• Three HVAC Maintenance Tips For Utah Residents

    January 28, 2014 // No Comments »

    Barring another Polar Vortex, Utah’s winter is typical. Cold, brisk, marvelously sunny, it keeps the air crystal clean. But, June, July, and August will heat things up. The weather cycles in Weber, Morgan, and Davis Counties want reliable and efficient HVAC comfort systems. What’s a homeowner to do this time of the year?

    HVAC

    What’s in an HVAC system?

    Even a properly running HVAC system adds up to a large piece of the household electric bill. Keeping it running smoothly maintains the energy savings. It is rather simple: if the system is not running easily, the struggle costs money. So, it makes good sense to anticipate the problems and prevent others.

    #1 – Some fixes are routine:

    1. Start outside to be sure the condenser is not covered by winter debris like leaves. It needs room to breathe and take in the air needed to cool and circulate, so clean windblown trash, clippings, and leaves from inside and outside the outdoor cabinet unit.
    2. Filters need changing regularly because dirty filters will reduce the air flow and the system’s efficiency. Fiber glass filters are easily replaced, and electrostatic filters can be washed clean.
    3. In late spring, let the air conditioning run for 15-20 minutes to see if and how it is working.
    4. As the spring progresses, the thermostat needs some adjustment to new desired temperatures and schedules.
    5. HVAC systems work well when clean, but cleaning with hose, water, and/or power spray invites damage and expense.
    6. Drafts and leaks felt indoors during the winter will still be there in the summer unless they are “winterized” with caulk, tape, or insulation.

    #2 – Some require a pro:

    1. State of the art thermostats require professional installation and programming for maximum value.
    2. Obstructions pan drain openings should be cleared.
    3. Some system filters and duct work require expert inspection.
    4. Motors need periodic lubrication and coils cleaned.
    5. Air flow is best measured with expert tools and gauges.
    6. Fan motors and blades are often worn and damaged and need repair.
    7. Controls – relays, capacitors, contactors, wiring, and connections – all need inspection and repair.
    8. Only professionals are trained in refrigerants, heat exchangers, and coils.

    A professional certified Utah heating and air conditioning company has a wealth of knowledge to assist users in fixing these issues.

    #3 – Reduce the total system load

    The system load refers to the amount of heating and cooling used. The load is key to determining the sufficiency of the system and the efficiency of its performance. Reducing the overall load saves in big and small ways.

    • Windows have ENERGY STAR ratings just like appliances, and they will help secure the house.
    • Insulation losses its effectiveness over time. It should be checked and supplemented every three years.
    • The seams in ductwork will crack and open over time. They should be checked and fixed at least annually.
    • Lighting systems and overhead fans alter static temperature. Both contribute to the stratification of the air, and that can work to the advantage or disadvantage of the overall HVAC performance.
    • Warm and cool air are affected by sunlight. This solar gain is most easily gained and controlled by the building’s orientation and the position of windows.
    • Admitting the outdoor environment in will influence the HVAC performance. On clear Utah days with moderate temperatures, the fresh air will perk up the house while the HVAC system is turned off.

    Early spring is time for the maintenance visit and, perhaps, signing that Maintenance Agreement for the future.

    Featured images:

    Gerald Jackson is a savvy home improvement diyer. It was a passion that was developed from a young age while working on home appliances alongside his father. When he’s not improving homes, Gerald enjoys playing basketball with his buddies and traveling.

    Posted in Home & Garden, Utah

    West Nile Virus Responsible For Bald Eagle Deaths

    January 6, 2014 // No Comments »

    Dead Bald Eagle

    Utah State officials, and nature lovers alike, have been left wondering what has been killing off our beloved bald eagles. Now scientists at the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources (DWR) believe they have an answer.

    Utah Bald Eagles Dying From West Nile

    Since the beginning of December 2013, some 27 bald eagles have been found dead, and scientists fear this number will continue to rise. Additionally, five other sick bald eagles are being treated at a DWR rehabilitation facility.

