Why did Lopi stop making the (2021 tax credit eligible) wood hybrid/cat inserts? What am I missing?

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OregonStrong

New Member
Feb 18, 2021
9
Portland, OR
@OregonStrong Thanks for starting this thread!! I'm researching inserts and have been thoroughly confused by what Travis Industries is doing. I especially don't understand which manufacturer (Lopi vs Fireplace Xtrordinair) makes which model - their websites are so contradictory I'm tempted to forgo them just to avoid the headache.
For example, does anyone know if the Large Flush Wood Hybrid-Fyre, the one that is listed as 78% efficient on the EPA website and would therefor qualify for the tax credit, is made by Lopi or Fireplace Xtrordinair? And I'm guessing it's no longer in production, based on OregonStrong's experience?

Honestly I think the body of the stove is the same, and Lopi and FX offer different faceplates? I noticed that in the brochure they say the body is the same and they list out the faceplates per company name. FX faceplates are more expensive.

Lopi makes a Large Flush Wood Hybrid-Fyre - I got the same one in Medium. And you're right - they are not currently in production. But, some dealers might still have some in stock from last year.

I got my Medium Flush Wood Hybrid-Fyre installed this week and it's burning right now - I'm still learning the best ways to use it, but overall I'm liking it a lot! My house is nice and warm but not overheated, and it looks good in my space.
 

OregonStrong

New Member
Feb 18, 2021
9
Portland, OR
The list of qualifying units is NOT fixed. It is a living document updated by the EPA as units are certified. This tax credit is over the next 3 years so there are many opportunities for new or retested units to qualify.

@stoveliker, yes all our inserts (3) qualify. As do Kuma, Hearthstone and others. Remember to check the EPA website for eligible units.

Thank you all for what you do to inform consumers....

BKVP

It's good to know more models may qualify in the future. FYI, Hearthstone doesn't currently have a qualifying model available - their Clydesdale qualifies but it's "coming soon," not available now. Their GMi70 doesn't qualify.

For other shoppers - I found the EPA list hard to navigate bc it's so challenging to sort just by wood insert, you have to know that "Travis Industries" means "Lopi," etc. FYI, if the standard was 73% HHV all current Lopi inserts would qualify.

For others looking: while things might change in the future, the qualifying inserts currently in production that I could find are: Blaze King (3 models), the Recency cats (4 models), and Kuma has one qualifying insert. Total of 8 currently available qualifying wood fireplace inserts.

Feel free to add to this list if you know of qualifying, currently available models!
 
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BKVP

Minister of Fire
Of the 40% of qualifying products, aren't most pellet stoves? Why 75% instead of 74 or 73% which would have included many more wood stoves when the goal is to increase the number of clean-burning heaters?

The 40% includes both wood and pellet, yes. There are 40+ wood units and it grows as new units are certified. Why not 75%? If you set it at 74%, those at 73% will have an issue with the value. It just continues down the line. This is a tax credit, not a stove changeout. Tax credit is this country are designed to incentive the more efficient products. Stove change outs, like WHERA are different in that we need to get old wood stoves out of existence! When contacted by legislative staff, they wanted to set the % quite high. My observation was the lower you go, within reason, the more selection and therefore more likely the old smoke dragon will get turned-in. I advocated for 73%. You can bet some think it should be 60%.
 
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BKVP

Minister of Fire
It's good to know more models may qualify in the future. FYI, Hearthstone doesn't currently have a qualifying model available - their Clydesdale qualifies but it's "coming soon," not available now. Their GMi70 doesn't qualify.

For other shoppers - I found the EPA list hard to navigate bc it's so challenging to sort just by wood insert, you have to know that "Travis Industries" means "Lopi," etc. FYI, if the standard was 73% HHV all current Lopi inserts would qualify.

For others looking: while things might change in the future, the qualifying inserts currently in production that I could find are: Blaze King (3 models), the Recency cats (4 models), and Kuma has one qualifying insert. Total of 8 currently available qualifying wood fireplace inserts.

Feel free to add to this list if you know of qualifying, currently available models!
All very agreeable observations. Let EPA know how you feel about their website! I'll second the motion....
 

Highbeam

Minister of Fire
Dec 28, 2006
19,131
Mt. Rainier Foothills, WA
I like the threshold being high. It discourages inefficient designs that utilize inefficient technologies and methods to just hit the low emissions standards. The higher efficiency threshold rewards and encourages manufacturers for better designs that do both. That’s the incentive we want. Time for those 60-74% guys to step up!

