This week we visited a second house on Gudger Road. Cindy’s house was just down the street. The residents were an elderly couple, and the man seemed to be nearing the end of his life. His wife was still working and also took care of her husband. She was very open to share her family problems with us, a recurring theme throughout our visits.
The house was in so-so condition, which is not surprising to see for an older couple. There was nothing horribly wrong. It was just clear that they were not physically able to repair the house, and may lack money to pay for repairs. Gutters were falling apart and their garage door had a broken window. She related that one of her children was too busy to help, and the other one had debilitating health problems.
We set up the blower door and found a few leaks, but overall the house was pretty tight. John and Elizabeth caulked some things in the bathroom. I was going to turn their hot water heater down a few degrees and we found they had a new unit with a digital thermostat. It was quite fancy and easy to adjust. We replaced some burnt out bulbs as well as some incandescent bulbs with CFLs. It was determined that the faucets and shower were flowing nicely.
Ian, Ben, and I helped set up an improvised clothes line in her side yard. Apparently it was a life long dream of hers to have one, so it was nice to fulfill that. Ben also fixed the broken window in the garage back door. This house had 3 refrigerators and 1 large chest freezer, which is the same setup as Cindy’s house! Kind of strange, but we told her that she could consolidate her goods and unplug her extra refrigerators. She was worried that the refrigerators would break if unplugged, but we assured her that she would just save energy. We are getting much quicker at our energy audits and may soon be able to complete two in one day!