    In a public statement, the DWR believes they have found an answer as to why our adored national bird is dying… West Nile Virus (WNV)!

    Utah DWR lab tests confirm that Utah bald eagles are dying from West Nile Virus, contracted by eating other small birds known as grebes. Birds becoming infected with West Nile is actually very common, but we all hate to see it hit so close to home.

    The good news is that these aquatic birds (grebes) that the bald eagles are feeding on, which are carrying WNV, should be done with there winter migration. These bald eagle deaths should just about be over.

    If you find a dead bald eagle, or any other dead bird for that matter, it’s best to leave it alone; even if you cannot contract WNV from handling dead birds.

    Birds & West Nile Virus

    Infected mosquitoes transmit the West Nile Virus to birds; and Mosquitoes become infected by biting infected birds. It’s a vicious cycle. Some predatory birds, like the bald eagle in this case, that are predators can become infected with WNV after eating sick or dead birds that were already infected.

    West Nile Virus has been detected in over 300 different species of birds, with crows and jays being the most susceptible.

    Protect Yourself From West Nile

    West Nile Warning

    It’s unlikely that you’ll ever catch West Nile from a bird, but it is very possible that you can catch it from infected mosquitoes. When outdoors protect yourself by wearing clothing that covers your entire body; and spray yourself down with a mosquito repellant containing DEET. Mosquito activity is at its peek during the dusk hours, so limit your outdoor exposure during these times.

    Author Bio:  is a Utah native who was saddened to hear about the bald eagle’s deaths. When not enjoying the great outdoors, I’m blogging for Bulwark Exterminating in St. George, Utah.

    Posted in Mosquitoes

    Top 3 Pests In St. George

    November 4, 2013 // No Comments »

    With the summer of 2013 now officially at an end, I thought I’d ask the exterminators at Bulwark Pest Control in St. George what pests they were receiving the most phone calls about this past summer.

    These are the top three pests in St. George:

    3. Roaches

    Cockroach

    Cockroaches can cause so many different health problems, spreading bacteria, parasites and worms. In fact, germs that roaches pick up from consuming garbage and sewage are actually protected by a roaches’ body and can remain alive and active for weeks; allowing the dirty bugs to spread germs. It should come as no surprise, that roaches are called about quite frequently in St. George. In addition to being dirty disease spreading bugs, roaches are also very hardy and multiply like crazy. When you start to see a few of these inside your home or kitchen, it’s best to call a St. George roach exterminator before the problem grows.

    2. Spiders

    Black Widow Spider

    Despite the fact that spiders are beneficial, gobbling up millions of Southern Utah pests by injecting a chemical that liquefies their victims; nobody wants to find one in their bedroom. Of all the different species of spiders found in St. George, the Black Widow spider is the most infamous. With her shiny black abdomen marked underneath by a bright red hour glass, the Black Widow spider is unmistakable. When a homeowner finds a few in his or her home, they know that they are dealing with this venomous spider. Frequent sightings of Black Widow spiders require professional St. George spider control.

    1. Ants

    Fire ants

    A nation-wide survey was recently done by the National Pest Management Association (NPMA) in which participants were asked what pests they are experiencing the most. The number one response was ants. Those findings were equally shared by the residents of St. George, UT; as ants were the number one called about pests.

    Carpenter ants, Field ants, Pavement ants, and Fire ants are all found in St. George. With St. George’s dry weather and moderate winters, it allows these ants to multiply and spread very rapidly. Serious infestations of these ants require professional St. George ant control.

    St. George Pest Control

    If you live in Southern Utah, and are frequently seeing roaches, spiders, or ants of any kind, it’s time to call a St. George exterminator!

