Information on type approval, Conto Termico and Certificato Ambientale

Testing according to the test programs for “catalysts and dust separators in firing systems” within the scope of the state building codes for obtaining a National technical approval (abZ)/ General construction technique permit (aBG)

The RRF is one of the few test laboratories in Germany to offer the corresponding tests to verify, for example, usability or operational safety for the test programs listed above.

For this purpose, the filter or separation performance is evaluated on one of our specially configured test benches. Further tests such as soot fire resistance or distances to flammable components can be carried out in our partner laboratory for chimneys and connectors. In this case, the RRF also assumes further coordination as the main test laboratory.

After successful approval or authorization by the DIBt, monitoring of the manufacturing plant and the factory production control by an external monitoring body may be necessary. In this case, too, RRF is your competent partner and can have this work carried out by its experienced assessors. Please do not hesitate to contact us.

Conto Termico (“5 stars”) new requirements in Lombardy (Italy)

From October 15, 2024, new requirements will apply for the construction of new biomass plants in Lombardy.

All newly installed devices must meet at least the requirements to achieve 4 stars. There are additional requirements depending on the altitude of the town.

If the town is below an altitude of 300 m above sea level, particulate emissions must not exceed 15 mg/Nm3 and OGC emissions must not exceed 35 mg/Nm3.

If the city is located above an altitude of 300 m above sea level, the appliance may have a maximum particulate emission of 20 mg/Nm3.

The requirements do not differentiate between log and pellet appliances.

For your information, the following is an overview of the general requirements for achieving 4 or 5 stars in the Conto Termico program:

Category/TypePMOGCNOxCOη
in mg/Nm³in %
Class 5 stars
Open fireplaces, closed fireplaces, fireplace inserts for logs, log stoves, wood-burning stoves, storage fireplaces253510065085
Stoves, fireplace inserts and stoves for pellets151010025088
Class 4 stars
Open fireplaces, closed fireplaces, fireplace inserts for logs, log stoves, wood-burning stoves3070160125077
Storage fireplaces3070160100077
Stoves, fireplace inserts and stoves for pellets203516025087
The RRF assumes no liability for the topicality, correctness and completeness of the information.
Despite the greatest possible care, no liability is assumed for the content. All rights reserved, in particular those relating to storage, reproduction, distribution and translation.

Procedure for issuing a Certificato Ambientale(/Conto Termico)

Based on the Italian Decree No. 186, we can issue so-called “environmental certificates” (“Certificato Ambientale”) for you.

As soon as you give us your approval for our offer, we will check whether your fireplace meets the desired requirements for class 1 – 5 stars based on the EN test report.

Checking the requirements of the EN test report is usually quick and uncomplicated for us, so you will receive the result on the same day in the best-case scenario.

Once the certificate has been issued, we will send it to you. You will receive your certificate within a few days.

As required by Article 3 of Decree no. 186, we enter all certificates issued in a list and publish it on our website. We regularly keep this list up to date. The following link will take you to our list of issued certificates: https://rrf-online.eu/service/downloads/

EFA update on the Blue Angel and quality mark

From March 21 to 22, 2024, the European Fireplace Association (EFA) hosted a conference in Bonn. The RRF was represented by our Managing Director Christian Droll, who acted as a board member of the EFA. The conference was also hosted by RAL Deutsches Institut für Gütesicherung und Kennzeichnung e.V., the central body for quality marks in Germany, which also manages the Blue Angel.

On the first day, the speaker Niklas Neureuther from RAL gave a presentation on the Blue Angel and quality marks. Other topics on the first day included the “#ofenzukunft” initiative, which provides targeted and comprehensive information about stoves and tiled stoves and addresses politicians, as well as a presentation by Sabrina Walter from the “Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Nuclear Safety and Consumer Protection” (BMUV), who gave an overview of current issues relating to immission control, funding requirements and the European legal framework. The ZIV, represented by board member Markus Burger, provided information on the topic of “Decommissioning single-room fireplaces” and the background to the counting of fireplaces and tiled stoves by the chimney sweep trade. Finally, Dirk Böhringer, external technical advisor to the EFA, gave a presentation on the testing and proof of use of particle separators. The focus of the tests by the DIBt, which he presented, was primarily operational safety and fire safety.

