10 Benefits of Hiring a Professional Pest Control Company

Pest control services in Eastern & Central Virginia - Loyal Termite & Pest ControlPeople often wait until it is too late to look into professional pest control services. No matter what pest you’re dealing with, trying to take care of an infestation on your own can be tricky. If you don’t approach it the right way, you could end up allowing the pests to multiply without any signs of slowing down. Many DIY strategies fall far short of a long-term solution, and improper use of professional pest control products by untrained individuals can lead to serious health risks.

If you’ve been thinking about hiring an exterminator recently, read on for ten reasons to follow through. Our technicians at Loyal Termite & Pest Control have seen great success servicing homes and businesses around Eastern & Central Virginia and home to help you, too!

Pest Control and Health Concerns

Hiring certified pest control technicians can eliminate many health concerns that you might expose yourself to without their help. Our first three reasons to hire professional pest control are in the interest of your health:

  • One: Controlled pesticide use. A professional will only use pesticides as a last resort, and when they do, they will use them safely. Improper or untrained application of pesticides can expose you and your family to harmful toxins.
  • Two: Decreased chance of illness. Many pests in Eastern & Central Virginia can pass on serious diseases through their bites or droppings. Technicians can help you avoid pest-related illnesses.
  • Three: Less itching and scratching. Mosquitoes, ticks, fleas, spiders, bed bugs, and more pests in the area can leave you with itchy bite marks. You don’t have to endure the bites every year!

Save Time with Pest Control

Hiring professional pest control can eliminate extra tasks from your life in a more efficient manner. Our next three reasons have to do with saving you time:

  • Four: Efficient solutions. Licensed technicians have the necessary experience to resolve pest problems quickly and efficiently, much more so than the average homeowner.
  • Five: Less cleaning. Having pests in your home means constantly cleaning up pest-related debris. Getting rid of them altogether will greatly reduce the time you have to spend cleaning!
  • Six: Safer structures. If you have rodents, termites, or carpenter ants living in your home, you’re likely inspecting your home constantly for new damage. Take that task off of your plate by hiring professionals to remove the pests.

How Pest Control Helps You Stress Less

Being aware of a pest problem in your home comes with lots of stress. Our last four reasons pertain to your mental well-being:

  • Seven: Better sleep. Having a fear of bed bugs or spiders in your home can cause you to lose sleep. Get rid of this worry by finally getting rid of the pests themselves!
  • Eight: Save money. Sticking to DIY remedies can add up after a few unsuccessful attempts. A professional pest control company can come remove your pests in just one session in the right circumstances!
  • Nine: Learn about the process. Our technicians at Loyal Termite & Pest Control not only eliminate pests from your home, but teach you about how they did it each step of the way. We aim to give you the knowledge to avoid pests on your own going forward.
  • Ten: Peace of mind. Once your pest infestation has been dealt with, it feels like you can finally breathe again! Don’t hesitate to get rid of your problems—you don’t have to deal with them!

If you’re ready to take the first step towards a pest-free home, contact your local pest control company. Our expert technicians at Loyal Termite & Pest Control have helped people all across Eastern & Central Virginia live pest-free since 1960. For a free quote, contact us today!

How Quickly Do Bed Bug Infestations Spread?

Bed bugs travel easily in Eastern & Central VA - Loyal Termite & Pest ControlBed bugs are one of the most feared pest problems for several reasons. One of the biggest reasons is that they are capable of spreading quickly throughout your home—even worse, they often do so silently. Compared to some pests, bed bugs move and reproduce at a relatively slow rate. However, it is because they move so silently that their spread can go unnoticed for some time. Before you know it, you could have a full-force infestation on your hands. For this reason, it’s crucial to learn how to stop a bed bug infestation in its tracks. Learn how with the bed bug control experts here at Loyal Termite & Pest Control!

Can People Spread Bed Bugs?

Because bed bugs bite people, it’s easy to assume people can spread bed bugs. However, this is not the case. Unlike fleas and ticks, bed bugs do not latch onto people. Instead, they will retreat after feeding. Bed bugs most commonly are spread when infested items are moved from one area to another. Typically, this happens when infested furniture or items are moved from one room to another. The spread of bed bugs can also be traced back to travelers and college kids bringing home infested suitcases.

