What You Need To Know About Pests In The Washington Metropolitan Area
Nobody wants to have their yard or home become a place where pests feel comfortable. Know what pests are most likely to find their way into your Washington Metropolitan Area property, why they are there, and how to keep them at bay with the help of the local pest professionals at Pestechs. While many pests may seem harmless, the truth is that they can cause a multitude of issues in Maryland homes, including structural damage and the introduction of health risks.
We want to help you learn more about our area's most common pests and work with you to stop them from feeling at home on your Maryland property with the help of our professional pest control services and our below pest control guide!
Seeing ants trailing through our yards or even our homes usually doesn't come as a shock to most people. These small insects are regular visitors to our Maryland properties. But, just because they are a common sight doesn't mean we should allow them to feed and nest on our properties. Ants, while mainly considered nuisance pests, are problematic. Depending on the species, they can cause structural damage, spread diseases, bite or sting, produce unpleasant odors, and contaminate surfaces and food in our homes.
Ants are social insects that live and work together in large groups and maintain multiple nesting sites making controlling these pests difficult. In Maryland, homeowners need to guard their properties from various ant species, including black ants, carpenter ants, citronella ants, house ants (sugar ants), pavement ants, and pharaoh ants. Though ants typically nest outside, they sometimes decide to stay and nest after moving indoors to forage for food or to escape extremely hot, cold, dry, or wet weather. Wall voids, spaces under floors, and structural wood are places ants nest inside our Maryland homes.
In addition to implementing year-round pest control services, use our simple, everyday ant prevention tips to help you keep ants away from your yard and out of your home.
- Do your best to block off common entry points; place door sweeps on exterior doors, caulk cracks in the foundation, and seal the spaces around wires and cables entering your home.
- Make sure windows have weatherstripping around them and screens are securely in place.
- Eliminate access to food by placing all trash bags in hard-sided trash cans, keeping lids on trash cans, picking up uneaten pet food, and keeping outdoor eating areas free of crumbs and sticky spills.
- Eliminate water sources by repairing leaky hoses and spigots, and inside your home repairing dripping pipes and air conditioners. Use dehumidifiers to eliminate excess moisture from your home.
Bed bugs are blood-feeding insects found in warm, humid, dark areas. They are aptly named because you'll typically find them in the seams of mattresses, box springs, upholstered furniture, and other areas where we spend a lot of time. Bed bugs hide near people because our blood is their preferred food source. These pests thrive anywhere there are people; the more people, the better. Our homes, hotels, dormitories, laundry mats, airports, schools, and hospitals are common places to discover bed bugs.
Bed bugs are difficult to prevent because we are the ones to introduce them into our own homes. Bed bugs are exceptional hitchhikers and move easily from place to place with the help of people. They will crawl onto our clothing or into our belonging and are transported to wherever we take them. Once inside our homes, these flat oval-shaped insects hide during the day and emerge at night to feed on our blood as we sleep. They are attracted to our body heat and the carbon dioxide we produce as we breathe. Signs that bed bugs are in your home include waking up with unexplained bug bites, finding dark streaks or drops of blood on linens, pillows, walls, or floors, or finding their shed skin in piles on the floor, under mattresses, or in drawers.
At the first clue that bed bugs have found a way into your house, reach out to us for help. The faster treatment begins, the quicker we can remove them from your home. In addition to our bed bug control services, use our simple, everyday ant prevention tips to help you avoid bringing bed bugs into your Maryland home.
- Thoroughly inspect and clean secondhand furniture before bringing it into your house.
- After purchasing new or used clothing, immediately wash and dry it on the highest heat cycles that the fabrics can handle.
- When spending time in public places while traveling, at work, or school, always keep your belongings away from other people's things and up off the ground as much as possible.
- Take care when using shared laundry facilities. Use only your laundry basket, and after your clothing is dry, take it home to fold.
Cockroaches are pests that homeowners in Maryland deal with regularly. Though many people associate cockroaches with unsanitary conditions, the truth is that any of our homes could fall victim to a cockroach infestation. Cockroaches have discovered that people provide access to the things they need to survive; moisture, food, and shelter. Cockroaches can find their way into our homes on their own or are brought inside in things like boxes, deliveries, appliances, and pieces of furniture.
If cockroaches have found their way into your yard or house, they are likely one of the following species: American cockroaches, Asian cockroaches, brown-banded cockroaches, or German cockroaches. Cockroaches are nocturnal pests which means they are most active at night. If you are spotting cockroaches during the day, know that a large infestation is present, and you need to contact Pestechs immediately for help. Cockroaches are extremely problematic to have in your home, as they spread diseases, trigger allergies and asthma attacks, contaminate food, and spread pathogens and viruses across the surface.
The best way to keep cockroaches out of your Maryland home is to partner with us at Pestechs. In addition to putting our cockroach control services into place, use our simple, everyday cockroach prevention tips to guard your home against these unwanted pests.
