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European directive for heating products takes shape

The European Commission’s EuP Directive, intended to make heating manufacturers design more energy efficient products, is scheduled to come into force by the end of 2011, it was recently reported.

Lobbying by the UK’s heating industry, led by the Heating and Hot Water Industry Council (HHIC) and OFTEC, has been seen to have succeeded after the initial proposals have been reduced in severity.

The requirement that all boilers would have to be boxed and dispatched with the necessary control systems, such as time-clocks, room thermostats and TRV’s, is now seen as unlikely to be included.

Similarly, the requirement that NOx emissions for oil-fired boilers to not exceed 35 milligrams per kWh seems to have been changed to120mg per kWh, with gas-fired boilers at the 35 mg per kWh rate.

Other requirements were for heating products to carry consistent labelling across the EU to enable customers to make a comparison between technologies.

Recent information indicates that condensing boilers will be labeled Band A with other technologies which are more efficient or renewable technologies getting Band A+ or Band A++.

Martyn Bridges, Worcester Bosch director of marketing and technical support, said:  “I am pleased to say that there has been a realisation within the Commission that initial drafts of EUP Directive were not workable, particularly for the UK heating industry.

“The requirement for controls to be dispatched with the boiler was impractical due to wide variations in the size of houses and the ability of different individuals to use and programme more complex control devices.  In addition, the NOx emissions requirements would probably have been practically impossible to meet.”

Following a new working document due this month, further consultations with representatives of member states (DEFRA in the UK) will take place.

It is expected that the Directive will go to a vote on the Regulatory Committee by the summer of 2011 with publication of the Directive in the autumn.