Tips to Keep Bed Bugs From Spreading

To prevent bed bugs from spreading throughout your home, it’s important to learn how to inspect for bed bug activity. In addition, some of the best ways to prevent bed bugs are to:

  1. Be wary of purchasing second-hand furniture unless you’ve inspected it thoroughly for bed bugs.
  2. Place protective covers over the mattresses and box springs in your home.
  3. When traveling, use hard shell suitcases and thoroughly inspect your hotel room for bed bugs. Always store luggage up off the ground.
  4. When arriving home from traveling, steam clean your suitcase and wash all clothing before storing everything away.
  5. If you utilize shared laundry facilities or a laundromat, seal your clothes in a plastic bag to and from the facility, and always fold your clothes at home.

The Spread of Bed Bugs in Virginia

If you’ve done all you can to stop bed bugs from getting in your home and are still noticing the signs of their activity, it’s time to call the bed bug control experts at Loyal Termite & Pest Control. Our team of experts will get rid of your infestation and keep you safe from bed bugs for good. Contact us today to get started!

Afraid of Rodents and Bugs? 2021 May Not Be Your Year

Loyal termite and pest controlEntomologists from Loyal’s parent company, Rentokil Provide their Pest Predictions for 2021

READING, Penn. (Jan. 4, 2021) — As if 2020 didn’t present enough challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic, 2021 could be a banner year for pests around the country.

To help residents prepare for 2021, entomologists from Rentokil used field knowledge and data to provide their predictions for pests in the upcoming year.

1. Rodents, Rodents Everywhere:

With shutdowns across the country, it’s no surprise that rodents are on the rise nationwide. Empty buildings, the scarcity of food and warmer winters have combined to create a rodent apocalypse.

“We’re seeing more rats in urban, suburban and rural settings because of the shutdowns,” said Marc Potzler, Board Certified Entomologist. “Food sources are cut off, and rats are having to travel to scavenge for food. We’ve seen rats out in public during the day, which is highly unusual.”

Warmer winters have also allowed for mice populations to boom in residential areas as it allows for a longer breeding season and there is a lower population loss due to hard freezes.

“Right now is the perfect time to rodent-proof your home,” said Potzler. “Make sure to repair any gaps on the exterior of your home, such as around garage doors, windows or pipes.”

2. Mosquitoes on the Move:

Mosquitoes populations have been increasing over the last few years. Aedes species, which are disease-carrying mosquitoes, are also moving to new areas. These mosquitoes can carry West Nile Virus, Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) and Zika virus, among other diseases.

“There is an increase of mosquitoes across the country, but notably on the West Coast, and they are adapting each year,” said Eric Sebring, Associate Certified Entomologist. “We have seen evidence of behavior adaptation, where mosquitoes lay their eggs strategically to hatch throughout the season.”

Protect yourself and your family from mosquitoes by removing any standing water on your property. Mosquitoes can breed in as little as one teaspoon of water. Also, wear EPA-approved insect repellent while spending time outside.

3. Bed Bugs:

The chatter about bed bugs was quiet in 2020, but that’s not because they have gone away.

“As people begin to travel again, we will start to hear about bed bug infestations,” said Sebring. “Bed bugs can be dormant for several months at a time, so they can emerge when a food source, humans, become available.”

Bed bugs are considered hitchhikers, traveling from place to place on people, luggage, clothing and other personal belongings. Homeowners and businesses such as hotels, colleges, hospitals, senior living facilities, retail stores, and libraries have experienced problems with bed bugs.

If traveling, inspect the bed by pulling back the sheets to examine the mattress. Check your luggage before packing and unpacking, and look for signs of living or dead bugs the size of an apple seed or black fecal smears.

4. More Time Outdoors = More Pests.

From hiking to gardening to dining al fresco, there is no doubt that the pandemic has forced people to spend more time outdoors.

In 2021, we will see the outdoor pest pressures continue:

Ticks: Ticks are responsible for transmitting several diseases, including Lyme disease, to humans and animals. These small insects are found in grassy areas and in the woods, so it is important to inspect yourself and your pets after spending time outdoors. Cover as much skin as possible while outdoors, wear long pants, long sleeves, closed-toed shoes, and tuck pant legs into socks. Light-colored clothing will also help any ticks you pick up stand out.

Ants: “As soon as the weather starts to warm up, we will see an increase in ant populations,” said Tom Dobrinska, Board Certified Entomologist. “Most of the ants we are dealing with are odorous house ants. When spending time outside, make sure to clean up any food, water or sugary substances and ensure that your home is free of any holes or cracks for them to enter.”

Stinging Insects: Stinging insects, such as wasps and yellow jackets, emerge at the first sign of warm weather, and as warm weather seasons are getting longer, stinging insects have more time to create issues. Make sure you check for nests early in the spring as they are smaller and get early nest treatment. Make sure to keep windows and doors shut, and secure outside bins so stinging insects are not attracted to the contents.

