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ETpro's avatar

Which would you rather have in your home; bugs, or spray strong enough to kill them?

Asked by ETpro (34202 points ) June 10th, 2011

Watching TV that question popped into my mind as they ran an Ortho™ commercial. As I was watching the actors in the commercial spray deadly poison around their baseboards, sills, cabinets, entry ways for piping and any other place creep-crawly critters might squeeze in, I wondered if the cure might be a lot worse than the disease. What do you think? Live with the occasional spider, or spray every way that they can get in, and hope the poison doesn’t affect humans.

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20 Answers

WestRiverrat's avatar

There are applications available that are non toxic to people and most pets. I use one of them.

marinelife's avatar

My response is the same as @WestRiverrat.‘s I would not use Ortho. This is a job for a professional.

Especially if you have pets or children.

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

It all depends on what it is, where it is, and how bad the infestation is.

crisw's avatar

Depends on the bugs.

I will happily live with harmless invertebrates such as house spiders, mayflies and June bugs. For real pests, such as ants, I use non-toxic solutions such as vinegar or peppermint oil in water.

funkdaddy's avatar

My wife and I had this discussion because our house had fleas and we couldn’t get rid of them with thorough (every day) cleaning. I’m not a big fan of pesticides in general and have the same thoughts when I see those commercials.

Eventually we decided to go with the “natural” bug killers. They come out and use pyrethrum on the yard and around the house then recommended other deterrents to help out with the fleas. They also treat the inside of the house the first time but haven’t had to since (6 months).

It’s still poison, and I’m not crazy about it, but it was the compromise we came to.

YARNLADY's avatar

We subscribe to a regular (every other month) pest control service. They use approved products based on the fact that we have toddlers and pets.

snowberry's avatar

I hate poison and will put up with a lot of stuff to avoid using it. The Off Clip-On creeps me out. Look at the list of precautions! http://www.off.com/ClipOn.aspx?mkwid=siR8L6dNZ&campaign=Off+Clip+On+-+Brand&group=OFF!+Clip-On&keyword=off%20clip-on&type=Exact&source=google&pcrid=7729279716&mt=e

There are others that aren’t bad at all because they are ultra sonic, but I have no idea how effective they are. That said, there are non-toxic things you can do to send bugs packing.

Cruiser's avatar

No sprays ever inside. Keep a clean home….don’t kill all the spiders and treat the outside of your home with a borax powder is all you will need. Go “here”: for some practical toxic free advice.

Bellatrix's avatar

Bugs. I find those ads for the aerosol device that sprays insecticide into the air every few minutes very disturbing! I will use some chemical products such as cockroach baits under appliances such as the fridge etc and spray surface spray occasionally around the skirting boards but I really try to avoid it. We get really big cockies here.

I would rather avoid leaving food about and use natural solutions for ants and the likes. We have the house screened too to keep as many flying insects out as possible.

King_Pariah's avatar

I use (I guess you could call it) pepper spray, bugs hate it and non toxic.

mazingerz88's avatar

Wow, this is exactly the issue I’m facing right now. Even as I’m typing, this bug crawls on my floor…wait a sec. ( steps on bug ) Ok it’s dead. Seriously, I have quite a number that scurry away everytime I turn the kitchen light on. They also show up in the bathroom, with one specie looking like those giant swarming bugs that are hard to kill in that movie “Starship Troopers”.

So now I’m thinking of which spray to buy. Thanks to this question it now comes to mind to get the one which is not too chemically harmful to humans. Is there one like that at all though?

ETpro's avatar

@WestRiverrat For the sake of all who use them (and some have to do so to stoip termites and other truly damaging pests) I hope you are right. But I saw that Ortho™ commercial right after listening to a warning that science has found a link between using Styrofoam cups and food containers, and long-term increase in cancers. That made me wonder just how safe pesticides designed to either repel or kill insects are.

After all, roaches have survived massive changes and environmental threats over a period of 354 to 295 million years. THey must be doggone hard to kill.

@marinelife Great point about taking extra care with pets and children. Thanks.

@Pied_Pfeffer Good point. When termites are eating you out of house and home, you have little choice but to act with weapons up to the task.

@crisw Thanks for noting that there are repellants that some insects will not cross, but that are actuality quite safe, even being used to spice up our food.

@funkdaddy Great info. Thanks for the link. A flea infestation is unacceptable., They pose a significant health risk to humans though the bacteria they may carry frin their last meal. So it’s a trade-off You have to look at the risk of the cure versus the risk of the infestation. Sounds like you got on top of it, and I am glad to hear that.

@YARNLADY As long as they treat outside only, I would guess the rewards outweigh the risks. THanks.

@snowberry There is always the pet frog or pet spider. THey just eat all unwelcome little guests. :-)

@Cruiser Thanks for mentioning borax. You’re right, that makes an elcellent foundation wall barrier.,

@Bellatrix I’m glad to hear I am not the only one who questions the logic of some of the pesticide products. You’re right, keeping a clean house, no dirty dishes lingering around, is a easy, cost-free and effective way toi limit hymenoptera home invasions.

@King_Pariah Great suggestion. And that could stop a hoime invasion by the bipedal variety of pest, as well. :-)

@mazingerz88 Sorry to hear about the frontal assualt the bugs are hitting you with. There are some great, non-toxic suggestions above. Search out the species of pests that are currently plaguing you, and see which of the safe approaches above best handles your attackers., Good luck.

Symbeline's avatar

The occasional bug and spider I think are cool. I don’t mind them in here, as long as they don’t land in my beer. And even if I did mind, I have two cats that usually take care of them, anyways.

ETpro's avatar

@Symbeline Very cost effective approach. Here, the ones that somehow slip by Spoony THE cat get trapped inside a glass, sealed in with a 3×5 note card, and transported back outside where hunting (or whatever bug-work the do) is probably much better nayway.

snowberry's avatar

On another thread I mentioned that borax (sorry, I’m too tired to look it up) is used to kill a number of different bug/insect species (it’s the main ingredient in the ant killer Terro. A search for Borax as a pesticide will bring up a number of ways it’s used to kill a variety of bugs. It kills them if they eat it, but apparently it will also kill them if they walk through it, or if you spray them with it.

I knew a woman who moved from a home infested with cockroaches to a home that was not. She laid a trail of borax against all the walls, and left it that way. For several weeks I remember seeing dead bugs around if I visited her in the morning before she had a chance to clean them up.

ETpro's avatar

@snowberry The borax does do a great job, and inexpensively. But the 20 Mule Team bringing it in leaves such a mess, I’ll stick to just trapping and transporting with a glass and a 3×5 notecard.

snowberry's avatar

Yep, its messy for sure. I read you can also dissolve it in water and spray it around. The point is you have to get it on their body in some way. If you rinsed your floor with it and left it that way, they still might bet a little on their feet as they walked across it. It might still work, but I would imagine it would take longer, and you might have to use other products to augment.

YARNLADY's avatar

For indoor use, I have found that LYSOL® disinfectant spray works for killing bugs on contact.

snowberry's avatar

You can use straight amonia in a squirt bottle to kill flying insects. Get the squirt bottle with a powerful squirter -the kind that will shoot 15 feet or more (just your plain ol’ generic squirt bottle will do it). You can get one at any hardware store. It’s much safer than many other kinds of bug spray because it’s just fertilizer. If you spray it on an ant hill, it will make them steam. (Kinda weird)

ETpro's avatar

@YARNLADY & @snowberry Thanks. Those are pretty innocuous products.

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