Avoid These Pest Management Tactics That Don't Work

#1. “Bug Bombs”

Bug bombs (also known as foggers) are pest control products that advertise their ability to kill pests by using aerosol propellants to aerate poisonous substances, killing any bugs within their reach. While it can be tempting to invest in these seemingly quick solutions, they’re not always as effective as they seem. In addition to the potential dangers to you and your family if the foggers are used incorrectly, they don’t reach bugs that aren’t out in the open at the time of the fogging. That means these bug bombs are potentially ineffective on pests such as bed bugs that hide underneath coverings.

#2. Throwing Away Furniture

While it may be necessary to get rid of some household items during an infestation, don’t make the decision to throw away furniture before you’ve consulted with an expert. Oftentimes throwing away furniture will only solve part of the problem. For instance, bed bugs can also live in the molding and carpet of a bedroom. Throwing away a mattress before the room is properly inspected by pest control services could mean that any new mattress you bring in will also become infested. Hold off on throwing away or replacing furniture until you have a better idea of what you’re dealing with.

#3. Osage Oranges

It’s a commonly-held belief that osage oranges will repel spiders. However, many people don’t realize that it’s not the oranges themselves but the trees they grow on that possess spider-repelling properties. Keep in mind that leaving out fruit like oranges can actually attract pests such as ants, making this myth especially counterproductive when it comes to pest management.

These are just three common pest management tactics that don’t actually work. When you’re dealing with an active infestation, it’s crucial to take advantage of the pest control services in your area. At Oliver Exterminating, we have years of experience managing pests and will be able to help you take control of the situation quickly and efficiently. Reach out to us today if you’re experiencing an infestation or are looking for ways to prevent one.

3 Ways to Prevent Pests in Your Home

Mosquito control is important both indoors and outdoors. Most people think of mosquitoes as outdoor annoyances, but did you know that mosquitoes also like to build their nests indoors? It’s true! Mosquitoes can quickly go from being an outdoor annoyance to an indoor hazard when they decide to make themselves comfortable in your home. Here are a few ways you can help keep mosquitoes and other pests away.

#1. Keep Out-of-the-Way Spaces Clean

Indoors and outdoors, mosquitoes love to make their homes in damp, dark places. Indoors, these places can include underneath sinks, leaky utility closets, and underneath appliances such as washing machines. Be sure to make these places a part of your regular maintenance routine and don’t neglect to give them a quick cleaning. Mosquitoes aren’t the only pests that like to hide in areas like these, centipedes and woodlice also love these spots!

#2. Keep Doors Closed and Sealed

Many pests, including mosquitoes, get into your home because of open doors, or because of improperly sealed doors. Be sure to keep doors closed during the summer months when it can be tempting to leave them open. Inspect your doors to ensure that they are sealed when closed, with no gaps that leave room for pests to sneak through. Hardware stores sell plenty of simple solutions that homeowners can utilize to be sure their doors are sealed tight.

#3. Call on the Professionals at Oliver Exterminating

At Oliver Exterminating, we’ve been in business since 1956 and understand mosquito control better than anyone. Whether you’re looking to safeguard your home against an infestation or you’re currently battling an active infestation, Oliver Exterminating has the resources you need to enjoy truly pest-free living. Ask us about PestFree365, our comprehensive program designed to ensure your home stays pest-free through a combination of preventative care and regular maintenance.

These are just three ways you can increase your mosquito control measures and help to ensure that your home stays pest free this summer. Keeping your home clean from top to bottom is one of the easiest ways you can ensure that your home doesn’t become a safe haven for pests like mosquitoes. If you’re ready to learn what professional pest management can do for you, reach out to Oliver Exterminating today!

Prevention Tactics to Keep the Bed Bugs Out

As colder weather arrives in Puerto Rico, pests retreat. Many indoor pests do disappear, or nearly disappear, with the onset of colder weather. They may go into hibernation, die off only leaving eggs behind in some unknown dark nook or cranny, or just move out of the house to some other location. But that’s not the case with bed bugs.

