Wood Stove Exchange Program

Program Summary

While local air quality is generally good many months of the year, there are times during the winter heating season when fine particulate (PM2.5) levels exceed applicable provincial standards. Recent studies have indicated that a leading source of winter PM2.5 is wood smoke emissions resulting from wood stove use. PM2.5 and other pollutants in wood smoke can have a direct impact on respiratory and cardiovascular health. It is therefore important to reduce wood smoke pollution, and our exposure to it.

To help reduce local wood smoke pollution, the Comox Valley Regional District has rebates available to homeowners in the Comox Valley who are exchanging non-EPA certified wood stoves for a new CSAB415 (EPA-certified) standard wood, pellet or gas heating appliance or electric air-source heat pump. New certified wood-burning appliances burn 30 per cent less wood, significantly reduce the risk of chimney fires, and reduce smoke and fine particulate emissions by up to 70 per cent. Non-cordwood options offer greater convenience, and further reduce (or even eliminate) harmful fine particulate emissions.

Funding support for the Comox Valley wood stove exchange program has been provided by the BC Ministry of Environment, the BC Lung Association & Island Health.

Questions regarding the program can be directed to the CVRD wood stove exchange program coordinator at 250-650-2302 or by email.

Exchanging old wood stoves for cleaner options is only part of the solution. Anyone who heats their home with wood has a responsibility to do so properly. Below are some smart burning tips.

Smart Burning Tips - stay warm the smart and safe way!

Tip#1

Signs your woodstove fire needs more air or your wood is too wet (MP3 Radio clip).

Tip#2

Burn only properly seasoned dry firewood. Burning other materials is inefficient and produces harmful emissions (MP3 Radio Clip).

Tip #3

Don't burn wood on days with a poor air quality rating (MP3 Radio Clip).

Tip #4

It's a new year! Now is the time to upgrade to cleaner, more efficient equipment (MP3 Radio Clip).

Eligibility

To be eligible for a rebate, participants must meet the following requirements:

  1. Registered owner of property within the Comox Valley Regional District (including all municipal and electoral areas)
  2. The home on the property has a non-EPA certified wood burning appliance (built prior to approximately 1994) that is the primary heat source of the home 
  3. The old wood stove is removed, decommissioned and recycled (ie. it cannot be re-used in a workshop or garage).
  4. All work must be done in compliance with local code requirements.

For those exchanging their wood stove for a natural gas stove or fireplace, eligible models are those eligible under FortisBC’s EnerChoice program.

For those exchanging their wood stove for an electric heat pump, eligible models are those eligible under the Oil to Heat Pump program or BC Hydro’s Home Renovation Rebate Program.

Available Rebates

New heating appliance Total Rebate
EPA certified wood stove  $250
Natural gas or pellet stoves  $600
Electric heat pumps  $1,000

There are limited quantities of each rebate type, and they will be distributed on a first come, first serve basis.

How to Apply

Option 1: Work with a Preferred Supplier

  1. Contact one of our Preferred Suppliers
  2. The retailer will check your eligibility, and once confirmed, will provide you with a tracking number for your application.
  3. Ask the retailer about additional rebates from the manufacturer, BC Hydro or Fortis BC. 
  4. The retailer will work with you to complete your installation, remove and decommission your old stove and complete your rebate application form [PDF - 297 KB].
  5. Get the completed application form from the retailer and submit it to the CVRD in person, by mail or by email. Submission of the completed application form is the responsibility of the applicant, not the retailer.

Option 2: Handle the Installation Yourself

  1. Download the Application form [PDF - 331 KB].
  2. Contact the Wood Stove Exchange Coordinator to check your eligibility by calling 250-650-2302 or [email]. Once eligibility is confirmed, you will be provided a tracking number for your application.
  3. Complete your installation, ensuring the following supporting documents are kept for submission with your application:
    • Sales receipt for replacement heating appliance purchase (& installation);
    • Photo of old wood stove in place & specifications plate on back of stove;
    • Proof of decommissioning of old stove (date stamp on your rebate application form or date-stamped receipt from Comox Valley waste management centre); and
    • WETT inspection report of your new stove installation (if installing a wood stove or pellet stove) OR copy of your BC Safety Authority Gas Installation Permit (if installing a gas stove/fireplace) OR AHRI number or AHRI certificate (if installing an air-source heat pump).
  4. Submit your completed application and supporting documents to the CVRD in person, by mail or by email:

    Wood Stove Exchange Program
    Comox Valley Regional District
    600 Comox Road, Courtenay, BC V9N 3P6
    Email