- Maintain a clean kitchen and keep indoor and outdoor eating areas free of food debris.
- Eliminate clutter from your home that provides cockroaches with warm, dark, humid places to hide.
- Keep lids on indoor and outdoor trash cans.
- Store pet food in containers with airtight lids.
- Regularly vacuum your home's floors and upholstered furniture.
Unlike structural pests, occasional invaders aren't likely to become permanent members of our households. Occasional invaders typically spend their lives outside but do find their way inside from time to time. Examples of occasional invaders in our area are bees, centipedes, crickets, firebrats, spiders, and silverfish. These pests are commonly driven indoors following prey or trying to escape harsh weather conditions.
Occasional invaders are annoying and unnecessary in our homes, but they usually won't harm the structure of our homes or pose a significant health risk. Most occasional invaders have high moisture needs and are attracted to the damp soil around the perimeter of our homes. When living near our homes or outbuildings, it is easy for them to move indoors, taking advantage of any large or small opening they find in the foundation, under doors, and around windows.
In addition to implementing year-round pest control services, use our simple, everyday prevention tips to help you keep occasional invaders out of your Maryland home.
- Make sure screens are intact and secure in your home's windows and doors.
- Place weatherstripping around windows and doors.
- Install mesh screens over chimneys, vents, and drains leading into your home.
- Cut back shrubs, bushes, and other vegetation away from your home's exterior walls to allow the sun to hit the ground and keep the soil dry.
- Never store trash cans, woodpiles, or stack materials next to your home's exterior walls.
There are a few things that all rodents have in common that make them difficult to keep out of our Maryland homes:
- Rodents are agile, curious creatures and find multiple places to enter our homes, both at ground level and up off the ground.
- They are on a constant search for food and water.
- They have learned that our homes provide them with safe, temperature-controlled shelter.
- Rodents are prolific breeders and live all around us in large numbers.
Though preventing rodents from entering our homes may be difficult, it is necessary. Rodents that move into our homes can create a lot of damage. Their front incisors are sharp and chisel-like and constantly grow throughout their life. To keep their teeth from overgrowing, they chew a lot, and in our homes, cause damage to wires, cables, drywall, flooring, furniture, and more. Rodents also spread diseases and bacteria that make people ill. Their saliva, shed fur, and feces will put allergens into the air that contaminate food, food prep areas, and other surfaces of your home!
The best way to get rodents out of your Maryland home is to partner with us at Pestechs. In addition to putting our rodent control services into place, use our simple, everyday rodent prevention tips to avoid becoming roommates with rodents.
- Regularly inspect your home's exterior and seal up any entry points you discover.
- Remove food sources from your yard by keeping lids on trash cans, maintaining gardens, and keeping outdoor eating areas free of food debris.
- Remove indoor food sources by maintaining proper food storage in your kitchen. Keep perishables in the fridge and store pantry items in containers with airtight lids.
- Regularly vacuum your floors and wipe down surfaces to remove crumbs.
Termites are wood-eating pests that often find their way into our Maryland homes, where they feed and cause damage for months or years without our knowledge. Eastern subterranean termites are the most common termites in our area. They nest in the ground, have extremely high moisture needs, and prefer to feed on water-damaged or decaying wood. Each day, they move from the nest to a food source through the ground or mud tubes they create, often accidentally finding their way into our homes through spaces in the foundation. Once inside, water-damaged wood located behind walls or under floors entices them to stay and use your home as a place to gather food.
Knowing the signs of a termite infestation is important to prevent your home from being damaged by termites. Signs that termites are in your home may include windows and doors not opening correctly, warped floors and ceilings, and blistered paint or wallpaper. One of the most common signs that termites are nesting nearby in your yard or inside your house is noticing termite swarmers. Swarmers are large, dark-colored termites that are winged. They emerge from a mature nest to find a mate, create a nest and build a new colony. Seeing a swarm of winged termites or finding piles of their discarded wings are indicators for you to take immediate action to eliminate these pests.
When it comes to termites, being proactive is key. In addition to partnering with us and implementing termite control services, use our simple, everyday termite prevention tips to avoid problems with these destructive pests.
- Leave a barrier between your home's exterior and bushes or shrubs. Creating a barrier allows the sun to hit the ground and keep it dry and less attractive to termites.
- Remove fallen trees, tree stumps, and other wood debris from your yard.
- Make sure that gutters and downspouts on your home are clear of debris and direct water away from the perimeter of your house.
- At the first sign of leaky pipes and fixtures, repair them and replace any wood damaged by the water.
If you are tired of dealing with a revolving door of pests that are determined to take advantage of the basic needs that your property offers them, reach out to us at Pestechs. We offer tailored pest control services that will meet the needs of your property and family. Our family-owned and operated business is committed to providing your family with the necessary services to get pests out of your home and keep them from returning! Discover the benefits of working together by giving us a call today and speaking with one of our helpful and knowledgeable professionals!