Watch Out for Bed Bugs in the Winter

You can get a bed bug infestation any time of year, the winter being no exception. And it doesn’t generally matter much what part of the country you live in either: bed bugs live there too. But how do bed bugs typically get into homes? And how can you prevent them from getting into yours? Here are some bed bug prevention tips to keep them out:

  • Avoid picking up used furniture from garage sales or from the side of the road. But if you must bring new furnishings into your home, inspect them thoroughly and spray them down with an anti-bed bug aerosol can before bringing them in.
  • Wash and dry any used clothes you pick up secondhand or are given on the high-heat setting. In the meantime, keep them sealed in a plastic bag.
  • Keep your pets (dogs and cats) well groomed and inspect them for bed bugs (and fleas and ticks) when they come in from outdoors. Remember that bed bugs can feed on your pets as well as on you, and it only takes a few intruders to start up a population.
  • If you have been out in the woods or if your coat or clothes have touched the ground, grass, or trees, check yourself for bed bugs before you return inside. Bed bugs may purposefully try to get onto any warm-blooded animal, and they can cling to clothes and hide in the folds.
  • Use a plastic mattress cover that seals your mattress completely off. This will at least stop any bed bugs that do get inside from infesting your mattress. But it will require other measures to actually eradicate bed bugs or fend off their bites.

Eradicate Your Bed Bugs This Winter

If you have a bed bug problem already, it will not go away just because the fall and winter weather are arriving. Bed bugs are not much affected by that because they are mostly “indoor” pests. Their primary food is human blood, though as mentioned, they will also feed on the blood of pets and other animals.

You may want to consider calling in experienced bed bug pest control in Puerto Rico, such as Oliver Exterminating, who has been providing top-notch pest control since 1956. You can also try some bed bug prevention measures on your own at first, such as:

  • Use diatomaceous earth on and around your bed. It will dehydrate and kill bed bugs.
  • Try bed bug sprays, fogger bombs, and CO2 traps.
  • Keep a lint roller handy to quickly roll up any bed bugs that you spot.
  • Use calamine lotion or rubbing alcohol on your skin to repel bugs and heal their itchy bites.

But you may need to still call bed bug pest control in Puerto Rico despite these efforts. Oliver Exterminating can apply heat treatment and other highly effective methods. Contact Oliver Exterminating today online or by calling (787) 764-2000.

Pests in Puerto Rico You Need to Avoid and How to Avoid Them

Fall is once again upon us. Pumpkin spice, homework, packed lunches, fallen leaves, and warm sweaters are all in season. When the weather turns, many different kinds of critters are looking for warmth too.

Rodents like mice and rats can make their way into your home through gaps in your walls, doors, or windows. Now’s the time to make an inspection and winterproof your home against these annoying pests.

Another pest that can really cause problems for tenants or homeowners in the fall are bedbugs. A lot of people mistake bedbug bites for allergies or scratches but skin inflammation that looks like a series of blisters could actually be bedbugs.

Dealing with Bedbugs This Fall 

Bedbugs are small, brownish insects that are relatively flat until they’ve fed. Bedbugs can bite at night to feed on blood, and they’re most active after midnight. These insects typically hide in crevices and cracks during the day and come out only at night.

These pests develop in three stages from egg to adult in about a month total, and they don’t need much beyond a warm home between 60 and 85 degrees. Now you know why bedbugs in Puerto Rico are becoming more of an issue.

Bedbugs can easily be transported in a variety of different ways from hitching a ride on backpacks and suitcases to sticking onto clothing.

Throw any clothing or sheets that you think could be affected by bedbugs into the hottest dryer setting for at least half an hour, vacuum around your bedroom, and use a brush to make a final pass before putting your sheets back on the bed.

To prevent bedbugs, remove clutter from around your bedroom and make sure that none of your wallpaper is slipping off and offering a place to hide. If you think you might have a bedbug infestation then contact Oliver Exterminating immediately.

Eliminate House Spiders, Stink Bugs, and Termites 

Sealing cracks and gaps around your home, keeping your home nice and clean, and removing outdoor debris like overhanging vegetation or wood piles are ways to reduce the problem if you find that spiders, stink bugs, and termites are somehow entering your home.

Removing wood piles where spiders can hide can also cut down on stinkbugs and termites, which can do your home’s foundation more serious harm. Drywood termites in Puerto Rico can hang around until well into November, so be sure to follow these tips and contact our professionals to thoroughly take care of the pest problem at hand.

Keep Mice Out of Your Home Too 

Oliver Exterminating protects your home in another way as well. Our Pestfree 365 home protection plan and commercial plan help you keep pests out of your home or business on an ongoing basis, making it easier for you to have a peace of mind.

