshop was to start off designing an different take a look at approach to the EPA’s technique, so that automated stoves can be analyzed and grow to be licensed in the US, as they already are in Europe. Tom Butcher, a senior scientist at Brookhaven Lab, hosted one particular of the general public webinars throughout the 7 days on that subject.

Rankings:&nbspThe judges gave double excess weight to emissions and performance, as they did in the 2013 Wood Stove Decathlon, because of the value of these values.&nbsp&nbspThis 12 months, the judges made a decision not to decide affordability because most of the stoves had been prototypes or systems developed to be built-in into other stoves and supreme costs and pricing was too speculative. Each and every of the ten judges scored each stove on innovation and marketplace charm. &nbspThe other a few standards ended up dependent on lab tests.
“We want to congratulate the MF Fireplace staff – and all the groups – for taking part in a method of sharing innovation, concepts and check results,” stated John Ackerly, coordinator of the function and President of the Alliance for Inexperienced Heat.&nbsp “These stoves have many of the remedies to extreme smoke from modern day-working day wood stoves and are challenging the EPA and the stove sector, to capture up with new technologies and new possibilities,” Ackerly mentioned.

The Wittus crew with the Twinfire.
Even though MF Fireplace stove, the Mulciber, experienced the highest mixed score, numerous of the other stoves stood out in key regions.&nbsp The German Twinfire, created by the Wittus team, experienced the second highest general efficiency, at seventy four%, and a single of the cheapest emission rates on a test operate. &nbspIts automatic air regulation enabled the stove to perform regularly effectively at distinct component of the burn cycle and it gained the maximum score for consumer charm, for its downdraft flame into a lower chamber.&nbsp&nbsp
The VcV, wired to monitor
temperature in important spots
The VcV, a New Zealand mechanical device that operates without any electrical energy, reached the highest typical effectiveness, at 82% based in portion on the lowest typical stack temperature at 167 levels (F), and the most affordable emission charge on one particular of its assessments.&nbsp It also&nbspacquired the 2nd maximum marks for innovation.&nbsp This was the only stove that did not need electrical energy and will be extremely cost-effective.&nbspA few out of 4 exams were extremely, really good, but on one the scorching reloads, some thing happened and that diminished its total figures, and took it out of contention for very first or second place.&nbsp This unit has undergone extensive R&ampD and is one of the entries that is closest to becoming all set for the marketplace.

The Catalus Ventus by ClearStak, acquired the optimum score of all for CO reduction, and the second
The ClearStak staff with the
Catalus&nbspVentus

optimum for emissions.&nbsp&nbsp It was a highly progressive entry, using dual cyclones, a pre-heated, constantly engaged catalyst and a fabric filter. &nbspIts sensors and controller held the oxygen rates extremely steady, in 50 percent a percentage level. The technologies could be built-in into a new stove, or added on to an existing stove. The designers did not consider to optimize performance, which impacted their all round score. &nbsp&nbsp

The Kleiss, all set for tests.
The Kleiss arrived at the competition with the hallmarks of an modern, automatic stove that could handle soaked wooden and virtually remove operator error.&nbsp The stoves sensors and algorithms had been designed to maintain quite very hot combustion temperatures and to let the operator to call for much more of significantly less heat, although prioritizing cleanliness.&nbsp Nonetheless, the stove did not perform as predicted, with secondary air contributing to principal burning with a large gas load. &nbsp&nbsp

Examination outcomes for all the stoves are offered listed here. &nbsp(References to grams for every hour are not equivalent to EPA gram per hour exams given that the Workshop utilized harder examination protocols.) A series of shows by the stove designers about their stoves and other stove and combustion professionals are also accessible.


The Wood Stove Style Challenge is a technological innovation competitiveness that also strives to deliver crucial stakeholders together to evaluate and understand about new stove technologies. &nbspPrincipal funding came from the New York State Vitality Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), the Osprey Foundation and the US Forest Provider.&nbsp Screening assistance was presented by Myren Labs, Masonry Heaters Affiliation and Testo and Wohler, two German businesses who are pushing the envelope of precise real time lab and field tests of particulate make a difference. &nbspThe Chimney Safety Institute of America and Olympia Chimney donated the chimney installations, and Blaze King and Woodstock Soapstone also supplied assist.

The 12 member Organizing Committee oversaw building protocols, tests and scoring and included reps from Alliance for Environmentally friendly Warmth, Aprovecho Study Lab, Brookhaven National Lab, Clarkson College, Hearth.com, Masonry Heater Association, Massachusetts Department of Power Assets, Myren Labs, NYSERDA, US Forest Support and Washington Department of Ecology. The Committee is now contemplating possibilities for a 2015 Stove Design Problem.