    Bulwark Exterminating
    56 North 500 East
    St. George, UT 84770
    (435) 627-8840
    bulwarkpestcontrol.com

    Truly Nolen Pest Control
    630 North 3050 East
    St. George, UT 84790
    (435) 688-1092
    trulynolen.com

    Terminix
    3568 West 900 South
    Salt Lake City, UT 84104
    (801) 618-2410
    terminix.com

    Posted in St. George Pest Control

    Treating Brown Recluse Bites Infographic

    October 14, 2013 // No Comments »

    Brown Recluse Spider

    The following infographic is an excellent resource for identifying a Brown Recluse; and what to do in the unlikely event of being bit by one of these dangerous spiders.

    Treating Brown Recluse Bites Infographic 

    Bulwark Exterminating Brown Recluse Infographic

    St. George Spider Control

    While the Brown Recluse spider is not commonly found in Southern Utah, there are other dangerous spiders that lurk. Some of these include the Black Widow Spider and the Desert Recluse. Even if the spider is not venomous or dangerous, like in cases involving Wolf spiders and common House spiders, you don’t want them in your St. George home, scurrying across your walls and floors.

    If you are frequently seeing spiders inside your St. George home, or on your property, it’s time you solicit the help of a spider control professional. Get St. George spider control today!

    Bulwark Exterminating
    56 North 500 East
    St. George, UT 84770
    (435) 627-8840
    bulwarkpestcontrol.com   
    Truly Nolen Pest Control
    630 North 3050 East
    St. George, UT 84790
    (435) 688-1092
    trulynolen.com   
    Terminix
    3568 West 900 South
    Salt Lake City, UT 84104
    (801) 618-2410
    terminix.com 

    Posted in Spider Control, St. George Pest Control

    Killer Bees Found in St. George

    June 5, 2013 // No Comments »

    Killer Bee Swarm

    The Utah Department of Agriculture and Food has been warning us for years, and now they have confirmed the existence of Africanized or Killer Bees in St. George, Utah; and multiple areas of Southern Utah as well.

    The Washington County commissioner has informed the public that the Killer bees were found in seven traps: three near St. George, and four in the Kanab area. After determining that the bees were in deed Africanized, they were quickly exterminated.

    Frequently found in most of Arizona and Texas, Killer Bees have been inching closer and closer to Utah. It now looks like they are here; but as to what extent, it is unknown. Experts say there is nothing to be alarmed about; residents of St. George just need to be aware that the killer bees are now in Utah.

    Africanized “Killer” Bees

    It is impossible for St. George residents to distinguish between Africanized Killer Bees and European honeybees by appearance, because both bees look the same. The only way to distinguish killer bees from other bees is their aggressive behavior. If killer bees are disturbed, the will viciously and relentlessly attack in swarms. These attacks can have deadly consequences.

    Africanized Killer Bee

    Don’t Get Stung By Killer Bees

    If you happen to see a hive of bees, of any kind, stop in your tracks. Walk away calmly as to not alarm the bees. Like I said before, they may be Killer Bees, they may not. There is no way to tell for sure. Just be aware of the bees and the situation. If you do happen to see a bee colony near your St. George home, get professional help from a bee removal specialist.

    To prevent any type of bee from making a hive near your home, take a few preventative measures. Make sure your home is not bee-friendly by cleaning up your property. Plug holes and hollow spaces in which Killer Bees like to build their nests.

    Pest Control In St. George

    The presence of killer “Africanized” bees is both a health and a safety risk to people and pets. Their presence can often time result in expensive damage to your property if their hive is not removed. Do not try to remove or exterminate the killer bees on your own, as attempts can be dangerous and even life threatening. Look to hire someone with professional training and protective equipment.

    Utah Bee Removal

    Utah Bee Removal
    13658 Bridle Trail Road
    Draper, UT 84020
    (801) 654-9700
    utahbeeremoval.com

    Utah Pest Control

    Bulwark Exterminating
    56 North 500 East
    St. George, UT 84770
    (435) 627-8840
    bulwarkpestcontrol.com

     

    Posted in St. George Pest Control

    Why The Honey Bee Is The State Insect of Utah

    May 14, 2013 // No Comments »

    Western honey bee

    Western honey bee (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

    Why The Honey Bee Is The State Insect of Utah

    The most popular state insect, of all the 50 US States, is the honey bee. In fact, the honey bee is the state insect of these 17 states: Arkansas, Georgia, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, New Jersey, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Vermont, Wisconsin, and of course… Utah.