The first step is inspecting for signs of pests. With rodents, things like droppings, gnawed holes, scampering sounds in your kitchen or basement, and unusual behavior from your pets could all be signs that something just isn’t right and that rodents have infested your home.

Our Pestfree 365 plan uses control methods aimed at getting rid of pests and keeping them out for good. Making structural repairs like caulking around doors and windows and adding screens can make a huge difference.

Storing food securely in Tupperware containers or cans is also a great way to eliminate food sources. Traps and bait stations might also work for some but if you have a real problem on your hands or if you’re overseeing a large commercial space then it’s best to take advantage of Oliver Exterminating’s rodent control program.

If you have a pest infestation on your hands or you want to take prevention methods during the colder months, be sure to contact the professionals at Oliver Exterminating for all of your pest management needs.

Avoid These Pest Management Tactics That Don't Work

Oliver Exterminating’s integrated Pestfree365 program recognizes that pests need shelter, food, water, and a way of getting into your home in order to gain a foothold. Deny pests like ants and mice those entry points and you’ll inevitably find fewer signs of infestations. However, many do-it-yourself pest management tactics don’t work, and that’s when it’s time to call in the professionals at Oliver Exterminating. Here are four pest management tactics that don’t work and why it’s best to call in a pest management professional.

Treat the Root Cause, Not Only the Symptoms

One of the top reasons that do-it-yourself pest control can fall short is that Puerto Rican homeowners wind up treating the symptom of the pest issue rather than getting at the root cause of the problem.

For instance, putting out mouse traps instead of checking for cracks, holes, and vulnerabilities in your home’s foundation that might be allowing mice to literally slip through the cracks in the first place.

By getting at the root cause of the issue, you can significantly reduce the odds of falling victim to a pest infestation. Mice, cockroaches, ticks, and other pests can be transmitters of diseases and termites can cripple your home value, so it’s nothing to ignore.

If you think you have a pest problem in or around your home, then contact Oliver Exterminating for help. We provide wildlife control, bedbug control, mosquito and tick control, and more.

Mouse Repellent Might Not Be Enough…or Even Work

Some people suggest bay leaves, mint, and moth balls reduce the odds that mice make it into your home. The weird thing is that none of these tactics are shown to work effectively.

Peppermint and spearmint are additional DIY ways of attempting to reduce mice that just don’t get the job done. Essential oils might be great for your skin, but they’re certainly not the best way to get rid of mice in your home.

At Oliver Exterminating, our pest management involves effective management methods like checking to see if structural repairs are needed (e.g., for mice this would involve sealing your home’s exterior) and making lifestyle adjustments.

You might consider storing your food in plastic containers instead of leaving cookies on the counter in plastic wrap and securing your trash more effectively.

We specialize in rodent control so whether you’re a homeowner, business owner, or property manager, Oliver Exterminating can help.

Coffee Grounds, White Vinegar, and Ants

Although boric acid might be an effective ant bait—unlike coffee grounds, white vinegar, ground cinnamon, and dish water (all suggestions online)—boric acid bait likely won’t kill every ant in a colony and there are toxicity issues to worry about. The best way to deal with an ant infestation is to rely on the expert knowledge of the pest management professionals at Oliver Exterminating.

Fabric Softener Sheets, Mosquitoes, and Gnats

Fabric softener sheets are said to keep mosquitoes and gnats away but there’s really no scientific basis for that claim. The main ingredient in fabric softener sheets thought to keep mosquitoes away, linalool, was looked into by the EPA back in 2007 because the claims were getting out of control.

The EPA concluded that: “the efficacy data on [linalool] may not support certain claims to repel mosquitoes.” So, if dryer sheets don’t really work, what should homeowners do in the meantime to cut down on mosquitoes?

Going back to the control methods with Oliver Exterminating’s Pestfree365 program, you want to look at how mosquitoes are able to thrive around your home.

Eliminating standing water from around your home is a good place to start but for more serious mosquito and tick control, you need to capitalize on the expertise of Oliver Exterminating’s pest control specialists who understand mosquitoes’ breeding habits and the most effective management methods.

Ways to Stop Inviting Pests Into Your Home in Puerto Rico

There’s really nothing more frustrating than having a pest control issue but not knowing where the pests are coming into your home from. The truth is that pests need a few simple ingredients to thrive. Shelter, food, warmth, and water are right at the top of the list.

