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For many people, calling a pest control service is the natural first step upon seeing signs of pest control activity. Once the professionals arrive, it is easy to forget about the problem and let them take care of the issue.
While we certainly don’t want you to stop calling us for your pest problems, there’s still a lot that you can and should do alongside professional treatment to make sure pest problems are completely handled.
To be sure, a thorough treatment of your home can and will deal with your current pest problems, but what about the issues of tomorrow? Odds are, there may be some conditions in and around your home that are making it easier and more attractive for pests to invade. Similarly, you may have some misconceptions passed down by anecdotal advice that actually makes your pest problems worse.
Fortunately, you have the perfect source of answers and guidance available to you: your pest control provider!
In my decades in the pest industry, I’ve noticed some common trends that exacerbate pest problems for homeowners. In such instances, I have always tried to give advice to each customer on how to keep pests out longterm.
The truth is, I don’t want to be in the business of “spot-fixing” pest problems each year for homeowners. Instead, I want to be a reliable ally in keeping your home pest free while minimizing the need for treatment. To that end, below are a few pieces of advice I have to help educate you about pests, the treatment process, and common problem areas.
- Keeping a clean home will help keep some pests out, but for others, it just won’t make a difference:
There is a popular sentiment that links hygiene and the cleanliness of your home with pest activity. Homes that get pests, it is argued, are those that aren’t kept tidy. However, in general, this is a complete misunderstanding of what attracts pests to your home.
The truth is, while pests can and will scavenge in your home, keeping your home clean won’t keep them out in and of itself. Pests are most commonly attracted to homes because they provide a dry, temperate environment. Many pests are unable to survive extreme temperature or moisture level changes, so your home provides them with a comparatively secure environment.
Further, many pests enter your home by accident or circumstance. A cockroach might wander in through a small hole in your siding, and from there reproduce into a massive population. There is little that keeping your home clean can do to prevent this problem.
I also want to note that bedbug infestations, specifically, are not caused or impacted whatsoever by the cleanliness of your home. Bedbugs are interested in one thing: feeding on the blood of hosts. The reason that they enter your home is that you’re living there, not because it is an unhygienic environment.
In other words, if you have pests in your home, it isn’t because you are dirty or irresponsible. Pest problems are unfortunately a part of life, and while keeping the home clean can deter some types of pests, it won’t in and of itself prevent them.
That said, keeping your home clean during treatment is extremely helpful. For example, if your home is treated with bait for roaches, food scraps and trash could provide them with an alternative source of food, distracting them from the bait.
- Please don’t try to treat pest problems yourself
Occasionally, I will encounter the sentiment that a professional pest control treatment is a last resort to deal with your problems. Certainly, companies that sell DIY treatment products are more than happy to encourage this position.
The truth is, viewing DIY treatment like medicine and a professional treatment like a doctor’s visit is misguided. Not all pest treatment products are created equal, and some DIY products are not nearly as effective as you might expect.
This is not necessarily because the product itself is somehow bad, but oftentimes because the application of the product is done incorrectly. Misusing products can render them ineffective and can negatively impact the treatments that a professional uses.
For example, one common problem I have encountered is misapplied roach repellant around homes. If not performed correctly, repellant will just scatter the pest population throughout your home, making them harder to deal with. It may also deter them from seeking out bait treatments that would otherwise cut down on their numbers.
It is also incorrect to assume that professional treatment is more “extreme” compared to DIY options. Reputable pest control companies use the safest possible products and minimize the application quantity whenever possible. An expert knows exactly how much to apply and where, so the treatment is much more precise. Further, professional grade products are much more effective, which means that a lot less needs to be used.
When applied correctly, pesticide products are not harmful to your health and wellbeing, but a misapplied product is a complete wildcard.
- On a similar note, be careful who you call to treat your home:
Just like products, sadly not all pest control companies are created equal. There are some companies that operate without proper licensing and training. These types of disreputable companies can botch treatments in your home, failing to deal with the problem in the best case and putting your health at risk in the worst.
Due to this, you should make sure to research a company before you hire them. Make sure that they have all the appropriate licensing and, preferably, a lot of good reviews/referrals.
These tips are by no means an exhaustive list of what I would like homeowners to know about their pest control. However, this will provide you a good baseline to make educated decisions about how to best solve your pest problems.
As always, if you have any pest problems or questions, the answers are always available at 770-479-1598! My team and I are standing by ready to provide fast, effective, and comprehensive treatment solutions to your pest problems!
Here’s to YOU living PEST FREE!