If you've ever been to the dentist or a racetrack, chances are you've experienced the potent effects of nitrous oxide.
A result of burning fuel, a greenhouse gas called Nitrous Oxide is emitted that contributes to global warming.
For this reason, many people that live in states like California and Texas need heating HVAC equipment designated as: "Low NOx".
Why California & Texas Have Low NOx Regulations
California and Texas enacted low NOx regulations because high levels of nitrous oxide deplete the ozone layer while contributing to the creation of dangerous, airborne ozone.
Installing low NOx HVAC and water heating equipment is part of a concerted effort to decrease greenhouse gases to pre-20th Century levels.
Low NOx Tech
Preventing global warming and lung damage aren't the only advantages of low NOx appliances. By using premixed burners with a lower flame, NOx emissions are reduced and efficiency is improved.
Premixed fuel burners achieve the optimal blend of oxygen and fuel prior to combustion, resulting in a clean burn that doesn’t waste fuel.
Low NOx vs Ultra Low NOx
Based on common industry interpretation, a product qualifies as Low NOx if it emits less than 40 nanograms per joule of heat output (expressed as 40 ng/J), or less than or equal to 55 parts per million (ppm) of NOx.
Newer standards calling for even lower restrictions on outputs are referred to as Ultra Low NOx. These products must emit less than 14 ng/J, or less than or equal to 20 ppm of NOx.
Is It Hard to Get Low NOx Equipment?
While low NOx equipment may not a focus for some manufacturers, demand is growing as regulated markets increase.
It's not difficult to find Low and Ultra Low NOx products for space and water heating like:
Tankless Water Heaters
High Efficiency Furnaces (Goodman)
Combi Boilers (Triangle Tube)
Is Low NOx the Future?
Although California and Texas are leading the way in clean air policy, there are other district-level agencies that are authorized as well. These agencies often look to Southern California’s SCAQMD (South Coast Air Quality Management District) for leadership on standards.
A low NOx heating appliance is a great choice for those who are concerned about the environment even if they don't live in a regulated area.