Jerry Ludwig 6:00 a.m. ET June 2, 2017
Laurie Broccolo gives you expert lawn care tips to give you a healthy lawn year round.
1 of 11
A couple in the UK decided to adapt to the lifestyle changes of having a baby, by just building their own bar in the backyard. Keri Lumm (@thekerilumm) reports. Buzz60
2 of 11
Money-saving expert Matt Granite breaks down 5 simple ways to save on your utility bills when they’re usually highest.
3 of 11
Harold T. Harrington, Busines Manager of Plumbers & Pipefitters U.A. Local 370 helps Flint residents detect if their home has lead pipes. Ryan Garza Detroit Free Press
4 of 11
Money saving expert Matt Granite outlines the top 3 ways you can increase the value of your home with these simple home improvement projects.
5 of 11
Brooke Fedigan, the DIY Dutchess, shows you how to organize tools in a mudroom using pegboard. Brooke Fedigan/For the Poughkeepsie Journal
6 of 11
When it comes to home improvements, it turns out many people are spending money just to lose even more money when it comes time to resell. Mara Montalbano (@maramontalbano) has more. Buzz60
7 of 11
You may fancy yourself an amateur house flipper. But wild paint choices, swimming pools and home offices may cost you more than you think. Emily Heckelman (@emilyheckelman) has the details. Buzz60
8 of 11
Charlie Garrett, VP of Garrett Heating and Plumbing Company gives tips on how to keep pipes from freezing during days and nights with temperatures below freezing. KENNETH CUMMINGS/The Jackson Sun
9 of 11
Erica Klopf applied her art and ecology studies at FGCU to landscape design. Klopf is creating edible eco systems one garden at a time, like this organic vegetable garden at the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation. Andrea Melendez/news-press.com
10 of 11
Erica Klopf applied her art and ecology studies at FGCU to landscape design. Klopf is creating edible eco systems one garden at a time for clients like Pirate Palms, a guest house with a a back yard food forest in Naples. Amanda Inscore
11 of 11
Broccolo Tree and Lawn Care: Expert lawn care tips
New parents build backyard bar to enjoy while their baby sleeps
How to lower your utility bills this summer and beyond
How to tell if your water line is lead
Three home improvement projects to increase value
DIY Dutchess – Organizing tools with pegboard
Home renovations that give you the most bang for your buck
Home ‘improvements’ that might hurt your property value
VIDEO: Plumbing company VP gives tips on keeping pipes from freezing
Edible Landscape: Organic Garden
Edible Landscape: Back Yard Food Forest
A carpenter ant walks on wood damaged by carpenter ants.(Photo: Karl Rabe/Poughkeepsie Journal)
Dear Jerry: For 52 years now, we have had big ants, carpenter type, every May. We see piles of sawdust, so we know they are causing some damage.
I have sprayed them and the area where they work with RAID and similar products. Repeated spraying seems to stop the visible action, but who knows what goes on up inside the structure?
I have set out jar lids of boric acid, which we have had for many years. Indoor areas. Boric acid is no longer available at drugstores.
We called an exterminator last year who discussed their treatment and left his card for us to call this year.
Id be grateful if you could discuss homeowner treatments of carpenter ants versus the expensive programs that exterminators offer.
I have read of homeowner powders that ants carry back to their nest, but do they work?
G.N.R., Brighton If there ever was an alarm to take action, this is it. Fifty-two years of sawdust? Holy cow, its a wonder that the house is still standing. Although boric acid is available, (Mayer Hardware carries it), its past the time to call for help.
Carpenter ants will use trees, vegetation and even utility lines as a walkway to a building. They then drop off the walk and look for nesting areas. Damp wood and wood rot is a major draw, but according to exterminator John Fraysier of Castleguard Pest Management, they will also nest in solid, dry wood.
If the nest is visible, Frazier will use a topical spray. If not, then a spray with a product that the ants can take back to the nest is used.
Boxed in: Expect a lot of box elder bugs this year
In either case, its time for you to hire a professional. No. 1, they should survey and evaluate the damage caused by 52 years of infestation, and No. 2, the current infestation should be treated. You may well need a carpenter to remove surface trim and repair any damaged areas. The sawdust (both past and present) should provide clues as to where the damage has and is occurring.
Carpenter ants dont just go away, and a professional with the equipment and experience is worth the cost. As always, read the contract and check cost for additional treatments, since an annual inspection and treatment as necessary is recommended.
Big brown bat(Photo: Merlin Tuttle/Bat Conservation International)
Dear Jerry: Your column is always informative and appreciated. Thank you for sharing your expertise.
The question my family has is how to discourage bats from roosting behind our louvered shutters. A few years ago we discovered bats behind two of our shutters. While we do appreciated the benefits of having bats in the area, it is less than desirable to host a colony behind shutters on the house.
In an effort to discourage them we took our shutters down the last two summers. We thought that was long enough time, but when we put them back up this spring, the bats soon started returning. The shutters are again being stored for the duration of the season.
