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Is Your Fireplace EPA 2020-Ready?

Your fireplace should be safe, warm, and saving you money. If your fireplace is old and outdated, 2020 is the perfect time to replace it. In May, stronger EPA standards for wood burning heaters go into effect. These new standards mean that any wood stove you buy now will be more efficient than ever. Not only that, but modern, efficient stoves are eligible for a tax credit.

At Mountain Hearth & Patio, we’ve been putting modern and efficient fireplaces, stoves, and inserts in homes in the Denver Metro for years. We supply many stoves that comply with the updated standards and our certified professionals can help you find the perfect appliance for your space.

What are the EPA standards?

The New Source Performance Standards for Residential Heaters, or NSPS, went into effect in 1988. These standards were set to regulate the amount of particulate emissions allowable from wood stoves, fireplaces, inserts, and other residential wood heaters. At the time, these appliances were far less efficient and a major source of air pollution.

This traditional-style FireplaceX 44 Elite is a great example of a modern wood fireplace.
Modern wood fireplaces, such as this Fireplace Xtrodinair 44 Elite in Conifer, aren’t just efficient heaters, they’re also beautiful, customizable features for your space.

Over the years, the EPA has updated the standards to require higher efficiency. The most recent update, in 2015, tightened the particulate emissions standard for wood heaters to less than 4g/hr. This May, the EPA will be updating the standard again, tightening the efficiency requirements for these appliances further.

What is the updated EPA standard for 2020?

On May 15, 2020, the Environmental Protection Agency will roll out their updated standards for wood burning residential heaters. Where the old standard required that stoves emit less than 4 g/hr of particulate emissions, the new standard will require emissions of less than 2.5 g/hr when burning cord wood.

A wood insert and new finish are great ways to update your existing fireplace. Our NFI-Certified technicians installed this FireplaceX wood insert in Evergreen.
A wood insert and new finish are great ways to update your existing fireplace. Our NFI-Certified technicians installed this FireplaceX wood insert in Evergreen.

These tighter standards are great for air quality. They also come with the added bonus of burning less wood for more heat due to the overall increased efficiency. Modern wood stoves, inserts, and fireplaces achieve this efficiency in several ways. Catalytic stoves use a catalytic combustor to re-burn the byproducts of combustion and increase burn efficiency and heat output. Non-catalytic stoves use baffles to create a longer, hotter path for gases, they also allow more combustion air to flow into the firebox.

Which hearth appliances meet the EPA 2020 standard?

Our wood burning fireplaces, stoves, and inserts are 2020 ready. We have many high-quality, high-efficiency hearth appliances from Fireplace Xtrordinair, Hearthstone, Lopi, and more that meet or exceed the new emissions standards.

These fireplaces aren’t just efficient. They’re beautiful, customizable features for your living space. Modern wood fireplaces, stoves, and inserts allow you to choose from design options such as doors, surrounds, and more to match your style. Whether you’re looking for traditional ambiance or contemporary elegance there’s an EPA 2020 compliant stove for you.

Wood stoves are powerful heaters with a classic attitude. We installed this Hearthstone Manchester in Evergreen, CO.
Wood stoves are powerful heaters with a classic attitude. We installed this Hearthstone Manchester in Evergreen, CO.

What is the Biomass Energy Tax Credit?

When you install a modern, efficient wood hearth appliance, you’re also eligible for a tax credit! As long as you update to a fireplace, stove, or insert that burns wood with 75% efficiency or more. This tax credit can be another way to find savings on your new appliance and installation. If you have an efficient wood burner installed before December 31, 2020, you can take advantage of these savings.

You can burn wood in Denver and the Metro as long as you burn in an EPA-Certified appliance. Our technicians installed this Vermont Castings Montpelier in Lakewood, Colorado.
You can burn wood in Denver and the Metro as long as you burn in an EPA-Certified appliance. Our technicians installed this Vermont Castings Montpelier in Lakewood, Colorado.

If you plan to take advantage of this tax credit, make sure to save the documentation of your purchase and your stoves efficiency. Then, it’s as simple as filling out the IRS Form 5695 and filing with your 2020 taxes.*

Talk to us about your home efficiency!

If you’re a wood burning purist looking for a modern source of heat, Mountain Man Fireplace & Chimney can help. Our NFI-Certified sales and installation staff can help you select the perfect fireplace, stove, or insert for your home that meets the latest efficiency standards. Come in to our showroom or check out our product pages to see our wood burning fireplaces, stoves, and inserts.

We also provide high-quality service and repairs. If you’re happy with your fireplace and need repairs or annual maintenance, our CSIA and NFI-Certified technicians will put their experience to work for you.

Contact us on our website, by phone at (303) 679-1601, or by email at Office@MtnHP.com to start your fireplace project. From service and repairs to sales and installation we have the experience and expertise to do it all.

Mountain Man Fireplace & Chimney has over two decades of experience with the sales, service, and installation of fireplaces, stoves, and inserts. We work in the Foothills communities, Lakewood, Littleton, Denver, and everywhere in between!

*Mountain Man Fireplace & Chimney are not financial advisors or tax preparation professionals. This article should not be considered legal or financial advice. To learn more about this tax credit and to discuss whether it’s right for you, consult with your accountant, attorney, or other tax preparation professional.

Originally posted on MtnHP.com, our sister website.

By Scott Rupe on April 14th, 2020 | Tagged with: Tags: , , , , | Leave a Comment

The Effectiveness of Fireplace Inserts

Fireplace insert effectiveness Image - Littleton CO - Mountain Man Fireplace & ChimneyAccording to the National Association of Homebuilders, fireplaces are the second most popular home feature buyers look for. Because of this, adding a new fireplace to your home or updating an existing one can add value and help your home sell faster in the future – as well as keeping your family warm and cozy for years to come.

