As spring kicks into high gear, it’s time for all of us to start thinking more about pest control. In particular, we know that many customers are worried about termite control. There are many steps you can take to ensure that your home or commercial property is safe from termites and other wood destroying insects. However, we think they can be broken down into three main categories: prevention, vigilance, and action.
The best way to recover from a termite problem is to never have one in the first place.
While sometimes even the most responsible homeowner ends up with termites, there are several steps you can take to keep the termites at bay:
Minimize wood-to-soil contact. This means not storing firewood or other wood debris close to your home, not affixing wooden trellises for plants directly to your walls, etc.
Keep your home as dry as possible. Fix leaky faucets, leaky roofs, and other problems that might lead to moisture where you don’t want it to be.
Install vapor barriers and automatic ventilators to keep the places of your home you can’t see dry and inhospitable to termites.
Contact us for a termite prevention plan. We can work on both existing structures and new construction projects.
Even if you’ve taken preventive measures, it’s important to keep an eye out for possible termites or termite damage
While it can be hard to catch termites early, it’s certainly not impossible. Here is what you should watch out for:
Wood damage: The easiest way to tell if you have termites is to see if they have already damaged your wood. Test wooden surfaces like windowsills by gently tapping them with the handle of a screwdriver or other lightweight tool. If the wood sounds hollow, you could have termite damage.
Mud tubes: Termites use tubes made of wood and soil to protect themselves. Look for these tubes (about the size of a straw) around your baseboards, pipes, chimney, etc.
Dead insects: You may not be able to tell the difference between a dead termite and a dead ant or other insect. However, seeing large numbers of dead insects is never a good sign.
Best pest control company
The right company should have reliable, professional technicians:
Pest technicians are the core of a pest control company. They perform any treatment that occurs in and around your home. Pest control operators understand this, so if a company’s technicians seem unprofessional, sloppy, or rude, odds are the rest of the company is not being held to a high standard. Beyond this, remember that these technicians would be treating your home with chemicals, so you will want to choose someone who is correctly trained.
The right company should have good reviews:
Pest control is a service industry, and most of a pest company’s revenue comes from long-term customers. Because of this, a good company that cares about its public image and strives to keep customers satisfied. When considering a pest control company, ask your friends and neighbors who they use for their service
You can also check online for Google Reviews and testimonials about the company. These will give you a good idea of how a typical customer feels about the service. Since Google reviews can be left by anyone, you will also get a better idea of how the company treats customers across its entire service range.`
The right company should have certification and documentation:
For a pest control company to operate legally, most states require some form of training and certification. Unfortunately, some less honest companies will choose to operate illegally without any licensing, and thus their training and treatment methods are not audited in any way. Homeowners should we wary of companies that are hesitant to show proper certification.
The right company should have correct service procedures:
There is a lot more to pest control than just spraying chemicals. A technician should be a pest expert with extensive knowledge about the treatment products and procedures that he employs. While a technician cannot be expected to know the answer to all of your questions, they should be friendly and willing to find out for you.
How To Choose Termite Exterminator
An investment as precious as your home is one that you certainly want to protect. You may or may not be aware of the costly damages that termite infestations can cause. Each year there is an estimated $5 billion in property damages from termites alone.
Look for a long-standing reputation – See how long they have been in business. Generally, a longer standing reputation is an indication of a pest control company who likes to build long-term relationships with local home and business owners.
Find values that align with you – Read about the company and learn their story. You want a company that is passionate about what they do. It’s also nice if they are locals, this means they have a good grasp of the pest threats in the area.
Choosing a Pest Management Company to Protect Your Home Against Termites
Termites are severe wood-destroying insect pests present in all Oklahoma counties. They cause hundreds-of-millions of dollars of damage annually to wooden structures and homes across the United States. Termite pressure (risk) may range from very heavy in southeastern counties to moderate-to-heavy in the rest of the state
Termites are soft-bodied, measuring approximately one-quarter-inch to one-half-inch long, creamy colored pale insects that consist of several different forms (castes). The different castes in a termite colony consist of the founding king and queen (primary reproductives that start a new colony), the wood-destroying form – workers, soldiers that defend the colony, and young, winged kings and queens (Figures 2 and 3). The winged forms (alates or swarmers; kings and queens) have two pair of wings that are nearly equal in length. When termites are swarming, this easily visible form is what homeowners call pest management professionals about. The wood-damaging workers are not usually visible unless their mud tubes or tunnels are broken open to expose crawling termites.
With termites, the thorax and abdomen are broadly connected, both about the same width, with a wide waist. That is, there is no narrowing or constricted waistline between these two body regions like that seen with ants. Bodies of termites are oval-tubular, not flattened. Figure 2 illustrates two castes, a worker and a soldier, showing body characteristics that are useful for identification. Figure 3 shows a top and side view of a winged termite swarmer (new reproductive).
Generally, subterranean termites must maintain contact with soil to survive. However, there are occasions where native subterranean termites can live above ground in structures and be completely cut off from soil contact, although this is not common. The probability that termites will attack a wooden structure within a few years after construction is high in Oklahoma. Termite attack could even begin within a year after construction because termites are everywhere in Oklahoma soils. Proper treatment of the soil with a liquid termiticide (insecticide formulated for termite control) before construction (pre-construction application) significantly reduces the threat from subterranean termites. If you know or suspect that your home is infested with termites, it is recommended the building owner retain the services of a professional pest control company. Termite management and termiticide applications require expensive specialized equipment, professional knowledge, and experience and training. This fact sheet reviews decision-making steps that will help you select a pest control company.
Do not become overly alarmed.
There is no need to become unduly alarmed if you learn that your home has a termite infestation. Termites work slowly so your house will not be quickly destroyed or collapse overnight. The termites have been present for several months or perhaps a few years, so taking a few days to determine your best termite management options is acceptable.
Tips for Choosing a Pest Control Company
When you have a pest problem, you want to know that you are going to get the professional service that you need. You expect the best, and you need it taken care of as quickly and efficiently as possible.
There are so many pest control companies to choose from, how do you pick the best one?
How long has the firm been in business? Longevity and experience are two keys to providing superior pest service.
Find out if they have experience with your type of pest problem. Sometimes, pest control companies specialize, but you will want one with expertise with your specific pest problem.
Get references. There really is no substitute for this, so go with one that comes with referrals from your friends or relatives that have used the company.
Find out if they are trained and licensed and if ongoing education of their field personnel is important to them.
Look to see if there are any guarantees. If they are dealing with termites, you also want to know if they have liability insurance just in case your termite problem is not resolved.
Check with the Better Business Bureau to see if there are complaints against the company. Your state will also have a similar list.
Get at least 2 or 3 estimates before you buy, then compare services offered and price before you choose one.
Find out how long the service is good for. There will be a contract, and it will state how many months they will service your home or business.
Ensure that the company you hire follows Integrated Pest Management protocols. Learn what chemicals they use and how they are distributed in your home or business. In most cases, you want to go for limited amounts and limited distribution. Note that warmer climates may require a wider usage.
Understand how often treatments are repeated and how many treatments are covered in the contract.
For termite contracts, find out if the damaged wood will be replaced, and when re-inspections will be performed. Also learn about where treatment stations will be placed and the types of chemicals used, ask for a copy of the labels.
Find out what the company will do in the way of prevention, how long it will take, and how often they need to return for inspections, cleanup, etc
Depending on the particular pest, your service professional should always perform the services as covered in the Agreement. Do not expect anything to be done for you if it is not in print. Make sure that you understand all aspects of the Agreement, too, before you sign anything. Ask questions if you need to