Fumigation is a three part process to get rid of termites, fleas, and other pests. The fumigation itself simply requires setting off the fumigants and getting out quickly, but preparation takes a bit more time. These fumigation preparation tips will help the process go quickly and safely.
Fumigation Preparation to Keep People Safe
Obviously, before the fumigants are triggered, everyone must leave building. In fact, professional fumigators are required to make a visual check of any place large enough for a child to hide in, including closets, hampers, and safes. This is vital, because chemicals used in fumigation are toxic to humans and prolonged exposure could be fatal.
Keeping food and medicine safe is also an issue during fumigation preparation. All food needs to be removed or specially sealed following fumigation standards for the chemical used, from the cereal in the pantry to the eggs in the fridge to the cat food in the corner. Similarly, unless medicine is sealed in a glass or metal container it should also be taken out of the house.
Moving Pets and Plants to a Safe Location
The chemicals used in fumigation are also poisonous to pets, so all animals should be moved out until after the fumigants have cleared. Even fish should be removed from the house in order to be safe. Animals can stay with friends, kept with the family in a pet friendly hotel, or boarded briefly at a kennel or with another type of professional pet watcher.
Houseplants can also be affected by the fumigants, so experts recommend removing them when possible. For small potted plants, homeowners can easily transport them together in an open box, but larger plants may be more difficult to move. Plants are much less difficult to keep than animals, but they should still not be left in a hot car or in a place that might reach freezing temperatures.
Making Sure No Pests Can Escape the Fumigants
After everything is safe, the next step is to make sure the fumigation will take care of all the pests. First, this means making the house as airtight as possible to prevent bugs and chemicals from escaping. Windows should be closed and the air conditioning turned off. Some homeowners choose to have professional tent fumigation, where experts place several tarps over the entire house, making a sealed tent so that the house is surrounded by fumigants.
Besides sealing the house, homeowners should also make sure that the air within it is flowing freely, so that the chemicals will reach the intended targets, wherever they are. This means opening all doors, cabinets, and drawers. Even plastic tubs and garment bags should be opened to encourage airflow to all possible pest hiding places.
Special Tips Before a Tent Fumigation
Some extra fumigation preparation tasks are required before tent fumigation, where tarps cover the entire structure. Since workers will be climbing on the roof and tacking tarps to it, antennas should be removed if possible. In addition, any landscaping that would interfere with tacking the tarps to the ground should be trimmed. Watering the soil near the house should protect those outside plants from the fumigants.
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