VANCOUVER – The City of Vancouver is inviting residents to provide feedback about moving to higher efficiency hot water equipment in existing detached and duplex homes.
A release stated over the past decade the city has updated its building code to reduce emissions as technology improves and more energy efficient equipment becomes readily available.
Two proposed updates to the Vancouver Building By-law for existing single-family detached homes and duplexes are:
- Home renovations over $75,000 would no longer be required to upgrade airtightness and attic insulation, and instead would be required to replace existing hot water heaters with higher efficiency equipment (to go into effect in July 2024).
- When hot water heaters are replaced, they must be replaced with higher efficiency equipment (to go into effect in January 2025).
Higher efficiency, the release stated, means equipment that is at least 100 per cent efficient, including electric water heaters, electric heat pump systems, hybrid gas/electric systems and high-efficiency gas heat pumps.
Typical gas water heaters, condensing or on-demand gas water heaters are not included as they are all less than 100 per cent efficient.
Several exceptions including emergency replacements of hot water heaters are also being proposed to provide flexibility and smoother uptake of the regulations in the early years, the release said.
According to the City of Vancouver, nearly 60 per cent of the city’s carbon pollution is from burning fossil fuels to heat buildings, including space heating and hot water. Vancouver’s Zero Emissions Building Plan aims for most new buildings to be near zero-emissions by 2025.
The proposed changes to Vancouver’s building code are aligned with upcoming CleanBC regulations and supported by financial incentives offered by both BC Hydro and Fortis, the release said.
Residents are encouraged to look at information and complete a survey before Dec. 7.