Diamond Certified Companies are Rated Highest in Quality and Helpful Expertise.

  • Why this rating is the most accurate.
  • Our editors gather deep company info.
  • Performance is Guaranteed.

Diamond certified companies are top rated and guaranteed

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

A pest control contractor treats for insects in a kitchen.

You are the customer. If your goal is to choose a pest control company that will deliver high customer satisfaction and quality, you’ll feel confident in choosing a Diamond Certified pest control service. Each has been rated Highest in Quality in the most accurate ratings process anywhere. And you’re always backed by the Diamond Certified Performance Guarantee. Here’s why the Diamond Certified ratings and certification process will help you find a top-rated pest control exterminator and is unparalleled in its accuracy, rigor and usefulness:

1) Accuracy: All research is performed by live telephone interviews that verify only real customers are surveyed, so you’ll never be fooled by fake reviews.

2) Statistical Reliability: A large random sample of past customers is surveyed on an ongoing basis so the research results you see truly reflect a Diamond Certified company’s top-rated status.

3) Full Disclosure: By clicking the name of a company above you’ll see the exact rating results in charts and read verbatim survey responses as well as researched articles on each qualified company.

4) Guaranteed: Your purchase is backed up with mediation and the Diamond Certified Performance Guarantee, so you can choose with confidence.

Click on the name of a Diamond Certified company above to read ratings results, researched articles and verbatim customer survey responses to help you make an informed decision.

More than 200,000 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 eliminates mediocre and poorly performing companies. Read detailed information about the ratings and certification process.

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DIAMOND CERTIFIED EXPERT CONTRIBUTORS IN THE Santa Clara County – Pest Control CATEGORY

Janet Thrasher is a 38-year veteran of the pest control industry and president of Thrasher Termite & Pest Control, Inc., a Diamond Certified company. She can be reached at (408) 212-0412 or by email.

Janet Thrasher

diamond certified contributor profile and expert article

Janet Thrasher: From Adversity to Achievement

By James Florence, Diamond Certified Resource Reporter

LOS GATOS — When Janet Thrasher started a termite control business with her husband, Duff, in 1979, she didn’t know what the future would hold. More than 30 years later, following both unexpected success and unforeseeable tragedy, she looks back on what can ultimately be called a triumph in the face of adversity. “After Duff and I got married, we moved from Southern California to Santa Clara, where he started working for a local termite company,” she recounts. “At the young age of 23, we decided to take the plunge and start our own business. We started out small, but the business grew, and in 1987, we moved from Santa Clara to Los Gatos.”

In 2000, just when life seemed to have fallen into a rhythm of relative predictability, the unimaginable struck: Duff died suddenly of a heart attack, leaving Janet with a household and a business to maintain. “At that point, I had three teenagers and 15 employees, and I wasn’t sure what to do next,” she says. “Overnight, I went from sharing the business workload to being the sole owner. Suddenly, I had to make all the decisions and learn more about termites, ants, bees, and fleas than I ever thought I would. When I was at my lowest, my family, my staff and even other pest control operators stepped in to help.”

After that initial boost of support, Janet threw herself into becoming a full-fledged pest control operator, incorporating the business and obtaining her operator’s license with the Structural Pest Control Board. Fifteen years later, she has established herself as a leading figure in the industry. In addition to being the chairperson and district director of Santa Clara Valley Pest Control Operators of California (PCOC), she serves on the Board of Directors for Peacock Insurance and is a member of the National Pest Management Association (NPMA). She also led Thrasher Termite & Pest Control to earn the QualityPro designation for excellence in pest management, as well as the distinction of being named the Silicon Valley Association of REALTORS Affiliate of the Year in 2011.

Looking back, Janet expresses her gratitude for both her immediate and business families and the roles they played in her company’s success. “Since 2000, we’ve tripled in size and opened a second branch in San Diego, which is managed by my son, Garrett,” she says. “I continue to be inspired by the collective support of my family, employees and colleagues. There are a lot of people here whom I care about very much, and I’m proud of our business and our ability to stay successful.”

Outside of work, Janet spends the bulk of her time with family. “I enjoy playing golf and exercising, but my biggest hobby these days is spending time with my grandchildren,” she says. “Of course, I also have my kids, my parents, my two older brothers and their families, and my husband’s family, whom I’ve managed to stay close with over the years.” Additionally, Janet enjoys traveling and spending time with friends. “I like taking road trips to Lake Tahoe and Monterey Bay, and I try to get to Hawaii a couple of times a year. I also attend an annual get-together in Palm Springs with 10 of my high school girlfriends, which is always fun.”