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Dec. 4 Webinar: Very best Techniques in Wood and Pellet Stove Plans

Posted by Earth Stove on November 14, 2014 with No Comments as , , , , , , , ,
The College of Maryland Extension Woodland Stewardship Schooling program will host a one-hour webinar on Thursday, December 4th from twelve:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m. to offer an overview of the “best practices” in wooden and pellet stove incentive packages throughout the United States.&nbsp
Indicator up below.
As renewable power programs develop around the region, far more and much more states are such as incentives for wood or pellet boilers and stoves. In contrast to other household appliances, this kind of as refrigerators, furnaces or washing machines, wood heating gear have no “Energy Star” labels for shoppers to check with to make strength performance comparisons. As a result, many states have devised a range of techniques to determine the eligibility of cleaner and more productive stoves and boilers.
This webinar will discover the functions of these programs, and will use Maryland’s stove incentive program as an case in point of how one particular condition fulfilled its objectives for guaranteeing shoppers purchase the most productive appliances available. The speakers will determine what they see as emerging ideal methods in stove and boiler incentive packages as these initiatives become far more mainstream.
This webinar features displays from Jonathan Kays, College of Maryland Extension All-natural Useful resource Extension Specialist John Ackerly, President of the Alliance for Eco-friendly Heat and Emilee Van Norden, Clean Power Program Manager of the Maryland Energy Administration.
The webinar is free and open to the general public. &nbspIndicator up now to reserve a spot.
For related content material:&nbsp

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Test Benefits, Shows and Images from the 2014 Collaborative Stove Style Workshop

Posted by Earth Stove on November 11, 2014 with No Comments as , , , , , , , , ,

Test Results

Portion of the Workshop principles was a prerequisite that teams experienced to publicly share their check results, which is a essential component of the collaborative and instructional approach. For the duration of the Workshop, each and every group introduced their examination data to the fifty attendees who had the possibility to go over the benefits and give comments to the &nbspteam. &nbspUnlike EPA test, which begins when the stove is currently very hot, we used a warm commence, capturing some start off-up emissions, we utilized cordwood instead of crib wood and we used higher humidity content material wooden. Be aware: any gram for every hour (g/h) references in the beneath test outcomes are not similar to g/h values from EPA check labs simply because we did not follow the Strategy 28 examination protocol.&nbsp

1. MF Hearth, the Mulciber. Powerpoint hyperlink.
2. The Kleiss stove. Powerpoint hyperlink.
three. much more coming quickly!

Staff Displays about their Stoves
Each and every staff presented the concepts and systems in the stoves. For a brief complex overview of all the stoves with make contact with data for the Groups, click right here.

one.&nbspThe Kleiss stove&nbsp(powerpoint)
two.&nbspThe Wittus Twinfire&nbsp(pdf)
three.&nbspThe VcV&nbsp(pdf)

Professional Shows
Throughout the Workshop, there were a series of expert shows and webinars about automation, standard stove technological innovation, public well being implications, air high quality, regulatory concerns and other related topics.

one. Dr. Tom Butcher, Brookhaven Nationwide Lab,&nbspAssessment of the Automated Stove Test Protocol&nbsp(powerpoint)
2.&nbspWebinar with the five groups, hosted by BTEC.
three. Glenn Miller, Fairbanks Air District, &nbspTechnology Improvements vs. Actions Modification&nbsp(powerpoint)
four. Ellen Burkhard, NYSERDA,&nbspRenewable Warmth New York&nbsp(powerpoint)
5. Norbert Senf, MHA, Emission Tests of Masonry Heaters (powerpoint)
6. Gael Ulrich, Smoke Particle Formation Essential, (PDF)

Pictures: Day 1

Ivana Sirovica, Jessica Peterson and Jeff Hallowell, from ClearStak&nbspBrookhaven Countrywide Laboratory.

Rebecca raking coal mattress to put together for the up coming load of gasoline.&nbsp
Many thanks to John Pilger and Chimney Basic safety Institute of The united states and Olympia Chimney for donating pipe and installation!
Indigo Hotel in Riverhead NY – our foundation for the week

The Testo exhibits real time emissions, with leading line demonstrating particulate subject (PM)

Rebecca Trojanowski gets rid of filters. The dark circle in foreground are the particulates on a filter from the examination melt away that will be weighed to determine grams for every hour.

Even the kindling is very carefully weighed so that every stove will get the very same warm up rick.

Jessica Peterson from ClearStak doing work late into the evening to get ready for testing tomorrow.


Photographs: Working day 2



Taylor Myers showing a thermal graphic of the Mulciber stove.&nbsp

Ben Myren, Tom Butcher and Eric Schaeffer firing up the New Zealand VcV stove.&nbsp

Taylor Myers exhibiting a genuine time digital display, employing bluetooth, of temperatures in his stove.

