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Why is DIY Rodent Control So Difficult?

There are many do-it-yourself rodent control products available on the market to take care of mice and rat populations in your home, but you might find that DIY rodent control is difficult at eliminating a full population. Homeowners often face a population rebound when using DIY rodent control, due to the nature of rodent behavior, as well as the Rebound Effect and the weakened effectiveness of over-the-counter rodenticide. Thankfully, professional pest control treatments can provide an affordable, effective solution to the rodent problem you might be dealing with.

Rodent Damage and Behaviors

Rodents like rats and mice are very clever, and have adapted to living adjacent to humans. Brown rats will dig holes near the home’s foundation, and infest the lower areas of the home like crawl spaces and basements, while black rats are adept at climbing, and will infest the higher areas of the home, like attics. When rats get inside your attic, they will rip up your insulation to make their nests, often soiling it in the process with their urine and feces. Mice are natural tunnellers, so they will tunnel holes inside your insulation to nest in. 

Rodents have teeth that never stop growing, so in order to keep it manageable, they will gnaw on everything they can get their teeth on. This often means a rodent infestation will lead to chewed holes in wooden structures, walls, ceilings and baseboards, kitchen cabinets, and cardboard, paper or soft plastic food containers. Rats and mice are also both known to chew on the rubber covering around wires, which can expose the bare wiring and lead to house fires. Rats and mice both breed extremely quickly, so just a few rodents in your home can spiral into a massive infestation very quickly.

The Rebound Effect

When attempting do-it-yourself pest control, you might find that it’s hard to keep rodent populations down long-term. Simply using over-the-counter methods are ineffective for long term treatments, as these rodenticides will kill off the current rat or mice population, but any stragglers that are left can easily rebound the population, and before you know it, you have a full-blown rodent infestation again. Failing to locate and seal off the entry points for your rodent infestation can also lead to a population rebound, as more rodents can simply re-enter through the same entry point.

Over the Counter and DIY Treatments

After spotting a mouse or rat inside your house, your first instinct might be to run to the nearest home improvement store and buy a bottle of rodenticide. Unfortunately, these treatments are only effective against the rodent pests that you are seeing, or the ones that are traveling through popular target areas like kitchens.. While this may take down a few of the rodents bothering you, if you are aware of a rodent infestation, then there are likely dozens more hiding out inside your walls, attic, basement, crawl space or garage. These rodents will quickly learn to sidestep any over the counter treatments you apply to your property.  

Another downside of do-it-yourself rodent control is the issue of safety. Many rodent control products contain harsh chemicals that you typically would not have in your home, and, if misapplied, could pose a risk to you, your children or your pets.   

Professional Pest Control Treatments

Professional pest control treatments are a much better option if you want to fully eliminate your rodent problem. Professional pest control service companies like Summit Pest Control offer integrated pest management, which goes beyond normal extermination to determine the root cause of the pest issue. Mice and rats are typically attracted to a home for a source of food or water, like left out crumbs or spills, unsealed trash cans, left out pet food, a water leak, etc. Rodents will also utilize and exploit the tiniest cracks in the home in order to gain entry, so they can access these sources of food and water. Alongside typical rodent control methods like snap traps and bait stations, a good integrated pest management program will focus on eliminating both the food/water source attracting the rodents, as well as sealing off their entry points, preventing them from getting back inside the house. 

Pest control companies have access to professional-grade rodent control products that are much stronger than the ones found in a home improvement store, and pest control technicians are often armed with tamper-resistant technology like bait stations, as well as the knowledge to apply these chemicals safely, making sure your children and pets are protected from any harm.

Professional vs DIY Cost

One of the biggest misconceptions about choosing a professional pest control treatment over a do-it-yourself treatment for your rodent problem is that hiring a professional will cost more. In reality, that simply isn’t true. When trying to eliminate a rodent control problem without the help of professionals, you will likely end up spending MORE money on chemicals and traps than you would have spent by calling a professional.

Best Professional Pest Control in Fredericksburg

If rats or mice have invaded your home in the Fredericksburg, Alexandria, Arlington or Fairfax areas, don’t waste the time or money trying to exterminate the population yourself. Instead, contact Summit Pest Control. We offer the best integrated pest management for rats and mice, using a combination of bait stations, trappings, exclusions, seal-outs and more to both eliminate the current rodent population from your home, as well as deter them from returning in the future. Contact us today for a FREE estimate at (703) 884-2124 or fill out a contact form!

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