In addition to her more leisurely pastimes, Janet maintains an active involvement in her local community. “After Duff passed away, our family founded the Duff Thrasher Memorial Youth Fund,” she explains. “We hold an annual golf tournament fundraiser that brings in about $10,000, all of which is earmarked for things that benefit the youth in our community.”

When asked what she’d do if she could retire tomorrow, Janet says she’d continue to stay active. “I would exercise every day and golf more often…maybe take some golf vacations. I’d also help my kids a bit more with their little ones. As much as I want to be available for them, sometimes I’m just too busy, so I’d like to have more flexibility for that.”

Ask Me Anything!

Q: What’s your favorite sports team?
A: The San Jose Sharks.

Q: What are your favorite TV shows?
A: I always get a chuckle out of “Friends” and “Modern Family.”

Q: What’s your favorite local restaurant?
A: Viva in Los Gatos.

Q: If somebody was making a movie about your life, what actress would you choose to play yourself?
A: Meryl Streep.

Q: What’s the best gift you’ve ever received?
A: My three children.

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How to Avoid Bed Bugs While Traveling

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LOS GATOS — One of the most common ways bed bugs enter a home is hitching a ride with unsuspecting travelers, particularly while they’re staying at a hotel. You can reduce the likelihood of bringing bed bugs home from your vacation by… Read more

Expert Video Tip

Video: Travel Tip to Avoid Bed Bugs

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Complete Video Transcription:

LOS GATOS — Host, Sarah Rutan: A common way that bed bugs get around is by hitching a ride with unsuspecting travelers, particularly while they’re staying at a… Read more

SELECTED PHOTOS FROM THESE TOP RATED COMPANIES

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INDUSTRY INFORMATION AND RESEARCHED ARTICLES BY THE DIAMOND CERTIFIED RESOURCE

  • Termidor

  • Agrifos

  • Bayer

  • Dow

  • EcoSMART

  • Univar

Exterra Pest Control
Bayer Insecticide
Demon Insecticide
Malathion Insecticide
Ecolab Pest Control
Hydrex Pest Control
Raid Insecticides
Clark Pest Control
Orkin Exterminators
Terminix
Hitmen Pest Control
ETEX Electronic Pest Control
Merit Tree Insect Control
Taslstar Insecticide
Phantom Insecticide
Roundup Weed Prevention
Terro Ant Bait
EcoSmart Pest Control
Termidor Termite Control
ArborSystems Tree Insecticide
Bayer Premier Pesticide
Avid Pesticide

garden pest control
lawn pest control
cockroach control
earwig control
pest elimination
mosquito control
ultrasonic pest control
orange oil pest control
green pest control
preventative pest control
rat pest control
insect pest control
outdoor pest control
termite pest control
organic pest control
natural pest control
pest extermination
mouse control
ant control
rodent control
non-toxic pest control
plant pest control
beetle pest control
residential pest control
indoor pest control

Alviso
Blossom Valley
Campbell
Coyote
Cupertino
East Palo Alto
Gilroy
Holy City
Los Altos
Los Altos Hills
Los Gatos
Milpitas
Monte Sereno
Monte Vista
Morgan Hill
Mountain View
Mt Hamilton
New Almaden
Palo Alto
Permanente
Redwood Estates
San Jose
San Martin
Santa Clara
Saratoga
Stanford
Sunnyvale

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94035
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California Structural Pest Control Board (CSPCB) (http://www.pestboard.ca.gov)
California Department of Pesticide Regulation (CDPR) (http://www.cdpr.ca.gov/)
California Environmental Protection Agency (CalEPA) (http://www.calepa.ca.gov)
California Code of Regulations (http://www.cdpr.ca.gov/docs/legbills/calcode/chapter_.htm)
California Association of Pest Control Advisors (CAPCA) (http://capca.com)
Pest Control Operators of California (PCOC) (http://www.pcoc.org/index.cfm)

Know What You Want
Questions to Ask Yourself Before Beginning Your Search for a Pest Control Company in Santa Clara County

Before you begin interviewing pest control companies in Santa Clara County, ask yourself what sorts of services you need, and what you are looking for in a pest control company. Some questions to ask yourself are:

