Well, being an Edinburgh based company, we are constantly restricted by Defra approved appliances both on the stove side and the biomass boiler side. So what is defra approval – exemption, well its stands for the department of enviroment, food and rural affairs and basicly lists appliances that have been tested at great expence to the manufacturer or importer to ensure they produce limited polution into the atmosphere.
In our experience most European manufacturers easily pass this but its very expensive to put an appliance through the tests, especially when you have a large range of appliances for sale or already have other countries certifications like the (Nordic eco label). Those manufacturers whose appliances dont pass will usually alter the air system controls, for example put a stop on the air intake so it cant be fully closed. This is why we as installers find it painful telling a customers they cant fit a certain product but can another, on some occasions the customer simply decides its too much hassle especially when they have there heart set on a specific appliance, coupled along with the Scotland government still not signing up to hetas competent persons scheme, therefore a building warrant required £££££. THE ONLY PERSON MAKING MONEY(LOCAL GOVERMENT) does it ensure a good safe install ?
So is defra worth the paper its written, bearing in mind nobody is watching what you are burning? Well its a attempt i suppose, however a cheaper system would be welcomed where all appliances could be checked at much lower cost to allow most manufaturers – importers to sell into smoke controlled areas, granted some with small alterations to comply.
defra – pls look at your area of the country only (different parts of the uk have different exempt appliances ? www.defra.gov.uk
next time, to line or not to line, we will look at the benefit of twin wall flexible chimney lining and issues concerning them