Two Groups Come Together to Give One Midland Home an Energy Makeover

by Victor Lopez
NewsWest 9

MIDLAND--Spring is here and Summer isn't too far away and keeping cool can be costly.

A local non profit and an electric company joined forces to give one Midland woman's home an energy makeover.

The two have been teaming up for years on various projects.  TXU Energy called West Texas Opportunities and asked if they knew of a family that could benefit from the makeover.

"It was a demonstration to show what you can do, yourself, in your home,"  Elda Barrera, Community Service Block Grant Coordinator for West Texas Opportunities, said.

TXU Energy is doing their part to keep people in the know, when it comes to saving on your energy bill.   It's part of their statewide, home energy makeover program.

"It's where we travel around the state, educating and demonstrating to customers how easy it is to make improvements around their home.  It's going to help them save on their energy bill," TXU spokesperson, April Martin, said.

These are tips that everyone can follow on their own.  And they were done to the home of Gloria Vasquez of Midland for free.

"They're putting in some light bulbs, the new ones, to save me some energy.  And my window sealing, a lot of windows and doors,  so I really think it's going to help my light bill," Vasquez said.

Tips include things like changing your filters, insulating electrical outlets, weather stripping and what about those light bulbs?

According to Martin, "If you notice that you have traditional light bulbs, those use so much more energy than a Compact Fluorescent Light bulb, which uses 75% less energy and lasts a heck of a lot longer than a traditional light bulb does."

This particular makeover was a one home deal.  But West Texas Opportunities has help available for anyone that needs it.

"We do a weatherization program, where we go into homes and blow insulation or any air leaks, we cover them up.  We also have a program for that," Barrera said.

All it takes is a simple walk through your home, looking for places where your energy dollars are going to waste and making the right fixes.

"We can safely say that if you apply all these different tactics, you can save up to 20% on your bill," Martin said.

TXU hits all the major regions in the state with this program.  In the last six years, they've done energy makeovers on over 400 homes.