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Why Trust Diamond Certified Pest Control Companies Rated Highest in Quality?

Only the best pest control companies in Napa County have earned the Diamond Certified award by scoring Highest in Quality in the most accurate and rigorous ratings process anywhere. You’ll never be fooled by fake reviews, since all research is performed by live telephone interviews that verify only real customers are surveyed. Most companies can’t pass this test. That’s why you’ll feel confident when you choose a Diamond Certified pest control company listed below. Simply click on the name of a Diamond Certified company below to read ratings results, informational articles and verbatim customer survey responses.

Thousands of customers of local companies have been interviewed in live telephone calls, and only companies that score Highest in Quality in customer satisfaction–a 90+ on a 100 scale–as well as pass all of the credential-based ratings earn Diamond Certified. By requiring such a high score to qualify, the Diamond Certified program cuts out mediocre and poorly performing companies. If you want quality, you’ll have confidence in choosing Diamond Certified companies. And you’re backed by the Diamond Certified Performance Guarantee.

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DIAMOND CERTIFIED EXPERT CONTRIBUTORS IN THE Alameda County – Pest Control CATEGORY

Richard Estrada is 19-year veteran of the pest control industry and owner of ATCO Pest Control, a Diamond Certified company since 2009. He can be reached at (415) 669-4994 or by email.

Richard Estrada

diamond certified contributor profile and expert article

Richard Estrada: Getting the Bugs Out

By James Florence, Diamond Certified Resource Reporter

NOVATO – When Richard Estrada first started working in the pest control industry, he was at a crossroads: burned out, overtired and looking for change. “I was delivering produce for a company based in San Francisco, which meant a lot of very early mornings,” he recalls. “I had just become a father a couple years earlier, and I found I wasn’t able to spend as much time with my son as I wanted because I was always trying to catch up on sleep.”

Richard knew he wanted to transition to a job with regular daytime hours, but he wasn’t sure where to start looking, so when he got an invitation from a friend to try his hand in a totally new industry, he didn’t hesitate to accept. “A good friend of mine owned a pest control company, and he invited me to work with him for a day to see if it was something I’d like to do,” he explains. “As it turned out, I found it very interesting and decided to keep working for him. Sixteen years later, I’m president of ATCO Pest Control.”

Born in East Los Angeles and raised in Iowa, Richard moved to the Bay Area in 1989, where he still lives with his wife, Stella, and their two sons, Nathan and Marcus. After nearly 25 years, he says he still appreciates the natural beauty of the indigenous landscape. “We have the bay, the mountains and so much more. I couldn’t imagine living anywhere else at this point.” Richard and his family like to take advantage of all the area has to offer, engaging in a variety of outdoor activities such as biking, hiking and skiing. One pastime that Richard especially enjoys is golfing with his sons. “My boys and I go golfing quite often. It’s a great way for us to enjoy the beauty of creation and spend some time together.”

In his professional career, Richard says a crucial ingredient for success has been his personal associations. “When I went into business for myself, I knew it would be important to surround myself with people who were smarter than me when it came to business matters. Today, whether it’s industry colleagues or company employees, I continue to partner with people whom I can collaborate with and learn from.”

When asked the first thing he’d do if he could retire tomorrow, Richard says it wouldn’t be a likely scenario. “Quite honestly, I can’t see myself retiring. I enjoy what I do and love working alongside my team members. I might travel and play golf a little more often, but I could never see myself fully retired.”

Ask Me Anything!

Q: What were you most known for in high school?
A: My smile.

Q: Which super power would you choose, flight or invisibility?
A: Invisibility.

Q: If you were an insect, what would you be?
A: I think I would be an ant—they’re hard workers and they don’t need to be told what to do.

Q: Do you have any memorable job stories?
A: One time, I got a call about an ant problem at a client’s house. As we were in the kitchen looking at the infestation, the client brought my attention to an ant farm that was sitting on the countertop. We both had to laugh at the irony.

Q: What’s one movie that people would be surprised you’ve never seen?
A: “Arachnophobia.”