Unfortunately, many Puerto Rican households sometimes forget to drain their sinks or bathtubs after using them or leave food around for pests like mice, ants, and cockroaches to feast on. Decanting birdbaths or small kiddie pools to prevent mosquitoes is simple enough but too many homeowners wait until it’s too late.

Signs that pests have already made it into your home are: droppings, noises in the walls or along your floorboards, chewed wrappers or wiring, a musky smell in the basement, or gnawed wood out back (termites).

Fortunately, there are DIY stops that you can take to significantly reduce the chances that pests make inroads into your home or business.

Steps to Take Right Now to Reduce Pest Issues

The easiest step that you can take right now to prevent pests from making your home an oasis is making sure that all of your food is canned, zipped, protected by plastic containers, or unopened in a drawer. Food or morsels of food on the floor or in the carpet can make it far too easy for mice and other pests to snatch up. If you’re unsure if your kitchen floor is totally free of food, then a quick sweep or vacuum should be enough.

Your garbage can also be a hotspot for raccoons, possums, and mice who want nothing more than to chow down. Keep a tight lid on your trash to prevent that from happening.

Block Your Home’s or Workplace’s Entrances

Next, you’ll want to prevent pests such as snakes or spiders as well as small pests like mice and ants from getting the chance to enter your home in the first place. But how?

Caulking your windows and doors is a great prevention method. As it turns out, weatherstripping and caulking are also wonderful ways to conserve your heating efforts and save on your energy expenses this winter season.

Small openings along your baseboards are also ways that critters make it into your home through walls or move from room to room. Plugging up any gaps that you find and perhaps adding screens to your windows and doors can be really beneficial.

Keep Your Home and Backyard Free of Clutter

Pests such as cockroaches and even termites like to hide in dark places. Out of sight is unfortunately out of mind for too many Puerto Rican homeowners.

One way to prevent pests from wreaking havoc on your home is to keep your home and backyard free of clutter. This means keeping trees trimmed and wood piles away from the home. Removing standing water is also a great way to prevent mosquitoes in your yard.

Thinking About Long-term Pest Control in Puerto Rico?

The only long-term, surefire way of ensuring a future free of pests, though, is enlisting the help of professionals to monitor the situation and make home or workplace pest control visits when necessary.

Oliver Exterminating pest control in Puerto Rico has been trusted since 1956, giving personal and thorough pest control care for residents of Puerto Rico and surrounding areas. We make it our mission to provide the best pest management possible and help you to maintain a pest free home or work environment. For more information about the services we offer, be sure to contact a representative today!

Dangers of Termites and Why You Shouldn't Delay Their Termination

Termites make a formidable opponent to your home’s foundation, but are termites actually dangerous to human health? Although termites aren’t known to transmit harmful diseases or to possess toxic bites, termites can exacerbate allergies among some Puerto Ricans battling a termite infestation.

Termite Infestations and Your Family’s Health

Termite nests can leave behind dusts and shed wings that, if left untreated by a pest control specialist, can infiltrate your home’s or business’s heating system, ventilation, and duct work. This dust can cause breathing issues and allergy flare-ups for some. There are reports that termites can cause sneezing, itching, and watery eyes through exposure to their droppings.

The weird thing about termites is that they’re actually beneficial to ecosystems yet harmful to humans and potentially dangerous for your entire family. Termites in nature break down waste and leave more nutrients in the soil out in nature. Since drywood termites love nothing more than chomping on your home’s wood, termite control is definitely something to consider if you suspect you’re dealing with a termite infestation.

Structural Property Damage and Things to Look For

The unfortunate thing about a termite infestation is that you might not immediately find any clues to tell you that one is underway. Clues may come later when you’ve suffered severe damage. Structural property damage as well as subterranean (“below the surface”) damage are the two most common kinds of ways that termites can wreak havoc on homes and businesses throughout Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic.

Structural Property Damage

Plenty of Puerto Rico homeowners assume that if their home’s not made primarily out of wood then they’re completely in the clear when it comes to a termite infestation. Think again—termites can damage your window’s plaster and home siding even if it’s made out of metal. Termites also love munching on cabinets and wooden furniture like dressers, tables, closets, and chairs. Wooden floors, walls, and ceilings might also be fair game.

