How to Choose the Best Pest Control for Your Home

Depending on where you live, your home may have a variety of pests coming in and making themselves at home. Some of them may not bother you that much, but most pests are a big problem!

The worse problem comes when you want to get rid of pests because they can be very difficult to handle. You will need the best pest control option for your unique situation if you want to keep firm control over your pest problem.

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Why There Are Different Types of Pest Control​

If you’ve been looking, you’ll know that there are a lot of different types of pest control solutions. It can be difficult to navigate through all the varieties, but it’s better to have these choices than to be without any choice.

Because many different pests do not respond the same way to each type of pest control. Some may be repelled by a spray or a bottle, while others are repelled by traps and ultrasonic devices.

It’s very important to know the type of pest or pests you’re dealing with before you try to do anything about them. If you just buy a generic formula, it may not work for your specific problem.

You will have to find the right way to deal with your pests, rather than trusting that one particular product will work for everything.​

How to Choose the Best Pest Control​

Here are some tips to help you make the best choice when you’re looking for a pest control solution:​

  • Type of pests

  • What is it that’s bothering you? Do you have a rodent problem with rats or mice, or is it a certain type of insect or bug? If you plan to take care of the pests by yourself, find out what type they are specifically so that you can target them properly.

  • Chemical sensitivities

Do you have any issues with certain types of chemicals? Some pesticides are created with very strong chemical solutions, so it’s best to know if you’re going to have any issues with the solution before you try to use it.

If you have issues with the chemicals in pesticides, you can find natural products and chemical-free solutions that might also work just as well to get rid of your problems.

  • Your home specifics

Depending on where your home is located and what is surrounding it, you may need to choose a different solution than others.

For instance, houses with large yards may need lawn treatments as well as indoor treatments, while an apartment won’t need outdoor treatments at all.

Also, even specifics such as carpet versus solid floors can change which pest control solution you will want to choose.

  • Method of dispersal

Which type of pest control do you need? There are concentrated powders that you can sprinkle around, liquids to spray, gels to apply, and more. If you have pets or kids, this will be a bigger issue than if you are a household of adults.

Some pest control options are much easier to live with than others. Sprays may leave an odor until they dry, while powder can cause a bit of a mess if you apply it in an area that you move around in. Gels and alternative solutions are usually the least messy and the most discreet, but you have to make sure you place them in the best areas for good results.

  • Area of application

Where you need to do pest control will change what you need to buy. For instance, treating a basement for roaches is different than treating a kitchen for roaches. You can use stronger products in areas that aren’t lived-in than in places where food is prepared for where you will be staying for long periods of time.

Outside treatments are completely different, so it’s best not to try to use most indoor solutions outside. This is because most pest control outside is done with bait, which is usually an inappropriate method for the indoors, where repellent is a more favorable solution.

  • Safety concerns

As I mentioned before, children and pets can cause some concerns when you’re choosing the best pest control. Both can be in danger of poison if they can access the pest controlled area easily. Choose something that will keep your entire household, including pets, safe.

  • Budget needs

There are some solutions that are very expensive, while others are easier on the budget.

Concentrated formulas and powders can cost a lot over time, as you will have to replace them periodically to maintain proper control.

Traps may or may not be cost effective, depending on how bad your problem is.

Other devices, such as the ultrasonic devices, rarely need to be replaced and can save you money if they work against your particular pests.

How Do Ultrasonic Pest Control Products Work?

One of the most recent breakthroughs that is said to help repel a wide variety of pests is the ultrasonic technology. Ultrasonic devices sound almost like scams that are too good to be true, but it’s not entirely a false claim. These devices aren’t magic, and they use a very simple mechanism to dissuade pests from hanging around in your home.

As the name implies, these devices send out ultrasonic sound waves that are disturbing to most rodents, bugs, spiders, and other common household pests. You won’t hear the noise from the device, as it’s in sound frequencies higher than the human ear can hear.

The consensus seems to be that these are good for light pest control, but they don’t work very well for infestations or for serious pest problems. They are good for keeping a lot of the creepy crawlies away, but not for everything or for a permanent solution.

Top Pest Control Options

Here are some of the top liquid and concentrated solutions:​

1.  Permethrin 36.8% concentration, 32oz.

Via Amazon.com

This formula is made from concentrated permethrin, and it’s used to target a wide range of insects. It’s mostly used as an outdoor perimeter treatment, but can also be sprayed inside at the entrances that the insects us as well as for spot treatments around trouble areas in the house.

As a concentrated formula, you can expect to get anywhere from 20 to 96 gallons of insecticide, depending on how strong of a formula you want it to be. Treat for ants, roaches, termites, fleas, ticks, and more with this formula.

Because it’s a general formula, you can’t expect it to work very well on everything. It’s not going to be specifically targeted at getting rid of certain pests, so if you have a particularly bad problem with a specific pest, then you might have difficulty using this spray for it.

