Tag Archive: Home

Does Toxic Mold Cause Bed Bugs? Here Are Some Tips You Need To Know

Mold BedbugsMold and bed bugs are two things that no one wants to see when they crawl in bed for a restful night’s sleep. While bedbugs do not spread disease, they do bite people during the night, which can result in itchy and uncomfortable skin. Molds, including allergenic and toxic types, can also set up residence in the mattress due to the dark, warm and moist environment. Repeated exposure to mold can cause a wide variety of symptoms and illnesses. With the shared environment, many people wonder whether mold can cause bed bugs. Although this is not the case, neither mold nor bed bugs deserve a welcome in your home, much less in your bed.

Causes of Bed Bug Infestation

 

Bed bugs are tiny and can hide just about anywhere. They are nocturnal and only wake up to feed at night. Bed bugs never went away overseas, and as Americans began to amass more and more possessions and the market for used and imported goods has flourished, as has international travel, it was only a matter of time before bed bugs became an epidemic here. In most cases, a bed bug infestation is a result of poor hygiene. However, you don’t have to have poor hygiene to get bed bugs in your house. They can hide in a used book, a moving truck, an empty box, or hitch a ride in your luggage when you come home from staying at a hotel. Your own hygiene can be excellent but you can still end up with bed bugs in your house.

Preventing Bed Bugs

 

You can prevent bed bugs from getting into your house and biting you while you sleep. These strategies can help keep you bed bug free.
Avoid buying used furniture from unknown sources.
Isolate used linens, clothing, books and other items for two weeks before bringing them into your home. Alternatively, bag them up in a heavy black plastic garbage bag and let them sit in the sun all day. The heat will kill the bugs. Examine hotel rooms for the signs of bed bugs before unpacking your luggage or using the bed.

Mold Infestation

 

No matter what the type of mold, it needs a moist environment, something to grow on, warmth and it prefers darkness. A mattress provides all of these. Although mold spores are everywhere within the environment, repeated exposure for many hours every day can cause some people to develop troublesome symptoms. Common symptoms of mold exposure include sinus and nasal congestion, coughing, trouble breathing, wheezing, skin irritation, itchy eyes, and frequent respiratory infections. Babies, young children, and elderly people are at a higher risk of developing symptoms from mold exposure. People with chronic respiratory diseases or immune system disorders are also at an increased risk of mold sicknesses.

Preventing Mold

 

You can prevent mold from overtaking your bedroom and your house. Some things to try include:
-Encasing your mattress in a waterproof cover.
-Using exhaust fans or opening a window when showering and cooking.
-Use an air conditioner and dehumidifier to get rid of excess indoor moisture.
-Clean frequently.

When Mold and Bed Bugs Coincide

 

If you have symptoms of a bed bug infestation or a mold infestation, you need to take action. You might need to take drastic measures such as getting rid of your mattress and having a pest control company come into your home to get rid of the bed bugs. Proper air conditioner maintenance can also help with mold control. Being cautious when purchasing furniture and other items for your home can also help prevent bed bugs. These inexpensive tips can help keep you, your family and your home healthy and free of the symptoms of bed bugs and mold exposure.

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Author Bio: Robert had a lot of problems with mold and bed bugs as soon as he moved into his new home. In this very interesting article Robert explained the relationship of mold and bed bugs.

Green Tips On Ridding Your Home Of Silverfish

SilverfishSilverfish. Those disgusting, wiggling, squiggling, silvery insects that come out at night to crawl up your walls and feast upon your books, dry oats, wallpaper glue, plaster, drywall and carpet. We’ve all seen them, whether you knew what they were or not. Silverfish are common household pests that, while not dangerous, can cause considerable amounts of damage to household items (not to mention that they’re just plain nasty and the sight of them can make one’s skin crawl!) However, it’s pretty easy to keep your home’s population of silverfish in check, and can be done without the use of harsh chemicals. Below you will find some green tips and suggestions regarding how you can rid your home of silverfish (or at least keep their numbers to a bare minimum.)