    Some of these states claimed honey bees as their state insect early on during statehood, and others decided more recently. As to which species of honey bee state legislators were referring to when they designated the honey bee the state insect; your guess is a good as mine. There are actually seven different recognized species of honey bees, with 44 subspecies. My guess is that these state legislatures were simply assigning the honeybee as a state insect in its truest and purest form. The genus Apis are only true honey bees recognized by scientists.

    Why The Honey Bee Is The Most Popular State Insect

    It’s understandable to see why so many states have claimed the honey bee as their official state insect. Honey bees are dynamic and hardworking insects. The largest companies in the world have would love to get just 10% of the honey bee’s work ethic out of their employees. Just like any thriving civilization (or dynamic corporate office for that matter), each honey bee has a designated role within the hive. Check this out; a honey bee would even give its own life for the preservation of the hive and the queen. Now that’s dedication!

    Why The Honey Bee Is The State Insect of Utah

    In 1983, Utah designated the Western honey bee as the official state insect after a plea from a local fifth grade class. Utah is also known as the Beehive State; and designated the Western honey bee as the state insect, because it directly represents the hard work and dedication of a hive. In designating the Western honey bee as the state insect of Utah, the state would love for it’s citizens, and it’s society, to emulate that of a honey bee and their hives. In fact, the honey hive is so well respected that it even dons the Utah state flag.

    The Honey Bee

    Bees are an extremely beneficial group of insects, play key roles in pollinating flowering plants. There is even evidence that they can cure diseases like HIV. They are also social insects that live together in colonies or nests. Hive labor is divided and have a caste system composed of workers, queens, and males. During the warmer months, honey bees can be found about almost anywhere there are flowers in bloom.

    Unfortunately, 14 deaths a year are caused by honey bee stings. Deaths resulting from a honey bee sting are only typical when the sting victim has an allergic reaction.

    Author Bio: writes blogs for Bulwark Exterminating, which is an industry leader in providing high quality pest control service. Bulwark is fully operational in eleven cities, including St. George, Utah.

    Posted in Utah

    Utah Bedbug Law

    April 10, 2013 // No Comments »

    bedbug (Cimex sp.)

    bedbug (Cimex sp.) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

    During the past few years US cities, including St. George, UT, have been dealing with a bedbug epidemic. Bedbugs have been found in Southern Utah apartment complexes, hotels, movie theaters, buses, nursing homes, schools, hospitals, and even Dixie State College. Property managers and tenants alike need to be able to identify bedbugs, know the best bedbug prevention measures, and know the Utah bedbug laws.

    Southern Utah Bedbugs

    Adult bedbugs are reddish-brown in color, and are a flat, oval shape. After feeding on a blood meal, a bedbug will no longer be flat, but will appear engorged and swollen. They will also turn a darker red in color after eating a blood meal. Adult bedbugs are approximately ¼ inch in length. Bedbug larvae are much smaller.

    Bedbug Prevention Measures

    In know it’s easier said than done, but the best way to prevent bedbugs is to take caution when traveling and sleeping in hotels. Before crawling into an unfamiliar bed, thoroughly check the mattress seams and bedding for bedbug activity. Check the furniture, outlets, and baseboards for activity as well, as bedbugs like to hide there too.

    If you do happen to bring home some blood-sucking bedbugs, professional pest control measures should be taken.

    Utah Bedbug Laws

    Currently, there are 22 states in the United States that have bedbug laws. As of 4/2013, there is only one law in Utah’s books that specifically addresses bedbugs. It’s important to note, that proposed bedbug legislation is continuously being brought to the table, and that the laws can change. The law reads as follows:

    Utah Administrative Code Rule R392-200. Design, Construction, Operation, Sanitation, and Safety of Schools

    Effective measures intended to minimize the presence of bedbugs on the premises shall be utilized. The premises shall be maintained so that propagation, harborage, or feeding of is prevented.

