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Changes to the City of Vancouver Building Bylaw that came into effect January 1, 2015 put severe restrictions on sidewall venting of furnaces and boilers. The current By-law requires that the exhaust for space heating appliances be directed up through the roof or horizontally through an exterior wall which faces a street. Unfortunately, this is not a feasible and practical option for retrofits applications where the existing space heating appliance is already vented through an exterior side wall.

HRAI and CIPH staff along with members were recently invited to participate in a consultation process with industry stakeholders to evaluate the current restriction for retrofit applications and explore alternative approaches that could be adopted by the City of Vancouver.

This opportunity came about once the City of Vancouver and FortisBC signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) in the fall of 2017.  As outlined in objectives under the MOU, the City committed to a process to understand concerns regarding the City’s current approach to sidewall venting and to explore approaches to allow for sidewall venting to be permitted for retrofit applications.

HRAI has participated in consultation meetings over the past few months. Work has begun on developing a guidance document on installation and a communications plan.  HRAI is getting close to agreeing on an alternative solution to be presented to the City of Vancouver at their Council meeting to be held in March of 2018.

For more information contact Caroline Czajko at HRAI, e-mail: cczajko@hrai.ca