Cleaning Tips

  • Vacuum on a regular basis. This will help get rid of silverfish eggs. Take special care to vacuum around floorboards and hard-to-reach crevices. Afterward, empty your vacuum cleaner contents into a plastic bag; tie the bag tightly and dispose of it ASAP.
  • Wash all surfaces frequently. Use a peppermint or eucalyptus cleaner. This helps repel them.
  • Keep ALL FOOD in sealed containers, such as plastic canisters or glass jars. Silverfish are unable to crawl up the smooth surfaces.
  • Freeze all infested books and garments for a few days in order to kill any eggs which may linger.

Homemade Baits

  • Jar Trap: This tried-and-true old timer’s trick involves wrapping the outside of tall glass jars with masking tape or twine and filling with about ½” of dry oats. The silverfish will be attracted to the oats and crawl up the rough surface of the jar- however, once he’s in, he’ll be unable to escape.
  • Diatomaceous Earth: Sprinkle diatomaceous earth around floorboards and other areas where the silverfish have been creeping. This non-toxic pesticide will stick to the silverfish as they crawl through it, scratching through its protective layers and causing it to dehydrate through the rapid loss of liquid. The result? Those nasty silverfish shrivel up and die.
  • Mashed Potato Balls: Mix mashed potatoes with alum and roll into balls and place on newspaper or pieces of cardboard throughout your house. The alum in the balls will poison and kill the silverfish.

Natural Silverfish Repellents

Some items are considered to be natural silverfish repellents, and can be sprinkled around floorboards, cupboards and drawers in order to scare the silverfish away. Among these include bay leaves, eucalyptus, Epsom salt, whole cloves, cinnamon, and cucumber peals. If you don’t like the idea of simply sprinkling these items around your home, place them in cupcake wrappers and set them out, scattered about your house.

Silverfish may seem like nasty little vermin, but the fact is they are harmless to humans and mainly just like to munch on things like your books, which can be quite the nuisance! Thankfully they are fairly easy to get rid of, although you will have to repeat the process every few weeks as any new eggs that you may have miss begin to hatch. With persistence you can get your silverfish population under control- without resorting to using pesticides to do so.

About the author: Chris is writer for a Long Island pest control company.

 

6 Ways To Elminate Bed Bugs In Your Home

Adult bed bug, Cimex lectularius

Adult bed bug, Cimex lectularius (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Despite their name, “bed bugs” can be found in almost any part of your house and are often found far away from the bedroom. Bed bugs might be lurking in your bookshelves (avoid buying used books on the street for this reason) or in your couch (avoid buying used couches too!) or in other places too. There are several ways to tell if you have bed bugs – maybe you saw an actual bug or egg so you are 100% certain; perhaps you have woken up covered in bites leading you to believe you might have bed bugs; or maybe you have even had an inspector come to your house to confirm your fears. Either way, now that you know you have an infestation, you are probably wondering how to take care of it.

First, save a specimen. This might sound gross, but you should hold onto the physical bodies of the bed bugs in a Ziploc. Beyond helping the exterminator confirm the infestation, you might need to show them to your landlord or insurer so that you can recover your costs. You may never see an actual bug, so if you do, grab it. Take pictures of any damage as well.

Second, don’t switch to another bed in your house. Your first instinct might be to sleep elsewhere if the bed bugs are actually found in your bed. But unfortunately, all this will achieve is spreading the infestation. So don’t start sleeping on the couch, and definitely don’t stay at a friend or relative’s house. The bed bugs will be waiting for you when you get home and will have left some cousins wherever you went.

Third, consult a professional. Even if you are sure you have bed bugs, you should always get a professional pest control operator to come in, identify the pest and then treat it. Call them as soon as you suspect an infestation and get them into your home right away. Treatment takes time, so start sooner rather than later.

Fourth, check the other beds. Not everyone will know if they have bed bugs just by being bitten. Not everybody reacts to the bites in the same way, so there could be bugs in their beds without them knowing. Make sure your professional pest control operator does a thorough check of the home.

Fifth, don’t start throwing everything away. Not every piece of furniture in your home needs to be sent to the landfill. Ask your professional pest control operator what can be saved and what should be tossed. Once you know what cannot be saved, the professional can help you dispose of it properly and safely so as not to spread the bugs even further.

Sixth, do start washing your linens and clothing. Your clothing and bedding should be dealt with right away. Machine wash everything on hot and then dry them on hot for about two hours. Dry cleaning is also an option. Whichever option you choose, the key part is to put the cleaned clothing and linens in sealed, airtight bags until you are going to use them in your bed bug free house.