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How to Prevent and Remove Rodents

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NOVATO — When it comes to keeping your home free of pests, rodents are a primary concern. Here are a few tips on how to both prevent rodents from entering your home and remove them after the fact. Prevention The most… Read more

Expert Video Tip

Video: Keeping Rodents Out Of Your Home

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Complete Video Transcription:

NOVATO — Host, Sarah Rutan: If there are rodents disrupting your neighborhood, there are some ways you can keep rodents out of your home. Today, we’re in Novato… Read more

SELECTED PHOTOS FROM THESE TOP RATED COMPANIES

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Glossary Of Terms
Glossary of Pest Control Terms Used By Local Exterminators

Like any specialized business, the pest control business may have its own language. A list of commonly used terms used in the pest extermination industry is as follows:

attractant
A substance that attracts a specific type of animal to it. Sometimes used to attract pests to traps or poisoned baits.

APHIS
Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service

band application
Application of a pesticide in a strip alongside or around a structure, a portion of a structure or any object.

Also known as: barrier application

beneficial insect
An insect that is useful or helpful to humans. Beneficial insects are usually those that provide crop polination or pest control services. Beneficial insects often contribute to organic gardening (including in enclosed spaces such as greenhouses) and Integrated Pest Management (IPM) plans, and may include some species of bees, wasps, flies, beetles and ladybugs.

Also known as: beneficial bugs

biological control
The control of certain creatures by using their natural enemies, such as predators, parasites or disease.

Also known as: biological pest control, organic pest control

broad spectrum
Something that affects a wide range or large number of organisms. In pest control, the term ‘broad spectrum’ usually refers to broad spectrum insecticides or pesticides that kill a wide variety of insects.

carrier
An inert liquid, solid, or gas added to an active ingredient to make a substance dispense effectively. A carrier is also the material, usually water or oil, used to dilute a product for application.

certified applicators
Individuals who are certified to use, or supervise the use, of any pesticide covered by their certification.

concentration
The amount of a product in a certain volume or weight.

crack and crevice treatment
Application of pesticides into cracks and crevices with no residual on outside surfaces.

decontaminate
To remove or neutralize a product so the environment is safe.

dosage
The measured quantity of a product used at one time.

efficacy
The effectiveness of a product.

FDA
Food and Drug Administration

FIFRA
Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act

fog
A spray of very small pesticide-laden droplets that remains suspended in the air for a time.

general-use pesticide
A pesticide that has been designated for use by the general public.

herbicide
A pesticide used for the control of weeds

infestation
An invasion of pests within an area such as a building, greenhouse, agricultural crop or landscaped location.

inhibit
To prevent something from happening.

insect growth regulator (IGR)
A type of pesticide used to disrupt the normal development of certain insects.

integrated pest management (IPM)
Eliminating pests by using multiple control methods.

Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS)
An information sheet provided by a chemical manufacturer describing the qualities, hazards, safety precautions, and emergency procedures to be followed in case of a spill, fire, or other emergency.

National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH)
The federal agency that tests and certifies respirator equipment for pesticide application.

non-persistent
Does not last long. Non-persistent insecticides are sometimes preferred for short-term pest removal.

non-target
Animals or plants within a pesticide treated area that are not intended to be controlled by the pesticide application.

parasite
A plant or animal that gets all of its nutrients from another organism. Parasites often attach themselves to their host or invade the host’s tissues.

pathogen
A microorganism that causes a disease. Some pest insects carry pathogens that can be dangerous to human health.

PCO
Pest Control Operator

pesticide
Any substance intended for preventing, destroying, or repelling insects, rodents, nematodes, fungi, weeds, or any other forms of life declared to be pests. Also any substance intended for use as a plant regulator, defoliant or desiccant.

pesticide resistance
Genetic qualities of a pest population that enable individuals to resist the effects of certain types of pesticides that are toxic to other members of that species.

repellent
A pesticide used to keep certain pests away from a treated area by saturating the area with an odor that is disagreeable to the pest.

residue
Traces of pesticide that remain on treated surfaces after a period of time.

restricted use
Any substance for which a special license or permit is required before it can be purchased or used.

rodenticide
A pesticide used for control of rats, mice, gophers, squirrels and other rodents.

selective pesticide
A pesticide that has a mode of action against only a single or small number of pest species.

spot treatment
Treatment of a specific, limited area, instead of a general overall application.

structural pest
A pest that attacks structures or buildings and destroys or damages them. Structural pests include wood boring insects includng termites, wood beetles and carpenter ants.

tolerance
The ability to endure the effects of a pesticide without exhibiting adverse effects.

toxicity
The potential a pesticide has for causing harm.

