Is This Really The End for Gas Stoves?
Recently, we have seen several news stories regarding the possible ban of gas stoves used for cooking. So why is an HVAC company talking about gas stoves? Hold that thought! To begin with, we wanted to try and cut through the drama, confusion and inaccurate info to share a summary of the facts and only the facts:
There are close to 40 million gas stoves in the United States and no, “the Fed” is not coming for your gas stove. However, several cities — and some states — are already moving away from natural gas as part of a growing decarbonization, particularly in new construction homes. This will make it much less worthwhile to purchase a gas stove, despite what lawmakers are talking about.
Gas stoves have been the focus of arguments due to some recent studies that have indicated that emissions from gas stoves may be harmful to your health. Namely, leading to respiratory illness and asthma.
The air inside our homes (and businesses) is much less than ideal. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has completed reports that indicate indoor levels of pollutants can be two to five times — and sometimes more than 100 times — higher than outdoor levels.
Even though gas stoves may contribute to poor indoor air quality, they are definitely not the only factor. Others could be:
- Occupants Within the Home: People and pets at home produce carbon dioxide (CO2), odors, vape smoke and pet dander (a common allergen).
- Other Combustion Appliances: Other fuel (or wood/oil burning) appliances such as space heaters, fireplaces, furnaces and water heaters.
- Construction Materials and Furnishings: Paints, carpeting, fiberglass, particle board and fabrics may emit harmful substances known as volatile organic compounds (VOCs), another common indoor allergen, through what’s known as “outgassing.”
- Cleaning Compounds: Household cleaning products may produce VOCs or other chemicals.
- The Soil: Radon gas and stormwater runoff may enter the home through the basement or crawl space from the foundation surrounding the home.
- Well-Insulated Homes: While there are significant energy efficiency benefits, homes that are well insulated are “sealed up” and as a result won’t have as much infiltration from fresh, outdoor air.
There are formal standards for residential ventilation and satisfactory indoor air quality (IAQ) levels. These guidelines are often referred to as the ASHRAE 60.2 standard. Local building codes have widely adopted these standards to determine minimum ventilation requirements and other measures so that you can minimize any harmful effects on your health, resolving both health and safety problems for everyone.
That being said, the final performance of your ventilation is not directly tested or audited. Even if it was, it’s highly predicated on the weather outdoors, the square footage of the home and other factors. The precise ventilation performance in your average American home fluctuates widely.
It’s still entirely your preference. You don’t have to say goodbye to your gas stove and replace it with electric, and you also don’t have to pick between your gas stove and the potential for lower indoor air quality. Proper and consistent ventilation is the real key to this debate.
First, whenever you prepare meals with a gas stove, you ought to use the fan on your range hood so the combustion byproducts like smoke and CO gas are safety released out of your home. But to be candid: how often do any of us use the fan on the range hood?
Which takes us to our next point. There are more suitable whole-home ventilation solutions that will consistently improve your indoor air quality and home comfort while still allowing you to be the "Bobby Flay" chef in your home. Read on to find out more about the potential solutions for your home.
|Exhaust Fans|| || |
|Outside Air Dampers|| || |
|Energy Recovery Ventilators (ERV)|| || |
So, why is a HVAC company thinking about gas stoves? Well, the “V” in HVAC stands for “Ventilation” and “There’s an Expert for That”! To learn more about gas stoves and which solution might be best for your home, contact Service Experts at 518-417-2938.