Finding out you have bed bugs is never fun. But if you follow the proper precautions and have patience, hopefully the bed bugs will be handled quickly and without major loss of sleep, furniture, and money.

About the Author: Michelle Lim has been writing about designer bedding for this website for years. When she’s not spending her time writing, she enjoys shopping and going on vacations with her boyfriend.

 

Protecting Your Home Investment

US Navy 090902-N-2888Q-003 Petty Officer 3rd C...

Your home is likely the largest single monetary investment you will ever make. Taking care of it will keep you and your loved ones healthy and happy, and regular maintenance will preserve the value of your investment. Here are just a few suggestions to get you started.

Cleanliness

 

Keep your home clean! Regular and frequent cleaning of a home will maintain its condition better than hiring a cleaning crew once a year—and if you wait that long, you’ll need the HAZMAT team.

There is simply no substitute for once-a-week (or more often) cleaning such as vacuuming, wiping down the bathrooms, mopping the kitchen floor, dusting, disposing of unusable food in the refrigerator and carrying out the trash. Daily maintenance of a home means wiping up messes as soon as they occur, picking up clutter, and cleaning up dishes. All family members, including children, should learn to clean up after themselves. Many homeowners have everyone remove their shoes when coming in from outdoors. Speaking from experience, I know that this practice will literally save the homeowner from having to replace the floorings every few years. A pile of shoes near the door is much easier to live with than constantly worn and soiled carpets, and scratched or broken tiles.

Less-frequent cleaning includes wiping out cupboards and drawers, polishing windows, scouring the oven, moving the fridge and cleaning behind/under it, and shampooing the carpet. While cleaning, you can spot signs of wear and tear, enabling you to fix any problems promptly, before they become bigger issues. Moreover, keeping your home clean and in good repair will make the house less susceptible to bugs, rodents, water damage, mold and mildew. Resolve problems in your home as soon as you are aware of them, whether it be a leaky pipe or a broken window.

Yard Upkeep

 

Keeping your lawn mowed, the trees trimmed and the flower beds weeded will not only beautify your home, but will also make you a good neighbor. Use a garden hose to flush out leaves that have accumulated in rain gutters, and provide proper drainage for rainwater to seep into the ground.

Sweep the porch, sidewalks and driveway, and remove the trash along the curb and gutter. For obvious reasons, put away toys, bicycles and other stuff every night. Get rid of old vehicles sitting in the driveway! Either fix them and use or sell them, or else take them to the recycling place and get some money out of them. Tidying up the yard—both front and back—will make your home more attractive and safe, and it will make the neighborhood look better, as well. If you ever want to sell your home, a buyer’s first impression—curb appeal—will be a powerful drawing card and may get you top dollar for your home.

Maintenance

 

Maintenance will cost something; however, doing no maintenance will be much more expensive. Performing maintenance yourself will cut costs and help you develop the skills for long-term services on your own home. Painting the interior of your home, for example, requires the purchase of paint rollers trays, tarps and other equipment; however, you will save thousands of dollars on hiring the job out. Major hardware stores can answer any questions about home maintenance projects, and they offer classes for customers who want to install tile and other such jobs. Once you have the skill, you can apply it to other areas in the home.

When you are serious about buying a home, have a reliable building inspector come and examine the house. He should check the foundation and other structural issues, the plumbing, heating/cooling and electrical systems, roof, etc. He will probably charge you around $300, but he can warn you about potential problems, or else assure you that the home is sound. His fee is a small price to pay for your awareness of the home’s condition.

Do not hesitate to hire a professional once a year to check the furnace to make sure it is working properly and doesn’t pose any dangers to the home’s occupants. An old or malfunctioning furnace can be life threatening, and it’s worth the investment to have an expert find and take care of potential problems. Make sure you invest in contents insurance to make sure your valuables are protected from any unforeseen disaster.

The best thing about having a clean and well-maintained home, inside and outside, is that it also makes you feel good about yourself; you’re proud to live there. You are comfortable in having visitors come, and people are glad to have you as a neighbor. Moreover, you will save a lot of money by learning home maintenance skills and doing the maintenance yourself.

About the Author: David Glenn is an expert in DIY home improvement techniques and interior design consulting. With his vast experience in the field, he hopes his writing can help people learn and save money through DIY projects.

 

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