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The Cañedo Family

Meet the Cañedo Family

Cesar, Fredes, and their four children (seven-year-old Cesar, four-year-old Santi, three-year-old Rocio, and one-year-old Lucas) live in a 31-year-old home in Potomac, Maryland. They turned a dated kitchen into an energy-efficient space.

Why They Decided to Make Changes

When the Cañedo family moved into their 1976 home, the insulation and weather stripping wasn’t very good. Even with the heat on full blast they were still cold. Every month they paid high utility bills, so they decided to do something right away.

Brief Overview of Home Improvements

The Cañedo family renovated their kitchen by updating with ENERGY STAR appliances and ENERGY STAR qualified lighting. They also re-insulated the entire home.

What the Cañedo Family Did to Save Energy

Physical Changes

In order to combat the cold, the family re-insulated the entire home and replaced all the old doors and windows. As soon as the house was properly sealed and insulated, energy costs fell and the house felt comfortable.

The other big step was to completely remodel the kitchen in order to have more space and save on energy. One way to save energy was to let light into the kitchen, so they tore down the wall separating the kitchen from the family room. They removed the kitchen island and replaced cabinets and surfaces. They also changed all the appliances and lighting to ENERGY STAR qualified models, including a new dishwasher and refrigerator.

Behavioral Changes

The Cañedos also made sure they were doing other things around the house to save energy, like keeping the thermostat programmed to 68° F during the winter months, turning off lights when they left a room, and equipping light fixtures with ENERGY STAR qualified compact fluorescent bulbs. They run the dishwasher every other day, when they have a full load of dishes. They also only do laundry at night when energy consumption is lower.

Results of the Improvements

The new appliances work much better than the old ones and use less energy. With their new ENERGY STAR refrigerator and dishwasher, new windows and doors, insulation, and lighting changes, the family’s utility bill is now $100 less a month than before.

Advice from the Family

  • Fredes says that it is important to learn how to take care of the environment and not waste energy. Using ENERGY STAR qualified appliances and taking other steps toward energy efficiency will help maintain the environment for today’s children.

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