Ants love our houses. Our homes not only breathe, but they also exhale, and that air they exhale is warm and moist, and also has food smells, attracting ants inside.
Sometimes ants may be trailing in from the ground outside and into your house through a gap around your foundation or siding, or they may have even taken up house inside a wall void, of your house.
Depending on the species of ants, we may use baits or sprays, or a combination of the two. Most ant problems can be controlled with an inside localized treatment where the ants are being seen, and an outside perimeter treatment to control the colonies outside.
If you like, we can spray the rest of your house inside as well for spiders and other occasional invaders while we are there.
Bed bugs, as you may have discovered for yourself, are very tough to eliminate with spray treatments alone. Oh now, you can spray many things on them directly and they can die, but in most cases, you are simply smothering their breathing holes and tubes. Bed bugs have a waxy layer covering their exoskeleton that helps prevent them from picking up residuals from sprays. They also build up resistance to pesticides leaving them ineffective and requiring “spray only” companies to make multiple trips using multiple insecticide treatments, which families with children and pets particularly don’t want done.
Heat treatments are the treatment of choice for safe, effective bed bug elimination. Heating the infested rooms and furniture between 130 – 150 degrees for several hours will simply dry up all stages of bed bugs. When the room cools, we apply safe, and effective products in areas around the bed, frame, and headboard to help protect from any re-introduced bed bugs into the room, or a rare survivor from the heat treatment. As the infested rooms are being heated, we inspect and spray the rooms not being heated.
Heat treatments also can involve less preparation work and can save furniture that may otherwise be recommended for disposal, saving you time and money.
Also, we do a follow-up inspection 10 days to 2 weeks after treatment, and in most cases, give a 3-month warranty.
We only offer a “spray only” treatment for bed bugs in cases where only a couple have been seen – basically an early beginning stage. Under ideal conditions, an adult female bed bug can lay an average of 5 eggs a day, so if we see evidence of eggs and hatching nymphs, we’ll want to heat the room.
If you are concerned about bed bugs, or maybe your job puts you at risk of getting them, you may want to consider a pro-active treatment. This treatment involves putting treated liners around the mattress and/or box springs that last 2 years and applying long lasting products where possible around the bed areas, frame, and headboard.
How do people get bed bugs?
- Just by moving in — Bed bugs can live for many months without a bloodmeal, and can survive somewhere in a room even if painted and re-carpeted.
- Visitors — Many customers have gotten bed bugs after helping a friend or family member that had to leave their apartment or home.
- Traveling — You never know who could have been in a hotel room before you, or even a chair before you. Even your suitcases touch others in checked baggage.
- Sleepovers — Someone in the family spending a night over at another residence that could have bed bugs.
- Schools — Some children live in homes with heavy infestations and bring them to school on clothing or on bookbags. That bookbag can touch your kids, or visit your house as well.
- Garage sales — Used clothing, furniture, and other items can contain bed bugs.
- Adjoining apartments — People will rarely come out and tell you they have bed bugs. They’re spraying to try and get rid of them may have chased them to your side.
- Delivery trucks — Many times the same truck that brings new furniture can also haul off old furniture, that could have bed bugs.
We have several species of cockroaches in our area, but the two most commonly found in homes are the German and oriental cockroaches. They start out as small nymphs and gradually molt several times to the adult stage. Sometimes the species can be confused because they look different in the smaller stages then the adults.
Generally, the German cockroaches like to start hanging out in your kitchen, maybe finding them on the countertop, inside cabinets, or around the refrigerator. Oriental cockroaches usually will start showing up in basements or on the floors, entering from the outside or sometimes even up drains.
Our General Treatment Service, inside and out, including any crawlspaces needing treated, should stop an oriental cockroach infestation. You could still see some for a short time after treatment due to eggs that can hatch inside wall voids. If you continue to see these occasionally after a couple weeks, let us know so we can schedule a follow-up visit.
If you are having a fair to heavy infestation of German cockroaches, we will need to come to your house to assess the problem to give you an estimate, and to see what preparation work may be needed before treatment.
Fleas like to live on animals to bite them for their blood. The female then lays her eggs on the animal hairs. The eggs, being slippery, will fall off the animal, particularly in areas they like to lay and sleep. After the egg hatches, the larvae like to hide in dark places to feed, such as under furniture, rugs, and deep in carpet fibers. With wood floors they can hide in the gaps between boards, and under the baseboard gaps. After some time, the larvae will spin itself into a cocoon stage called a pupa, where will stay until ready to emerge as an adult. The flea can also stay inactive inside the pupa cocoon until an animal or other activity is detected, which is why a house can be empty for several weeks, then be suddenly full of “starving fleas” when someone enters. This can even happen after a treatment, due to the fact that the cocoon stage cannot be penetrated by sprays. A follow-up may be necessary.
Mice and Rats
If you are having an issue with either of these rodents, we can come out and give you an estimate on treatment. Our baits must be placed in child/pet resistant containers, so we will suggest how many stations will be needed inside and out to eliminate your problem, and if you like, to help prevent future problems.
Basically, you buy the stations, and we can drop by occasionally and refill the stations, or you can fill them yourself with a key we can provide you. To be effective, the stations need fresh bait about every 2-3 months.
A lot of our customers will add this refill service to their Quarterly Service or Seasonal Service Treatment to have done on the same trip for a reduced rate.
Occasional invading insects enter buildings sometimes due to seasonal temperature changes, heavy rain periods, drought periods, or sometimes just due to heavy population buildup around the outside.
Many insects can be classed as occasional invaders, such as crickets, beetles, centipedes, sow bugs, oriental cockroaches, large spiders, stink bugs, Asian lady beetles, and more.
If you see a lot of these inside your home, our General Service Treatment inside and out, or even just sometimes the outside treatment, will help stop these insects outside before they get in.
If you are in an area where you see a lot of this activity throughout the year, you may want to look into our seasonal plan.
Termites, as you probably know, like to eat wood. Unfortunately, they can’t tell the difference between a dead tree root and a floor joist in your basement, or a wall stud in your wall.
In early spring, common around April and May, the winged reproductive stage of termites will fly or crawl out of existing termite colonies with the goal of starting new colonies. If you find these small bodied insects with long clear wings inside your home, we can take a look at them and determine first that they are termites, because some ant species can swarm at the same time, and look similar. If they are termites, we will inspect your home and give you an estimate on treatment.
Thinking of building a home? The best time to treat your home, for the most complete coverage for termites, is as it’s being built.
Contact us before the ground is broken for an estimate. We need to come at several stages as the house is being built, and will need to coordinate with the builder.