WETT Inspections for Angus, Barrie, Alliston and Orillia
When installing a new wood stove or buying a home with an existing fireplace or wood stove your insurance company will probably require that you have your unit inspected by a Wett Certified Inspector.
Wood Energy Technology Transfer Inc. (WETT Inc.) is a non-profit training and education association managed by a volunteer Board of Directors elected by holders of valid WETT certificates. Through its administrative designate, WETT Inc. functions as the national registrar of the WETT program. Through professional training and public education, WETT Inc. promotes the safe and effective use of wood burning systems in Canada.
WETT’s Mission statement states: To develop, maintain, promote and deliver professional training courses within the framework of the Wood Energy Technical Training Program (WETT) for practitioners of trades related to the sale, installation, maintenance and inspection of systems using wood and other biomass fuels. To maintain a registry containing the names of holders of valid WETT certificates and those who are students under the program. To foster and promote among certificate holders the highest level of professional conduct in the delivery of services to the public. To encourage and promote the safe and efficient use of wood energy through the distribution of public information materials and through the collaboration with government agencies and related industries. To foster and promote research and education in the utilization of wood as a source of energy To promote the interests and activities of the members of the organization in a reasonable and legal manner To provide a forum for the discussion of issues of importance or interest to the members and to share information and opinions for the mutual benefit of the members. A certificate holder will protect the rights and safety of others and use reasonable skill and judgment while engaged in the practice of wood energy technical work in accordance with the terms and conditions of Wett certification.
It would be foolish to suggest that wood heating is suitable for everyone. For example, firewood is not a good fuel for people unable or unwilling to do the physical work involved. Wood is not the best fuel for people living in large, densely populated urban areas because the air there is already fouled by traffic exhaust, industrial emissions and large residential developments. But people living outside large urban areas in smaller cities, towns and rural areas can benefit from heating with wood. They tend to have larger lots for the storage of a winter’s firewood supply and they are closer to the woodlots that provide fuel.
Large parts of North America have highly productive forests that could sustainably supply fuel for far more homes than are currently heated with wood. The productivity of many forests can be improved by thinning, and this process could yield a large amount of wood fuel. Advanced technology wood heaters can effectively burn tree species that have historically been considered inferior. Poplar, spruce, pine and willow can be used as firewood in modern appliances. Firewood production can provide the incentive for good forest management and its use can reduce greenhouse gas emissions by displacing fossil fuels.
The US government’s regulation of wood stove emissions, starting in 1988, produced a technological revolution that changed wood heating forever. Wood stoves certified by the Environmental Protection Agency emit roughly 90 percent less smoke and deliver up to one-third higher efficiency compared to older conventional stoves like the so-called ‘airtights’ of the 1970s and 1980s. Advanced technology, EPA certified wood stoves certainly do burn much cleaner and are also more pleasant to use, but there is more to reduced smoke emissions than using better technology. There are really three aspects: advanced technology in the form of EPA certified heaters, good quality fuel that is dry enough and split to the right size, and user practices that can reduce wood smoke and boost efficiency.
Lots of people have been mislead by old timers who say that white ash (for example) can be burned green. Sure it will burn, but very badly because it has a natural moisture content of over 30 percent. While that is lower than most species, it is still much too wet for efficient burning. Some advice from old timers is helpful, but not in this case.
What is the best tree species for firewood? While there is always room for debate, we like to suggest that the best species in your area is the one that is most plentiful, easy to split and doesn’t cover your hands and clothes with sticky sap.