Hydronic Heater Ads Misleading Consumers
Marketing claims by a number of hydronic heater manufacturers citing efficiencies up to 99% may run afoul of the Phase 2 Partnership Agreement between the EPA and manufacturers of Phase 2 units. The problem stems from manufacturers using the EPA’s name to explicitly or implicitly endorse the extremely high efficiency numbers that had been reported by test labs last year, but have since been called into question.
A recent Wood Master advertisement running in the October/November issue of Mother Earth News states, “EPA DATA PROVES NOBODY IS CLEANER OR MORE EFFICIENT” in addition to claiming that Wood Master tops the list of “heaters rated by the EPA” and that the boiler is “EPA Qualified over 99% efficiency.”
Relevant language in the Phase 2 Partnership agreement includes: "Partner agrees not to construe, claim, or imply that its participation in the EPA Program constitutes federal government approval, acceptance, or endorsement of anything other than Partner's commitment to the Program. ... The Partner agrees to ensure that outreach materials describing this Agreement include statements that EPA does not endorse any particular product, service, or enterprise." For the full agreement: http://www.epa.gov/burnwise/pdfs/owhhphase2agreement.pdf
Now that the extremely high efficiency numbers obtained through the EPA Phase II partnership program have been discredited, the Alliance believes it is misleading to consumers for manufacturers to continue using them in advertisements for their products. The EPA should proceed with due haste to disassociate the Phase 2 program from such efficiency numbers.
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