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Common Pest Control Questions

What to Look for when Selecting a Pest Control Company?

When choosing a pest control company to handle my needs, what are the critical things I should look for?

Your pest control company should be a current member in their national, state, and local associations for pest control services. This not only shows that they are active in their industry, but also means that they have been somewhat vetted by these organizations. Before signing a contract, make sure that you understand how the company goes through the pest control process. It is better to go with a company with a comprehensive approach, or any solution to your pest control problems may only be temporary in nature.

At Stark, we utilize the STEPS total protection system, a process where we begin by identifying the source of your problem and then proceed to eliminate the pests in the most environmentally friendly fashion possible. This helps to rid you of your current problems and prevent future infestations.

Is there any type of pest-free guarantee attached to extermination services?

Pest guarantees are available, but you will need to pay close attention to the fine print as they differ from company to company. When selecting a firm with a guaranteed, you may want to look for:

  • Is the guarantee only available if you use their full suite of services?
  • What is the duration of the guarantee?
  • What factors may make the guarantee void?

By doing some legwork, you will better understand how this guarantee will work and avoid any messy situations where your expectations aren't met.


Questions About Pest Control

Are over the counter sprays effective for roach control? If not, what other things should I be doing to get rid of these nasty intruders?

Cockroaches are one of the toughest pests out there; so many techniques like the use of over the counter sprays tend to be ineffective in removing the problem. This is largely due to the fact that these creatures can live in almost any habitat and conditions. Generally speaking, it usually takes some sort of professional pest control involvement to get rid of roaches once and for all.

I have kids. Do I need to be worried about any types of pest control treatment?

There are a variety of pest control solutions on the market, so there is no way to accurately report on whether or not certain treatments are harmful to children. Stark Exterminators utilizes an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) approach, which identifies the true nature of any type of pest control issue. We can then use the most environmentally (and child) friendly treatment to eliminate your pest control problem at its core and prevent these invaders from coming back.

I recently noticed that bees are boring their way into my home's siding. What should I do to prevent this from happening? Do these bees sting?

It sounds like Carpenter bees are the likely culprit if they are boring into the wood in your home. This species of bee lays eggs inside the holes that they create, but you shouldn't be faced with any type of stinging threat when they are around. However, while they aren't a physical threat, they certainly can create damage to your home. While it is tough to keep them from boring, you can discourage their return by sealing up the holes after they leave.


Questions About Bed Bugs

Are bed bugs spreading rapidly? I always see them on the news these days.

Yes, these pests have been exploding in recent years. The National Pest Management Association has reported that there was over a 70% increase in bedbug cases from 2000 to 2005, and they continue to spread.

I have a clean home. Do I still need to worry about bedbugs?

You need to be concerned with the bedbug threat regardless of how clean your home may be. These creatures spread rapidly by either hitching rides on their hosts, or by getting into suitcases and other bags, ultimately finding their way back into your home.

Why are bed bugs so hard to get rid of for good?

There are few creatures that are as resilient as bed bugs. They can live for upwards of a year without eating, and can thrive in a wide range of temperatures. In addition, they can be very elusive as they are nocturnal and very transient.

What do I need to do to get rid of them?

Like most pests, it is best to attack the bed bug problem by first identifying the cause. Stark Exterminators uses this approach by starting with a complete home evaluation that identifies the reason that they are there in the first place, and proceeds to develop a control and treatment strategy depending on the extent of the infestation.


Questions About Termites

What are termites and what species cause the most damage?

There are 3 main species of termites, subterranean, drywood, and dampwood, that cause damage in the continental U.S. As a whole, termites are responsible for nearly 5 billion dollars in property damage each and every year, so the threat is a real one that should be treated accordingly

How can I tell if there is a potential termite infestation in my area?

Swarms of termites, often mistaken for flying ants, are a tell tale sign that there is an infestation nearby. If you do happen to notice the swarms, you should be diligent and immediately check your home for any additional signs that they have made their way in. If you notice blistering or darkening of your wood, damage to your foundation, or mud tubes then you may have a termite infestation on your hands.