On the second day, the association’s direction for the future was presented. To enable the association to keep on strengthening, monitoring and supporting its European work in Brussels, cooperation with associations is to be expanded and costs reduced through digitalization in view of the stable membership fees. Furthermore, the three specialist groups – manufacturers, exhaust systems and suppliers – are to be strengthened and do more substantive work. According to the Chairman of the EFA Board, Uwe Striegler, this is necessary as the strong growth has resulted in 42 members from all sectors. Mr. Striegler sees the future of the EFA as secured and well positioned for the coming years thanks to the continuous further development.

The upcoming conference will take place from October 24 to 25 in Würzburg. A workshop on current issues is planned for the time in between. The date will be announced in good time.

Trade fair appearance at Progetto Fuoco 2024

From February 28 to March 1, 2024, our CEOs Christian Droll and Dennis Droll and the head of testing laboratory Sven Müller, were at the Progetto Fuoco in Verona. There they took part in numerous meetings and came into direct contact with you.

This trade fair was also a complete success for us, as we were able to make new contacts and hold future-oriented discussions with you.

Among the top topics were the new EN 16510 series of standards and the certification of chimneys and flue gas systems, for which we are also accredited in addition to testing fireplaces.

If you are visiting or exhibiting at a trade fair and you’re interested in making an appointment with us, please feel free to contact us at info@rrf-online.eu or 0208 607041-0.

In front Dennis Droll and Sven Müller on their way to the fair

Progetto Fuoco 2024 

From February 28 to March 1, 2024, we will be visiting the Progetto Fuoco in Verona. We gladly visit you at your stand or arrange an appointment with you. 

To arrange an appointment, please contact us by telephone on +49(0)208 60 70 41 – 11 or via e-mail at l.schmidt@rrf-online.eu

Decommissioning, retrofitting or replacing fireplaces in accordance with the 1. BImSchV

In 2010, the „1. BImSchV“ came into force in Germany. This ordinance specifies replacement obligations (retrofitting or decommissioning where necessary) for single-room firing installations for solid fuels.

The ordinance is available to everyone online free of charge, and chimney sweeps, associations and the media have been providing continuous information on the topic since 2010.

German version of the 1. BImSchV:

1. BImSchV – Erste Verordnung zur Durchführung des Bundes-Immissionsschutzgesetzes *) (gesetze-im-internet.de)

English translation: First Ordinance on the Implementation of the Federal Immission Control Act (Ordinance on Small and Medium-Sized Firing Installations) (Erste Verordnung zur Durchführung des Bundes-Immissionsschutzgesetzes – Verordnung über kleine und mittlere Feuerungsanlagen – 1. BImSchV (bmuv.de)

Due to the fact that the last date for retrofitting or decommissioning is 2024, we are receiving a flood of telephone and written inquiries. Many fireplace owners are worried due to false reports in the media, need proof of compliance with limit values or are looking for consulting.

Our notified body is not the right contact for this.

As a testing and certification body notified by the European Commission, we are not permitted to make test results or documents accessible to third parties or to make statements to third parties about tests or certifications carried out by us, as these are legally the property of the respective client/manufacturer. We are also not permitted to provide consulting on products tested or certified by us.

If you have any questions, you should first contact the distribution channel through which the construction product was purchased (e.g. specialist dealer, hardware store, shipping chain).

If this cannot provide information, please contact the manufacturer listed on the type plate or documents.

Even if manufacturers no longer exist or cannot be found, this does not release us from our duty of data protection and confidentiality.

The following transitional periods are listed in the 1. BImSchV:

Date on the type plateDate of decommissioning, retrofitting or decommissioning
Up to and including December 31, 1974 or date can no longer be determinedDecember 31, 2014
January 1, 1975 to December 31, 1984December 31, 2017
January 1, 1985 to December 31, 1994December 31, 2020
January 1, 1995 to including March 21, 2010December 31, 2024

The current phase affects fireplaces that were marked between January 1, 1995 and March 21, 2010 (date/year on the type plate). These must be decommissioned, retrofitted or replaced by a new low-emission fireplace by December 31, 2024 if the existing fireplace does not comply with the applicable limit values.

For all fireplaces that are affected by a previous phase but have not yet been considered, immediate action must be taken by the district master chimney sweep.

The Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Nuclear Safety and Consumer Protection (BMUV) assumes that up to approx. 4 million fireplaces are affected by this legal regulation in the 1. BImSchV. The number of inquiries we receive is correspondingly high.

Please understand that we are unable to answer detailed questions for the reasons mentioned above.

Successful notification according to EN 16510

We were one of the first European laboratories to receive notification in relation to the new EN 16510 series of standards. The notification certificate was sent to us by the Deutsches Institut für Bautechnik, which means that we are now authorized to issue test reports in accordance with EN 16510.

The notification concerns the following construction products:

EN 16510-2-1Roomheaters
EN 16510-2-2inset appliances including open fires
EN 16510-2-3Cookers
EN 16510-2-6 Mechanically by wood pellets fed roomheaters, inset appliances and cookers

The notified bodies have submitted a draft on the use of historical data related to part 2-1 (room heaters) to the European Commission. The decision will be communicated within the next 14 days.
The proposal for the use of historical data for the other parts of the standard EN 16510 2-2 to 2-6 will be processed by the notified bodies in the coming week.

The EN 16510 series of standards replaces the standards EN 13240, EN 13229, EN 12815, EN 12809, EN 14785 and thus the majority of standards for small fireplaces. From 09.11.2025, the fireplaces concerned must be placed on the market with a test report in accordance with the corresponding part of EN 16510. The standard for storage fireplaces EN 15250 will be harmonized at a later date and is not yet acutely affected.

Further information on EN 16510 can be found here: Harmonization of EN 16510 – RRF (rrf-online.eu)

You are welcome to contact us about tests in accordance with EN 16510 or the use of historical data from your fireplaces.

RRF team building “training” to become stove builders for Ethiopian clay stoves

On 24.11.2023, Marius Dislich and Christoph Ruopp were our guests with their project “Die Ofenmacher e. V.”.

The day began with a pleasant meeting in the warmth, where the two of them told us about their local projects, the people and their experiences with other cultures. After they explained the theory of a clay stove to us and divided us into two groups, we got down to business.

First, everyone was allowed to try out for themselves how to mix sand and clay so that it becomes a stable and dense mass when dry. Once we had found the optimum mixing ratio, the sand, clay and water were kneaded on the floor with our feet to classical African music. Meanwhile, a delicious African stew was prepared on an already made clay oven that Marius and Christoph had brought along. Strengthened by the stew, they got to work on the clay. The aim was to build a complete clay oven in two teams.

The clay oven used in Ethiopia has a second hearth for the met’ad, which is the main cooking area from the Ethiopian user’s point of view. The exhaust air from the met’ad combustion chamber also heats another pot, and the heat from the exhaust gases from the cooking pot combustion chamber is also used by this pot.

Even though everyone in the team could still feel the hard work in their bones the next day, they all had a lot of fun with the project. There was even a small competition for the most beautiful stove. The result of both stoves is impressive and we can now call ourselves “stove builders” of an Ethiopian clay stove.

As much fun as we had that day, the cause of “Die Ofenmacher e. V.” is serious and important. Around 3 billion people worldwide still cook over an open fire. This is the fifth most common cause of death. In addition to life-threatening burns, open fires produce very high levels of particulate matter and emissions. “Die Ofenmacher e. V.” trains local stove builders and teaches local people how to make a stove from locally available materials that can also be easily assembled and maintained. This stove alone significantly reduces health risks, emissions and wood consumption.

Last year, we supported “Die Ofenmacher e. V.” with a financial donation. In order to show how pollutant emissions can be drastically reduced worldwide with simple means and how high the reduction actually is, we donated a test of a typical clay stove to “Die Ofenmacher e. V.” as a Christmas campaign. “Die Ofenmacher e. V.” can use the test results as a basis for discussions for example with politicians and supporters and continue to realize their goals. We would like to thank Marius and Christoph for the exciting insights and a unique and unusual team-building exercise and, of course, everyone in the RRF team who supported the project wholeheartedly

Harmonization of EN 16510

Today we can inform you that the long-awaited citation in the Official Journal of the European Union of the designated parts of the EN 16510 series of standards, and thus harmonisation, has finally taken place.

This concerns the following parts of the standard

EN 16510-2-1:2022     Residential solid fuel burning appliances – Part 2-1: Room heaters.

