At ClearDefense Pest Control, we invite you to join us in a New Year’s pledge to prevent pests from invading your home or office. The pledge is simple and straightforward, and might help save your home from unwanted guests.
In 2018 …
I promise to keep my yard clean and protect my perimeter
It’s an acquired taste to enjoy mowing the lawn, clearing brush, and trimming overgrowth. The reality though, is that a clean yard minimizes chances of unwanted pests. A disheveled yard provides ample hiding and a safe haven for pesky critters. Keep hedges trimmed, clean up the wood pile (or rotting trees), and monitor for unsolicited activity.
I promise to check my home quarterly for cracks, loose siding, and entry gaps
Your home is only as safe as your siding. A single crack can be a welcome sign for various pests of all sizes — rodents, bugs, snakes, and more. Ensure gaps are sealed and paths to entry are minimized. Regular maintenance can mitigate long-term damage and improve property value to boot.
I promise to minimize clutter in my garage every month
When’s the last time you used those golf clubs? Do you really need to have those old tools piled in the corner? Clutter is home sweet home to spiders and other creepy-crawlies. Keep everything clean and dry with preventative maintenance and the chances of infestation reduce drastically. For extra protection, lay down bug or mouse traps in high-risk areas such as under workbenches or dimly lit areas.
I promise to stay proactive with routine inspections
While ClearDefense Pest Control offers thorough home inspections, we want you — the homeowner — to stay alert too. You don’t need a professional exterminator to check spackling or caulking, nor do you need an expert to identify a hole in the roof. Mark your calendars and take an hour out of your day to ensure your home is not susceptible to risk. If you need us, we’re happy to help!
I promise to ask for help if I need it
It’s not always easy to ask for help, but sometimes you must. In this case, we’re pest control specialists who alleviate infestations and keep your home and yard protected around the clock.
Want to schedule preventive maintenance in 2018? Contact us today for a quote.
Gettin’ chilly, isn’t it? Pests think so too.
Overwintering pests like to nuzzle up in your home during the winter months. It’s a straightforward relationship — it’s cold, so these critters want to come inside where it’s warm. Winter months may drag along with no obvious signs of infestation, but as the temperatures rise, effects of their stay may materialize in the form of damage.
While it is true that many common pests cause less damage during winter, it is also important to stay proactive and alert. Here’s a short list of common overwintering critters that you’ll want to avoid.
While a welcome sight in gardens, ladybugs (also known as ladybirds) can leave stains and foul-smelling fluids in your home.
These loud creatures can keep you up at night. Larger varieties can even prove a bit frightening if they catch you at an inopportune time. These insects are oftentimes food for other household pests, so catch them while you can.
Moths can damage clothing or furniture, and are notorious for hiding in dark corners, enclosed spaces, and other hard-to-reach areas.
Rats and mice repopulate quickly and can damage electrical wiring and wooden furniture. They can also carry diseases and contaminate food in short order.
Here’s how to prevent an overwintering pest infestation:
- Call a professional exterminator service like ClearDefense Pest Control
- Ensure cracks, entry points, siding and windows are properly sealed
- Tidy up inside and out. Minimizing clutter reduces attractants and hiding spots
- Fix leaks and clean up damp areas of your home
If you encounter a pest problem this winter, don’t fret. Contact ClearDefense Pest Control for a free service quote.
Identifying a mouse problem isn’t always as easy as cartoons make it seem. There’s not always a perfectly shaped hole in the wall, nor is the rodent in question considered harmless. Mice carry diseases and can cause substantial damage to property. Additionally, the winter months can drive them indoors as they seek shelter, so now is the time to consider preventive measures to protect your family and property.
Signs of rodents
There’s a trail of clues when a pest invades your home, and some evidence is easier to identify than others. With mice, there are few telltale signs that are cut and dry:
- Droppings. Granular in shape. More droppings means more mice.
- Nests. Mice will create makeshift nests with supplies they find laying around.
