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New York State DEC Announces Proposed OWB Rule and Hearing Dates

Post in 'The Boiler Room - Wood Boilers and Furnaces' started by altheating, Apr 22, 2010.

  1. heaterman

    heaterman Minister of Fire

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    I would recommend checking with the manufacturer of whatever unit you are considering/using. Ask them or look in a manual to find the recommendations and spec's for stack diameter and height. That will be your answer.

    One huge issue with OWB's and stacks is that generally speaking, the taller the stack the greater the draft generated through the unit. This can and often does lead to severe over firing conditions especially in a natural draft appliance like the CB in the picture. Too much draft can be worse than not enough.

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  2. shagy

    shagy New Member

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    Are you comparing a Garn gasser with a soon to be no longer made non gasser? Not a very good comparison is it? Are you saying that a Garn for example has no difference in performance with a short stack vs a tall stack? Would you say the same for your favorite brand? Im guessing its not a outdoor model.
  3. shagy

    shagy New Member

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  4. shagy

    shagy New Member

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    In this area I know of stoves over 20yrs old and many over 15. Not as bad as commonly stated here. That is not the issue ...... People bought these with their hard earned money. These people love em. These are wanting to use these till they are not usable. They do not want the Nazi's to take way more rights.I know most on here think these people are somewhere between stupid and ignorant to use these,which is your right. But what if the next thing is indoor fireplaces. How about no more campfires?
  5. heaterman

    heaterman Minister of Fire

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    Nope. I'm talking about issues with tall stacks in general that apply to any wood burner. Doesn't matter if it's an OWB (although they are far worse) a Garn or any of the DD gassers. Now, that being said, an indoor boiler and stack present a completely different set of circumstances. As I said, read the manual for whatever type or brand of product you have and call the manufacturer if the stack or chimney recommendations are not clear. Manufacturers recommendations are the best line of defense against some of the ludicrous mandates on stack height that are being promulgated by state and local agencies.
    In addition, assuming that these agencies will stop at outdoor models and ignore complaints about wood smoke or smell generated by an indoor unit would be a flat out mistake. The wood burning industry has to take the lead on this and develop products that are as efficient and clean as possible rather than letting the regulators drive what is done. It may be too late for that already but I think direct and positive improvements that work at the actual point of use instead of the lab would mitigate the inevitable over correction that government bureaucrats always seem to enact.
  6. shagy

    shagy New Member

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    Heaterman.... your hitting that nail pretty firmly on the head
  7. ken999

    ken999 New Member

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    Very true.

    I was talking with the guy who taps the maples on my lot yesterday when he stopped to deliver my yearly gallon of syrup (yum). He lives 1/2 mile down the road and drives by constantly. He asked how I liked my boiler and commented on how little smoke he see's out of it compared to some of the others around. I felt pretty good about that. I mentioned to him the proposed regulations for the OWB's and the first thing he said was "How'bout all the indoor wood stoves?"..."Why aren't they going after them?"...

    I doubt they will be stopping at the OWB's once the OWB owners ask those same questions at the upcoming public hearings.

    I'm certainly glad that there is an effort to steer people into cleaner units. Let's hope that the reaction within the industry is positive, and that the end users burn responsibly. I'd hate to see wood burning saddled with gross over-regulation and needless legislation.
  8. EricV

    EricV Feeling the Heat

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    I may be wrong but indoor wood stoves already regulated by the EPA since 1992? I believe they are limited to 7.5 grams of particulate per hour. That is the phase II of the EPA regulations.

    I wonder what the particulate emission of an OWB is.
  9. Frozen Canuck

    Frozen Canuck Minister of Fire

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    Have to agree with Ken.

    OWB's are where it starts (low hanging fruit) also the major source of complaints from neighbors, as their smoke is so easy for all to see. After that problem is removed they will likely move on to wood stoves & gasers without storage, or in simple terms everything that is not a batch burner as they have a smoulder cycle built into their normal operation. Easier to pick out from the crowd.

    Then it will be on to the batch burners (gasers with adequate storage) that do not have a smoulder cycle built into their normal operation.

    Eventually we will probably see regs & testing methods that are similiar to those that already exist in western europe, lets just say Germany so everyone that wants one will have a reference point. In Germany they test every combustion appliance, if it burns a fuel it gets tested period.

    Test varies with the type of fuel (input). After that it is down to the two most important factors, #1 Environmental Protection (emissions) or in simple terms how clean the appliance burns. #2 Resource Conservation or in simple terms how efficient the unit is.