    Source: http://www.rules.utah.gov/publicat/code/r392/r392-200.htm

    Seek A Bedbug Attorney

    The purpose of this blog post is to provide general information to the residents of Southern Utah. If you are a landlord, tenant, or bedbug victim, seek the professional advice of a licensed St. George attorney who specializes in bedbug cases.

    McMullin Legal Group, PLLC
    1240 East 100 South #6
    St. George, UT 84790
    (435) 673-9990
    stgeorgeutahattorneys.com
    Harris Lawyers PC
    4 S 2600 W # 6
    Hurricane, UT 84737
    (435) 635-9814
    harrislawyers.com
    Robert J. DeBry & Associates | St. George Office
    134 North 200 East #302
    St. George, UT 84770
    (435) 656-0198
    robertdebry.com

    St. George Pest Control

    If you have the unfortunate task of battling bedbugs, don’t go at it alone. Instead, get the help of a licensed pest control professional. The same goes for battles against cockroaches, ants, spiders, and scorpions. Get pest control!

    General Pest Control

    Bulwark Exterminating
    56 North 500 East
    St. George, UT 84770
    (435) 627-8840
    bulwarkpestcontrol.com

    Bedbug Control

    Western Pest Control
    303 West 300 North
    Hurricane, UT 84737
    (435) 635-1456
    wpest.com

    Posted in Pest Control

    Help With Fire Ants

    March 22, 2013 // No Comments »

    IMG_1601.JPG

    Fire Ants 

    If you’ve lived in Southern Utah for long, you’ve likely had an unfortunate encounter with the Red Imported Fire ant. After making its unwanted debut in the late 1930’s, the fire ant has spread to most of the southern states. They sting, they bite, and they destroy property.

    Appearance

    Red Imported Fire ants have red bodies, and black abdomens. The worker ants range in size from 1/16 to 1/4 of an inch in length. There bodies are covered with long, bristly hairs.

    Mounds 

    ant mounds

    Red Imported Fire Ant nests are easily identifiable because of their large mounds that protrude above the ground. These mounds reach heights of almost three feet high, and can measure two feet in diameter. Fire ant nests can also reach depths of over eight feet. These mounds cause significant property and environmental damage; damaging tree and plant roots, and electrical equipment in which they are attracted.

    Range 

    English: Potential future distribution of the ...

    Characteristics 

    Red Imported Fire ants do bite, but they are well known for their painful stings. If a homeowner reports being stung by an ant, it’s safe to assume it’s a Red Imported Fire ant. No other species of North American ant can sting; although others will bite. Fire ants are very aggressive pests. If disturbed, hundreds of stinging worker ants will spill out of the nest in order to defend it. Pest control professionals and homeowners alike should take extreme caution when dealing with these malevolent ants.

    Help With Fire Ants

    Eliminating those pesky fire ants from your property is no easy task. If you opt for over-the-counter pest control products that come in aerosol cans to solve the problem, you’ll be disappointed. They don’t work. The fire ants will scatter, only to return to their nest when traces of the pesticides subside. Instead, seek the services of an ant control professional.

    If you have been unsuccessful in your attempts to control fire ants around your property, a pest control company who specializes in ant control is the way to go. These companies are up-to-date on all the effective methods used to control fire ants. They will provide a combination of baits, sprays, drenches, and granules; consistently. Their continual and effective strategy will eliminate the fire ants from your home.