- Gnawing marks. Mice like to chew on wood, piping and sometimes even electrical wiring.
Other signs aren’t always clear:
- Outdoor holes or cracked siding. Is this a result of Mother Nature or a furry fiend? Look for gnaw/scratch marks, loose dirt surrounding the area, or droppings.
Dealing with mice in your home
While it is recommended to consult a professional for infestations, you can use bait boxes and traps to take care of most routine mouse problems. One common mistake when using traps is the bait becomes “tainted” with a human scent, which alerts mice to keep clear. Do not handle bait with your bare hands. For bait, use peanut butter instead of cheese.
Keep in mind that it is almost impossible to find just one mouse in your house — that’s because they reproduce quickly and can hide nearly anywhere due to their small size and flexibility.
Ensure food is properly stored and there’s no clutter left on the floor. Rodents will take any available opportunity to eat, nest, and reproduce. Cut off their food and shelter supply to shorten their stay.
Remember: rodent control is a two-pronged approach. You have to eliminate the active pests, and also prevent future pests from making a home in yours.
Are you encountering rodent issues in your home or office? Contact ClearDefense Pest Control for help.
Yes, it’s true that the winter months provide a much-needed reprieve from many household and lawn-faring pests. But some pests just don’t know when to quit, and may actually revel in the cold if you’re not careful.
Here are three pests that can thrive in the winter months.
Just when you thought your walls were safe for winter. Hollywood dramatics aside, termites can thrive during cold snaps simply because they’re out of sight, and therefore out of mind. Subterranean colonies remain active year-round, though the cooler months may slow down activity in most regions. In Southern states, termites continue laying eggs, tunneling, and foraging at nearly the same rate as other months. Regular monitoring is recommended to ensure these critters don’t flourish. Keep an eye on water-damaged areas and look out for mud tubes. Perimeter monitoring is recommended to ensure maximum protection.
Consider this a cautionary tale. Don’t let your guard down!
Feels good to snuggle up in a warm home, doesn’t it? Mice and rats feel the same way. These rodents aren’t simply destructive — they bite, potentially carry diseases that can harm your family and pets. They reproduce quickly, creating babies every few weeks. Proper precautions to prevent a rodent infestation include keeping food properly stored, floors and walls clean of clutter (which makes for a perfect hiding spot), and securing potential outside entranceways.
Look for cracked wood, door gaps, and holes in siding. For homes with an attached garage, make sure the door stays shut when possible.
As the weather chills out, stink bugs look for a spot to hibernate sans frostbite. That means your home or office is a prime target. Stink bugs are relatively small and therefore can navigate tiny cracks and crevices, so in addition to securing doors and windows, keep an eye out for loose paneling, window screens, cracked wood from the outside. Given that stink bugs are attracted to light, avoid leaving lights on overnight as it will serve as a beacon to nearby pests. If your home is overrun by these critters, be careful with vacuuming as their odor spreads easily. Cleanup is better suited by catching individual bugs and flushing.
If you encounter any of the above pests this winter, or are just looking to take preventative measures, give ClearDefense a call.
When it comes to awareness of your home, it’s crucial that you know what to look for as signs of a pest problem. Early detection is the most powerful defense you have against damage and destruction of your home, not to mention successfully eradicating the problem. So if you begin to notice any of these red flags, know that it’s time to call in an expert.
Chewed Up Wires or Furniture
Rodents attack anything they can get their hands, or rather teeth, on. If you’re noticing that there’s unexplained damage to your furniture, walls, or baseboards, that’s definitely a sign to keep track of. Additionally, if there are suddenly chewed through wires, damage to your insulation, or any other unexplained teeth marks in your home, be aware that it might point to a larger pest problem.
If you spot rodent droppings, cockroach droppings, or any other waste that might have come from pests, that’s a definite time to call a professional. If you’re noticing waste evidence of pests, the pest problem is probably past the introductory stages. Call an expert immediately and get your home inspected. You don’t want the problem to go any further.
