EPA NSPS and Vedolux wood boilers
Please take a look at our newer posting for an update on where we stand regarding the EPA testing.
-for US customers- The new EPA regulations are now in effect so there is limited availability for new wood boiler models. Some used and demonstration wood boiler models are available. Until the new EPA tests are completed new boilers still in stock are available for commercial installs. The NSPS only affects residential use boilers. The EPA rule does not apply to Canada sales. Boiler models that have passed the new test will be available for residential sales.
UPDATE: July 6, 2016 The most popular and best selling Vedolux 37 boiler model was the first one tested to the new standards. The Vedolux 37 tests have been completed for submittal with emissions levels passing 2020 limits! The Vedolux non lambda boiler models have passed the new EPA emissions standards so we are confident the lambda models will also pass the 2020 levels as they move thru the testing process.
Most of the pellet boilers that are on the EPA approved list were approved with NYSERTA’s renewable heat program with EN-303-5 test. NYSERTA approved boilers are automatically accepted by EPA. We used this process for the Pellmax UB pellet boiler. Unfortunately En-303-5 tests could not be used to qualify wood boilers for NYSERTA’s or the EPA programs.
We began the process many months ago with the hope that all approvals would be finished by 2016. We had indications from EPA correspondence in 2015 indicating after the laboratory we are planning to use for tests received their accreditation by the the EPA, the lab would be able to submit already performed EN-303 tests for consideration, however the EPA has very recently informed this lab they have decided not to consider prior test results. The Vedolux wood boilers will need all new tests performed by the approved lab. This will take some more time but we will continue to work toward this goal.
The Vedolux boilers we sell were made for cord wood and thermal storage. What had been the official test method for hydronic boilers was designed primarily for outdoor wood boilers was not a workable option. A new test method for boilers using thermal storage and cord wood as fuel was announced with the publication of the EPA NSPS in May 2015. Since this test method is so new, labs are only very recently able to perform this test. A few US labs were unwilling at first to even offer quotes for this new test. That left our european imported boilers designed for thermal storage at a distinct disadvantage. There wasn’t a viable EPA approved test option prior to this time and consequently we were never on the EPA phase 2 list. And considering the rule was announced in May 2015, it only allowed about a half year to make everything fall in place by Jan 2016. Our boilers have lower emissions than the current .32lb per million BTU when converting en-303 lab results but comparing is somewhat apples to oranges because the tests use different filters. This emissions rate limit is required for all new residential boilers being sold now. Varmebaronen and SmokeLess Heat are committed to the US marketplace and plans to have their wood boiler product line EPA approved as soon as possible.
The new EPA rule now in place is effectively removing some of the the very cleanest burning products to unavailable status for the residential market in the near term.
This is how we understand the conditions we find ourselves in and how our business is working toward getting the required approvals for the wood boiler product line.
UPDATE: March 20 2016. The test lab SP has been approved by the EPA to conduct the new tests and the results should be done in time for Varmebaronen approved boilers for this year heating season. Preliminary calculations show the current Vedolux models should be able to pass the 2020 limits pending final results this summer. These tests show a significant financial commitment by Varmebaronen to continue to build the US and Canadian market.
Dean Zook – owner