Extreme Home (Energy) Makeover: PSO Edition

Home Hacks

Meet Mike Kernan. As a PSO energy efficiency coordinator he knows a thing or two (or 200) about how to make a home more energy efficient. But Mike doesn’t just know about this professionally; he’s experienced it firsthand!

A charming abode in need of some fine-tuning.

Mike and his family live in a charming two-story home built in 1926. Alas, his home was a little too old fashioned when it came to energy use. The house had varying temperatures from room to room and between floors, so the HVAC had to work harder (and expend more energy) to keep things comfy.

“We just couldn’t keep our home comfortable,” says Mike. “Our bedroom was a hot box during the summer and the living room would be freezing because we were trying to cool down that one room.”

Mike knew his house could do better, so he contacted a participating service provider, and together they made a plan turn the 94-year-old house into a modern, energy-efficient home.

How Mike did it.

You might be able to relate to Mike’s story, and you’ll definitely be able to learn from it! Here’s how he did it.

Seek professional help.

When it comes to efficiency, having an expert in your corner is always a good idea. Mike’s home qualified for a free home energy checkup, which helped uncover how his home was wasting energy. Spoiler alert – his HVAC, duct work, and attic insulation were in need of some TLC! This helpful report was key for prioritizing the upgrades that would have the most impact on his home’s efficiency.

Get in the zone.

Mike has his home “zoned”, meaning he added separate thermostats on the first and second floors. This improved the energy efficiency by heating/cooling the individual floors (“zones”) versus the entire house. Mike’s also a member of PSO’s Power Hours program, which gives customers a $75 rebate on select Wi-Fi thermostats! Click here to see how Power Hours can help you save all year long. 

Add smart dampering

Mike used smart dampering to ensure the system could force air where it’s needed between the first and second floor ductwork. Sounds complicated, but it’s really just a smart way to help your home consistently maintain the right temperature.

Trust, but verify

Following the upgrades, a verifier ran a test-out, which let Mike know if the upgrades delivered the correct level of energy efficiency. The first test-out results showed the home was 84% sealed. A huge improvement, but not quite to the efficiency level expected. The verifier identified a potential issue, and the service provider fixed it. The result – the home has even less air leakage and better efficiency.

Easy upgrades. Huge savings.

In just a few short weeks, Mike’s family made the following upgrades to their home!

  • Replaced furnace and HVAC unit
  • Replaced ductwork
  • Added spray foam insulation to attic rafters
before and after photos of attic insulation

Mike saved big by taking advantage of PSO’s home rebate program. Even better? Since he completed multiple upgrades at one time, he received even bigger rebates through PSO’s multiple upgrade bonus, which rewards customers for making multiple energy-saving improvements to their home.

Mike also added a new pool pump last fall, so his home is more comfortable and energy efficient than ever. With winter weather now here and another hot Oklahoma summer just around the corner, Mike’s family is able to save energy and money all year long — and you can too!

Start the New Year off right! Find a Participating Service Provider to take advantage of rebates on qualifying home upgrades.