Once used as a primary source of heat, fireplaces have slowly declined in modern housing. While still aesthetically pleasing in many homes, some homeowners wonder whether it is worth replacing or removing altogether and how it might affect the value of their home. We run into more headaches nowadays with fireplaces that don’t work, maybe you don’t want to bother starting and maintaining a fire, or you live in an area that regulates when you can and can’t burn. If you do enjoy the extra source of heat, there are efficient alternatives that actually provide a better source of heat like a wood or pellet stove. Here in Washoe County, it is important to understand the regulations put in place for these heat sources and what might be the best option for you.


What You Need to Know About Your Source of Heat

Burning anything and releasing smoke into the air is an active pollutant and therefore, wood stoves and fireplaces are often regulated by the health district. The Washoe County Health District limits those two items and determines if you’re allowed to install one, whereas cleaner alternatives like a gas-fire stove or a clean burning pellet stove can be installed no matter where you live. To control the pollution caused by burning, Washoe County enforces a burn code. The codes coincide with the Air Quality Index (AQI) to determine when we have safe or unsafe levels of pollutants in our air. A green code means it is acceptable to burn dry, seasoned wood, pellets and fire logs (properly seasoned wood is split, stored and aged for at least six months). A yellow code means you should burn less than usual or stop altogether as it well help to prevent our air quality from worsening during this time. A red code will generally prohibit you from burning for a 24-hour period and compliance is enforced in this stage meaning you could receive a warning and/or fine. To find out which zip codes these regulations affect or additional resources you can visit the Washoe County Health District website. These codes are active from November 1st to the end of February and it is your responsibility to know when you can or cannot burn.

fireplace inspection

Reno’s Wood/Pellet Stove and Fireplace Inspection Experts

If you are buying a home in Washoe County with a wood or pellet stove, or plan to build a home with a wood or pellet stove, an inspection is required to ensure that it is certified as clean burning. The Air Quality Division of the Washoe County Health Department certifies Grush inspectors to perform wood pellet and wood stove inspections throughout the city. If you are buying a home with a fireplace or have one in your current home, it is equally important to have an inspection and keep up with regular maintenance as dirt, dust, leaves, debris, lint, ash and more can accumulate in your fireplace over long periods of time, restricting the flow of air and gas. Be prepared this winter and give us a call at (775) 323-1117 to schedule a wood/pellet stove or fireplace inspection from the professionals at Grush Inspections LLC.