This 1920 ranch house was added onto in 1960, doubling its size. The addition was built without an accessible crawl space, so only half the foundation wall could be insulated; the other half was not accessible.
install programmable thermostat
This ranch house was originally built in 1958 with a vented crawl space. In 2000 it was fully renovated and added onto, and the addition had a basement with a heat vent in it... however, the basement was connected to the crawl space, which was still open to the outdoors. This resulted in a huge loss of conditioned air out through the crawl space. Our main recommendation is to seal the crawl space off from the outdoors so that this air is no longer lost.
This rural home uses propane in the high-efficiency furnace and upstairs space heater, but electricity to heat water year-round. We recommended a heat-pump water heater to dehumidify the basement while heating water more efficiently. We also recommended replacing the failing air conditioner with a dual-fuel heat pump (that is, working in conjunction with the existing furnace) and fixing some ducting problems that were causing the upstairs to be insufficiently heated, requiring them to use the inefficient propane space heater.
This house was performing extremely well, partly because the owner spent most of her time away. Even so, we were able to recommend adding insulation to the walls (which were uninsulated) and ceiling (which had big gaps between the fiberglass batts) and sealing most of the air leaks, primarily at the whole-house fan. We found a significant amount of moisture in the crawl space and recommended sealing the dirt floor with plastic as well as improving drainage away from the foundation.