Hearth Insight
December 2020
Member Spotlights:
Thank You to All of Our 2021 Renewing/New NWHPBA Members!
Thank you to all of our renewing & new members who have signed up already for 2021!!!

  • A Your Town Chimney, Inc.
  • Accent Stove & Spa
  • Associated Energy Systems
  • All American Chimney Service
  • Aqua Quip
  • Aqua Rec's Fireside Hearth & Home
  • Axmen Bellevue Fireplace Shop
  • Burning Stoves & Stuff
  • Cascade Fire Solutions Inc
  • Central Montana Propane LLC
  • Chimney Techniques
  • Coastal 
  • Craft Stove of Western WA, Inc
  • Dan's Stove and Spa
  • ESi
  • Falcos
  • Fireplace Outfitters
  • Fireside Home Solutions
  • Fosseens Home & Hearth
  • Gas Products Inc.
  • GREATER NW REPS, INC
  • Hannig Marketing
  • Hearthworks, LLC
  • Heritage Fireplace Shop
  • Keller Supply
  • Lakewood Gas
  • Lisac's Fireplaces & Stoves Inc.
  • Master Craft Hearth & Home
  • Monroe Fireplace Inc
  • Mountain View Hearth Products
  • Northwest Hearth and Home
  • Obadiah's Woodstoves
  • Olympic Stove & Spas Inc
  • Quality Stoves & Pellets Inc. 
  • Rich's for the Home
  • Seattle Fireplace
  • Silver Bow Hearth & Home, LLC
  • S.J. Perry Company Inc
  • Smitty's Fireplace Shop
  • Sutter Home and Hearth
  • Technical Glass Products
  • Tri-County Stoves, LLC
  • Wallace's Stove & Fireplace
  • White Heating & Air Conditioning
  • Wing Sales & Marketing
  • Woodstove Warehouse

For those who have not yet renewed, membership is expiring on January 1st, 2021. Please send in your renewals ASAP! Your membership is crucial and allows us to continue to advocate for the health of our industry. While 2020 was full of unprecedented events, we are thankful for our NWHPBA community. With the help of one another, we were able to support each other and share our successes through tough times.

Renewing your membership is easy and we have a lot of options for your convenience!
  • Renew online and pay via card or check
  • If you select pay by check, you will be directly invoiced and can mail us a check
  • Call us directly at NWHPBA and we can renew over the phone with you
  • 253-525-5153 (Due to COVID, if you do not connect with us, please leave a voicemail and Amy, our Executive Director, will return your call within 24-48 hours)
"This industry can feel really secluded and alone. Maintaining my membership has allowed me to build relationships and really get to know the other members. This has opened doors and encouraged brainstorming to solve industry wide issues as well as internal ones within my business that someone had already been through and knew a great solution for."

-Ryann Blake, Chimney Techniques
December Legislative Update
from our NWHPBA Lobbyist, Carolyn Logue
NWHPBA Prepares for Legislative Sessions – Be Ready for Action!

All of the states in the NWHPBA region have legislative sessions this year. Budgets and COVID response are expected to take center stage in all states, but both Washington and Montana are showing signs of battles on energy issues. Washington state in particular is seeing bills introduced to ban natural gas in new construction and further reduce the use of natural gas overall. Montana has several bills in the pipeline that will seek to restructure energy laws in that state. 

Washington’s Legislature is going to be all virtual. Other states are looking at doing the same and some will be blended. While the idea of a virtual session is concerning when it comes to public input and transparency, the positives are that more NWHPBA members might find themselves able to testify in committees via remote means and the slowness of pace might make it harder to pass potentially business damaging bills.

The important thing is to stay alert. Help NWHBPA by paying attention to what your Legislature is doing in the area of woodstove issues, air quality, natural gas/carbon and licensing – be our “eyes on the ground.” Watch for alerts from NWHPBA to help indicate when you should contact legislators about an issue. By working together and staying alert, we can reduce negative impacts of legislation and perhaps even get some positive changes in front of legislators this year.

Washington State’s Governor Proposes Sweeping Environmental Policy Agenda
Governor Jay Inslee, despite economic issues related to COVID-19, continues to push a broad environmental agenda in the state. For the 2021 session he has proposed a COMPREHENSIVE PACKAGE that would do the following:

·        Cap statewide greenhouse gas emissions and invest in clean energy, transportation and climate resilience programs – also funding part of the Working Families Tax Credit
·        Establish a clean fuel standard and reduce transportation emissions through electrification
·        Require new buildings to be carbon free by 2030 and eliminate fossil fuels from existing buildings by 2050
·        Require an environmental justice assessment for all climate related investments and create an Environmental Justice and Equity Advisory Panel to analyze how climate investments impact communities most affected by climate change.
·        Invest $428 million in clean transportation, clean buildings and clean energy projects

For NWHPBA members the biggest concern in these proposals is the impact to natural gas lines running to buildings. There is a proposal for full electrification to buildings which will mean bans on gas lines – particularly to new construction. NWHPBA is also concerned that bans on will lead to fewer incentives for cleaner gas solutions as a back up to electricity. 
The positive in the Governor’s proposal is that there is no attempt to rein in the use of woodstoves (other than existing air quality laws that limit the use during air quality events). The Governor’s Capital Budget does include $4 million for woodstove changeout programs and NWHPBA will be working to ensure this is included in the final budget that passes. The concern there will be a push by the air quality authorities to move people away from woodstoves towards electric heat pump or ductless systems. NWHPBA wants to ensure that wood to wood changeouts are allowed in addition to continuing changeouts to gas fireplace and heating appliances.