What we like:

  • Kills bugs on contact
  • Concentrated solution allows you to mix a lot of times
  • Long-lasting results from outdoor applications
  • Easy to mix in the specially made bottle

    What we don't like:

    • Cannot be used on pets or around children
    • Not safe for skin contact

    2.  Talstar Pro 3/4gal. jug

    Via Amazon.com

    This pest control formula is made from 7.9% Bifenthrin, which targets a different set of bugs. It is good for most general pests, such as earwigs, roaches, mosquitoes, millipedes, and some others. This formula may not work on all common pests, but it can do a lot for a majority of the annoying bugs that will bother you at home.

    You can apply this formula anywhere indoors or outdoors, including in food handling areas. Once it is dried, it is not a safety hazard around the home. It is a great treatment for around the yard and the perimeter, but will also be okay for thorough sprays indoors to get rid of pests living inside.

    Talstar Pro doesn’t always work well on every type of bug. Spiders and fleas seem to be the most resistant to it, although some types will still be killed by this insecticide.​

    What we like:

    • Safe for pets once the liquid has dried from spraying
    • Great for application all around the inside and outside of the house
    • Easy to mix and apply in the right proportions
    • Good value for your moneyWorks very well on stinkbugs

      What we don't like:

      • This product doesn’t always work on fleas or spiders
      • May stain some carpets if sprayed inside

      3.  Suspend SC Insecticide, 1 pint

      Via Amazon.com

      This is a good product for broad pest control in and around the home. It can be used anywhere, including the kitchen and other food handling areas. Anyone can mix this effectively at home, with the normal concentration yielding about 64 gallons per 1 pint of the formula.

      When you apply this concentrated formula, it won’t stain any of the surfaces it’s applied to. Wood, carpet, tiles, vinyl, and other surfaces won’t show any visible signs of staining or residue from the liquid spray. Unlike some other sprays, this formula actually works on porous surfaces as well, making it great for stone surfaces, cracked areas, and places with small crevices. Additionally, there’s no noticeable odor once the liquid has dried.

      Because this is a broad pest killer, you can’t expect it to work well on every type of bug and pest in or around your home. It may not be good for use in the garden, and there are some reports that it’s not effective on mites and other small insects.

      What we like:

      • Professional grade insecticide
      • No bad odor after application in your home
      • Safe for people and pets once it dries
      • Potent formula that lasts for a long time and many mixes

        What we don't like:

        • Not very effective for medium-large flea infestations
        • Higher concentrations may be required for heavy infestations of any bugs, especially roaches

        4.  Ortho Perimeter Home Defense MAC Insect Spray, 1 gallon

        Via Amazon.com

        Unlike the others on this list so far, this is not a concentrated formula. It is a pre-mixed solution with a built-in spray bottle that’s great for applying it around your home. As a 1 gallon bottle, it’s easy enough for most people to carry around when spraying, so that makes it convenient for homeowners to use around the whole house and outdoors.

        This is a nice product to have on hand for immediate needs in pest control. It’s inexpensive enough to keep a bottle in the closet or under the kitchen sink for reaching as needed.

        Unfortunately, it’s not a concentrated formula. Concentrated formulas are much more cost effective than pre-mixed formulas, making this product a poor value for the money. It is a product of convenience rather than value, which makes it a good addition to a larger pest control plan, not a solid option for major control.​

        What we like:

        • Very easy to apply and use when needed
        • Works well on ants
        • Sprayer is very quick and can reach any part of the house
        • Use the spray immediately upon arrival without having to mix anything together

          What we don't like:

          • Not as effective as some other products on spider populations
          • Less value for money than a concentrated formula

          Here are some of the top gel products offered:

          5.  Advion Syngenta Cockroach Gel Bait, 4 tubes

          Via Amazon.com

          While some gel treatments work well on a variety of bugs and other pests, this gel is meant especially for roaches. It’s good for all types of cockroaches, and works in all areas around the home, even in the kitchen.

          Rather than repelling the pests away, this gel is a bait product that is eaten and also taken back to the nest to infect other members of the same colony. It works well on roaches because of the unique formula that is very attractive to roach species, and also deadly at the same time. To apply, simply squirt a small amount of gel around different areas of the home and wait to see the effects of the gel in a few days.

          What we like:

          • 4 tubes per purchase, for convenience of reapplying whenever needed
          • Works on roaches even after the gel hardens
          • Great for all types of roaches, not only for specific species
          • Better than most sprays and traps for dealing with roach infestations
          • Easy to apply and reapply when needed

            What we don't like:

            • Expires after 1 to 2 years from manufacture date
            • Not for use in areas where open food is stored or where food is directly prepared
            • Does not work for other types of bugs and pests

            6.  Maxforce Ant Bait Gel, 4 tubes

            Via Amazon.com

            This any gel bait works by using an ingredient called Fipronil to attract and kill all types of ants that come into your household. It’s meant to be an inside product, and isn’t really designed for use outdoors or around the perimeter. Most people apply it around the kitchen to catch troublesome ants in the act of rummaging around the kitchen for food and water.

