Mice, mites, and beetles, oh my! There are a variety of pests that can be unwelcome guests in commercial buildings. Many building service contractors offer pest management as part of a larger portfolio of services to give their customers peace of mind that creatures will not be crawling around their facilities. Pest sightings can lead to complaints, negative word of mouth, and reputational damage. Thus, proper pest management is crucial for upholding brand image and making every facility a welcoming space for occupants. Pest management also has a positive impact on carpet. Read on to learn more about the connection and recommendations for dealing with unwanted critters.
Common Creatures Creating Havoc
While there are many types of rodents and insects that can reside in and around commercial buildings, consider the impact the following creatures can have on a commercial carpet care program and overall cleanliness.
- Rodents – Mice and rats are some of the most unpleasant pests because they are large enough to see and they are associated with uncleanliness. Rodents also present challenges because their droppings and urine can pass on infectious viruses in some cases. They also urinate quite frequently, which can give carpet an ammonia smell. Meanwhile, rats can produce about 40 droppings in a day and mice can produce around 80.
- Dust mites – Dust mites are arachnids with eight legs. They are too tiny to see with the naked eye, which can make it difficult to know whether a facility has an issue with dust mites. The best course of action is to clean regularly to ensure that dust mites are not living within your customers’ buildings. Dust mites feed on skin cells and while they do not bite, they can cause allergic reactions in some people. This can manifest as a skin irritation, sneezing or coughing.
- Carpet beetles – These incredibly small beetles can be black in color or feature mixed patterns of brown, yellow, and white. They often infest carpet to feed on a protein called keratin. If there are food soils embedded in carpet, this can further increase the chances of an infestation. These beetles also like congregating in areas with lint and hair. Female beetles can lay up to 100 eggs, so it is important to catch them early on or implement tactics that prevent them from taking up residence inside.
Best Practices for Managing Carpet Pests
Service providers can implement the carpet bug control tips below to keep pests from taking up residence in their customers’ facilities and properly address infestations that do occur.
- Vacuum regularly – It may sound like a relatively simple solution, but vacuuming is one of the easiest ways to avoid the accumulation of dust mites and carpet beetles as well as spot the early signs of rodent infestations. It is important to vacuum all carpeted areas and to be especially mindful of areas near baseboards that may attract extra dust and lint. Service providers should also address heating vents to clear out any potential food or nesting materials.
- Set traps – There are a variety of different rodent traps available on the market and service providers can place these in various areas of a building. From ceilings and basements to kitchen areas, there are certain areas where rodents typically congregate. These tend to be areas that dot see frequent use or those where access to food and nesting materials is easy.
Whether you opt for snap traps, glue traps, live traps, or even the use of peppermint oil to repel rodents, be sure to look out for the signs of an infestation. If you smell urine, hear squeaking noises, or see droppings, gnaw marks, footprints, you may need to take further actions to eliminate rats or mice.
- Target organic stains with the right chemistry – Take the proper precautions when dealing with rodents, as they may be infected. Wear gloves and shoe coverings and use a specially formulated chemistry that targets urine and feces stains. Not only will this chemistry address the visible stains that rodents can leave on carpet, but it will also help to remove the unpleasant odors associated with these marks.
Parting with Pests
The last thing facility managers want to hear is a complaint about a rodent sighting or carpet mite infestation. This makes pest management an important part of every facility maintenance program. Pests can upset building occupants and visitors, negatively impact health and wellbeing, and can signal that a facility does not prioritize cleanliness. By taking preventative steps to keep pests from making their home inside your customers’ buildings, you can avoid many of the negative consequences that carpet bugs create and further reduce maintenance costs.