When Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) published its energy use outlook in 2011, it seemed highly doable on paper, especially with today’s technology. However, it also meant a likely spike in prices of heaters with the latest technology, and a greater need for professional services in maintaining high-tech heaters. Plumbing & HVAC online magazine writer Simon Blake puts things in perspective:
Meeting NRCan’s goal of reaching an energy factor of 0.80 by 2020 will push gas water heater prices over $1,000 per unit, said Claude Lesage, president of Giant Factories, Montreal. “They are expecting a condensing water heater to be around $400. There’s no way we can make it for that.”
The current basement for the energy factor of water heating devices is at 0.67. By 2016, this will go up to 0.75.
Many households may object to the higher costs involved in meeting the NRCan standards, but they should also keep in mind that sticking to old systems isn’t the better option. The cost of keeping old systems also grows as time passes, to the point that maintaining one is no longer more cost-effective than buying a new one. Robert Plant of the Harvard Business Review explained this analogy using computers, saying an old iMac isn’t compatible with today’s systems anymore.
In keeping up with the mandatory changes in water heating systems, households can ponder on the iMac example. Will spare parts for your old water heater still be available in the years to come? Will newer, better parts work on an old water heater? There’s no use keeping an old water heater that has long been put out of production or obsolesced.
In implementing the changes, trusted Saskatoon plumbers should thoroughly inform their customers on what needs to be done, and how much it will cost. The purpose for such a disclosure is to let the customer know how much they have to pay before work begins. The decision whether or not to go through with the project is then left up to the customer.
Chances are, the local government is aware of the price concerns. This is why they have many rebate programs in place, like the ENERGY STAR® Loan Program for approved SaskEnergy customers. If the new heater meets NRCan’s energy factor requirements (0.67 for tank-type and 0.82 for tankless), it’s eligible for a “prime plus two” loan.
As it stands, there seems to be no stopping the implementation of the new mandatory energy factor rating. A Saskatoon plumbing company like Perfection Plumbing & Drain Cleaning can be counted on to make the transition easier for households, and inform homeowners on how this can be significantly better for everyone.
(Source: More complexity, more cost, Plumbing & HVAC)