We’re just back from the Hearth, Patio & Barbeque Association 2013 Expo, which was hosted in Orlando, FL.

The event is North America’s largest indoor-outdoor living showcase, and 350 manufacturers, suppliers and industry insiders attend the event each year.


Fun at our Expo booth

While managing our booth at the show, we had the opportunity to talk shop with many fireplace and stove professionals, getting the latest information on where the industry is headed. Here are the three most popular discussions we overhead at the Expo.

1. Great news for environmentally-conscious homeowners, the Alliance for Green Heat and Popular Mechanics magazine is teaming up for the first ever Wood Stove Design Challenge. Manufacturers and suppliers are excited about the international competition to build the cleanest, most efficient next-generation wood stoves, which could find their way into retail outlets in the years ahead.

2. Safety is a top priority for us and for our home heating industry partners, and it’s no surprise that a popular topic of conversation was the HPBA Fireplace and Stove Glass Safety campaign. It’s a topic that has been discussed here at the blog before. The industry buzz is that the campaign is building in popularity with retailers reporting that more homeowners are considering safety when making fireplace and stove related decisions and purchases.

3. Of particularly good news to us at the Chimney Safety Institute of America, industry insiders reported that the CSIA Certified Chimney Sweep credential has become very important to retailers making referrals for chimney and fireplace inspections and repairs. Retailers say they want to be positive that they’re offering their client a reputable and educated referral, and it’s good to see them turning to our certified sweeps to make good on this promise.

Well, there you have it; an insider’s view the HPBA 2013 Expo. We enjoyed this year’s show and are already looking forward to all that next year’s event will have to offer.