Produced by ClearStak, this genuine time digital show displays 154 degree stack&nbsptemperature, 529 in the firebox and 451 in the&nbspcatalyst. Approximated efficiencies ended up in the mid-80s.&nbsp

Glenn Miller from the Fairbanks Air District on the still left, Rob Rizzo from Mass. Dept. of Energy, and Gaetan Piedalue and Marc Suave from Polytest Labs, a EPA accredited take a look at lab. Ellen Burkhard from NYSERDA is peering into the stove.&nbsp

Ben Myren, Tom Butcher and Eric Schaeffer firing up the New Zealand VcV stove.




Day 3

Corey Van, 1 of the young ClearStak staff that assisted construct the Catalus Ventus.&nbsp

Rebecca Trojanowski loads the Catalus Ventus.

The tube on the right of black pipe is a Condar, which operates very in the same way to a dilution tunnel. Norbert Senf is employing it concurrently with the Testo PM analyzer.
A warm up take a look at load created by Ben Myren. This leading down burn off, with smallest kindling on top, and larger kindling on the base is a very effective way to commence fires.

Amanda Aldridge of the EPA talks with Norbert Senf (guiding flue pipe) about the Condar analyzer. Rob Rizzo from Mass. Dept. of Vitality in upper proper.

Electronic controllers that can be place in wood heating systems that had been part of Jeff Hallowell’s presentation. Harold Garobedian in purple jacket on appropriate, and Rafael Sanchez from the EPA guiding him.

A new Testo humidity meter that operates without pins.
George Wei hangs practically upside down to set a temperature sensor in the top of the flue pipe to evaluate stack temperature. This is a essential info point for deciding effectiveness.

Working day four &nbsp &nbsp &nbsp &nbsp &nbsp &nbsp &nbsp &nbsp &nbsp &nbsp &nbsp &nbsp &nbsp &nbsp &nbsp &nbsp &nbsp &nbsp &nbsp &nbsp &nbsp
John Ackerly on opening working day, welcoming absolutely everyone and chatting about how automated stoves can remedy many problematic problems issues that appear with widespread wooden burning.
From the still left to appropriate – Ellen Burkhard from NYSERDA, Lisa Rector from NESCAUM, Amanda Aldridge from EPA and Mark Knaebe from US Forest Services.
We invested hours in this place, possessing diverse displays each hour, with plenty of discussion and discussion. Right here, Ben Myren is presenting the testing final results of the VcV stove.
We invested several hours in this area, possessing various shows every hour, with lots of discussion and debate. Right here, Ben Myren is presenting the tests results of the VcV stove.

Gregory Elliiot and Peter Cullen from Wohler, and John Pilger from Chimney Basic safety Institute of The united states.

We managed to uncover a BYOB restaurant which led to far more crimson wine intake. From left – Rod Tinnemore, Dave Misiuk, Amanda Aldridge, John Ackerly, Norbert Senf, Ellen Burkhard and LIsa Rector.


Final Day
The Catalus Ventus exhibits outstanding hot catalyst temps in contrast to the both the stack and the firebox. This was for the duration of begin up, when it was emitting maximum smoke, but between the catalyst, the cloth filter, almost no smoke came out the stack.

Ivana Sirovica, a Study Fellow from Alliance for Inexperienced Heat, and Ben Myren, as Ben completed the ultimate test of the 7 days.

Tom Butcher using the Wohler particulate analyzer on the VcV stove. Because we utilised wood that was often over 25% humidity material, we had to deal with far more moisture in our tests instruments.
Beneath the VcV stove is exactly where the magic happens, and mechanical valves immediately close or open the major or secondary air, depending on what the stove wants to maintain a clean and productive burn up. THis stove managed a constant low melt away fee with lovely swirling flames in the upper part of the chamber.

Ben Myren displays how his thermocouples could study the temperature in 10 places of the stove at all moments. The best of the flue could be 250, when the air entering the catalyst was almost 800, and 1300 in the firebox.

Brian Gauld, the owner of the VcV travelled from New Zealand, in which there is also demand for automation that can increase stove performance much far more than stoves are probably to carry out when operated manually.

&nbsp &nbsp &nbsp &nbsp&nbsp Dr. Phil Hopke of Clarkson College and Mattian Woll of Testo.


Our twine wooden was kiln dried and then shrink wrapped so it would preserve a consistent humidity articles. The wooden was far wetter, on common, than wood employed in EPA examination certifications, which aided us evaluate how these automated stoves could execute with larger moisture content wooden.
Planning of kindling for the assessments.
George Wei and Yussef were two of Brookhavens proficient technicians. The two have worked on improving oil combustion techniques, outside wooden boilers and stoves.
The final stove is taken out, and demonstrates the problem of tests the identical working day as taking away stoves that are nevertheless scorching!&nbsp


Heated Up!