Thackston Family: Insulation Success

energy efficiency insulation successMelissa Thackston and her family recently took advantage of Dominion’s EnergyShare program (implemented locally by LEAP) to take their DIY home energy improvements to the next level.


When LEAP’s Energy Coaches visited their home, we:

  • Found a gaping hole in attic around her flue pipe (18″ x 34″), leading all the way down to the basement.
  • Sealed that hole up, along with some quite leaky light fixtures — which dropped air leakage 30%.
  • Took the insulation up from R-6 to R-38.
  • Installed some low-hanging fruit measures like energy efficient LED light bulbs and pipe insulation.

In the Homeowner’s Words:

“Making energy improvements was always something we planned on doing to our house.  We did all the low hanging and affordable projects we could, like changing light bulbs and taking advantage of the City’s toilet rebate, but there never seemed to be enough funds for the projects that would have bigger impacts to our utility bills.  Soon after finding out we were pregnant with Baby #3, my husband had the opportunity to start his own business.  Every dollar became precious and we could no longer afford NOT to weatherize our house.

We thought our house had some insulation in the attic and that we just needed to add a bit more, so we were shocked when we found out it was mostly bare!

Soon after the insulation was added to our attic, there was a cold snap.  While the house felt warm, we noticed that our heater wasn’t running.  My husband actually had to check to make sure it was still working, we had grown so accustomed to it running constantly in cold weather!  In the summer, we normally set our thermostat to 72.  This summer we started joking that 72 is so much colder now, that most days we were comfortable having it at 74.  While getting energy bills is never enjoyable, we have found it fun to compare our usage to the previous year.

Working with LEAP was very easy and they were very knowledgeable and professional.  We are so grateful for the work they were able to do for us.  I would encourage everyone to at a minimum have their home assessed.  We always say ‘you don’t know what you don’t know’ and LEAP did a wonderful job helping us with what we didn’t know.”