Tips for Richmond Pest Control Services

Tips for Richmond Pest Control Services

Everyone’s need for pest control services in Richmond is different because everyone has a different tolerance for the pests that invade our home. Whether you need monthly, quarterly, or annual pest control services depends on what you consider to be a pest problem. For some people, seeing on occasional cockroach is tolerable, while that same cockroach can send others scrambling to hire a professional.

In short, what is “pest free” to one person may feel like an infestation to someone else. Regardless of your stance, there are times you need professional pest control services – even if you are a do-it-yourselfer. This is particularly true with wood-destroying insects such as termites, carpenter ants, and wood-boring beetles.

These types of pests can be difficult to treat, depending on the size of your Richmond home, the type of construction, and the extent of the problem, which is why you want to rely on professional pest control services.

No matter if you need pest control services to eradicate termites, cockroaches, ants – or any other pest you might encounter – being an informed and educated consumer is the best way to ensure you hire the right company for the job.

Treatments for these pests can be complex and expensive, depending upon the size of the home, the type of construction, and the extent of the problem. We cannot endorse specific pest control companies, but we can offer some tips to help you reach an informed decision on the type of service you need or want. The emphasis here is on solving specific problems, particularly for wood-destroying pests, but the same general principles apply to regular service contracts for other common household pests, such as cockroaches and ants. Becoming an informed educated consumer is the best way to protect yourself and to make sure you get the kind of service you need and want.

Requirements for Pest Control Services

In Virginia, all pest control companies must have at least one licensed individual on staff. Other pest control technicians must be certified applicators or licensed technicians under the direct supervision of the licensed applicator.

Persons who buy or use restricted-use pesticides, and certain occupational users of any pesticides, must be certified as a pesticide applicator. The Commonwealth of Virginia recognizes three types of pesticide applicators: private applicators, commercial applicators, and registered technicians. The type of pesticide applications a person can perform is dependent on the applicator’s certification.

The Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, Office of Pesticide Services certifies individuals as private applicators, commercial applicators, and registered technicians. To become certified, all pesticide applicators must participate in approved training and demonstrate their competency by passing the required exams. Approved training, at a minimum, means study and review of the appropriate training manuals. In addition, all pesticide applicators are required to pass the Virginia Core exam to receive certification. Commercial pesticide applicators must also pass an exam in at least one category of pest control specific to the type of work they perform.

Applicators maintain their certification through renewal and recertification training, and certificates must be renewed every two years. To qualify for renewal, applicators must meet the requirements for recertification by attending appropriate continuing education training courses.

In short, make sure that the Richmond pest control service you hire has a valid license to provide the service you need. You may verify the license of a pest control company by calling the Commonwealth of Virginia Department of Agriculture.

Pesticides Aren’t Always the Solution

Although some pesticide treatments are done routinely – on a monthly, quarterly, or annual basis – not all pest problems are solved simply by applying a pesticide. Effective pest control starts with an inspection, which is why Eco Pest Control offers free inspections with all pest control services. Only have a thorough inspection is completed can the best treatment approach be identified.

Eco Pest Control extermination services include integrated pest management techniques, which are a combination of common sense and scientific principles. Integrated pest management uses knowledge about the pest’s habits, lifecycle, needs, and dislikes; uses the least toxic methods first, up to and including pesticides; monitors the pest’s activity and adjusts methods over time; tolerates harmless pests; and sets a threshold to decide when it’s time to act.

When dealing with a pest problem – and before your hire a Richmond pest control service – start by asking yourself these five questions:

  1. What is causing the problem?
  2. How many pests have been seen? How often are they being seen?
  3. Where are the pests being found? Is there something attracting the pest to the area?
  4. Are they entering the house from outdoors? If so, how are they getting in? Did they hitchhike in on clothes, shipped items, or luggage, or did they crawl and/or fly in?
  5. What steps are required to correct the current situation and prevent it from occurring again?

