National Geographic : 1981 Feb 28
little or no insulation, woefully inadequate in today's battle againstrisingheating bills. When volunteers who interpret the thermograms to residents advised owner MichaelBeauchamp to insulate his walls and attic, plug leaks in door and windows, and consider enclosing his porch, he summed up the reactionof many. "It's got to be done. When you're looking at $100 heating bills, it gets to be more thanyou can handle. It might be all right if we were paying for it and stayingwarm, but it's cold in here!" The house fourth from right tells a happier story. "When I bought this house, it leaked like a sieve," Tom Richards recounts. Now with blown-in wall insulation, ten inches of atticin sulation,a glass-enclosedporch actingas a heat lock, new storm windows and doors, caulking and weather stripping, and cardboard behind the attic dormer window (a hot spot in many of his neighbors'similarhomes), his 1918 dwelling shows the leastheat loss on the block. Ranch houses in a newer neighborhood (below left) also appear to show more efficient heat retention but have chinks in their armor. Red and yellow windows blare radiation, while loose stripping tinges a front door yellow in the center house. On the roofof its neighborto the right, above red andyellow windows, a chim ney glows white, appearingeven warmer than the red-and-white electricaltransformer at its same height to the left. Poorly dampered chim neys suck warmth into the sky with a voracious appetite-justone of many thieves stealingheat in the night.