5. Termites Aren’t Going Anywhere

Termites are a pesky problem, and unfortunately, are not going anywhere. Termites can cause extensive damage to structures, especially homes. As people are moving out of cities during the pandemic to more suburban areas, education about termite protection is key.

“We received more calls for termites this past year than we have in many years,” said Potzler. “It’s important to raise awareness for homeowners now to have proactive protection to keep from costly repairs in the future.”

6. Pests in the News:

There are a few pests that will continue to steal the limelight in 2021.

The Brown Marmorated Stink Bug is an invasive pest that has been making its way across the country since it was first introduced from Asia in 2001. Besides its pungent odor, this stink bug has become a nuisance for homeowners as it gathers in large numbers on the sides of houses and buildings and enters through small cracks in the home. “The brown marmorated stink bug is here to stay,” said Dobrinska. “We will continue to see this species emerge in late spring in large numbers.”

The Spotted Lanternfly will continue to wreak havoc across the Northeast and beyond. The invasive pest, first found in Pennsylvania in 2014, is spreading across the Northeast, with New York reporting its first sighting this year. The pest can significantly damage trees and plants.

“The Spotted Lanternfly is becoming a big problem in the Northeast, and it will continue to spread,” said Potzler. “It can be devastating for agriculture and is a nuisance for homeowners.”

The egg masses look like a smear of mud on trees and outside of homes. It’s important to scrape the egg mass off, put it in a bag with rubbing alcohol and throw it away, and then call the state department of agriculture.

The infamous “Murder Hornet,” also known as the Asian giant hornet, grabbed many headlines, causing homeowners to panic trying to decipher the difference between stinging insects in their yards and this aggressive species. The Asian giant hornet is the largest hornet species in the world, growing up to 3 inches in length. Currently, the Asian giant hornet has only been found in the Pacific Northwest.

“We know that there was one colony found and eliminated in Washington State,” said Sebring. “Unfortunately, if there is one, there will be more.”

While your chances of being stung by an Asian giant hornet are fairly low, the sting can be dangerous as the venom volume is higher, causing more pain. The hives are primarily built underground or in hollows in trees. If you suspect it is an Asian giant hornet or any stinging pests, call your pest management provider to assess the situation as soon as you spot activity.

Don’t Let These Pests Ruin Your Halloween!

Spiders are one of many pests that can invade Virginia homes in the fall - Loyal Termite & Pest ControlRats, spiders, and bats—oh my! You may gladly hang up spooky webs and fake spiders as decorations this Halloween, but you certainly don’t want the real thing infesting your home. A few pests in particular are very common this time of year. Infestations are also common right now as you start to pull out boxes containing all your seasonal decorations. To keep pest problems from ruining your Halloween festivities, the team at Loyal Termite & Pest Control is here to shed light on creepy-crawly pests to keep an eye out for.

Common Pests During Halloween Time

Pest infestations in the fall months are very common. This is due to the fact that many pests begin to seek shelter indoors to escape the impending drop in temperature outdoors. Here are the pests to look out for this season:

  1. Rats. Rodents infamously squeeze their way inside this time of year for warmth, food, and shelter. They could be nesting in your boxes of decorations.
  2. Spiders. Spider populations are abundant in the fall and many get indoors. They may be lurking in your box of decorations!
  3. Bed bugs. While common at all times of the year, traveling or college students lead to an increase in infestations. They also could be found on second-hand costumes.
  4. Stink bugs & boxelder bugs. These seasonal bugs appear on the sides of homes and could crawl indoors if given the chance.

How to Prevent Pests This Halloween

You may be putting fake rodents or bats out as decorations, but you definitely want to prevent the real ones from getting indoors! As you would any other time of the year, it’s important to implement preventative measures to keep fall pests away. This includes sealing all cracks and crevices in your home with caulk, installing new window or door screens, cleaning up your yard’s foliage, keeping a tidy kitchen with sealed food containers, and storing all seasonal decorations in airtight plastic bins. If you are having trouble sealing off your home to pests this fall, it’s often best to contact your local pest control expert for more prevention tips and tricks.

Seasonal Pest Control

The last thing you have time to deal with this holiday season is a pest infestation. Always be extra cautious when unpacking your decorations or buying secondhand items. If you find yourself with an infestation or want to further protect your Virginia home from seasonal pests hibernating in your home, the residential exterminators at Loyal are happy to help. 