Many pest problems don’t require professional pest control services. Sometimes, a pest problem can be resolved simply by vacuuming up the pest, cutting off their entry and access points, or, in the case of attacks on stored food, eliminating the infested item and thoroughly cleaning the storage area.

If you’re a do-it-yourself who likes to rely on over-the-counter pest treatments, don’t expect these to get rid of all your pests overnight. Some treatments, particularly baits, are designed to work slowly, allowing for several of the pests to carry the bait back to the nest to kill the colony. This process takes time.

In addition, weather conditions can impact the speed at which treatments work. When the weather is hot and dry, you can expect to see lots of certain kinds of pests, such as springtails and millipedes, which can make pest control treatments less effective.

Don’t Rush to Hire Pest Control Services

If your problem is termites or other wood-destroying insects, such as carpenter ants and wood-boring beetles, don’t feel rushed to hire the first pest control service you find in Richmond. Delaying your pest control services several days or weeks is of no real consequence, especially when it comes to additional termite damage. You are better off taking a few extra days to evaluate the safest, most effective, and economical solution.

It is customary for termite control treatments to be guaranteed from one to five years. Make sure you know what the guarantee covers and determine if there is a yearly inspection charge. In addition, find out if the pest control company is responsible for structural damage if the treatment fails to control the termite infestation. The guarantee is only as dependable as the company that offers it.

As the leading pest control company in Richmond, Eco Pest Control also offers homeowners and business owners both the Sentricon system and Termidor. Sentricon is effective, environmentally friendly, and the most recognized name in termite bait stations. Following your termite inspection, your Eco Pest Control professional exterminator – who is certified in the Sentricon system – can install and maintain your system.

Termidor, on the other hand, is the leading liquid termite treatment on the market. If you choose this treatment following your exterminator’s termite inspection, then your technician will apply Termidor in the soil around the perimeter of your property to form a continuous barrier of protection. Termidor’s active ingredient is a termiticide. As soon as a termite crosses the barrier, it picks up the termiticide and transmits it to other termites, eventually wiping out the entire colony.

Both Sentricon and Termidor come with 12-month warranties that are both renewable and transferable.

Communication is Key

Excellent communication with the company that provides your pest control services helps prevent misunderstandings and problems. Our pest control technicians servicing your home consider you to be a valued customer and they are there to help you. Never hesitate to ask questions about the service you are receiving, about the applications being used in and around your home, or to get advice about what you should be doing to help keep insect problems from occurring.

Green Pest Control Services

Also check to see if your prospective pest control company uses green, environmentally safe products. If the pest control services you select to treat your Richmond home is not competent, both health and property can be damaged. While choosing a pest control company that uses an eco-friendly approach is always the best option, be aware that many pest control companies claim to be “green,” but aren’t. So, ask what “green” or “organic” pest control means to them and inquire about the types of methods they use to treat pests. Ask if their service is completely non-toxic, natural, organic, safe, eco-friendly, or chemical free. At Eco Pest Control, the answer to all those questions is “yes.”

Bottom line: Toxic chemicals kill everything in their path – including certain insects that are beneficial to all of us – and pose serious health hazards. The absolute best environmental pest control solutions are minimally toxic, which means you can solve your bug problem without putting your family, dog, and cat at risk.

Additional Resources

  • National Pesticide Information Center (804) 575-7054
  • Your state pest control regulatory agency
  • Cooperative Extension Service office near you
  • Citizen’s Guide Pest Control and Pesticide Safety
  • Fact sheet – Choosing a Pest Control Company: What you need to know
  • Questions to Ask Before Hiring a Pest Control Operator
  • Tips for Finding a Pro
  • How to Select a Bed Bug Control Provider
  • Choosing a Qualified Pest Management or Lawn Care Company
  • Selecting a Lawn Care Company
  • Choosing a Pest Control Company
  • Hiring a Pest Management Professional
  • Pest Control: Do it Yourself or Hire a Professional?
  • Green Shield Certified Pest Control Company
  • GreenPro Certification Program
  • Choosing a Pest Control Company: IPM Is the Key
  • Pesticide Environmental Stewardship Program (PESP)