If you’re noticing peeling or warped paint, that might be a sign of inner damage due to insects. Termites, carpenter ants, and other wood eating pests can nest in your walls and cause all kinds of damage invisible to the naked eye. If you notice that a section of your paint looks damaged or different from the rest of the wall, keep an eye on it and call a pest control technician. When it comes to the integrity of your home, you don’t want invisible damage weakening the infrastructure.
The pitter patter of little feet over head you’re hearing? Random squeaks or rustling when you turn on the lights in your basement? Don’t ignore the signs! Call a North Carolina pest control expert today!
As the summer comes to a close, everyone is getting excited for fall. Pumpkin spice lattes are back in stores, everyone is breaking out scarves and jackets and getting ready for apple picking season. But you aren’t the only one switching up your routine this time of year! North Carolina’s most common pests recognize the changing weather and start to make their winter plans. Make sure your home isn’t their destination! Prepare with these fall pest control tips!
The most common pests that invade the indoors in the fall are rodents. Mice and rats in particular start looking for hidey holes and openings into your home. This is a huge problem for homeowners. Not only do rodents chew through food you might have stored, they attack insulation and wiring, which can lead to some costly repairs. In addition, they leave droppings and carry disease that can be harmful to you and your family. Make sure that any outside damage to your home that rodents could squeeze through is repaired. Keep your house clean and free of food debris so you’re not attracting rodents in the first place, and if you still wind up with a pest problem, set traps, or call in a professional. Serious diseases can result from from a rodent problem. You don’t want to expose your family to that danger.
The other major subset of pests that move indoors are cockroaches or waterbugs. These guys are famous for infesting dirty places and spreading disease. They’re hard to keep track of because of their hatred of light. Keep an eye out for their droppings around wet places in your home such as sinks, bathrooms, or around pipes. To keep cockroaches out, keep your home clean, particularly of food debris. If you continue to spot droppings around your home, call a professional.
Stay sharp this autumn and keep an eye out for any signs that pests are planning to live in your home for the winter. Think you might have a problem? Give us a call! One of our technicians can take a look and set your mind at ease!
When it comes to your home, it can sometimes feel like there is ALWAYS something wrong. The paint is chipping, the refrigerator is making weird noises and when you run your dryer too often, you start to smell something funny. We understand that oftentimes it can feel like the sky is always falling and something always needs to be done. It’s easy to ignore something that seems minor in favor of ignorance. However, ignoring signs of a pest problem can have major repercussions- and you don’t want to find out the hard way how much damage pests can do in almost no time at all! Here are some outcomes from ignoring what might be an infestation in your home.
If you’ve got carpenter ants, termites, or even rodents, the basic structure of your home can be at risk. Termites can gnaw through wooden beams, rodents nest and chew through insulation, and ants can turn any wall cavity into a nest containing a colony of over 100,000. However, the damage takes time to inflict and if caught early, it’s possible to keep the issue from becoming too big- or too expensive.
Destruction of Personal Property
Particularly if you store personal items in an attic or basement and don’t look at them often, if you notice the presence of pests in your home, those things might be at risk. Wedding dresses, family photographs, books, journals, any treasures you can’t replace tend to be stored in the first place rodents and pests move in- which means they are the first things to be attacked.
Danger to Your Family
Rodents spread disease, severe allergies make wasps, bees, and hornets a risk, and decks or porches can become weak and pose a risk due to extensive wood damage. Keeping your family safe means making sure that your home is a clean and secure, not playing host to various household pests.
Home Value Decreases
When your home is affected by major pest infestations, the home value severely decreases. Aside from the damages that must be taken into account, there is now a risk to the homeowners that the damage was not fully fixed, that the infestation was not fully eradicated, or that the home is built in an area that is prone to pest incursions. Nipping pest problems in the bud is the best way to be sure that your home retains value in the future.
Demand for Extensive Repairs
Which basically just means “Break out your checkbook, this just got expensive!”. When the structure of your home has been compromised by pest damage, the bill for repairs gets really big, really fast. The sooner you pick up on the problem and take care of it, the less likely you are to be stuck with an insane fee to pay.
