Cooling down home costs

June 20, 2008 7:09:31 PM PDT
Just in time for summer and high air conditioning costs, a Houston program is saving folks money on their power bills. Our Action 13 Angels roll up their sleeves to re-do homes.

It was like Christmas for Valie Arceaneaux the day our angels showered the 82-year-old widow with presents that would save her lots of money.

"I was getting something I was proud to be getting," she said.

The snow in this great grandma's attic is insulation, blown in by some angels at Reliant Energy. In a program called Power House, Reliant is redoing, for free, homes like Vaile's and making them energy efficient.

Pat Hammond of Reliant said, "The improvements we're making here are going to make a significant impact on lowering your energy bill."

And Valie's bill had grown so high in recent months that it left her in shock.

She said it had risen to around $300.

Her House is 65 years old and showing its age.

"Honey it needed work," Arceaneaux said. "The windows were dilapidated because they were so old they were cracked. The doors didn't fit I could look and see underneath my door and see outside air would come in the windows and doors."

No more drafty doors and windows here

Sixteen new windows will now keep the hot air outside and the cool air inside.

Reliant even replaced Valie's 25 year old refrigerator.

Hammond said it should make a world of difference in her electric bill. And, it did.

Her last electric bill was $89.

Reliant and Re-building together are in the process of doing $1,000 Houston area homes, like Valie's. You're eligible for this free program if you're a senior on a low income and own your own home. Reliant customers can put their names on a waiting list by calling (713) 497-6666. Or, if you're not a Reliant customer call Re-building Together Houston at (713) 228-2890. More info here

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