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Seven Pest Control Myths We Need To Know

We can find many tips and home remedies in getting rid of pests in home, from using natural ingredients, to improvising a DIY trap and purchasing off-the-shelve insecticides and gadgets. However, are these pest control solutions effective or will they worsen the condition? When do we then need to call for a professional pest control company to resolve the pest infestation for us? Rentokil shares the seven common pest control myths that we need to be aware of and what can we do to manage the pest problem at home.

Pest control services are meant for heavy infestation

One of common pest control myths is the need to engage services only if condition is severe. Pest eradication should start from mild conditions where infestation has not turned serious and spread widely. This is especially so if there are no multiple breeding sites that make containment more challenging. In addition, when reproduction and nesting are developed, it increases the pest population, thus increasing the complexity of pest elimination, requiring intensive treatment, regular frequencies and higher price of pest control.

Finally, home owners should not wait until infestation is heavy before taking proper eradication actions, as damages and health safety risks may kick in. This includes weakening the property’s stability, damaging the structure with cracks and holes, itchy pest bites that may become an allergy or infection and various transmission of diseases. For example, Salmonella, Hantavirus, Rat Bite Fever and Dengue Fever. Start to practice pest prevention habits that is the first step to prevent pests from attracting a home, and integrate a positive regime with adequate pest management to ensure keeping pest problems under good control.

Water is a good way to flush away pests

Among the many pest control myths, the use of water against pests top the list! Water and moisture may be beneficial for health but may not be a good remedy for other aspects. Particularly when it comes to managing pest presence, while water seems to be a quick solution to flush them away and eliminating their presence, it may bring additional problems.

Firstly, water is a main source of survival for all pests (besides food, blood source and shelter). Secondly, some pests such as cockroaches and ants are capable of overcoming underwater challenges with their spiracles to transport water vapour out from the attaching tubing. Thirdly, some pests such as mosquitoes and even midges require water to breed and reproduce and the presence of a small puddle is good for their multiplication purpose. Finally, some structures and surfaces, especially moist wood, promote the start of a termite infestation where termites thrive well in moist condition. Above all, wet slippery floors and surfaces pose safety risks among families by slipping over the wet condition.

High-rise buildings are free from pests and termites

It does not matter how high you stay or your low-rise home dwelling is at higher risks. This is because pests occur at any time and in any condition. It includes the type of home, the level of the location and even cleanliness of the environment.

Firstly, pests like the rats are good climbers. They can climb and balance on impossible beams and height to hide and source for food. Secondly, there are flying pests such as flies and mosquitoes. These pests easily enter into a home through any opening they can find. Thirdly, bed bugs for instance are cross infestation. This means they can be brought home through latching means (on yourself, shoes, bags or any items). Furthermore, they have the ability to travel from surrounding infested premises. These blood sucking pests are flat and tiny, and hence slipping in any cracks and crevices are easy. Finally, termites are pests that are capable of building a huge colony empire and expanding their presence. They travel through mud tubes vertically so long as there is provision of wood and water.

In summary, pest infestation can take place regardless of a residential or commercial environment, condition of the home and location. The precaution is certain business sectors or premises are at higher risks. Examples include food establishments where there is abundance of food and waste, dengue clusters zone where there is high Aedes Mosquitoes activity or places with poor sanitation that attracts rats and cockroaches with decomposed matter and odour.

Read also: Can the pest termite travels?

Spices and condiments can repel pests away

There are many ideas around using strong and pungent smell to chase unwanted “guests” away. This is because of their low tolerance to unpleasant scents. For example, spices and condiments such as cinnamon, cloves, bay leaves, garlic and vinegar are often said to deter pests like ants, cockroaches and rats. Some of these scents do also deter individuals with low preference of spice. However, this is merely using a strong scent to either mask the chemical signals that pests rely on. In addition, it confuses their scent of navigation temporally. This also means, relocating their presence and spreading their infestation to other parts of the premises. In some cases, because a heavy infestation or environment has other strong smelling components (such as wastes), these scent masking may have little to no effect.

Rather than utilising pest deterrent methods to repel pests, it is best to engage in professional pest control services that not only resolve the pest frustration, but also minimise safety risks in using DIY methods that can be toxic and dangerous.

Home is pest-free if we do not see visible pests around

Are we completely safe and pest-free so long as we do not witness flying and crawling pests around? Unfortunately, the answer is no due to several factors and reasons:

  • Pests presence may be difficult to spot due to their tiny body size that we do not take notice of
  • Pest infestation starts with early signs. For instance, droppings, marks, smells or stains that we did not association with pest’ presence.
  • They can hide at hard to reach spaces including ceiling, behind appliances, deep within cabinets and edges or beds.
  • Termites are pests that are beyond visibility as they live underground or within structures. This limits their sight of presence unless equipped with detection technology.
  • Cockroaches, rats and bed bugs for example are nocturnal. Hence, they only emerge at night to source for food, while we are asleep.
  • Mosquito breeding and the tiny larvae could have missed if we do not perform regular checks on stagnant water and breeding sites
  • Pest can travel and make their way in via openings. Therefore, a once pest-free home can be infested if the home has poor proofing condition.