    Ant Control St. George

    Bulwark Exterminating
    56 North 500 East
    St. George, UT 84770
    (435) 627-8840
    bulwarkpestcontrol.com 
    Truly Nolen Pest Control
    630 North 3050 East
    St. George, UT 84790
    (435) 688-1092
    trulynolen.com 
    Terminix
    3568 West 900 South
    Salt Lake City, UT 84104
    (801) 618-2410
    terminix.com 

    Posted in Ant Control, St. George Pest Control

    Insects That Look Worse Than They Are

    March 14, 2013 // No Comments »

    In the world of insects, sometimes looking intimidating is enough to deter a predator. The shape and colors of insects say a lot about it’s adaptability and presence in the wild. In nature, bright colors are often a warning to stay away because of venom or poison, but this is not always the case since sometimes these merely act as decoys. Size and shape also serve to protect from and deter predators, but don’t mean that the insect is fearsome and aggressive.

    To us humans, insects inspire responses ranging from revulsion to apprehension to total fear. Much of this comes from a natural dislike of bugs that crawl and buzz and fly. Since there are about 1.5 billion insects for every one of us, getting somewhat comfortable with this class of invertebrate may be important. Here are some insects whose creepy reputation outweighs their actual ability to do you harm.

    Cockroaches

    Cockroaches

    Cockroaches (Photo credit: Destinys Agent)

    These probably make the top of most lists of insects nearly everyone either actively hates, is generally revolted by, or would categorically avoid if nearby. While cockroaches are ugly and creepy looking, they don’t bite. Their only harm is the spread of bacteria, but this can be avoided in clean areas. One reason for their reputation as fearsome insects is that they are often found in large numbers and thus have the ability to truly disgust as a group.

    Dragonflies

    Dragonfly

    Dragonfly (Photo credit: Shoops2011)

    Something about large, fast moving, flying, multi-colored insects inspires a nervous fear that we can’t overcome. Dragonflies are large and creepy looking, but totally harmless to humans. In fact, dragonflies do a lot of good by eating mosquitoes and other small destructive insects that pester you a lot more and are actually much more harmful.

    Praying Mantis

    English: A South African praying mantis (Mioma...

    These are pretty well known to be harmless to humans, but many people are afraid of contact with the garden insects. The praying mantis is quite hideous and has a fearsome disposition for smaller insects, but the worst you will get is a slight pinch by picking one up. Many a kid has even made a pet out of the praying mantis, so despite the loathsome appearance, these insects are quite docile.

    Scarab Beetles

    English: Malham Tarn: Cockchafer beetle Chafer...

    English: Malham Tarn:  (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

    These are large, stout beetles that look more intimidating than they actually are. They often have bright, metallic colored bodies and are scavengers for dung and decaying plant matter. The size and color of these beetles make them seem harmful, but they are harmless and will usually do everything they can to avoid you.

    Spiders

    Spider 028

    Spider 028 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

    These arthropod insects can be both harmless and very deadly. For this reason, most people avoid contact with spiders. The assumption is that any spider you come across could bite you and potentially be venomous. Realistically, most spiders don’t have lethal venom and will not bite. Exercising caution is always a good idea around spiders, but the general rule is that by leaving them alone, they will leave you alone. Most spider bites result from carelessness or unintentionally getting too near a web.

     

    Ben Vaughn writes on pest extermination in Utah and understanding insects and home infestation.

     

    Posted in Pest Control

    Valentine’s Day Cockroaches

    February 11, 2013 // No Comments »

    Valentine’s Day Cockroaches

    Cockroaches can ruin an otherwise perfect Valentine’s Day, even if you have taken the time to buy her expensive jewelry and roses. Cockroaches are a romance killer. Show her how much you love her this Valentine’s Day by getting roach control.

    Pest Control St. George UT 

    Bulwark Exterminating
    56 North 500 East
    St. George, UT 84770
    (435) 627-8840
    bulwarkpestcontrol.com   
    Truly Nolen Pest Control
    630 North 3050 East
    St. George, UT 84790
    (435) 688-1092
    trulynolen.com   
    Terminix
    3568 West 900 South
    Salt Lake City, UT 84104
    (801) 618-2410
    terminix.com

    Posted in Roach Control, St. George Pest Control

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