NWHPBA continues to fight to retain customer choice when it comes to clean energy solutions and also to ensure people still have the ability to install fireplaces that will serve as back up heat when electrical heating systems fail. 

NWHBA Members Make Their Mark at Washington State Energy Strategy Committee Hearing
 
NWHPBA lobbyist Carolyn Logue, along with Scott Ongley and Grant Falco, testified at the hearing of the Washington State Energy Strategy Advisory Committee. The focus of the testimony was to ensure that the state’s Energy Strategy – which guides legislative policy – retained the use of natural gas in homes for heating purposes. The draft report recommended a move to full electrification in a short time period, even though other models showed that there were pathways to cleaner energy and reduced greenhouse gas emissions that included the use of gas and renewable alternatives.

Below is a copy NWHPBA’s written testimony.

Washington State Energy Code Changes Still On Track for February 1 Implementation
 
After being delayed 7 months due to the impacts of the COVID-19 shutdowns, Washington State’s Building Code Council is still slated to have its changes to the state Energy Code go into effect on February 1, 2021. These changes not only impact the use of gas in homes because of a new point system that favors electrical appliances, it also impacts the efficiency of gas fireplaces put in when a permit is required. 

The gas fireplace efficiency changes mirror changes that went into effect in British Columbia. NWHPBA worked hard to ensure that the original, more onerous proposed changes did not get adopted.

Below are the changes to fireplaces (gas and wood) going into effect as part of the new Energy Code on February 1:

R402.4.2 Fireplaces. New wood-burning fireplaces shall have tight-fitting flue dampers or doors and outdoor combustion air. When using tight-fitting doors on factory-built fireplaces listed and labeled in accordance with UL 127, the doors shall be tested and listed for the fireplace. When using tight-fitting doors on masonry fireplaces, the doors shall be listed and labeled in accordance with UL 907.

R402.4.2.1 Gas fireplace efficiency. All gas fireplace heaters rated to ANSI Z21.88 shall be listed and labeled with a fireplace efficiency (FE) rating of 50 percent or greater in accordance with CSA P.4.1. Vented gas fireplaces (decorative appliances) certified to ANSI Z21.50 shall be listed and labeled, including their FE ratings, in accordance with CSA P.4.1.

R402.4.4 Combustion air openings. Where open combustion air ducts provide combustion air to open combustion, space conditioning fuel burning appliances, the appliances and combustion air openings shall be located outside of the building thermal envelope, or enclosed in a room isolated from inside the thermal envelope. Such rooms shall be sealed and insulated in accordance with the envelope requirements of Table R402.1.1, where the walls, floors and ceilings shall meet the minimum of the below-grade wall R-value requirement. The door into the room shall be fully gasketed and any water lines and ducts in the room insulated in accordance with Section R403. The combustion air duct shall be insulated where it passes through conditioned space to a minimum of R-8.

Exceptions:
  1. Direct vent appliances with both intake and exhaust pipes installed continuous to the outside.
  2. Fireplaces and stoves complying with Section R402.4.2 and Section R1006 of the International

Residential Code.

R403.1.3 Continuously burning pilot lights. The natural gas systems and equipment listed below are not permitted to be equipped with continuously burning pilot lights.
  1. Fan-type central furnaces.
  2. Household cooking appliances.

Exception: Household cooking appliances without electrical supply voltage connections and in which each pilot light consumes less than 150 Btu/hr.

  1. Pool heaters.
  2. Spa heaters.
  3. Fireplaces

Exception: Any fireplace with on-demand, intermittent or interrupted ignition (as defined in ANSI Z21.20) is not considered continuous. 

Definitions for reference:

PILOT LIGHTCONTINUOUSLY BURNINGA small gas flame used to ignite gas at a larger burning. Once lit, a continuously pilot light remains in operation until manually interrupted. Pilot light ignition systems with the ability to switch between intermittent and continuous mode are considered continuous.

PILOT LIGHTINTERMITTENTA pilot which is automatically ignited when an appliance is called on to operate and which remains continuously ignited during each period of main burner operation. The pilot is automatically extinguished when each main burner operating cycle is completed.

PILOT LIGHTINTERRUPTEDA pilot which is automatically ignited prior to the admission of fuel to the main burner and which is automatically extinguished after the main flame is established.

PILOT LIGHTON-DEMANDA pilot which, once placed into operation, is intended to remain ignited for a predetermined period of time following an automatic or manual operation of the main burner gas valve 
HPBExpo June 23-26th, 2021:
Louisville, Kentucky
Mark your calendars: HPBExpo 2021 has been moved to June 23-26th, 2021 in Louisville, Kentucky. With the current COVID-19 conditions, the March dates for Expo have been postponed and relocated to Louisville. If you have Expo questions, please email nwhpba@aminc.org .
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The NWHPBA Communications Committee publishes the Hearth Insight monthly. If you have a story or article you would like to have shared, please email us to be included in our upcoming editions!!!
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