Some individuals may choose to call a pest control company at the first appearance of an uninvited guest in the form of a household pest. However, many people try to combat minor infestations themselves.
It's entirely possible to stop, or at least impede, pest infestations inside your home, but you need to know when to throw in the towel and call in a professional when the possibility of a severe infestation is imminent.
When Do Pest Infestations Require the Services of a Pest Control Company?
The need for professional pest control services will usually depend upon the type of pest and/or the level of infestation. Common problems include:
Random intrusions of mice and rats can be troublesome because of their propensity for chewing into vulnerable food containers. Mouse and rat traps are usually effective in eventually eliminating small rodent issues. Don't use poison within the home, because rodents may die in inaccessible places and create quite a stink.
However, if mice or rats gain access to food sources and allowed time to breed, they will do so incessantly. They will then nest inside walls or under stoves or refrigerators, creating fire and health hazards. They will also chew the insulation form electric wires inside walls when food sources are removed, possibly causing house fires.
If you see excessive amounts of rodent excrement (oval and dark brown in shape and color) along walls or hear the pitter-patter of tiny feet racing inside your ceilings, it's time to call in a pest control professional.
The resurgence of the bedbug has caused serious infestations in hotels, businesses, and private homes. They may enter your home by hitchhiking on your clothing after being seated in a public area or sleeping in a hotel room that is infested. Bedbugs are small rust colored bugs with a triangular shape.
They feed on blood, and will usually feed as a human host sleeps. You will usually only initially notice their presence because of small blood stains or your sheets, pillows, or sofa cushions. If bedbugs are limited to a single area, such as your bed, you can check the frame, mattress and bedding to determine the level of infestation.
If you don't see any large areas of fecal matter (brown stains) along the edges of the frame or mattress, you may choose to place your bedding in plastic bags, wash them and then dry them at high heat setting. Vacuum your mattress thoroughly to capture any stray bedbugs or eggs.
Cover your mattress with a plastic cover specifically designed for bedbugs. You will need to keep the cover in place for at least one year to be certain that any errant bugs or eggs in the folds of the mattress die of starvation.
If your find bedbugs in multiple locations, it's best to call in a professional. Your entire home will likely require an intense heat treatment to kill any bugs or eggs inside the home.
If you notice small piles of light coffee colored dust on floors, especially under exposed rafters in rooms such as basements, you may have a termite infestation. Termites can cause major structural damage to your home, so call in a pest control company as soon as possible to have your home inspected and treated if necessary.
Pest control companies can rid your home of pests in a safe and efficient manner, so don't let a minor problem become a major one. Call in a professional when needed.