In the 18th century compact house with central chimney, the pipeless furnace register can be set in the small front entrance and another register cut in the ceiling directly above it. This carries part of the heat to the second floor and so makes for better distribution of the warm air. As already stated, such a furnace is quite inexpensive and so easy to install that the average handy man will not find it too complicated. We put one in our country home some eight years ago merely as a means of keeping the house warm during the early spring and late fall. We have since found that it can and does heat the entire house even at sub-zero temperatures.
In all honesty, however, one must admit that it has certain disadvantages. First, it is like the old-fashioned stove in that an even heat is hard to maintain. Second, with coal or wood as the usual fuel, there is a discouraging amount of dust generated. Third, the doors to all rooms must be left open so that the currents of hot air can circulate. One chooses between frosty seclusion and balmy gregariousness. Yet, in spite of these very definite “outs,” it is far better than no furnace at all. It is, in fact, an excellent stop gap for the country house owner who is not prepared to invest in the more expensive heating plants at the moment. The more effete system can always be added later and the faithful old pipeless junked, moved to some other building, or left in place for an emergency, such as a public-utility-crippling blizzard or flood.
Whether one lives in the country or the city, geology and geography govern the source of the water that flows from the tap. Cities go miles for an adequate, pure water supply and have been doing so since the days of the Caesars. Such systems involve thousands of acres and millions of dollars for water sheds, reservoirs, dams, pipe lines, and purifying plants.
The country place is a miniature municipality with its own water system. The latter need not be elaborate or expensive but it must be adequate. Nothing disrupts a family so quickly and completely as water shortage. Personally, we would far rather see our family hungry and in rags than again curtail its baths and showers. “We can be careful and only use what is necessary,” sounds easy but before long everybody is against father. He is mean and unreasonable. Save the water, indeed! It is all his fault. He should have known the supply would fail when he bought the place. A moron could see it was not large enough. A six weeks’ drought? Well, what of it!
Meanwhile water diviners, well diggers and drillers add gall and wormwood to the situation. “Oh yes, that well always did go dry about this time of year. Saving the water wouldn’t make any difference. Better not bother with it but dig or drill a new one.” Expense? Why quibble about that when the peace of one’s family is at stake. There is, of course, only one outcome. A broken and chastened man soon makes the best terms he can with one of his tormentors. If he is wise it will be with the advocate of the driven well. That solves for all time any question of water supply.