The Docks: Using 46% Less Energy

Enhabit homeownersThe Docks didn’t need a test to find out their 1965 split-level ranch in Grants Pass leaked, they just looked at the roof. So much heat was escaping through the attic, snow melted on contact. Inside, the Docks covered their windows with plastic sheeting to keep the freezing cold air out. “It was hideously ugly,” said Julie Dock, adding that they kept the plastic on year-round.

Since so much cold air seeped in French doors and single-pane windows, the Docks figured getting their windows replaced would be the best place to start. So they called an Enhabit Contractor. But since replacing the windows alone was such a spendy proposition, she didn’t think they could afford it.

Julie did her homework, comparing rates through Enhabit with other financial institutions. “The others really couldn’t match Enhabit. I like the (financing) so we’re not out of pocket. Then we can do ALL that needs to be done. That was key,” Julie said. So the Docks went “whole hog,” starting with a 100 Point Performance Check that revealed startling results.

The leaks weren’t just bad, they were “catastrophic.” From that point on, the contractor and the Docks worked as detectives, discovering leaky culprits all over the place – from canister lights in the kitchen and a bay window to a big gap in the foundation. “They caulked things I didn’t even know leaked,” she said. They insulated the attic and installed a storm window over a stained glass window on the front door. Triple-pane windows replaced drafty single-pane windows and holes drilled at the perimeter of the house and added insulation to seal the home’s envelope or “shell.” “That really made a big difference right away,” Julie said. Since the gas furnace was already efficient, the Docks opted not to replace it.

After the home upgrades, the changes to the Docks’ home are apparent. The work generated a 50 percent improvement in seepage, which was well over the projected 30 percent improvement. On the outside, their roof tells a whole new story: “We were the only house in the neighborhood with snow still on the roof – we weren’t losing all that heat.” On the inside, Julie’s home is “toasty wonderful.” The Docks’ gas bill is telling the story as well: “We used 46% less energy this billing period than we did for the same period last year, even though the average temperature was almost exactly the same. We saved $108 on our gas bill in this one month. Yippee!” Julie cheered.