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Frequently Asked Questions
FAQ for Local Exterminators and Pest Control Companies

Q: Why choose a Diamond Certified Pest Control Company?
A: Diamond Certified helps you choose a pest control company with confidence by offering a list of top-rated local companies who have passed the country’s most in-depth rating process. Only pest control companies rated Highest in Quality earn the prestigious Diamond Certified award. Most companies can’t pass the ratings. American Ratings Corporation also monitors every Diamond Certified company with ongoing research and ratings. And your purchase is backed by the Diamond Certified Performance Guarantee. So you’ll feel confident choosing a Diamond Certified pest control company.

Q: What is IPM?
A: IPM is Integrated Pest Management. The goal of IPM is to control pests by using the best control methods after carefully considering each method’s safety, effectiveness, cost, and its effect on non-target organisms and the environment. IPM does not necessarily eliminate the pest, but works to control it.

Q: Why should I hire a professional pest control company?
A: Sometimes the pest control problem involves the use of chemicals that may be harmful to humans and pets. It’s important to know how to apply the chemicals in a way that will protect you and everyone else in the home. A properly certified and licensed pest control company can provide someone who can do that safely.

Q: Shouldn’t all the baseboards in my home be sprayed?
A: No. It is not necessary and needlessly exposes people and pets to pesticide. Pests may live behind baseboards, or inside them, but never on them. If pesticides are applied, they should be applied to the cracks, crevices and voids where pests spend most of their time.

Q: If I want ongoing, periodic service, what should the service consist of?
A: Once any existing infestations are brought under control, any further service should involve ongoing inspection for further infestations, and treatment if further infestations are found.

Q: What frequency of service is best?
A: The frequency of service depends upon your situation and the type of pest involved. Once your pest problems are eliminated, you may choose to retain periodic service, but that service should focus on inspection and spot treatment of pests, if and where they are discovered, rather than routine pesticide application.

Q: Who can I call if I suspect my house is not being properly serviced?
A: First express your concerns to the technician who provided your service. If you’re not satisfied with the technician’s response, call the company. If issues still cannot be resolved, you can contact the Better Business Bureau, Attorney General’s office, or the agency that regulates structural pest control in your state.

Q: Are pesticides always necessary to control pests?
A: No. Not all pests require pesticide use. Many can be managed by using only less toxic formulations such as baits, dusts, and microencapsulate pesticides that present less risk of human exposure. Talk with your pest control service about which alternative pest control methods will be effective in controlling the pests in and around your home.

Q: Are pesticides safe? What if I am pregnant, or I have an infant or small children?
A: No chemical is absolutely safe. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) registers all pesticides, after determining that each presents tolerable risk when used according to label directions. Any use inconsistent with a pesticide’s label is a punishable violation of federal law. In general it is the misuse of pesticides that is hazardous, though the EPA recognizes that risks associated with pesticide exposure may be greater for pregnant women, children and infants, and takes this into account when registering pesticides. If you have any concerns about pesticide use, have your physician review the labels of pesticides that will be used in your home.

Q: How much should pest control service cost?
A: The best way to determine this is to compare estimates from several companies. It can be unwise to hire the company offering the lowest price, because there are many other factors to consider such as licensing/certification and reputation. The more information you gather, the easier it will be to decide if the price is right.

Q: Who do I call if someone is accidentally exposed to pesticides?
A: First call the Poison Control Center in your area. It’s best to have the name of the pesticide so you can inform the Poison Control Center, emergency medical technicians, and your physician. If you do not know the name of the pesticide, the technician or their company should be able to tell you, or you can check the service reports they gave you after each treatment. Always save these reports! They are required to show what pesticides were used. Follow the Poison Control Center’s instructions.

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