Do fireplaces qualify to be changed-out?
No. Fireplaces, including pre-fab fireplaces (like the one pictured here) are not "fireplace inserts" and therefore do not qualify. Millions of homes have been built with lightweight and inexpensive pre-fab fireplaces called “builder boxes”, a title which reflects the low cost of these units. These fireplaces weren't designed to provide efficient zonal heating, rather for "ambiance." Using these units can often make the room colder!
Because of limited funding, only old wood burning stoves (free-standing or "inserted" into a fireplace) may be changed-out. These devices are those used most frequently for home heating. Also, old pellet stoves cannot be replaced under this funding because they are much cleaner than old wood burning devices.
Why upgrade? Old wood burning stoves and inserts are less efficient that the new technology devices. They also produce more smoke. New technology devices heat more efficiently and cleanly. This means saving money and improving air quality inside your home and outdoors!
This is a limited time offer beginning January 12, 2012. Spokane Clean Air secured a grant from the Washington State Department of Ecology to fund this program. Funds are available on a first come, first serve basis. Funds are not guaranteed until an application is approved and a discount voucher has been issued. Based on grant funding, we expect to be able to fund approximately 140 changeouts. Only one changeout per household is allowed.
How can I tell if my stove is uncertified or built prior to 1995? If your device is EPA-certified, there should be a label on the back or on the top if you have a fireplace insert. If not, try to locate the original paperwork. You can also check this list of EPA-certified devices. If there is no label on your device and your device is NOT listed on the EPA certification list, chances are it is non-certified and can be changed-out under this program. If your device is certified, but it is 1994 or older, it will qualify for changeout as well. If you still have questions, please call our office for assistance, (509) 477-4727.
What if I already bought a new stove, can I still get the money? Unfortunately, the answer is NO. This program is not-retroactive. Only those with installed and operational old wood stoves or inserts are eligible and other terms and conditions apply.
Choices when upgrading
"Mini-split" ductless heat pumps - Some local utilities offer rebates on certain ductless heat pumps. ENERGY STAR qualified ductless heating and cooling systems are highly efficient products that deliver warm or cool air directly into different zones in your home, instead of routing it through ducts first. You may also hear them called mini-split, multi-split, or variable refrigerant flow (VRF) heat pump systems. They are an increasingly popular, cost-effective solution to replace inefficient baseboard electric heating and window air conditioners in older homes. They are also used in new construction, home additions, multi-family (condo or apartment) housing, and to improve comfort in poorly heated or cooled rooms. Click here for more information.
Gas Stoves and Inserts - Gas stoves are designed to burn either natural gas or propane. They emit very little pollution, require little maintenance, and can be installed almost anywhere in the home. Today’s gas stoves can be vented through an existing chimney, or direct vented through the wall behind the stove. While some models do not require outside venting, EPA does not support their use due to indoor air quality concerns. For more information, see the Hearth, Patio, and Barbecue Association Fact Sheet on Gas Stoves (PDF). (2 pp, 1.2 MB, About PDF)
Pellet Stoves and Inserts - Pellet stoves and inserts are similar in appearance to wood stoves; however, instead of wood, pellet stoves burn a renewable fuel made of ground, dried wood and other biomass wastes compressed into pellets. Pellet stoves operate by pouring pellets into a hopper which feeds automatically into the stove. Unlike wood stoves and fireplaces, most pellet stoves need electricity to operate.
Wood Stoves and Inserts - A wood stove is an appliance that is usually made of cast iron, steel, or stone. Fireplace inserts are similar in function and performance to free-standing wood stoves, but are designed to be installed within the firebox of an existing masonry or metal fireplace. A certified installer will make sure the flue liner in your masonry chimney is installed correctly. If your fireplace is factory built (or "zero-clearance"), you must use an insert that was specifically designed and tested for your unit to make it more efficient and less polluting.
Things to consider if heating with wood or pellet
Remember: Only wood burning devices that meet Washington's more stringent emissions standards may be sold and installed in Spokane County.