Don’t let pest infestations get out of hand! Give us a call today and let one of our technicians do a walkthrough of your home. Our experts have the experience to identify warning signs and suggest treatment options for even the earliest stages of a pest problem!
Nibble, nibble, like a mouse, who is nibbling at your house? Unless you are living in the story of Hansel and Gretel, if your North Carolina home is getting nibbled at, it’s probably termites and not children. Termites are one of the most common and most expensive household pests. They cause over $5 billion in damage throughout the United States every year, and fixing termite damage is a huge undertaking, not to mention making sure the infestation is taken care of for good. If you see any of these signs of infestation, it’s time to call an expert, before any more damage is done!
Termite Shelter Tubes
Subterranean termites build shelter tubes (also known as “mud tubes”) to provide moisture for them while they are searching for food. These tunnels are most commonly found on foundations of homes where termites have begun to make their way into the wood of your home. Make sure to store mulch, firewood, wood chips, and any other wood away from your home to avoid creating a moist environment where termites can make their home and thrive.
Discarded Termite Wings- When termites swarm, they fly from their old nest to their new one, and when they get to a new area to make their home, they discard their wings. If you see a large amount of discarded wings, or a swarm of these insects anywhere near your home, call an expert. You might have noticed them early enough that they will not have had time to become a huge problem for you.
It’s easy to spot holes in the wood created by termites, but often the damage is not so easy to see. Termites prefer dark, humid environments, so in general they stay well below the surface of the wood, inflicting damage completely invisible to the human eye. If you notice that an area of wood in your home has begun to sound hollow, call in an expert to inspect the area. You might have a termite problem that you haven’t been able to see.
Cracked or Distorted Paint
Termites can wriggle into spaces narrower than a dime, and this includes cracked paint. If you notice that the paint in your home has begun to peel up and crack, it’s a prime area for termites to infest- or they could already have made their home. Make sure that you repair any cracked paint, damage to your foundation, roof siding, vents, or windows. One tiny crack in your home is all a termite needs to get in and wreak havoc.
Frass (also known as termite droppings)
Termites produce piles of frass as they eat their way through the wood in your home. Frass looks like tiny little wood colored pellets that will be left in piles inside our outside your home. If you notice frass anywhere around your property, it’s a sure sign of termites, and you’ll want to get the area inspected immediately.
Sagging Floors- As the wood is damaged from the inside out, your floors will lose their integrity. It can be tricky to catch termites before visible damage is done to the wood, so you might notice your floors sagging and weakening before you notice that there are termites gnawing at your hardwood. If your floor suddenly looks damaged, proceed with caution! Walk around your floor carefully, tapping the wall to listen for hollow sounds. Then you can call a professional to take a look at the trouble areas.
Termites are stubborn pests, not to mention a very expensive problem to have! Keep an eye out for any of these signs of infestation so you can nip the problem in the bud. When in doubt, call in a professional. Our team at ClearDefense has the experience and knowledge to identify a termite problem and develop a strategy to eradicate the current problem and prevent a future one. Give us a call and find out why we are the clear choice for North Carolina pest control!
When it comes to keeping pests out of your home, you might be hesitant to use chemical solutions. Particularly if you have small children, the idea of treating your home to keep mosquitoes, spiders, ants and flies out might seem more dangerous than helpful. If you are reluctant to use chemicals to keep your home pest free- or you’re just looking for a green option- check this out! Here are a few of the best all natural pest control solutions for North Carolina homes!
- Lavender- Lavender is usually known as a nice, light, floral scent used to make a house smell more welcoming, but it has another use too! Lavender oil naturally repels insects, making it the perfect option for you to keep bugs and moths out of clothes when you store them! Place a lavender pillow or sachet in with your clothing when you put it away for the season. You can also leave a saucer with lavender oil near areas where you notice a bug problem. The oil will repel the insects and disinfect the air!