Any advice you can offer to make our current shutters bat-proof will be very much appreciated. Otherwise, its off to the store to unhappily invest in bat-proof shutters if, indeed, there are such things.
W. & C.R. via email
First, Im glad that you do appreciate the benefit of having bats around. They can consume thousands of insects over a season. However, having them roost in the house or, in your case, behind shutters is a major nuisance.
Since the shutters are removable, thats a plus. There are several steps that you can take and, hopefully, one or more will help. If the bats are clinging to the back of the louvers, try stapling some plastic sheeting to the back of the shutters. That way they cannot get a firm foothold to rest upon. An even more permanent fix is to screw Plexiglas to the rear of the shutters. Depending upon the siding on the house, you may need to put plastic on it as well.
Real estate columnist Jerry Ludwig(Photo: File photo)
(If the shutters were fixed, I might suggest placing a foam gasket around the perimeter of the shutters. The foam pipe insulation used around water pipes might be useful here.)
Mothballs may also help, given their strong odor. Take some fiberglass screen or other foldable mesh, place some mothballs in it and staple to the areas behind the shutters. The keep-off-the-furniture pet sprays may help, although Id try the moth balls first. High-pitched noise boxes sometimes may work.
Before you begin the eviction process, I suggesting purchasing and installing a bat box or two nearby. That may provide an incentive for the bats to relocate.
Please let me know what works. Jerry Ludwig is a former contractor and home inspector. He is an honorary member of the American Institute of Architects. Email your house questions email@example.com write him at P.O. Box 25510, Rochester, NY 14625. Please include the year your house was built and the town where you live.
Read or Share this story: http://on.rocne.ws/2rybhNC
- 10 Fascinating Facts About Ants - ThoughtCo - June 2nd, 2019
- Do I Need an Exterminator To Get Rid of Ants? | COMBAT - April 26th, 2019
- Ants | Pest Control Omaha - Exterminator | Omaha Pest ... - April 4th, 2019
- Black Ants: Bite, Types, Size | Western Exterminator - February 15th, 2019
- AAA Exterminating Co - Exterminator Termite Control - February 10th, 2019
- Pest Control for Greensboro Charlotte Raleigh and Central NC - January 25th, 2019
- Ant Control - Dealing with Ants | Western Exterminator - January 10th, 2019
- Ants and Ant Control - Eastside Exterminators - November 21st, 2018
- Carpenter Ants Exterminator in CT | EliminateEm - October 11th, 2018
- How to Get Rid of Flying Ants | Ehrlich Pest Control - September 17th, 2018
- Carpenter ants in Chicago best ant pest control exterminator - July 23rd, 2018
- Ant Control: Pest Control for Ants by Arrow Exterminators - July 12th, 2018
- Cost to Hire an Ant Exterminator - Estimates and Prices at ... - May 24th, 2018
- Exterminator in Connecticut - Bee Smart Pest Control - May 13th, 2018
- Carpenter Ant Control - Get Rid of Carpenter Ants - Orkin.com - May 11th, 2018
- Ant Exterminator in Buffalo, NY - Buffalo Exterminating - May 11th, 2018
- Ant Control & Ant Killer Products | DIY Ant Pest Control - April 5th, 2018
- Borax to Kill Ants | Ant Exterminator Blog - February 22nd, 2018
- Ant Control & Ant Killer Products | Do My Own - November 20th, 2017
- Pest Control Secaucus, NJ, | Exterminator Cost Secaucus ... - November 14th, 2017
- Exterminator Reveals Cheap Secret: Never see ants in your ... - September 26th, 2017
- Pest Control Products and Services Market Projected to Reflect 5.4% CAGR by 2026 - Digital Journal - September 7th, 2017
- It's Northwest spider season; what you can do around your home - KIRO Seattle - September 5th, 2017
- High Heat Sparks Ant Invasion CBS Los Angeles - CBS Los Angeles - September 1st, 2017
- Condo Smarts: Signs of pests call for quick action - The Province - September 1st, 2017
- Texas Floods Bring Floating Fire Ant Colonies - PCT Magazine - September 1st, 2017
- Friday, August 25, 2017 - LWW Journals (blog) - August 25th, 2017
- Column: Round the Town with Karen Wyant - Jackson County Times-Journal (blog) - August 14th, 2017
- Cynthia Drummond: Signs of transition from summer to fall - The Westerly Sun - August 14th, 2017
- Gardening column: Follow these tips to ensure healthy raspberry and blackberry bushes - News Sentinel - August 12th, 2017
- Invasion of the Sugar Ants - Longmont Observer - August 9th, 2017
- Bar Rescue Episode Transforms Bug-Infested Liquid Lounge Into The Tidal Bay Beach Bar - Long Beach Post - August 9th, 2017