  • Do I want a Diamond Certified pest control service in Santa Clara County that is rated best in quality and backed by the Diamond Certified Guarantee?
  • Am I wanting to go as natural as possible, utilizing non-chemical methods of pest control?
  • Am I looking for prevention as well as control of the current problem?
  • Do I want an integrated approach to my pest control problem?
  • How often do I want to have pest control in your home? Is this a one-time event, or do I want a regular visit every month, or within some other time frame?
  • Are there any chemicals to which I am sensitive?
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What To Ask In Person
Questions to Ask When Meeting with a Representative of the Santa Clara County Pest Control Company in Person

After you have consulted several Santa Clara County pest control companies by telephone, it's time to meet with a few in person. You may do this in their offices, or you may want to have them come into your home or cropland to evaluate the pest problem. You should not feel obligated to have anyone in your home if you are not comfortable; therefore, you may want to consider meeting in their offices first and arranging a walk-through by appointment during a time when you will be home with someone. Always go with whatever is most comfortable for you.

When meeting with a company in person, there are some questions you should ask regarding their services:

General Questions:

  • Are you insured and/or bonded? (Ask to see a certificate of insurance and find out if the company carries complete insurance coverage with adequate coverage that includes an "errors and omissions" clause that covers accidents like inadvertent staining on carpets or breakage of items.)
  • To ensure an accurate estimate, what process do you follow prior to giving an estimate?
  • What if my pest problem is more severe than originally thought?
  • How soon can you start?
  • Once you start treatment, how long will it take to complete?
  • Is there a drying time for any wet chemicals?
  • Will clean up afterwards be required? If so, am I responsible for that?
  • Will I need to wash all surfaces and dishes, etc. before using them after you have applied treatment?
  • Will there be any lingering odors?
  • Do I need to move out of my home while you work?
  • How long will I need to stay out of the area?
  • Is the work warranted? If so, for how long?
  • What does the warranty entail and is it a written warranty?
  • Will repeat treatments be necessary?
  • If the problem doesn't go away after you have completed treatment, will I be charged for you to come back and do it again?

If the Pest Problem is a Rodent Infestation:

  • What treatments will you use to get rid of rodents?
  • What can be done to prevent them from coming back?
  • I have pets. What precautions do I need to take?

If the Pest Problem is a Crop Issue:

  • Will this harm my crops?
  • What if it rains right after you apply the treatment?
  • Will the residue remain on the crops, and if so, for how long?
  • Can I enter my fields right away, or do I need to wait for a certain period of time?
  • What precautions need to be taken when picking crops?
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  • What To Ask References
    Learn from Previous Santa Clara County Pest Control Customers

    It's best to choose a Diamond Certified pest control company because all certified companies have passed an in-depth ratings process that most other companies can't pass. If you want quality from a pest control company in Santa Clara County, you can have confidence choosing a Diamond Certified company. Diamond Certified reports are available online for all certified companies. And you'll never be fooled by fake reviews. That's because all research is performed in live telephone interviews of actual customers.

    If you can't find a Diamond Certified pest control company within reach, you'll have to do some research on your own. If you do, it's wise to call some references provided by your pest control company. Keep in mind, though, that references provided to you by the pest control company are not equal in value to the large random sample of customers surveyed during the Diamond Certified ratings process. That's because references given to customers from companies are cherry-picked instead of randomly selected from all their customers. So the contractors will likely give you a few customers to call that they know are satisfied.

    If you do call references, ask for a list of the company's 10 most recent customers. This will help avoid them giving you the names of only customers they know were satisfied.

    Questions to ask Local Pest Control and Exterminator References

    1. Did the pest control service you hired do a thorough assessment of your problem?
    2. What type of work did this pest extermination company do for you?
    3. Were the employees of this company courteous and helpful?
    4. Do you feel the price was fair for the pest eradication or extermination services that were done?
    5. Was the pest control work completed in a timely manner?
    6. Did they explain clearly what they were going to do so you could ask questions?
    7. Did they provide you with pest control options?
    8. If you needed this type of service again, would you use this Santa Clara County pest control company again?
    9. Were you pleased with the work they did for you and the length of time it took to complete the work?
    10. Were you satisfied with the pest eradication services from this Santa Clara County pest control company?
    11. Would you recommend this company to others who have experienced pest infestation issues?
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  • Review Your Options
    Find and Hire a Good Pest Control Company in Santa Clara County

    The Diamond Certified symbol has been awarded to companies that scored Highest in Quality in an accurate ratings process.