Bed bugs occur because of poor home sanitation

Bed bugs are commonly associated with dirty and unhygienic environments. To some extent, pest prevention starts with ensuring good sanitation standards. Risk of infestation is higher for some pests associated with poor hygiene like rats and cockroaches. However, bed bugs can occur even if the home is clean and tidy, and despite regular housekeeping. This is because bed bugs are highly associated with cross infestation. They can be transported anywhere so long as they cling onto an item or a person. They seek humans as their transportation carriers because of the body warmth they are attracted to, and the need for blood as their main food source.

In addition, bed bug infestation can result from poor management of luggage and belongings. These includes unpacking of suitcases on the bed, placing luggage near the bed and not checking of the items before settling in. There are ways you can prevent the start of bed bug invasion by adopting a diligent bed bug prevention checklist. Read the useful guide on the do’s and don’ts in dealing with bed bugs in your home.

Housekeeping and cleanliness can eradicate pests

Yes, it is important to keep the place clean and free from food scrapes, unwanted waste, crumb bits or moisture. While good hygiene and sanitation eliminates the necessary food source that pests require, this is only one of the pest prevention methods to keep them away. Pests require a specific elimination method with the use of relevant and required tools and active ingredients to control their presence. For instance, termite treatment requires the injection of termiticide into the ground at specific intervals to build a barrier of protection against termite entries.

Rats, due to their intelligent nature are better managed with innovation and technology. For example, the use of sensing technology to detect their presence more accurately, for targeted placement of lure and baits. Mosquitoes on the other hand are causing a high volume of dengue cases in Singapore. Thus, it requires an integrated and comprehensive mosquito control programme to eliminate both adult and breeding mosquitoes. This includes the deployment of mosquito traps that target at all life stages at key risk areas. Examples include shady and high vegetation conditions.

Debugged Blog Seven Pest Control Myths Why Is Pest Control Necessary

Why is engaging a pest control specialist necessary?

There are debates around the availability of insecticide sprays and sticky baits or gel applications in retail stores. Some even proved effectiveness with the use of DIY remedies. To some, pests such as ants, cockroaches or even spiders and less common pest species are not critical for professional pest control engagement. Rentokil Initial explains several factors that calls for a need to ensure proper pest management is in place:

  • Termite control specialists underwent training to carry out complex and specialised treatments. For example, performing termite inspection with Microwave Technology, injecting with active ingredients with carefully planned dilution rate or placing above and in-ground termite baiting units to attract, detect and control termite colony.
  • Mosquitoes can cause an epidemic outbreak due to chemical resistance, increased in mosquito-breeding, high risk environment and activities (vegetation sites and active construction works) or poor housekeeping that requires intensive and professional mosquito treatment.
  • Pests pick up bacteria and all sorts of pathogens. They cause contaminate during food consumption and preparation process. Thus, compromising our food safety and health risks.
  • Pest detection and identification can be tricky. This is because of their good hiding skills and non-obvious signs of pest infestation that unless spotted by professionals.
  • Damages and consequences resulting from pest entries can be severe and detrimental. Examples include collapse of ceiling due to termite feeding on them, hazardous fire and short circuit from rats gnawing and replacement of furniture and upholstery from bed bugs infestation.
  • Businesses such as food establishment, hospitality, healthcare and food manufacturing require proper pest control solutions, monitoring and reporting for regulatory compliance.
  • Limited efficacy in control and elimination without proper use of tools and equipment, specific active ingredient and carefully-planned frequency and number of treatments.
Debugged Blog Seven Pest Control Myths Various Pest Control Solutions

Learn the various pest control solutions available

There are many pest species and a long list of treatments available to control pest infestation. However, there are common residential pest control solutions addressing typical pests turning up in a home uninvited.

Pest control for home pests

Firstly, ants and cockroaches are common home pests as they lurk around kitchens, dining halls and bathrooms. This is because of the food ingredients, waste, water and decaying matter they can find.

Termite control solutions

Next, most homes (and all sorts of premises as long as there is wood and foundation) are prone to termite activities. These include the furniture, door and window frames and panels/beams that termites can feed. Termite control includes long term termite solutions with seven to ten years of warranty. It works by injecting termiticide into the ground (or placing baiting units with chips to detect termite presence before replacing with units with active ingredient). Alternatively, using foaming agent to localise drywood termite treatment on frames and furniture.

Solutions to get rid of bed bugs

Thirdly, most homes at some point would need to get rid of bed bugs by engaging professional bed bug control services. Bed bug elimination requires specific residual spraying and steam treatment (usually requires three treatments) coupled with inspection and monitoring.

Mosquitoes control methods

Fourthly, mosquitoes are everywhere, indoors and outdoors, and treatments typically involve an integrated mosquito management. These include water-based fogging and larviciding (to get rid of larvae). Additionally, placing of mosquitoes traps internally and externally to trap adult mosquitoes hovering around.

Rat control solutions

Finally, rats can infest residential environments as they travel, dig their way through burrows and surface from sewers and drains. With their flexible body, they can squeeze into homes easily so long as there is as small as a 1cm hole for their entry. Rat control includes using lures/baits with glueboard, tamper resistant baiting stations and units equipped with sensing technology to alert of an activity. Depending on where the control is required or if there is a heavy infestation, there are solutions by deploying snap traps or units to contain twenty rats in one catch.

Call Rentokil Singapore at (65) 6347 8138 for pest control services today.

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