    So.... #1 you must pollute as little as possible no matter what fuel you burn. #2 Your appliance & the emitter system it supplies energy to must be highly efficient (not waste energy).

    Kind of explains why their manufacturers spec a given volume of storage for each unit. Helps them comply with #1 & #2. Also explains why companies like Veissmann, Froling & a host of others spend so much time on R&D. Their regs won't allow the sale of a unit that does not comply, so the units stay in R&D until they are sure they will pass the test, then & only then do they move onto full scale production.

    Kind of the opposite of the way a lot of the units come to market over here. We have some good maunfacturers that do the R&D first, then move onto production but by no means the majority.

    BTW when you take the time to investigate you will see that their tests are much more stringent than anything that is even proposed here. For sure there are no EPA numbers that are totally irrelevant. They have progressed far beyond that & realize that their testing methods & the regulations must resemble real world operation of combustion appliances.

    That's one of the reasons that they spec a given MC % range for wood being burned in a unit. You won't find any of them stating that you can burn large green rounds in their appliances either. Come to think of it I don't recall them ever having an OWB industry over there. Please correct me if I am wrong but I think they avoided that whole nasty OWB issue that has us in a neighbor vs neighbor conflict over here, that essentially comes down to the right to breathe clean air.

    IIRC the only unit that I have seen that they even partially expose to ambient temperatures/conditions is the Herlt bale burners, makes sense as they are fed with a tractor.

    Kind of makes you wonder if they laugh or just hang their heads in disgust when they see & hear what is happening here. I wonder if they are tired of waiting for us to catch up or catch on.

    I posted something similiar to this a few months ago & got a lot af responses that were shall we say.... off the deep end. Please try to avoid that as it only serves to convince the anti/non woodburning community that we are all just a bunch of self interested/self serving fanatics who operate with a total disreguard/lack of respect for all others. Makes us easy targets.

    That said: Please do give this issue some deep thought and post where you think we are going from here. Re: testing & regulations.

    Just something I have noticed on this site, in a few months we have gone from "there will never be any testing/regulation" to "what kind of testing/regulation will be in place"?

    Maybe we are starting to catch up/catch on.
  10. webbie

    webbie Seasoned Moderator Staff Member

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    It seems to me that our industry has partially dug their own grave. To this day, we have our major trade group fighting against regulation of OWB......with the only reason for that fight being the $$$ they receive from the OWB "lobby" (the makers).

    It was, IMHO, a poor decision for our industry to get in bed with the dirty burners...and one which we will all pay for. The industry now has a pretty bad name up here - wood burning is considered as dirty...the result being that we are going to have to start a ground-up educational campaign if we want clean biomass to be a decent part of the energy mix in the NorthEast.

    That is part of what the conference next week is about. These newer trade groups (HeatNE, Heatgreen and others) are 100% in the "as clean as possible" camp.

    Sometimes a big trade group can get too diluted when it tries to please everyone.
  11. heaterman

    heaterman Minister of Fire

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    Jahwol Herr Commandant!!!!
    Speaking of the Germans, I have to say they are absolutely relentless and even draconian in their pursuit of clean burning appliances, be they gas oil or wood. As I have been told, they have what amounts to "boiler police" over there. Every other year you have to have your boiler tested for efficiency and emissions. If it doesn't pass inspection you get a period of time to get it cleaned up, repaired or replaced. The "boiler police" return after the allotted time and check it again (all of which you pay for) and if it is not within spec, they take your boiler. No if, no and, no but, they just take you boiler. Doesn't matter if it's the middle of January or not, they just take your boiler.

    I can see that happening here now that the EPA (thanks to executive order) has the right to regulate CO2 emissions. All because people, both manufacturers and end users, took the easy/cheap way out. One thing I have learned in the heating trades is that cheap, never is. I'm afraid a lot of folks are going to learn that lesson rather harshly.
  12. Frozen Canuck

    Frozen Canuck Minister of Fire

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    Yes I have read the same about how the Germans enforce their rules re: combustion appliances.

    Not sure if we will get there as our govt's are far more likely to tax/fine us into compliance. They like the excuse to get more $$$$$$.

    Kind of gives one an idea of how far the pendulum can swing when a group refuses to clean up it's act though.

