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Seattle Pest Control and Home Services: October 2013

Friday, October 11, 2013

2 Incredibly Simple Steps To Make Sure Water Doesn't Ruin Your Home

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Let's face it, living in the Puget Sound area is pretty wet.  Our homes take a beating with the amount of rain they have to endure all year.  Water really is the enemy of your home.  Think about the design of your home, the slant of the roof, the siding and the gutters.  All of these elements are designed to move water away from the structure.  But, what happens when water sneaks past these design elements and comes to rest in your crawl space?  Well, a lot of damage can result when you have standing water in your crawl space.

I go to homes all the time to do pest control treatments and jump into the crawl space to find water pooling up and wreaking havoc on the structure without the home owner even realizing that it is there.  Standing water left unaddressed can result in ruined insulation, ductwork and not to mention the structural elements of your home.  It is a very big deal when water invades your crawl space.

It is for this reason that I want to give you two incredibly simple preventative steps that can save you thousands of dollars in repairs.


#1- Look in your crawl space!

Look, I told you it would be simple.  The vast majority of people that have had their crawl space ruined by standing water never even knew they had a problem until the pest control company, cable company, or plumber went down there for something else and discovered it.  You should pop the hatch on your crawl space door and look in there with a flashlight at least a few times a year (especially after a heavy rain).  Catching standing water early is the key to avoiding any major repairs.  Once you realize that you have a drainage issue with your home, you can start to think about preventative drainage systems like a French drain or sump pump, but you will never know you need one until you look!

#2- Observe where water runs off your property

Okay, this is pretty simple too.  When it is raining, you should probably do a walk around your property.  Does the water pool anywhere near the foundation or in the yard?  Does the property slope towards your home?  This was the case with the home that I moved into last August.  The property sloped straight towards a foundation vent and I didn't need to wait until the rain came to know that this would be a huge problem.  I decided to install a French drain before the rainy season and I have never had a problem with it.  By observing the water run off, you can sometimes easily catch major problems before they happen.

I warned you that it was going to be simple, but despite how simple these steps are, many people neglect them.  Don't be one of them and make sure that water is not ruining your home!

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Why You Are About To Get Ants In Your Kitchen

Seattle pest control company
If you were to step outside right now, you would see the fall leaves changing color and the chill of cold air.  Summer is over, fall is upon us and winter is close behind.  In the world of pest control that I work in, this is a quiet time.  Many of the pests that wreak havoc all summer long, decide to call it quits and wait until spring.  But, not all of them.

As a Seattle Pest Control Company, we find that the highest volume of our sugar ant treatments take place in the fall when the weather starts to cool and the rain comes pouring down.  This is because sugar ants start to move with changes in barometric pressure.  We have had plenty of that lately in the Puget Sound area, haven't we?  The driving rain and bitter cold start to move many pests inside, but especially the sugar ants. 

If you are looking to avoid having your kitchen taken over by ants, there are a few things that you can try. 


1)  Weatherize your home

If you were planning on doing this anyway, why not do it now?  Ants can fit in through the tiniest of openings, but lets not make it easy on them.  Gaps under the door or around windows can provide a quick access point for ants to come in.  By making it a little more difficult on them, you can stop them from establishing a nest and having to deal with it later.


2)  Do a preventative exterior treatment

Usually we do not recommend using store bought products for pest control because they rarely work, but when using it as a preventative measure, you greatly increase your odds of getting the job done.  Of course, the ultimate answer would be to call a pest control company, but if you want to try the do-it-yourself route, go pick up some Ortho Home Defense and spray the foundation of your home.  This will work as a good protective barrier and might help you avoid an infestation.

3) Start up a preventative maintenance program with a pest control company

This might not be as expensive as you think.  Our pest control company charges about $60 to $70 to do a quarterly preventative pest service and it will cover just about any pest.  Take a look at your budget and decide if this is worth it to you.  Obviously, this would be the best way to keep ants out of your kitchen.

Lastly, if you have any questions about ant treatments or just need a little advice, we would welcome your call!