Benefits of a new fireplace insert

If you have an existing masonry fireplace, you may be losing as much 90% of its heat up the chimney. This extreme inefficiency can make it more difficult to heat your home as well as cost you more in heating and fuel costs. To combat this, consider installing a fireplace insert.

Fireplace inserts are easy to install, use, and maintain, and can help save you money thanks to their increased efficiency. Below are three of our favorite reasons to consider installing a fireplace insert in your home.

Improve efficiency

While open hearth masonry fireplaces are notoriously inefficient, inserts of all fuel sources have significantly high efficiency ratings. Burning with closed system combustion, inserts more effectively burn the fuel source and lose less heat up the chimney. Not only does this save you money on fuel costs, but it can also lower your electric bills. The Hearth, Patio, and Barbeque Association found that installing an insert in place of a masonry fireplace could reduce energy bills by as much as 40%.

Fireplace inserts aren’t just more efficient – they are also better for the environment. The EPA established strict particulate emission standards for all fireplace inserts. In order to earn the EPA certification – and be sold – inserts must create minimal amounts of smoke and other particulate emissions; by burning cleaner, fireplace inserts are often helpful for family members suffering from respiratory problems such as asthma.

Switch to a new fuel source

Installing a new insert can give you the opportunity to switch fuel sources. This is most commonly seen in homes that currently have a wood burning fireplace and want to switch to gas. In cases like this, installing a new insert into an existing hearth can help save money – while still giving you the fireplace of your dreams.

If you are switch fuel sources, your chimney may need to be relined. Because gas and wood fires create different byproducts of combustion, different chimney liners are needed; while wood burning fires create more smoke and creosote, gas fires create an acidic or corrosive condensation. Having the right flue liner can ensure your new fireplace is burning and drafting safely.

Find a fireplace that matches your style

Whether your home is rustic and traditional or has a distinctly contemporary look, there is an insert to match your style! With a variety of sizes and styles available, it is easy to find an insert that will seamlessly blend into your home’s décor. Likewise, accessories such as fireplace screens can also be used to add even more design to your new heating appliance.

Get your new insert before winter arrives!

There is still time to have your new insert installed before winter arrives. Whether you want to improve efficiency, change fuel sources, or merely update the look of your fireplace, a new insert will add warmth and comfort to your home this winter and for years to come. Contact Mountain Man Fireplace & Chimney today for more information on new fireplace inserts.

By Jake Johnson on October 28th, 2016 | Tagged with: Tags: , , | Leave a Comment

EPA Versus Non-EPA Fireplaces and Stoves

Not sure the difference between EPA vs Non-EPA stoves? Read on to learn more or call Mountain Man Fireplace & Chimney!

Not sure the difference between EPA vs Non-EPA stoves? Read on to learn more or call Mountain Man Fireplace & Chimney!

During the cold months of winter, most homeowners consider their fireplaces and stoves to be a necessity. However, telling the difference between a “good” or “bad” heating appliance can sometimes be difficult.

Many homeowners base their decision on whether or not to purchase a stove or fireplace based on its EPA rating. Others may purchase a home with an older heating appliance only to discover that it is not EPA certified.

While EPA certifications are an excellent way to evaluate the energy efficiency of a new appliance, there are also many units that do not have these ratings yet still work well. In this post we will discuss the difference between EPA and non-EPA certified fireplaces and stoves.

What are EPA certifications?

The EPA, or Environmental Protection Agency, created regulatory emission requirements for heating appliances such as stoves, fireplaces, and inserts. These requirements were developed in order to help minimize air pollution.

What is the difference between an EPA certified and an EPA qualified appliance?

Currently, only wood and pellet stoves can receive EPA certifications. To make this certification, this must meet strict regulatory emissions standards.

Fireplaces and outdoor boilers, also called hydronic heaters, cannot be EPA certified because their emissions cannot be as closely regulated by the EPA. However, many of these appliances can be EPA qualified. To earn the EPA qualification, manufacturers can voluntarily meet emissions standards set by the EPA. While this does not make them certified, units with this qualification do burn cleaner and more efficiently than those without it.

How can I tell if my appliance is EPA certified?

Wood burning stoves that are EPA certified should have a tag or label located on the back of the stove. If you cannot find a tag, the current list of EPA certified wood heaters can be found here. Homeowners should also look for labels for safety certification groups such as Underwriters Laboratories.

Finding the EPA qualification tag of an existing fireplace unit may be difficult. Often, the labels for these appliances can only be viewed before they are installed. If you have questions about the qualification of your unit, the list of EPA qualified fireplaces can be found here. If you are purchasing a new fireplace, look for the tag that labels the appliance as Phase Two Qualified.

Benefits of an EPA certified appliance

Many homes may have older appliances that do not meet current EPA standards. While these appliances might still function well, there are a number of benefits of upgrading to an appliance that meets modern EPA standards.

The main benefit of upgrading to an EPA certified or qualified appliance is in the improved efficiency. An older, non-certified wood stove may create as much as 30 grams of smoke per hour. Newer certified models, however, create as little as two grams of smoke per hour. Less smoke means that more of your fuel source is being burned, which translates to savings for you by purchasing less wood or pellets.

While you may love your old stove or fireplace, consider upgrading to a new EPA certified or qualified model. You will make your home safer and healthier by reducing smoke and emissions, as well as potentially save money by burning your fuel source more efficiently. If you’re ready to upgrade your heating appliance and live around Littleton, CO, contact the staff at Mountain Man Fireplace and Chimney today. Our expert staff can help you find the stove or fireplace that is right for you!

By Jake Johnson on January 30th, 2015 | Tagged with: Tags: , , | Leave a Comment