Watts News
 Published for the members of North Itasca Electric Cooperative
VOL. 20 NO. 10  -  October 2017

Espes choose load control


Even though the Dual Fuel program does not qualify for rebates, the storage water heater, ductless heat pump, and refrigerator did, adding $975 to their open account. The Dual Fuel program electric rates to heat their home cost 5.65 cents per kWh. Their heating season cost for electricity last winter was under $800.

While Jerry was helping Donald with the mechanical decisions for their new home, I helped Joyce with the selection of new appliances.

Jerry and I stopped by the Espes and interviewed them. When we arrived, they were very happy to see us and took us on a tour of their new house. We got to hear all about the decisions on the house which were very interesting. Joyce once lived in the Philippines where she had tile flooring that she loved. Joyce liked that the tiles were easy to keep clean which led her to choose the same in her new house.

We spent a little time just catching up. They talked about the fire and how close they came to dying that night. Donald said, "I tell people the thing that woke us up was two gun shots, the fire had started in the basement and I had a loaded revolver in the pantry and as the fire burned, two rounds went off waking us up. I now tell people to check the batteries in your smoke alarms!" Joyce said, "At the time, it was very stressful, but God pulled us through!”"

Before I even started the interview, Joyce was telling me how much she loved her new kitchen and the appliances. She said, "I wouldn’t have gotten through it without your help, I was so stressed, I couldn’t make a decision and you were so patient and helped me figure everything out."

She was happy that we decided on the smudge-proof stainless steel. She said, "It is easy to clean." She also loves the microwave and said, "I never used my old one, now I use this one all the time...Love it!" She showed me a dial that Donald got for her to attach to the dishwasher indicating if dishes were dirty or clean. Joyce said, "Works great if I remember to spin it," then giggled. She said they were very happy with the deals we gave them.

The Co-op Connection card gave them additional discounts, saving them even more money and the fact that they were able to charge them until they got all the rebates: $400 for the water heater, $500 for the A.S.H.P. and $75 for the refrigerator.

I asked them, "What made them decide to go to North Itasca Electric to purchase their appliances?" Donald said, 'I really appreciate the co-op and what the guys do." Donald was a retired electrician. He said, 'I know some of what the guys go through to keep the power on. I remember when everything was overhead and we had lots of outages out here. Those guys and girls from the co-op work hard, and we appreciate all they do. We want the co-op to prosper."

When I asked about their Dual Fuel and the A.S.H.P. and how they like them, they both said, "We love them." I asked what made them decide to go that direction with their heat and Donald said, "We had no clue what we wanted and we had talked to a few different electricians, but we weren’t sold with what they had to say. When we came in and Jerry went through our options and explained everything to me, it made sense and that is why we went the way we did. Jerry did a great job explaining everything and took the time to answer all our questions."

They seemed a little surprised when we pointed out that they only used on the average 160 kWh per month on their storage water averaging of $7.08.

Joyce told us that they used Polar Insulation to spray foam their home, and they would recommend everyone to go that route. They felt that foam insulation was a big factor with the A.S.H.P. and how well it works.

Joyce told me, "We used to heat with wood, and I had a lot of allergies, it was so dirty. Now I don’t have the allergy problems and it is so much more efficient and clean." Donald said, "We do not have to deal with fuel oil and the lines freezing up in the middle of the winter any more, either."

Overall, they were very happy with everything, and they both wanted to thank all the community members for their support and kindness. They were surprised at how people pulled together to help them. And they were especially thankful to Mr. and Mrs. Roy Johnson for letting them stay there in their time of need. Joyce said, "We now see that it wasn’t all bad that our house burned down, a lot of good things came from it."

Return to the October 2017 Issue