            To apply, you simply squeeze a small dot of gel around cracks and crevices in whichever area you need ant treatment. It works best if you follow the trail of ants and apply the gel at the entrances they use and the closest point to their outside source as possible. This will keep the ants from coming into your home at all, and will kill them before they can infest the area too much.

            ​If you use this gel, you shouldn’t expect it to work on any other type of bugs apart from varieties of ants. The formula used is not attractive for any other bugs, even for roaches, and will not work as bait for anything except ants. This can make it an expensive choice for pest control if you are already doing something else to control pests. However, it’s great for anyone dealing exclusively with ants.

            What we like:

            • 4 tubes of 27 grams each in the box, giving you a great supply for a long time
            • Targets and eliminates all types of ants that will infiltrate your home
            • Bait products like this effectively control entire colonies, not just those that wander into your home
            • Easy to apply and forget

              What we don't like:

              • Each application is only useful for up to two weeks
              • This product doesn’t always have the right consistency from the tube

              These are a few of the best traps and ultrasonic devices offered:

              7.  Cravegreens Ultrasonic Repeller, set of 4

              Via Amazon.com

              This is a set of 4 ultrasonic devices that can be used all around the home. Usually it’s recommended that you use 1 per floor of your home, but you can double up to keep pests repelled from more lived-in areas if you want better coverage. These ultrasonics are said to work well on mosquitoes, mice, rats, and some common household insects.

              The annoying sounds emitted from the device can’t be heard by you or anyone else, but pests in your home will be bothered by the sounds and therefore repelled from your home. It works best on larger pests, such as rodents, but can also help with your bugs and creepy crawlies.

              Some reports on these devices have said that they get a bit warm, which may actually cause some bugs to be attracted to the devices rather than repelled by them. This is an unfortunate problem, and seems to mostly apply to roaches if you already have them in your home. If you combine these ultrasonic devices with other pest control methods, you may be able to have better control over all types of pests than if you use them by themselves.

              What we like:

              • Ultrasonic sounds are inaudible to human ears and will not disturb you at home
              • Helps you save money on light pest control
              • Completely safe for every area of the home
              • Money back guarantee from manufacturer if results don’t happen within 3 weeks
              • Works well on rats and miceBuilt-in nightlight for use around the home

                What we don't like:

                • Not good for people with rodents as pets
                • Mostly ineffective for heavy infestations
                • Can warm up and causes other issues around the home

                8.  Trapper Max Mouse & Insect Glue Boards, 72 traps

                Via Amazon.com

                These basic glue board traps are easy to set up with a frustration-free design that makes everything simple for you. You can place them behind furniture and appliances, around the baseboards, in the ducts, or anywhere else you’re having trouble with small to medium sized pests.

                If you’re having trouble with larger pests, these may not be the right traps for you. Rats will not be caught be these traps, although mice usually will. These are no-kill traps, so if you don’t want to deal with the bugs or mice caught in the glue, these are also a bad idea for you.

                Most bugs and mice will be caught in these traps. The glue is strong enough to hold a lot of insects at one, especially spiders, earwigs, crickets, roaches, and other smaller creatures that usually run around the corners of your home.

                What we like:

                • Little to no odor produced from the glue traps when placed
                • Most pests cannot escape from the traps
                • No harmful chemicals or pesticides are used in the glue
                • Works on bed bugs if placed properly around the room

                  What we don't like:

                  • Although these are no-kill traps, most mice and bugs will not be able to be released after caught
                  • Some mice escape if other insects are already caught in the traps

                  Our Top Pick

                  Via Amazon.com

                  Talstar Pro 3/4gal. jug

                  As an overall, broad pest control treatment, I would recommend the Talstar Pro concentrated formula. Although it’s not a great treatment for fleas and some heavy spider infestations, it’s a great general solution for the majority of household insects.

                  Since this solution is a concentrated formula, you will get a lot of value for your money. It’s also a safe solution to use inside and outside of your home, including the kitchen, and will not cause any harm after it’s dried.

                  For these reasons, I think this is one of the best pest control options for most people, even those with pets and children. Keep in mind that this is an insect control product, not a rodent control product, so you should look at other options if you have a rodent problem.

                  Amelia
                   

                  Amelia Robinson is a lover of plants and gardens, as well as an educator on this topic. It’s her goal to make sure that you get the chance to learn what you need to about gardening to succeed with your own home garden at the blog RobinsonLovePlants.com. You’re not going to find just a collection of basic articles about gardening here. Instead, she wants to answer the difficult questions for you. She tweets at @robinsonplants

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