8 Debunked Bed Bug Myths

Learn about bed bug myths in Henrico VA - Loyal Termite & Pest ControlFor decades, there has been a lot of theories and myths about bed bugs circulating. As one of the most dreaded pest problems, it’s easy to understand why bed bugs are so feared. However, are the reasons why you most fear bed bugs even true? With bed bug awareness week upon us, the team at Loyal Termite & Pest Control wants to debunk common bed bug myths we often hear about. Keep reading to learn how to separate fact from fiction when it comes to bed bug problems!

Bed Bug Myths vs. Facts

When it comes to any pest problem, it’s easy to incite fear when you read false facts. Some of the most common questions we see about bed bugs include:

  1. Can bed bugs transmit disease?
    • Thankfully, no. Bed bugs may cause you anxiety and even itchiness, but their bites do not transmit disease as mosquitoes do.
  2. Are bed bugs capable of living for months without feeding?
    • Yes, but it’s unlikely for them to live for a year unless they are in the most optimal conditions. Young bed bugs need to feed more often than adults.
  3. Are bed bugs nocturnal?
    • No! Bed bugs are active when their hosts are at rest. This usually means overnight, but they are able to adjust their schedule as needed.
  4. Can bed bugs infest areas of your home other than your bedroom?
    • Bed bugs can infest anywhere–including chairs, sofas, cracks in the wall, and even power outlets. They prefer to congregate near where their hosts rest, making bedrooms the main target.
  5. Can you see bed bugs with the naked eye?
    • Although nymphs are nearly impossible to see, adult bed bugs are about the size of an appleseed and can absolutely be seen with your own eyes.
  6. Do you have to get rid of infested furniture?
    • No! In fact, you shouldn’t move infested furniture in the midst of an infestation. Doing so can contribute to bed bugs spreading into other areas.
  7. Are bed bugs more likely to infest messy homes?
    • This is one of the biggest myths. Anyone is prone to a bed bug problem, regardless of how clean or cluttered your property is!
  8. Can bed bugs fly or jump?
    • No! Unlike fleas and ticks, bed bugs have underdeveloped wings and are only capable of crawling.

What to Do About Bed Bugs in Virginia

If you have a bed bug problem, it’s important to act quickly. When it comes to bed bug control, DIY is not the answer! Getting rid of bed bugs requires the pest control industry’s best treatment options that are designed to get rid of all life stages of bed bugs in your property. The team at Loyal is proud to offer comprehensive bed bug removal services–contact us today to learn more!

Choosing Between Professional & DIY Pest Control

Sprays are a common DIY pest control method. Learn about the pros and cons of DIY pest control in Henrico VA from Loyal Termite & Pest ControlThe DIY movement is popular, but does it work for everything? When it comes to pest control, do-it-yourself methods can be a gamble. Everyone has tried them: vinegar sprays for ants, store-bought roach spray, rat traps, the list goes on. Unfortunately, these methods are unreliable and will rarely work to get to the root of a pest infestation. For quick, effective, and trustworthy pest control, a professional exterminator is always the way to go. Here at Loyal Termite & Pest Control, we want our customers to be informed when making choices about their pest control plan. Read on to learn how to choose between professional and DIY pest control services.

How DIY Pest Control Fails

A lot of people gravitate toward DIY pest control thinking it’ll save them money. However, in the long run, this can be false. Although store-bought pest control works to control small issues, it rarely works to control big infestations. There are several downfalls to DIY pest control: First of all, they simply won’t work to control more dangerous pests such as bed bugs, termites, rodents, carpenter ants, and more. Also, many store-bought products are laden with chemicals that can be dangerous for your family if applied incorrectly. These products also rarely come with a guarantee or warranty on their effectiveness. In sum, it’s always a guessing game when it comes to DIY pest control.

Benefits of Hiring a Professional Exterminator

Yes, a professional pest control company is going to be more of a commitment. However, the investment will pay off in the long run when you are guaranteed with pest-free living! Some of the benefits to professional pest control are: 

  1. An experienced exterminator has the knowledge and experience to tackle any current infestation you have. They are experts in the behaviors and habits of pests, making it easier for them to control any problems quickly and efficiently.
  2. With a focus on IPM practices, they can also work to prevent future problems. As often as possible, a professional will use environmentally-responsible products that are always applied safely and effectively with little invasion or disruption to your daily life.
  3. When you decide to have regular pest control services, your exterminator will work with you to develop a customized pest control plan suited to the unique needs of your home.

What Choice is Right For You?

DIY pest control may sound like an easier option, but more often than not, is fruitless. Serious pest infestations always need to be handled by a professional pest control company. For long-term protection against pests, the professional exterminators at Loyal can help!