March 19, 2018

SoCalGas Participates in Testing of New Residential Natural Gas Furnace that Meets California’s Clean Air Targets


Ultra-Low NOx residential natural gas furnace reduces emissions by 65 percent and was among first to comply with SCAQMD Rule 1111 standards


LOS ANGELES, March 19, 2018 – Southern California Gas Co. (SoCalGas) today announced the company will participate in the testing of a new residential natural gas furnace that reduces emissions by 65 percent and is one of several low emission models that now meet the requirements of the South Coast Air Quality Management District’s (SCAQMD) ambitious air pollution reduction standards. To meet the SCAQMD’s clean air goals, several leading manufacturers have introduced residential furnaces that significantly reduce emissions; many are already on store shelves.

The Ultra-Low NOx furnace was developed by Rheem and will be tested by SoCalGas engineers and HVAC contractors at the utility’s state-of-the-art laboratory and in field trials in up to 15 homes in Southern California. Engineers spent five years developing the technology to reduce NOx emissions by 65 percent. The demonstration project will test the furnace under normal operating conditions and provide Rheem with real-world performance data prior to large scale production.

“We are committed to working with manufacturers and retailers to develop and deliver products that meet our customers’ needs and individual tastes while keeping customer bills low,” said Yuri Freedman, senior director for business development at SoCalGas. “Across Southern California, people prefer natural gas four to one over electricity because it is more affordable and reliable. Technological advances like this new residential furnace show that we can make meaningful environmental gains while protecting consumer choice.”

“SoCalGas’ participation in testing new technologies like the Rheem Ultra-Low NOx gas furnace demonstrates the company’s ongoing commitment to looking for ways to reduce emissions,” said Alex Vargas, Mayor of the City of Hawthorne. “Products like these show that Californians can meet the state’s clean air standards with a furnace that heats homes at a manageable cost.”

“Our Ultra-Low NOx furnace got the thumbs up to be compliant with Rule 1111, but we also think it’s important to get first-hand validation from a gas utility company in California, where the mandate will be required,” said Ryan Teschner, product manager, furnaces, Rheem. “SoCalGas has a gas engineering team to give our Ultra-Low NOx furnace a thorough inspection in their state-of-the-art lab.”

In Southern California, natural gas is the most affordable and reliable option for home and water heating and for cooking. More than 90 percent of residents use natural gas to heat their home and hot water. According to the American Gas Association (AGA), households that use natural gas for water and space heating, cooking and clothes drying save an average of $874 per year compared to homes using electricity for those applications.

Moreover, thanks to energy efficiency measures and new technology, residential water and space heating account for only about 4 percent of greenhouse gas emissions statewide, according to the California Air Resources Board.

SoCalGas is a leader in developing and investing in technologies that reduce air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions while keeping bills affordable for customers. Since 1990, the company’s energy efficiency and rebate programs have reduced emissions equal to taking almost 700,000 cars off the road, and according to the AGA, SoCalGas has the second lowest average bills in the nation among gas utilities.

About SoCalGas

Headquartered in Los Angeles, SoCalGas® is the largest natural gas distribution utility in the United States, providing clean, safe, affordable and reliable natural gas service to 21.7 million customers in Central and Southern California. Its service territory spans 22,000 square miles from Fresno to the Mexican border, reaching more than 550 communities through 5.9 million meters and 101,000 miles of pipeline. More than 90 percent of Southern California single-family home residents use natural gas for home heat and hot water. In addition, natural gas plays a key role in providing electricity to Californians—about 60 percent of electric power generated in the state comes from gas-fired power plants.  

SoCalGas has served communities in California for 150 years and is committed to being a leader in the region’s clean energy future. The company is working to accelerate the use of renewable natural gas, a carbon-neutral or carbon-negative fuel created by capturing and conditioning greenhouse gas emissions from farms, landfills and wastewater treatment plants. SoCalGas is a subsidiary of Sempra Energy (NYSE: SRE), a Fortune 500 energy services holding company based in San Diego. For more information visit or connect with SoCalGas on Twitter (@SoCalGas), Instagram (@SoCalGas) and Facebook

About Rheem
Founded in 1925, Rheem is the only manufacturer in the world that produces heating, cooling, water heating, pool/spa heating and commercial refrigeration products. Rheem is headquartered in Atlanta, and has an international presence in 14 countries. The company’s premium brands include Rheem, Raypak, Ruud, Eemax, Richmond and Splendid, as well as commercial refrigeration brands Russell, Witt, ColdZone and Kramer, which are part of the company’s Heat Transfer Products Group (HTPG) division. To learn more, visit

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Contact Info

SoCalGas: Irene Nguyen, 213-244-2442, [email protected]