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How do the New 2020 EPA Wood Stove Regulations Impact Homeowners?

If you’re someone who enjoys the warmth and benefits of a wood stove, you’re not alone. Wood burning stoves provide a wonderful source of comfort and heat to our homes. However, in recent years there have been some concerns regarding the impact of wood stoves, specifically from the EPA.

The EPA is the Environmental Protection Agency and its sole purpose is to instill regulations that protect the environment.

While wood-burning stoves provide an excellent source of heat, the long term impact of wood stoves on our environment has been discussed for years. Recently, the EPA released new standards for residential wood stoves, so it will lessen the overall impact on the environment.

Today, we wanted to take a closer look at the 2020 wood stove EPA regulations, and how they will impact the future of wood stoves within homes.



The New EPA Wood Stove Guidelines


It’s no secret that in order to produce heat, wood stoves rely on wood pellets as their method of fuel. However, as wood burns, its smoke releases particulates into the air that are harmful to the environment, and can negatively impact individuals with preexisting heart or lung conditions. Those with respiratory problems could be at serious risk from wood stoves - which is why these new guidelines have gone into effect.

In an effort to limit the release of particulates produced by wood, the EPA modified the original standards around wood stoves in 2015, to place limits on the amount of particulate matter (referred to as PM) wood stoves produce. These standards were created to guarantee wood stove manufacturers produce cleaner, more efficient wood stoves, and other wood-burning devices.

The initial regulations that began in 2015 had plans to increase the limitations of PM by 2020. Within the last few months, the EPA has moved onto Phase 2 of its new standards, known as New Source Performance Standards. These requirements have made it official that all new wood stoves must produce fewer than 2 grams of smoke per hour. Additionally, these new standards also require all wood pellet stoves to burn wood pellets that are compatible with their stove, which should be listed in their user manual, therefore are more EPA friendly. For more information about these regulations, review the Final EPA 2020 Performance Standards.

Essentially, these standards aren’t just for homeowners, but for wood stove manufacturers and retailers as well. It means that from now on, wood stoves must be manufactured with the new EPA standards in place, for everyone’s benefit.



How do these Guidelines Impact Your Current Wood Stove? 


We realize that these guidelines aren’t exactly crystal clear, so we’d like to explain how this impacts you, and your current wood stove. The point of these EPA guidelines is to guarantee that wood stove manufacturers produce and sell more environmental and health-conscious products, so homeowners can breathe cleaner air.

If you already have a wood-burning stove, you probably have one burning question - what does this mean for you and your wood stove?

At the moment, nothing. The EPA is placing these restrictions on new wood stove models. If the one you currently have is in perfect condition, you can continue to use it if you choose. However, keep in mind that it is not as EPA friendly as a wood stove manufactured after 2020.

There is no rush to go replacing your wood stove, but if you don’t already have one, or want to replace your wood stove to something more EPA friendly, you can rest assured that retailers and manufacturers are doing their part to protect the environment.



Casual Furniture World Carries EPA Certified Wood Stoves


At Casual Furniture World, we take the health, well being, and satisfaction of our customers seriously. That’s why, in compliance with the EPA standards, we carry brand names that follow the 2015 and 2020 EPA standards. A few of our favorite brand names include Hearthstone Wood Stoves, Buckstone Wood Stoves, and Jøtul Wood Stoves.

If you’re thinking about a brand new wood stove installation, and want a residential wood heater that is compatible with your home and compliant with the EPA, just visit your local Casual Furniture World store for more assistance.

If you’d like to learn about other possible ways to heat your home, review our 2020 Gas Fireplace Guide to learn more about direct vent, vent-free, and natural draft fireplaces.

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