- Basil- Aside from being delicious on pretty much everything (Caprese salad, anyone?) basil is the perfect solution for a wet climate near a lake or a pond. This will work as a natural mosquito repellent, as well as keeping flies and other nuisance bugs away. Plant some in your garden or keep a plant in your home- you can cook with it and enjoy a bug free environment!
- Vinegar- If you notice that ants have invaded your home, break out the vinegar! All natural and a great disinfectant, vinegar will help you shore up any entry points ants seem to be using to get into your home! Combine one part vinegar with one part water and spray wherever you notice that ants have been making themselves at home!
- Peppermint Oil- If you’re looking to get rid of dust mites, add a few drops of peppermint oil to some water and spritz your mattress, pillows and rugs! Dust mites are repulsed by the smell of peppermint oil, but luckily humans aren’t! You can also try clove, eucalyptus, or lavender and achieve the same results!
- Soap, Orange Citrus Oil, and Water- This is an organic pesticide that won’t harm your family in the least, but will definitely do some damage to summer pests! Mix 3 tablespoons of liquid soap, 1 ounce of orange oil, and one gallon of water and shake it up. You can spray this wherever you notice that the bugs like to hang around. This works against slugs and can be sprayed directly on ants, roaches and spiders! No harsh chemicals whatsoever but very effective!
If you have pets or small children, you don’t need to put up with a pest problem to avoid exposure to chemicals! ClearDefense offers entirely organic pest control solutions so you can get the bug free environment you need without exposing your family to any harmful pesticides. Let us help you find the perfect strategy to keep your home and your family safe this summer!
Summer pests can invade your home quickly and quietly until all of a sudden you have a major problem! North Carolina summer pests can cause major problems and it’s a good idea to prime your home against them so they never have a chance to get in! There are plenty of things you can do to make sure bugs don’t have an open invitation to wander in and make themselves at home. Here are a few of our top tips for how to keep summer pests out of your home!
Whether it’s wasps, yellow-jackets or hornets, these pests can be a real pain! If you have ongoing problems with infestations by these insects, a professional can help with removal and prime your home against future issues. To keep your home nest free, try the following tips:
- Seal cracks and entry points into your home.
- Keep an eye on overhangs and eaves on your home, which make a cozy place for a nest.
- Keep bushes and trees trimmed and be sure to check for nests before you trim anything!
- If you see a nest, contact a professional. It can be dangerous and painful to attempt removal yourself!
Ants are some of the most common and most annoying summertime bugs. To make matters worse, colonies can include thousands upon thousands of ants, which can quickly lead to an infestation! To keep them at bay, try a few of these strategies:
- Keep bushes, trees and foliage trimmed and away from your home.
- Keep all food sealed in containers and keep your kitchen clean.
- Vacuum regularly.
- Place sticky traps or ant bait in problem areas.
- Seal cracks and holes where ants can enter your home.
Aside from causing infuriatingly itchy bites, mosquitos carry dangerous diseases that can make you and your family very sick! Aside from yard treatments to keep mosquitos out of your yard, these few tips can help keep mosquitos away from your home:
- Clear out stagnant water. Divert water away from your home through downspouts and change the water in birdbaths, ponds and other water features at regular intervals.
- Mosquitos come out at night so avoid being outside after dusk or before dawn.
- Wear repellent when outdoors.
- Light citronella candles around your home.
Ticks are another nuisance that can cause major problems if not addressed. Particularly if you hike or spend time in the woods, these insects might cause you major problems. To keep from getting bitten, try following these few suggestions:
- Wear insect repellent when outside.
- If you are hiking or working in tall grass, bushes or trees make sure to wear long sleeves and long pants.
- Check yourself and any pets for ticks after being outside.
Summer is a wonderful time to be outdoors and enjoy the sunshine! Don’t let summer pests ruin your fun. Give ClearDefense a call and find out why we are one of the best North Carolina pest control companies. Keep yourself and your family safe by being vigilant about pest control so you can enjoy every second of this summer!