The Woodstove Exchange Program was established with the intent to provide incentive for replacing old woodstoves (high particulate emissions) with more efficient, low emissions models or alternatives through rebates. This program is funded by the BC Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy with rebate funding top-ups from the qathet Regional District and overseen by the BC Lung Association.
Pollution from woodstove heating can impact your health, your neighbours and your family. Old uncertified woodstoves contribute to poor air quality. Particular matter (PM2.5) released from activities including wood burning, has been found to negatively impact the body, especially the lungs and heart.
2019 Woodstove Exchange
This program runs on a first come, first serve basis. There are limited quantities of each of the two available rebates. The program offers an option for households with any woodstove manufactured prior to 2014 to participate in the program if they are switching to a new pellet or gas heating appliance or electric heat pump. The rebate amount for this option is $550. The uncertified woodstove to an EPA certified woodstove exchange is $350.
To determine if you are eligible to utilize the woodstove exchange and receive your rebate you must meet the following requirements:
- Registered owner or property within the qathet Regional District (including the City of Powell River and electoral areas).
- Home on the property has a wood burning appliance that is regularly used as the home’s heat source. For exchange to a new gas or pellet stove or an electric heat pump, the existing wood burning appliance must have been manufactured prior to 2014. For exchange to a new wood burning appliance, the existing wood burning appliance must be non-EPA certified (manufactured prior to approximately 1994).
- Old woodstove must be removed, decommissioned and recycled (ie. It cannot be re-used in a workshop or garage and one of the specified recycling facilities must sign off on your application).
- Work must be done in compliance with local code requirements.
- Only one rebate is permitted per taxable residence per year.
- Homeowners are required to pre-qualify through the qathet Regional District’s Let’s Talk Trash team. Once pre-qualified, a tracking number will be issued that will secure one of the limited rebates.
- Once the homeowner has satisfied all program requirements and has been verified by Let’s Talk Trash, a rebate from the qathet Regional District will be issued directly to the homeowner.
- Program start date is March 1, 2019. To qualify for the rebate, the homeowner must purchase and install the new appliance after the program start date. The program end date is November 30, 2019. To qualify for the rebate, the homeowner must purchase and install the new appliance, dispose of the old appliance at an approved recycler and submit all completed required documentation before the program end date.
- Homeowners with incomplete applications by November 30, 2019 will be considered ineligible for the 2019 program.
Old Wood Burning Appliances that Qualify for Rebates
- A free-standing non-EPA-certified “stove”
- An EPA-certified stove that is older than five (5) years.
- A “homemade” or “barrel’ stove.
- An “airtight” non-EPA-certified fireplace insert or tube type heat exchanger with a face plate and door (like the ‘Free Heat Machine’ or Welenco) that is currently installed in an open hearth fireplace
- A non-EPA-certified “wood furnace” (ducted, forced air, home heating appliance) – may only be replaced by an EPA-certified wood furnace or pellet furnace or a non-polluting option such as a heat pump.
- A wood-burning cook stove.
Homeowners can apply through Efficiency BC to access additional rebates outside this program. For those exchanging their woodstove for an air sourced heat pump, some models are eligible through Fortis BC for additional savings. Local retailers may also offer additional in-house incentives.
Clean Burning Tips
If you heat your home with a woodstove, following safe burning practices improves your heating efficiency while reducing air pollution. To help you get the most out of your wood, only use dry wood (wood with less than 20% moisture content). Burning wet wood does not burn as hot and you will be creating harmful smoke by drying wood in the woodstove.
After 15 minutes of starting the fire, there should be no visible smoke coming from your chimney. A $20 moisture meter can show you the moisture percentage of a log; insert the probes in the firewood log to obtain a reading. If you don’t have a moisture meter, check the firewood log ends. Dry, seasoned wood should have cracks and split ends. Also, if you knock dry wood together, you should hear a hollow sound, not a wet ‘thud’
Check out the Provincial Wood Burning Guidelines for more information on how to properly dry, store and build your woodstove fires.
- Videos (courtesy Government of Canada)
Acceptable air quality is everyone’s right. Protecting air quality is everyone’s responsibility.
Please direct any questions regarding the program to the qRD 604.485.2260 ext.308 or email firstname.lastname@example.org