Summit County home undergoes major ‘green-up’ |

Summit County home undergoes major ‘green-up’

Paige Blankenbuehler
summit daily news

Don Sather, a Frisco resident and owner of Big Horn Center in Silverthorne, has a background in solar energy and wanted to upgrade his Frisco home to be more safe from wildfire danger while implementing the latest environmentally conscious technologies.

Part of the upgrades, which were extensive, included the remake of the insulation of his home and the upgrade to LED lighting throughout the property.

Additionally, Sather said rooms in his home not often used or storage spaces are not heated, even in the coldest months.

With more efficient appliances, triple-paned windows and insulation, Sather said his monthly utility bills have been cut in half.

Even more notable, the environmentally conscious resident planned, and carried-out, a massive remodel that added a 20 percent capacity to the original structure all on his own, beginning research on environmentally friendly improvements years ago.

“My wife and I have been collecting articles for years,” Sather said. “Then we narrowed down what we thought would work best with our home and our design.”

Throughout the planning and construction phases, Sather made sure he incorporated every possible green component, from insulation to lighting.

Because lighting is a key element in terms of energy conservation, Sather focused much of his home improvements on upgrading to more efficient lighting options.

According to Sather, the light-emitting diode (LED) lights are not only visually pleasing, but will save him money in the long term.

A case study by American Lighting revealed that the upgrades will result in a 30 percent reduction in energy costs.

“I couldn’t be happier with my experience,” Sather said. “Not only do we love the effect of the lighting, but we are also seeing a reduction in energy costs, as well as the sheer convenience of not having to replace light bulbs very often – it’s a win-win.”

Throughout the home, American Lighting installed LED bulbs of all shapes, sizes and warmth.

Above the kitchen sink and the stovetop, down-lit LED puck lights provide warm light, similar to an incandescent bulb, to perform tasks, while still retaining a soft, warm glow.

The kitchen and interior of the home used primarily warm LED lighting, but in areas like the garage, storage spaces and windows, were equipped with cool LED lighting.

“It was wonderful to be a part of the process and to see how LED lighting helped to accentuate the elegantly designed home,” said Genesis Kobos, consultant for American Lighting. “Mr. Sather truly committed to creating an environmentally conscious home, and we were pleased to be a part of that process.”

Along with lighting and insulation upgrades, Sather and his wife focused on improvements that could be done outside of their home to limit the possibility of wildfire affecting their property.

“We’ve added rock siding to our home, removed trees and upgraded the roof,” Sather said. “Having a lot of rocks bordering our property limits the risk of wildfire reaching our home.”

After the improvements to his home were completed, Sather had High Country Conservation Center perform an energy audit of his house.

The audit uncovered an area where more installation could be added around the electrical outlets in his home.

“Upgrading our home will always be a continuous process,” Sather said. “We really care about the environmental component of adding these upgrades. It saves money and adds to the comfort feature in our home.”

With home audits through HC3, an auditor spends 2-3 hours taking a close look at attics, crawl spaces, basements and mechanical equipment to gain a whole-house perspective of your home.

Along the way the auditor will share observations and insights where your home has room for improvement while assessing the opportunity for savings.

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