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Bellingham, WA | Whatcom Co


Inefficient Baseboard Heat Home Transformed

A Solar by Barron Case Study

Katelin and Jonathan O. recently purchased a 1,400 square foot farmhouse in the North County of Bellingham, WA. Built in 1934, the home was solely equipped with electric baseboard heat. Proving to be a very inefficient heat source, their energy usage in the home was at 21,500 kWh per year - unnecessarily high, especially for a home of its size. Monthly electric bills for Katelin and Jonathan were coming in at $180 per month, or $2,100 per year.

The couple expressed their concern to our Barron Team. They were quickly realizing their finances would be stretched due to their aged and inefficient home. We answered by developing a comprehensive plan, addressing everything from indoor air quality to a Ductless system and solar array.

We presented the plan and moved forward with the design, focusing first on the attic. By air sealing and insulating the space, we created a barrier to prevent dirty, unconditioned air from leaking into their home. And in turn, sealing the holes and cracks in the attic to prevent conditioned, paid-for air from escaping their living area.

Removing the electric baseboard heat throughout the home, we replaced it with a Ductless heat pump system. This was an ideal solution to Katelin and Jonathan's inefficient home. Moving forward it will provide them with consistent, comfortable heat in the winter and cooling in the summer.

The results have already been dramatic. The partnership of the Ductless heat pump system with sealing and insulating the attic reduced the energy usage for the couple by nearly two thirds - bringing their 21,500 kWh usage down to 7,700 kWh per year.

Finally, we offset the remainder of Katelin and Jonathan's electric bills by incorporating solar into their home's system. The Barron Electrical Team installed a 7.7 kW solar array to the roof of their barn, allowing the two to generate a portion of their own power right from the source.

All of the improvements and costs of this new farmhouse system were combined into a PSCCU Solar loan. Katelin and Jonathan's monthly payments on the loan are less than their old power bills, and the value of their home has increased considerably.