Next thing you know we’ll see both emissions standards and efficiency standards for all stoves.
 
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begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
89,456
South Puget Sound, WA
The difference of 1% isn't going to be worth a hill of beans difference. There is much more variance in the operation and maintenance of the stove than the lab testing. I'm with BKVP on this one. It should have been set at 73% if the goal is to incentivize people to upgrade to cleaner stoves.
 
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stoveliker

Minister of Fire
Nov 17, 2019
1,470
Eastern Long Island NY
The difference of 1% isn't going to be worth a hill of beans difference. There is much more variance in the operation and maintenance of the stove than the lab testing. I'm with BKVP on this one. It should have been set at 73% if the goal is to incentivize people to upgrade to cleaner stoves.

But isn't this inherent to having to set a threshold? If you set it at 73%, won't those being tested (however realistic that test is) at 72% complain?

The bigger issue would be (potentially), if this threshold was set with knowledge of the performance of each stove - that could mean that certain brands are cut off knowingly. Given the variability in real life performance (with me, the operator, having the biggest influence... on a level much larger than a 1% change), setting an arbitrary limit should be done without knowing who (mfgs) is affected in which way.

Was that the case here? If not, what are the guarantees built into the process that the threshold was set without concern for individual mfg/models?
 

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
89,456
South Puget Sound, WA
Yes, that is the issue with any regulation limit. The point is that if the goal is to get people to upgrade to a cleaner appliance that meets 2020 standards then 75% is too exclusive IMO. As you correctly note, there are other factors that can take a 75% efficient stove below that bar pretty easily depending on the operation and maintenance of the stove.
 

Highbeam

Minister of Fire
Dec 28, 2006
19,131
Mt. Rainier Foothills, WA
I keep hearing you say the goal is to get consumers to upgrade to cleaner stoves but all new stoves are required to be clean. The goal appears to be to get consumers to upgrade to more efficient stoves.
 

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
89,456
South Puget Sound, WA
The goal is to reduce air pollution. 2 or 3% efficiency difference is going to make a lot less difference than running and maintaining the stove properly.
 

BKVP

Minister of Fire
I keep hearing you say the goal is to get consumers to upgrade to cleaner stoves but all new stoves are required to be clean. The goal appears to be to get consumers to upgrade to more efficient stoves.
Supposedly more efficient stoves burn less wood, contribute less PM. BeGreen is correct that many, many variables can effect efficiency.
 

BKVP

Minister of Fire
The goal is to reduce air pollution. 2 or 3% efficiency difference is going to make a lot less difference than running and maintaining the stove properly.
Or providing enough options to trade up from a 70 g/hr to a stove that is 2.5 g/hr. (or less)
 

Highbeam

Minister of Fire
Dec 28, 2006
19,131
Mt. Rainier Foothills, WA
The goal is to reduce air pollution.

Are you sure? The eligibility criteria isn’t for a particular low emissions point. Emissions and efficiency are not directly related, only the best designs accomplish both and perhaps the goal is to incentivize and reward those better designs.

It’s not about 75 or 74. They chose a line in the sand.
 
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BKVP

Minister of Fire
Are you sure? The eligibility criteria isn’t for a particular low emissions point. Emissions and efficiency are not directly related, only the best designs accomplish both and perhaps the goal is to incentivize and reward those better designs.

It’s not about 75 or 74. They chose a line in the sand.
Just you wait...EPA is developing an FRM for testing with cordwood. The idea being it "more accurately reflects real-world. "
 
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begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
89,456
South Puget Sound, WA
It’s not about 75 or 74. They chose a line in the sand.
Based on repeating a 2008 Congressional decision in 2008 as part of the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act according to HPBA. Sounds like a lot of lobbying by some mfgs., particularly for pellet stoves which also are not at peak efficiency unless well maintained, which they frequently are not.
 
