First Scorpion Of 2011

I woke up this morning about 4am (don’t ask why, I was awake and I got up). Saturn the Cat was laying next to me. I expected her to get up with me and run into the kitchen and meow to be fed, instead she went to the front door and sat there.

I know something is up when she doesn’t want food right away so I got the flashlight and found a scorpion in a space between the floor and the front door. I got a pair of needle-nosed pliers and put the scorpion in a glass, while trying to keep Saturn away from it.

First scorpion of 2011

My cat is part bloodhound.

part bloodhound cat

It is possible to train a cat. For the last several years I have been using positive reinforcement whenever she finds a bug, but specifically a scorpion. She wants me to know about them if she doesn’t manage to kill them first.

That she plays with them then kills them is probably not something that I could have trained her to do. I have seen the scorpions sting Saturn, usually on the nose while she is trying to sniff them. This results in her getting pissed off and smashing the scorpion with her giant 6-toed polydactyl paw.

I’m pretty sure this scorpion came in from the garage since I forgot and left the door to the garage propped open overnight. I open the door so that Saturn can go into the garage and hunt (or whatever it is she does in there). Since big garage door to the outside is warped and I have seen scorpions go into the garage, finding them in the house will probably continue to be an issue until I have the garage door replaced.

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The Poorly Desgined Forced Air Heating Unit

Equipment Closet

The former owner of this house was a HVAC contractor who appeared to own their own business. I’m pretty sure about this because I have found their business related items around the house. Since the house was foreclosed on, i assume they went out of business. I have no idea if they installed the forced air heating unit in this house, but if they did I can see why they went out of business.

To start, the heater is a Frasier-Johnson brand, which doesn’t appear to be made anymore and when it was, it was a low end brand. This heater has a EnergyGuide rating of 80, and the lowest scale is 78. Pretty much the least efficient you can get. The main problem is with the filter configuration. Two filters sit in a “V” configuration above the heating unit, but there is no easy way to install the filters.

There is no access panel in the duct work to put them in. The only way I can figure to put the filters in is to push them up from inside the heating unit. I have to reach about 12 inches inside the heater, reach around motors, electronics and whatever where I’m left with about an inch of space to get the filters inside. From there they have to balance precariously on a few pieces of metal in the “V” configuration, where I can’t actually see how they are setting without getting down on my knees with a flashlight to look up inside the duct work. They aren’t sealed against the duct work and one of them keeps falling out of place leaving huge gaps.

I’m looking at possible ways to cut up the duct work above the heater so I can access the filter area. Doesn’t look easy though.