|Painting of Old Heating Stove in School|
Even now there are legacy fireplaces and wood stoves that burn warmed air in the house which in turn draws in cold air from the outside. Thus, the old traditional space heating stoves in developed countries are somewhat analogous to open cooking fires in developing countries. The rather important exceptions are that the cooking fires and traditional cookstoves in developing countries typically are built of local materials by those who use them and they also do not have chimneys.
The old wood heating stoves produced and sold were both polluting and inefficient. After the EPA developed and approved standards for space heating wood stoves in 1988 the manufacturers mostly fell into step and now the stoves meet the fairly strict standards and are sold advertising this fact in retail stores around the country. During the initial years after the regulations took pace there were many stove manufacturers that went out of business probably because their products could not meet the new standards. The regulations are not for the faint at heart, and I provide a link to compliance monitoring for them. You will find that they are very exhaustive. However, one advantage of having such standards is that now programs are being implemented in some communities to change out old stoves for EPA certified new ones thus reducing emissions during cold weather. These stove can also be inserted into fireplaces. I just recently had one (a Vermont Castings Montpelier fireplace insert) installed and your can see a picture if it in the by clicking this link.
|Burnside early 19th Century Coal/Wood Potbelly |
Stove in use in David's Auto-Credit: D. Barnes
Today there is some possible movement on efforts to establish standards or at the very least a rating system for better stoves. Before getting started on the new better stove initiatives do we need to establish a framework for standards, protocols and rating systems. Is this a good or bad idea?
Take the poll and provide comments! I know there are some strong feelings about this topic. So let's hear them!!