How should I prevent termites from damaging my home?

When it comes to termites, it is imperative to be proactive because once an infestation is identified it may be too late. Here are a few things to be on the lookout for if you are seeking to termite-proof your home.

  • Make sure that you use gutters and downspouts to divert rain from congregating
  • Ensure good circulation by making sure that shrubbery isn't blocking any vents or air ducts
  • Remove any roots or random wood sources that are under or near your home.
  • It is best to have an 18-inch barrier between your foundation and the soil in your home.
What is the most effective way of treating a termite infestation?

Stark takes pride in providing the very best types of termite control solutions. We feel that our approach works well because we begin our process by eliminating the problem at its source. Our strategy for termite removal depends on:

  • The type of Termite causing problems
  • Details about your property
  • Specific details about the infestation itself

By taking these items into consideration, we can then develop a gameplan to make sure that the problem is removed, and but the steps in place to make sure that they don't come back in the future.


Questions About Stinging Insects

What types of bugs are generally considered to be "stinging" insects?

From a classification perspective, there isn't any type of hard and fast rule that makes an insect a "stinger". Usually people think of bees, hornets, and wasps when it comes to this type of pest, but the category can even be expanded to include scorpions, ants, and mosquitoes as well.

How can stinging insects be harmful to me?

Stings from insects can be very dangerous to humans, as nearly 500 thousand people are sent to the hospital each year as a result. Typically, these cases are from allergic reactions, but there are instances where stings from multiple insects or swarms are the culprits. Also, don't forget about the danger posed by mosquitoes when you are thinking about stinging insects. These pests can carry potentially fatal diseases such as Malaria and the West Nile virus, which have been fatal at times in humans.

How do protect myself from stinging insects?

You should treat stinging insect infestations like you would with any other pest, which is to begin by understanding the nature of the problem. Once you have identified why you are having a problem, you can take the proper steps to eliminate the cause. At Stark Exterminators, we utilize the Integrated Pest Management (IPM) process when dealing with stinging insect issues. This approach focuses on removing items important to the pest such as food, water, and shelter. After these items have been removed, we can then proceed along to remove the actual pests from the premises.


Questions About Mosquitoes

How concerned should a really be about a tiny mosquito?

Don't let their size fool you. Mosquitos pack a formidable health risk to humans, as they are known to be carriers of potentially fatal diseases like Dengue fever, Malaria, and the West Nile Virus.

I have heard of the West Nile Virus, but what is it?

The West Nile Virus came onto the scene in 1999, and has now been reported in 41 states. This high profile disease has been at the forefront of the news, as its symptoms can prove to be quite serious. West Nile Virus has been known to cause:

  • Meningitis
  • Brain Inflammation
  • Paralysis

Since this disease carries potentially severe consequences, it is best to be proactive and protect yourself against any mosquito threat.

What should I do to eliminate my mosquito problem?

There are an abundance of sprays, misters, and other techniques that are available at local stores that are designed to address your mosquito control problems, but more often than not they tend to be inadequate.

At the end of the day, mosquitoes are like any other pest and need to be treated with a comprehensive plan that involves a professional to ensure that they stay away. Stark Exterminators uses the STEPS Total Protection System as a means from removing your mosquito problem. This process begins by targeting the conditions that led to the problem in the first place, and then moves on to remove these pests for good.

What are a few things I can do on my own to reduce the mosquito threat?
  • Eliminate any sources of standing water
  • Remove food sources that may attract mosquitoes like trash cans or food
  • Install screens on your home to prevent entry
  • Always wear pants and long sleeve shirts when these pests are present
  • If you are outside, make sure that you have applied mosquito repellent

Questions About Pests & Asthma

Are Children at greater risk for asthma symptoms when pests are around?

Yes, believe it or not kids with existing asthma problems run the risk of increased symptoms when pests or rodents are around. This is due to the fact that allergens, which are left behind by these creatures, tend to trigger the symptoms and make them more severe.

How can professional exterminators prevent asthma symptoms in our home?