    Pest infestations in the home or the field will require different types of treatment, depending on the type of pest; therefore, your choice of a pest control company in Santa Clara County will depend on your needs. It is important to weigh all of the information you have received after speaking with different companies and talking to references. In addition, before deciding on the best pest control company in Santa Clara County for you, it's important to consider the following questions:

    1. Can a pest control company in Santa Clara County satisfy your needs and eliminate your problem?
    2. Is the company willing to provide follow up care for minimal or no cost, if their first treatment doesn't work as planned?
    3. Is the company willing to warranty their work and guarantee your satisfaction?
    4. Are they willing to provide you with a written contract and warranty for their work?
    5. Is the company willing to spend the time necessary to communicate with you exactly what needs to be done and how it will be done?
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  • How To Work With
    Before You Hire a Santa Clara County Pest Control Company

    Pest control can involve harmful substances that can be unsafe for you, your family, and your pets if not used in the correct manner. Before you hire a pest control company, you will want to find out what safety precautions they take when working with possibly hazardous materials, and what you will need to do prior to them coming into your home, and what precautions need to be taken after they are finished.

    Once you hire a company, in San Jose, Sunnyvale, Santa Clara, Mountain View, Milpitas, Palo Alto, Cupertino, Gilroy, Campbell, Morgan Hill, or one of the surrounding towns, it will be important to keep in contact with the pest control company to ensure everything is going according to plan and no problems have come up in the process, such as there being a larger infestation than initially thought.

    Sign a Contract with the Pest Control Service You've Chosen

    When you are happy with the information your Santa Clara County pest control company has given you, and you are ready to begin, you should sign a contract that includes a warranty for the work to be done. Any changes to the contract should be done in writing. Do not give a verbal agreement for anything without having it put into writing and signed by both you and the company. Some things to look for in a pest control contract are:

    • The contract should be signed by both parties.
    • Can either you or the pest control company cancel? Will there be penalties assessed if you cancel the contract?
    • Possible exclusion clauses in the contract. Exclusion clauses specify the things that can cause the contract to be canceled.
    • Is there an arbitration clause or other method to settle possible disputes?
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  • Be a Good Customer
    How Can You Be a Good Pest Control Company Customer?

    It's the pest control company's responsibility to ensure they are meeting all safety and quality pest control standards when working in your home or on your land, but you play a big part in the success of the work. Here are a few simple steps you can take to be a good customer when hiring a Santa Clara County pest control company.

    • Remember, a friendly smile goes a long way!
    • Before you hire a pest control company in Santa Clara County, restate your expectations and goals, and reiterate to the pest control company representative your understanding of the agreement. Most problems with local pest control companies occur because of a breakdown in communication. By being clear about your expectations and theirs, you can avoid most conflicts.
    • Ask your pest control company representative if you should call to check on the progress or if he will call you with updates.
    • When the company calls you, return calls promptly to keep the treatment process on schedule.
    • Be clear and upfront with the pest control company. Let them know what you want from your pest control company, the long-term outcome you're expecting and specific ways they can satisfy your expectations.
    • Be sure your service representative has a phone number where they can reach you at all times while they're working in your home or fields. The work will move along more smoothly if your pest control company can reach you for any necessary updates, questions or work authorizations.
    • Pay for the pest control company work promptly.

    Why would you want to be a good customer? Pest control companies in Santa Clara County appreciate customers who are forthright, honest, and easy to work with. Your good customer behavior sets the tone from your end and creates an environment conducive to a good relationship. Things may very well go smoother and any problems may be more easily resolved.

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Check The Work
Check the Work Done Against the Invoice

Upon the completion of the treatment in your home, you will want to sit down with the Santa Clara County pest control company representative and go over the invoice and the work completed. Have the pest control worker thoroughly explain the work that was done, and any follow up work that needs to be done by the company or by you. Make sure you have a clear understanding of what has been done in your home, or on your land, so that, should the problem arise again, you will be able to communicate with the company clearly regarding what was done and what may still need to be done. Additionally, obtain an accurate list of any chemicals that were used in case you or someone in your home has a reaction to them.

Finally, review all work completed with what is on the invoice you receive from the pest control company to ensure all work being paid for was actually done, and that all work was done to your satisfaction.

