Dealing with pest infestations is no one’s favourite job. They’re disruptive, destructive, potentially harmful, and you may even need residential pest control services to take care of the problem. That’s not only expensive, it’s time-consuming and a serious hassle, which means that many of us turn to DIY solutions. But, are DIY pest control treatments any good? They’re often simple and affordable, but DIY pest treatments don’t pack as much of a punch, and they aren’t always the best solution for the job.
How to Choose Between DIY and Professional Pest Control
So, you’re struggling with some creepy crawlies that have decided to make a home on your property. There are plenty of DIY and professional solutions available, you just need to figure out which one is best for your situation. There’s no one-size-fits-all answer here. It’s up to you to assess the following factors and decide where your money is better spent:
- The pests you’re dealing with – By far the biggest factor in DIY vs professional pest control is the pests you’re dealing with. Critters like ants and cockroaches are usually pretty easy to get rid of using DIY products. If you’re battling something tougher, like rodents or bed bugs, you’ll be hard pressed to deal with them on your own. When it comes to persistent, invasive and fast-breeding pests, you should always opt for professional pest control. A professional can take care of the issue all at once so that you don’t spend months trying to curb an expanding rat population on your property.
- Size of the infestation – If you’ve got a small spider infestation or ants marching across your kitchen counter, DIY pest control might be the solution you need. DIY pest treatments are affordable and are ideal for small infestations. If you’re dealing with a major infestation though, like termites in the walls or bed bugs in the carpet, professional solutions are your best bet.
- Cost of treatment – Professional pest control treatments cost more money up front. You can expect to pay anywhere between $200 to $500 for an average pest treatment, depending on the critters you’re dealing with. That’s expensive compared to a $15 can of bug spray from the grocery store. The trade off is that professional treatments are more effective. If you choose to go the DIY route you could end up spending hundreds on different treatments, and you might have been better off paying for a professional service the first time around.
- Product safety – Most chemical pest control methods use some sort of poison to combat creepy crawlies. These products usually aren’t harmful to adults, but they can pose a serious risk to young children, pets and the other fauna on your property (like native birds and animals). If you don’t know what you’re dealing with, it may be hard to apply DIY products without doing unnecessary harm. On the other hand, a professional will be able to design a treatment that protects your family, pets and other wildlife while still dealing with the infestation.
Which Pest Control Solution is Right for You?
In most cases you are better off paying for professional pest control services. The upfront cost is higher, but professionals use much stronger products. That means they’re better equipped to deal with ongoing infestations and prevent the problem from resurfacing later. If you really want to save some money then DIY pest control solutions are usually effective for dealing with small infestations of critters like ants, spiders and cockroaches. However, if you have a more serious infestation. if you’re dealing with pests like fleas, bed bugs, wasps and rodents, it’s time to call the professionals.
Effective DIY Pest Prevention Methods
While professional pest control is the right solution for most infestations, prevention is typically the best medicine. Taking early action can stop most pests in their tracks so that you never find yourself having to worry about bug bombs or pest control invoices. Some of the most effective pest prevention methods include:
- Keeping your yard tidy and clearing away debris such as fallen branches, grass clippings, kids toys or any standing water
- Trimming bushes, grass, trees and other plants that brush up against the side of your house
- Trimming back tree branches that overhang your roof
- Fixing water leaks (including broken pipes and leaky outdoor taps) as soon as possible
- Using caulk and weather stripping to seal around doors and windows
- Installing termite prevention products such as mesh barriers
- Keeping your food stored in air-tight containers
- Regularly taking out your rubbish and cleaning your rubbish bins
- Cleaning your home and kitchen to reduce tempting treats like crumbs and food scraps
These simple things don’t take very long, but they’re the most effective way to prevent pests from taking hold!