Stan and Shirley Hampton traveled to Texas this year for the 5-day Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association (HPBA) Training & Expo 2019, North America’s largest indoor-outdoor living showcase where over 400 leading hearth, patio and barbecue manufacturers and suppliers exhibit and demonstrate their latest home heating solutions. The National Fireplace Institute® (NFI) is the professional certification division that focuses on increased public safety by establishing credentials for professionals involved in residential hearth appliances. The HPBA also advocates for and supports dealers’ interests in retail stores before federal, state and local governments; promotes policies favorable to their business; and provides necessary, on-going training with more than 30 sessions.
This type of yearly training is of an extremely high value for hearth industry store owners as there are ever-changing regulations and new building codes. Shirley says, “We put fire into people’s homes so we want to be ever-vigilant about home safety and, as such, we are dedicated to provide safety for our customers. We attend training Expos three times a year in different locales throughout the nation to ensure we are current, and providing the newest and most efficient stoves/fireplaces/inserts for our customers.
Stan and Shirley also put a high priority on developing a good team through encouragement, training, and honesty. They engage employees to be business owners, to see their jobs as a career and, in that light, to shoulder more responsibility. In all things, she values a close walk with God, a personal relationship that aligns her life with Jesus Christ, directly affecting the quality of relationships with people.
The HPBA not only showcases the latest products for retailers’ showrooms nationwide, but also the latest services and technologies for their companies. Shirley is excited about the new Jotul F500 V3 stove created for the 2019 sales year that won the Vesta Hearth Products’ Best-in-Show Daniel J. Melcon Award for 2020 technology and new EPA standards at the HPBExpo. She anticipates stove costs to heat our homes will increase in 2020 by 4-6% and yet, she says, it’s still the most cost effective and environmentally safe means of heating homes.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has been in the wood burning industry since 1989; Stage 1 was in 2015 when smoke emissions for wood burning stoves were regulated at 4.5g/or less per hour. Stage 2, in 2020, no more than 2.0g/hr smoke emissions will be allowed. New emission control regulations help keep the environment clean, allow the continued practice of cutting down trees (a renewable heat source), and affect burn days. Sierra Hearth & Home, Inc. (a family owned and operated business since 2006) has NFI Certified Specialists on staff and are committed to the highest professional standards. They specialize in wood, gas and pellet fireplaces, inserts and freestanding stoves. You can see many working models on display in their 3,000 sf showroom. Call or visit today for professional assistance with all your service needs.