The National Pest Management Association estimates that termites create more than $5 billion worth of structural property damage every year. Termites are as small or sometimes smaller than ants and can do the bulk of their damage behind furniture, on the side of your home, or underneath your home undetected. If a termite starts chowing down on your home’s or business location’s support beams and ceiling joists that keep your home literally held up, then you could be talking about a major issue.

A termite control specialist from Oliver Exterminating Services Corporation can come to your home or place of business and check for termites in the most likely locations. In addition to support beams and joists, other popular spots are around your home’s exterior and in between wall studs. If termites are in your walls, then you might have to check the insulation too since termites can eat that in addition to plaster and siding.

Things to Look For

Buckled wood and the appearance of slight water damage are signs that termites may have done significant damage to your home’s floors, ceilings, walls, furniture, or cabinets already. You’re not actually seeing water damage—you’re seeing the aftermath of termites chewing on that part of the wood in your home and causing it to look wavy.

The appearance of water damage to wood in your home, holes in logs lying around outside your home, or a smell like mildew that infestations can give off are fairly good signs your home is in danger. Fortunately, Oliver Exterminating continues to be the largest, most experienced tent fumigating pest and termite control company throughout Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic. Find out how we can use termite control to inspect or treat your home or business for termites.

5 Smart Tips From the Mosquito Control Experts

The Centers for Disease Control have advised that Puerto Rico residents “practice enhanced precautions” in terms of their response to the Zika virus that’s run rampant over the region already.

Because there currently isn’t any available vaccine or medicine for the Zika virus like there is for bacterial infections and antibiotics, anyone who owns a home or business in Puerto Rico needs to take special precautions.

The CDC lays out special guidelines for pregnant women who are at the highest risk, but there are a few steps that you can take to lower the odds that your home or business becomes a haven for mosquitoes.

Hurricane Maria that barreled into Puerto Rico created severe destruction in its path and left behind the standing water and humid breeding ground that mosquitoes like best. Here’s what you can do to stay safe:

Eliminate Standing Water Around Your Home

Take a walk around your home and look for ditches, birdbaths, or gutters running along the ground that could act as breeding sites for mosquitoes. Female mosquitoes like to lay their eggs in stagnant, standing water like birdbaths.

So, if you have a birdbath or a kiddie pool in your backyard that’s been collecting water, it could already be a breeding ground. If in your walk around your house you find signs of larvae, then upend the receptacle or call a pest control specialist like Oliver Exterminating who can handle the problem for you.

You need to act quickly because the process of the mother mosquito laying the eggs and the eggs turning into adults and being capable of flying away (and biting!) is extremely quick—from start to finish about two weeks.

Each batch is around 500 eggs, so what looks like innocent standard water can quickly spiral out of control to become a big mosquito issue.

Use a Lawn Mowing Service

Keeping your lawn mown and choosing Oliver Exterminating lawn care for your home or business can reduce the chances of having big pockets of standing water in your lawn that might act as a breeding ground.

Consider Mosquito Control Rings

Mosquito control rings can be placed in ponds, pools, or birdbaths to reduce the chances that a female mosquito will lay her eggs there. These control rings are affordable for most families and can cover a 100 square foot area. This means that one ring could cover a small pond.

Mosquito control rings contain a safe, naturally occurring bacteria known as BT Israelensis that’s been shown to actually destroy the larvae (eggs) of mosquitoes for thirty days after you install the ring. These rings last up to 2 years and can be placed in water of any depth.

Clean Pools, Ponds, and Birdbaths

Speaking of a female mosquitoes larvae, did you know that mosquito larvae take in the algae that can grow in pools and standing water for food?

Algae, bacteria, and tiny organisms form the cornerstone of mosquito larvae’s diet, so cleaning algae where you see it is a great strategy for reducing the chances that mosquitoes will spawn and create a problem on your property.

If you’re a business owner with a fountain in front of your office, then know that algae can grow there too. Clear the surface of algae or install oxygenating plants to reduce algae naturally.

Have Your Yard Professionally Treated

Spraying lawn insect repellent on your lawn and shrubs to create a home barrier or safely applying granules with a fertilizer spreader are DIY solutions. For greater assurance and easy appointments, know that mosquito control and displacement is a core service at Oliver Exterminating.