Why Do-It-Yourself Pest Control Is Not Recommended

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The popularity of do-it-yourself (DIY) home projects has risen drastically in recent years. DIY can often save you money and I certainly understand wanting to save money wherever you can. However, there are some home projects that should be completed by a professional and pest control is one of them. Pest control professionals train in their field continually. They are initially trained and certified by the state department of agriculture here in Tennessee. Once they are certified, they must attend continuing education such as training classes, seminars and online webinars to keep up with proper standards and the latest in pest control technology. Professional pest control technicians complete an average of 10 educational training hours per year to maintain their certification. Professionals study the products and tools that they will use daily to insure that not only are they the most effective method but also they are used properly. Pest control professionals are trusted in many homes, and with that comes great responsibility, which should be taken seriously.

A homeowner usually doesn’t start a DIY project such as pest control expecting something to go wrong however we’ve seen many cases where things do go wrong or a homeowner wastes money on products that don’t solve their problem. There are many products available that a homeowner can use to control pests. Some of these products are effective in the short term and others are not. The typical homeowner is not trained as to where to apply the product with the least amount of exposure for maximum effectiveness as a pest control professional has been. The typical homeowner also does not have the proper tools to apply the DIY products purchased at their local hardware store. Most importantly, the typical homeowner is not familiar with the product label to know how to best use the product.

Let’s dig a little deeper beyond the DIY hardware store products, and to the homeowner that gets some unlabeled pest control product from a neighbor or perhaps purchased a “Restricted Use Product” online. A Restricted Use Product is only to be purchased and used by a pest control professional but unfortunately there are online vendors that will sell these products to anyone. We recently saw a very tragic case where four children died as a result of an improperly applied product underneath their home. This is definitely an extreme and very sad situation but it could have easily been avoided had the product never been applied in that setting (the product wasn’t labeled for use under a home – it was intended to be used in a grain factory). “This is known, this happens across the United States and it’s when people get a hold of stuff they don’t know how to use and they don’t do enough research and figure out that water is bad for it,” said Lieutenant Josh Whitney. Here is a link to that story in case you missed it: http://www.cbsnews.com/news/gas-poisoning-amarillo-texas-four-children-dead-others-injured/

Pest control professionals just don’t haphazardly purchase and apply products. We study the insect biology, we research the products we use, we investigate what application methods work best and assess all areas of a property before we do any of the aforementioned things. Controlling insects is a pest control technician’s job but being a professional pest control operator involves much more than that. We must do our jobs effectively while protecting people and property to the utmost extent.

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