Help is now available for home weatherization

RBC I Fall is definitely in the air and thoughts are turning to getting ready for winter. Now is the perfect time to make your home as energy efficient as it can be—to keep your family warm and to save money on your heating bills.
Eligibility for the program is based on income levels. Counties served are: Rio Blanco, Chaffee, Clear Creek, Eagle, Garfield, Grand, Jackson, Lake, Moffat, Pitkin, Routt and Summit.

The designation is intended to raise the awareness about the Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP), instituted in 1976, to provide assistance to low-income families for making energy-efficient improvements to their homes.
Created by the US Department of Energy, the mission of the WAP is geared to reduce costs and reduce energy usage for low income families, particularly seniors, people with disabilities and families with young children.
In our area, the weatherization program is administered by the Northwest Colorado Council of Governments (NWCCOG), under contract to the Colorado Energy Office (CEO).
Doug Jones, the weatherization field supervisor at the NWCCOG puts it this way, “Our job is to help people save energy, save money and save the environment by making homes more energy efficient and safer.”
Once a home has been selected for the program, a qualified weatherization professional tests for gas leaks and carbon monoxide levels, followed by a comprehensive energy audit to find out what energy conservation services would be most beneficial to the home.
Services may include installing insulation to bring levels up to current standards, sealing major air leaks, caulking windows and doors, adding weather-stripping, installing storm windows and perhaps even installing new high-efficiency furnaces and refrigerators.
Once the work is complete, the team then retests for gas leaks and carbon monoxide. The result is a home that is much more energy efficient and also safe for its inhabitants.
Beyond the efficiencies in energy consumption, weatherization also contributes to the economy. By reducing a household’s energy use and heating costs, these families have more income available to spend within their local communities. Additionally, the weatherization process has helped to preserve precious affordable housing units in our area.
The best part about this program is that there is no cost to the recipients.
If you think you, or someone you know, might qualify for weatherization services, please call 1-800-332-3669 or check out our website: nwccog.org—Weatherization.
The Weatherization team is actively seeking eligible homes in all counties for the program.

By Nate Speerstra
Special to the Herald Times