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BKVP

Minister of Fire
Based on repeating a 2008 Congressional decision in 2008 as part of the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act according to HPBA. Sounds like a lot of lobbying by some mfgs., particularly for pellet stoves which also are not at peak efficiency unless well maintained, which they frequently are not.
All the solid fuel manufacturers participate in the NASFS of HPBA. HPBA lobbied on behalf of all manufacturers. Of course, all expected to qualify when the process began 3 years ago. And we (entire NASFS) lobbied for 73% HHV and were surprised when the final legislation came out at 75%.
 

webby3650

Master of Fire
Sep 2, 2008
11,061
Indiana
I’ll tell you how I measure efficiency: with my
Blaze King I can load wood once in an 18 hour period. Or I can load my non-cat stove 3x daily…
This additional wood consumption isn’t taken into account at all! Cleaner exhaust is all that’s looked at.
Fuel and oil for my saw, my tractor, my splitter, not to mention my time! Not too dissimilar to this electric car push, that’s fueled by coal fired power plants.
 

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
89,456
South Puget Sound, WA
This additional wood consumption isn’t taken into account at all! Cleaner exhaust is all that’s looked at.
A while back bholler posted a real world comparison for wood consumption. In colder weather I thought that the Princess wood consumption was about the same as with the Regency non-cat when installed in the same location, but maybe I am crossing threads.
 
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stoveliker

Minister of Fire
Nov 17, 2019
1,470
Eastern Long Island NY
Actually, a while back I think bholler posted a real world comparison for wood consumption. In colder weather it sounds like the Princess wood consumption was about the same as with the Regency non-cat.

That is because the efficiencies of the most efficient group of stoves does not differ by much.

As has been said before, the BK may do comparable to other stoves when running at it's higher output range - but it has expanded its capabilities (including stability of performance) on the low end of the range as compared to (most...) other stoves
 

bholler

Chimney sweep
Staff member
Jan 14, 2014
25,392
central pa
A while back bholler posted a real world comparison for wood consumption. In colder weather I thought that the Princess wood consumption was about the same as with the Regency non-cat when installed in the same location, but maybe I am crossing threads.
You are absolutely correct. I saw no reduction in wood usage
 

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
89,456
South Puget Sound, WA
You are absolutely correct. I saw no reduction in wood usage
It makes sense. A few percentage points difference in efficiency is not going to make a huge notable drop in daily consumption . Maybe in low and slow heating circumstances less fuel might be used if it reduced wasteful room temperature swing during times of lower heat demand?
 
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BKVP

Minister of Fire
It makes sense. A few percentage points difference in efficiency is not going to make a huge notable drop in daily consumption . Maybe in low and slow heating circumstances less fuel might be used if it reduced wasteful room temperature swing during times of lower heat demand?
So we all know emissions and efficiency are reported as Overall Efficiency and Gr/h. The emissions are very heavily weighted in low and medium low burns. 80% of the weighted average comes from these 2 burn rates. That is because industry and regulator research observes 80/80 rule. 80% of wood burners operate their wood heaters 80% of the time in the 2 lower burn rates.

As to efficiency, it's a complicated formula using B415.1 as method for calculations.

As has been pointed out for years, efficiency and emissions are heavily influenced by a vast number of variables. Regulators readily acknowledge this and strive to have methods that are rigorous and repeatable (mind you this is all in lab environments).

Some very exciting days ahead for solid fuel manufacturers. These matters are getting more and more complex. Just since 2014 methods have changed as have standards.

We move forward as one group, facing never ending challenges. Challenges that help coalesce manufacturers.
 

BCC_Burner

Feeling the Heat
Sep 10, 2013
449
Uptown Marble, CO
I've been heating with/around wood heat for 20+ years now, and I can count on one hand the number of times I've run a stove (or seen a stove run) at a "low burn rate." That stat stinks worse than a pile of something the dog left in the yard.
 
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BKVP

Minister of Fire
I've been heating with/around wood heat for 20+ years now, and I can count on one hand the number of times I've run a stove (or seen a stove run) at a "low burn rate." That stat stinks worse than a pile of something the dog left in the yard.
That's why the 20% exists. Show me a single brochure from our industry that promotes high or even medium burn times. We as manufacturers & the dealers address the first 3 questions consumers ask:

1) How long will it burn
2) How much space will it heat
3) What does it cost
Clearly there are those that require higher burn rates to keep their homes warm. In fact, last week while visiting dealers it was pointed out time after time to me the greatest variable forgotten by most folks is the residents themselves and how warm they wish to keep their homes. My ol' mom is 84 year old. Lives in S. Cal and although she does not burn wood, she keeps her home at 79-81 degrees. She is old, skinny and feels cold easily. I suspect if she did burn wood, she would not be running a stove on low very often.
 
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