As a Pest Control Company located in the Portland Metro area, we have learned a lot about what methods work best for exterminating pests. We also have learned a lot about what does not work. Just about every customer that hires us has tried to take care of their pest problem on their own before calling us. Obviously, if their attempts had worked, we would not have had the pleasant experience of meeting these fine people. So, with all of the failed attempts in controlling pest issues in mind, I would like to show you why many store bought products do not work for each of the pests below:
Ants are the most common pests that people deal with up here in the Pacific Northwest. They are literally all over the place and just about every house in the area will be infested at some point. When people head to the store to try and find products to treat ants, they do not take into consideration that there are many different types of ants and each of them should be treated differently. For example, every ant pesticide spray that you see on the shelves at the store has some form of repellent in them (not including baiting products). When treating for Sugar Ants, the use of repellents will actually make the problem worse, spreading the colony around the house! If you choose the right products for your specific ant infestation, you have a chance of getting rid of them, but if you choose wrongly, you can make things worse than if you did nothing at all.
Treating for fleas can be very tricky because they reproduce so quickly. Many of the products that you purchase at the store can actually kill fleas, but none of them (that I know of) can kill a flea egg. Typically our customers will say that they tried something and had some momentary relief, only to have them come back again. This is because the products are not addressing the life cycle of the fleas and only blasting chemicals around the house. The worst offender is definitely the infamous “Flea Bomb”. Most people have used them, spraying nasty chemicals over everything in their home, leaving behind a sticky, smelly residue. It seems like this approach would kill everything, but again, it doesn’t kill the eggs. Further, it drives fleas deeper into voids to escape the repellent. Honestly, I think that using a “flea bomb” is one of the worst things that you can do.
Using mouse and rat traps is a tried and true method for killing mice. The evidence is right there in front of you. However, since a single female mouse can reproduce at the rate of about 70 pups per year, for every mouse that you kill, there might be several others having babies. Trapping, in my opinion, is not an effective way to exterminate mice or rats. As professional’s we prefer a baiting method, but layperson does not have access to the type of products that we use. Instead, if you are going to use an over-the-counter rodent bait, you have to deal with the drawbacks. For example, most of the bait products that you can purchase, can be harmful to pets. In addition to this, the majority of them are “multiple feeds” meaning that the rodent has to eat the bait several times before it actually killing them. Lastly, judging by my own experience and observations, it does not appear that the standard store bought rodent baits are very palatable. I don’t know if any of the DIY options are counterproductive, but they are usually not very productive at least.
So, What Should You Do?
Since I happen to own a pest control company, it would be easy for me to say “call us and let us exterminate your pest problem!”, but many people do not have the funds available to afford even a basic $88 treatment. So, what I can offer is a little advice. First, know exactly what your pest is. If you know the exact species, you can start doing some research and you might uncover which products will be counterproductive, so that you do not make your problem worse. Second, you can research your pest directly on my website. We do not keep industry secrets behind lock and key and give many helpful details on how to treat pests for free. Lastly, I happen to own a Portland pest control company and you can call us!