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Written Warranties
Ask for Written Guarantees of All Pest Control and Extermination Services

When the work is completed, your Santa Clara County pest control company is required to give you a written invoice. This should include:

  • Any charges for special equipment utilized.
  • An itemized list of all work performed.
  • The name and physical address of the company and their license number.
  • How long the warranty is valid.
  • What part of the work is under warranty.
  • Any applicable hazardous waste disposal fees.
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Top 10 Requests
Common Pest Control Services in Santa Clara County

There are many reasons why someone may need a pest control company in San Jose, Sunnyvale, Santa Clara, Mountain View, Milpitas, Palo Alto, Cupertino, Gilroy, Campbell, Morgan Hill, and the surrounding towns, but the most common reasons someone would contact a pest control company in Santa Clara County are:

Fleas/Ticks

We love our pets, especially the cute furry kind like dogs and cats. They are members of our family and bring us a lot of joy. Regrettably, they also may bring us ticks and fleas. Regular treatment of our pets can help prevent this problem, but once an infestation is in the home, it may be very difficult to get rid of the problem. Fleas can hide in the carpet and lay eggs and regular vacuuming may not be enough to get rid of them. Unfortunately, fleas and ticks live on the blood of animals, and human blood is just as good as dog or cat blood, but fleas and ticks can carry disease, such as Lyme Disease and plague.

Extermination of Bed Bugs

Bed bugs can be a serious problem, and there has been a recent upsurge in infestations. If you suspect you have a bed bug problem, you will want to seek help immediately to get the problem under control.

Ant Control

Ants will come into a home if there is a food source. You may see a line of ants marching single file across your countertop or floor to or from a food source. What is the food source? Will removing it get rid of the ant problem? Can you locate and plug the hole they use? If the ants have built a colony somewhere within your home, the issue could be bigger than you think.

Bat Control

In many states bats are a protected species, but bats can cause serious problems if they are in your home. First and foremost, bats can carry rabies. If someone is bitten by a bat, it is highly likely they will need rabies shots, especially if it is unknown if the animal is a carrier of rabies. Better safe than sorry is the view of most people as rabies is a very serious disease that has no known cure. Additionally, bat droppings (guano) can harbor bacteria and the fungus known to cause Histoplasmosis, and be a food source for other pests, such as roaches. If you have bats in your home, it is best to consult a professional regarding the removal and cleanup of the infested space as special equipment and suits may be needed depending on the amount of guano.

Eradication of Mosquitoes

Mosquitoes hatch where there is standing water. If you live near a lake, pond, or swamp, you may have issues with mosquitoes and getting rid of them may not be possible; however, there may be ways to prevent them from coming into your yard or home. Since mosquitoes can carry diseases, if you have a large number of them in and around your home, you may need to contact a professional to help you find ways to get rid of them.

Control of Bees/Wasps/Hornets/Yellow Jackets

Bees can be beneficial to crops, but some types of bees, such as carpenter bees, can cause damage to your home. Also, wasps, hornets, and yellow jackets can be aggressive when defending their home territory. If someone in your home is allergic to bee stings, this can be a serious problem. Whether you want the creatures moved or eliminated is up to you, but a professional can help decide the best options for you and the creatures.

Rat, Mice and Rodent Control

Mice, rats and rodents can be a problem as they breed and produce large litters in a relatively short period. In one year, a female mouse may have up to 60 babies, which will be ready to begin reproducing within 10 weeks of birth (sometimes earlier). While mice may appear to be cute and cuddly creatures to some, their droppings are unsanitary, and many mice carry bacteria that can cause salmonella. Additionally, mice can chew through walls, damage furniture, and make a mess in our homes. They also eat crops and food meant for livestock. As mice are a natural food source for many larger predators, too many mice in and around the home can cause there to be a large number of predatory animals, such as snakes, around our homes. As many snakes are poisonous, having a readily available food source for them can cause problems.

Spider Eradication

It isn't often that spider infestations in a home are an issue as spiders prefer to be where there is a readily available food source; however, if you find your home has a lot of spiders, it is possible that you are providing that readily available food source without your knowledge. While spiders can be beneficial, many of them are poisonous and can be hazardous to humans, such as the Black Widow Spider and the Brown Recluse. If you notice a large number of these creatures in and around your home, you may want to consider eliminating them before someone gets bitten.

In addition to these common pests, there are a large number of insects that can affect crop production, including cutworms, snails, slugs, many types of beetles, and various rodents. Depending on how widespread the problem is, hiring a pest control company may be the only solution to saving your crops.

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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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