- Limb Days and election application deadlines approaching - Hays Free Press - July 31st, 2017
- Fire Ant Fears Boost Japan Pesticide Maker to 30-Year High ... - Bloomberg - July 5th, 2017
- Experience has Produced a Leader In Omaha Miller Pest & Termite - Digital Journal (press release) - July 5th, 2017
- Marvel Takes Home 4 2017 Saturn Awards - Marvel (press release) (registration) (blog) - July 1st, 2017
- 'Marvel's Inhumans' Debuts First Official Trailer - News | Marvel.com - Marvel (press release) (registration) (blog) - June 29th, 2017
- 'Marvel's Inhumans' Unveils First Poster - Marvel (press release) (registration) (blog) - June 26th, 2017
- The Defenders Strike a Pose in New Poster - Marvel (press release) (registration) (blog) - June 25th, 2017
- The season for unwanted pests - 1011now - June 24th, 2017
- 'Marvel's Rocket & Groot' Eligible for Outstanding Short ... - Marvel.com - Marvel (press release) (registration) (blog) - June 22nd, 2017
- Vote 'Marvel's Agents of SHIELD' At The Teen Choice Awards 2017 - Marvel (press release) (registration) (blog) - June 21st, 2017
- Everyday cheapskate: Make your own safe and effective ant spray ... - Herald & Review - June 19th, 2017
- Make your own safe ant spray - Coos Bay World - June 17th, 2017
- The Avengers Must Reunite to Defeat the Kabal in - News | Marvel ... - Marvel (press release) (registration) (blog) - June 17th, 2017
- The Top Five Exterminators in Movies - TVOvermind - June 15th, 2017
- The Kitchn: Can lemon peels really keep ants away? - Orlando Sentinel - June 13th, 2017
- 10 things to keep in mind about fire ants - Island Packet - June 12th, 2017
- Large spider climbs into ND woman's home, turns out it's common for our area - Valley News Live - June 10th, 2017
- Bullet Ant - Ask The Exterminator - June 8th, 2017
- Ant-Man Shrinks Into Action With 3 New Animated Shorts - Marvel (press release) (registration) (blog) - June 8th, 2017
- How to safely enjoy summer outdoors - Foster's Daily Democrat - May 28th, 2017
- 5 Warning Signs That Your Home Has Been Invaded by Pests - RealtyBizNews - May 23rd, 2017
- Sugar Ants on Picnic Menu for Memorial Day a pest control warning - MENAFN.COM - May 21st, 2017
- Sun's out, bugs out: Pests we can expect as summer creeps closer - WKBN.com - May 19th, 2017
- Exterminators see boom in business thanks to weather - KAKE - May 19th, 2017
- Standing water could lead to bacteria and surge of mosquitoes - 13WHAM-TV - May 18th, 2017
- Pest Control Services Market is Expected to Cross US$ 22 Billion Globally by 2026 - Finance Wire - May 17th, 2017
- Bigger Is Better: 15 LARGEST Marvel Comics Characters - CBR (blog) - May 16th, 2017
- Mother's Day: A Tribute to My Mom as She Dodged Four Hurricanes - Dan's Papers - May 15th, 2017
- Review: The Hugo Boss Prize 2016: Anicka Yi, Life Is Cheap - Time Out New York (blog) - May 6th, 2017
- Anicka Yi's Art Is an Enigma Wrapped in an Ant Farm - artnet News - May 3rd, 2017
- The Bugs Of The World Could Squish Us All - FiveThirtyEight - May 3rd, 2017
- Trump Thought Being President Would Be 'Easier' Than His Old Life - Scary Mommy - April 29th, 2017
- Spring fever - Newton Daily News - April 28th, 2017
- Greater Seattle Area has Marching Armies of Little Black and big ... - MENAFN.COM - April 27th, 2017
- Pest control services market is expected to exceed US$ 22 Billion by 2026: Market Research Engine - Finance Wire - April 18th, 2017
- Warm winter will bring crazy summer - crazy ants, that is - Beaumont Enterprise - April 10th, 2017
- Seattle Has Big Black Ants Attacking Homes commercial buildings like bull doozers - MENAFN.COM - April 8th, 2017
- How to say goodbye to wet-weather bug infestations in the home ... - Stuff.co.nz - April 7th, 2017
- What to do about flying ants in your home - thespruce.com - April 3rd, 2017
- April Maintenance Tips for Your Palestine, TX House - Palestine Herald Press - April 3rd, 2017
- Oakland CA Pest Control Cockroaches Rodent Exterminator Site Launched - MilTech - March 31st, 2017
- Romex Pest & Termite Control in McKinney Opens - Digital Journal - March 30th, 2017
- Spring can mean pest home invasion | News | edmondsun.com - Edmond Sun - March 30th, 2017
- How to head off a household disaster - The Boston Globe - March 25th, 2017
- Unwelcome lunchroom guests: Regina General Hospital deals with ant infestation - CBC.ca - March 24th, 2017
- Black ants only get in Seattle King county homes or commercial ... - MilTech - March 24th, 2017
- Black Ants invade a Seattle commercial building home with a vengeance - MENAFN.COM - March 12th, 2017
- Winter didn't come to Tampa Bay, so now the termites and ants will ... - TBO.com - March 11th, 2017