EN 16510-2-2:2022     Residential solid fuel burning appliances – Part 2-2: Inset appliances including open fires

EN 16510-2-3:2022     Residential solid fuel burning appliances – Part 2-3: Cookers

EN 16510-2-4:2022     Residential solid fuel burning appliances – Part 2-4: Independent boilers – Nominal heat input not exceeding 50 kW

EN 16510-2-6:2022     Residential solid fuel burning appliances – Part 2-6: Mechanically by wood pellets fed heaters, inset appliances and cookers.

The coexistence period (transition period) has been set at 24 months (until 9 November 2025) by the European Commission. During this time the products named above can still be on the market based on the original test reports.

What will come next?

Now, after the standard has been harmonized, can we apply for notification to the DIBt. As soon as the notification has been issued by the DIBt, the testing laboratories are allowed to issue test reports in accordance with the above-mentioned standards.

From November 9, 2025, the above-mentioned construction products must be declared with a CE marking based on type tests in accordance with the applicable part of EN 16510.

We are currently still waiting for information on how to deal with historical data from existing test reports. The committee of the notified bodies SG03WG2, in which we participate, made a proposal here. However, there is no official decision of the european commission yet.

You are welcome to contact us about tests according to EN 16510 or the transfer of historical data.

For further information according EN 16510 follow the Link: The new standard series EN 16510-x:2022 – RRF (rrf-online.eu)

Another addition to our team in Oberhausen

At the beginning of the year, we were able to welcome a new employee at the firm in Oberhausen. The 25-year-old Dogukan Piri will strengthen our laboratory as a technician. After his traineeship as an industrial mechanic in Essen, he then completed a six-month postgraduate training. Mr Piri will currently not only be schooled in 13240 and 13229 but also in the future 16510 series of standards. We are pleased to include him in our team as a support and we look forward to a good time together in our company.

WOF 2023: not only a complete success for us!

Our expectations on the “World of Fireplaces” were exceeded. Not only we, but also the associations, such as HKI and EFA, the other exhibitors and the visitors were positively surprised by the premiere of the World of Fireplace. The rush to the first major trade fair after the pandemic was so great that close physical contact on the 15,000 square meters plus outdoor area became unavoidable.

At the fair we shared a stand with our partner Mr Petersen from “ChimneyLab Europe ApS” in Denmark. We had a lot of fun not only with our stand partner, but also with all interested parties who exchanged technical information with us on topics such as the new EN 16510 standard, the “Blue Angel” eco-label or “Environmental Sustainability Information” and on business matters such as the certification of flue gas systems according to EN 1856-1/-2, new offers and our re-accreditation. Likewise, we were delighted to meet face-to-face the people with whom we had only written exchanges during the pandemic. Of course, we also talked to our stand visitors about the current trade fair and can say that this was consistently positive.

Particularly noteworthy was the well-attended “Fireplace Hub”, which offered visitors a varied programme of presentations from research and development as well as panel discussions. On Monday, we were represented by our Managing Director Dennis Droll on the topic of “How important is quality in stoves? Of course, not only was this topic discussed, but various questions were also answered.

A panel discussion sits on the left Dennis Droll, Managing Director of the RRF with two other people as part of the Fireplace Hub

From our point of view, the foundation has been laid for the goal set by Michael Rambach, Managing Director of Trendfairs, the organiser of the fair, to make the fair a permanently successful event for all participants. The “World of Fireplaces” own statistics show that a total of 8,135 trade fair visits were counted. The first two days were the ones with the greatest rush. As expected, most of the visitors came from Germany. But the fair also attracted people from all over Europe, also. Less well represented, but still representative, were the visitors from America, Asia, Australia and the Emirates who had travelled a long way. Rhe range of trade visitors was broad, from CEOs and fitters to decision-makers of the independent sales sector.

Our conclusion of the trade fair is clear: All in all, it was a very successful event, which inspired everyone involved and which we are happy to continue regularly.

We and everyone else involved are certain that the specialist event has a great future ahead of it. We look forward to seeing the World of Fireplace surpass the bar they have set for themselves in 2025.

Section of the RRF booth at the fair. Finn Petersen on the left, Dennis Droll in the middle who is talking and on the right a visitor