    They are a democracy just like us, so don't go thinking that it will never happen here.
  13. leaddog

    leaddog Minister of Fire

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    Makes me glad that I'm 68 years old. I don't have that many more years and I hope I don't EVER see anything that stupid in my life time. I'm afraid that if it would come to that that there would be some real problems around here. Alot of people around here aren't very happy with more gov. But we ( the wood burning group ) are just like the hunting groups. We fight amongst ourselves and the anti's just keep picking away and soon we'll all be gone.
    Dove hunting here in Michigan is a good example, next is bear hunting, regulating wolves, controling deer in urban areas ,etc.
    They have already been trying to stop campfires here and regs on OWB's and I hear grumblings about fireplaces.
    Once you get a reg in place you will play hell in ever getting it changed.
    leaddog
  14. heaterman

    heaterman Minister of Fire

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    We will find out this fall how many are sick of big government. We here in Michigan can take some cheer in that our governor is done this year. The scary thing though is that she may be headed to the Supreme court. Lord, help us all. She and her minions have been trying for the last few years to do away with many forms of small, local government here in Michigan. Now it looks like they will try to centralize all political power in the capital through a constitutional convention. ..........It's that change thing again.........

    God bless you Mr Robertson!
  15. ken999

    ken999 New Member

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    We are already under a no campfire ban....New York sucks....

    Screw Germany. They can keep their boiler police. Pulling somebody's boiler in the middle of January is just insane. Nobody is going to die from it before April.

    This is America...let's live like Americans. We shouldn't accept anything 'just because' the Europeans do it.

    Give us clean burning boilers and incentives (tax-cuts) to use them and we will.

    Very simple. No jack-booted thugs neccesary.

    Nor are they welcome.
  16. heaterman

    heaterman Minister of Fire

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    Not saying that's what I hope for here either but as long as cheap, dirty burning products are available, people will buy them. I think the only hope we have to eliminate products that perform poorly is to legislate that they can't be made period.

    BTW, the campfire thing is being discussed here in Michigan right now also. I would wager that the EPA produces more CO2 generating their paperwork and running around doing their studies than all the campfires in Michigan combined.

    I really don't like contemplating where this thing could end up, but as Craig said in one of the recent posts, we have brought it upon ourselves through poor products and practices.

    The can is open and worms are everywhere.
  17. ken999

    ken999 New Member

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    I agree....
  18. EricV

    EricV Feeling the Heat

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    Camp fires are not banned. Open fires are banned but not campfires nor fires for religious celebrations.

    Get your facts right please.

    And there is a true liberal American, don't do the right thing unless some one else pays for it with a tax incentive. I paid for my boiler with my own hard earned money and I'm proud of it.
  19. Como

    Como Minister of Fire

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    Freedom to pollute.

    Or freedom not to be polluted?

    Take your pick.

    I will go with the second.
  20. ISeeDeadBTUs

    ISeeDeadBTUs Guest

    I'm way ahead of ya all . . . I'll trade my GreenWood for a Viessmann :lol:
  21. heaterman

    heaterman Minister of Fire

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    Working on that.....
  22. ken999

    ken999 New Member

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    ...right...Open fire...Campfire...what's the difference? If I want to burn some brush here in the yard, do I get a get out of jail pass if I pitch a tent next to it and call it camping? My point was we've already got some rediculous laws with regards to outdoor fires.

    And I'm about as far from a liberal as it gets Eric. You can get off your horse now. Last I checked, EVERYONE pays for there own boiler, unless I missed a free sale or something.

    Tax cuts certainly draw peoples attention, and there's alot of people who do not know diddley about gasification. Whats wrong with THAT? Get more people looking into burning a renewable resource instead of foreign oil. I fail to see the liberalism.
  23. EricV

    EricV Feeling the Heat

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    Well the burning laws have a very good reason. This time of year there is usually several hundred fire calls involving paid fire departments, volunteer fire departments and state Rangers that are caused by plain folk like us burning a little brush in their yard. This is an attempt to discourage those fires until mid May when things green up again and they are less apt to get out of control quite as easy.

    As far as the liberalism, you said it, not me

    "Give us clean burning boilers and incentives (tax-cuts) to use them and we will"

    There, horse is dead.
  24. DBoon

    DBoon Minister of Fire

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    I'd just like to do some fact checking before I accept this statement at face value. What is the source of your information? Perhaps you can provide a web link or some other reference? It's not out of the realm of believability, but then again, that's how a lot of statements get accepted as general truths when in fact there is no truth behind them.
  25. ken999

    ken999 New Member

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    Here's the part your missing.

    Your basing my supposed liberalism on "don't do the RIGHT thing"...

    The right thing isn't always the SAME thing for everyone. In the context of what we are talking about, there are some instances where a regular old OWB have applications, and they were LEGAL, but just because you don't approve of them period, that makes it wrong.


    Like I said...time to dismount.

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