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Caulking Question

(6 posts)
  1. Legette

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Tue Aug 23 2011 10:52:19
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    We would like to caulk our baseboards but I have a few questions first that maybe someone can answer:

    Backgroud: Single family home with partial finsihed basement. Painted molding, wood, pergo and tile floors throughout whole house including in the basement (except for some basement area that is just cement slab). Very few cracks, holes and crevices where baseboards meet floors. Top of baseboards, windows and door frames are already caulked. Wood floors were redone about a year and 1/2 a go so there are very few "spaces" mostly just an old nail hole here and there from where the carpet use to be. Had first professional treatment last Friday, next treatment is this coming Friday. According to PCO the infestation was not that bad - seemed limited to the bed in our masterbedroom of which we haven't seen any since. However, we did find one live one and one dead one in the guest bedroom since our first treatment.

    Questions (sorry if any of them seem silly):

    1) If we caluk and there are live bed bugs in the walls will they live and multiple in there?

    2) If they multiply, will they evetually find a way to "breakout" and/or will they work their way down to the basement where part of the ceiling is exposed?

    2) Is it best to wait till all of our treatment sessions are over before we caulk or should we do it before they're finished?

    3) Would also like to steamclean after we get approval to do so from our PCO since we already had a treatment; I'm assuming we should do it before we caulk?

    4) Or is it better not to caulk?

    Any info anyone could share would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks!

  2. cilecto

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Tue Aug 23 2011 16:03:41
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    I'm not an expert, but suspect that caulking is primarily done before an infestation or after effective treatment, to prevent bugs from infiltrating from adjoining units in an apartment building, via common walls or via utilities. As you are in a single-family home and mid treatment, I'd suspect that caulking for you should not be a priority. If you're in an attached home situation, you might want to speak with an expert to determine how to approach isolating from your neighbors.

    Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night...
    - Psalms 91:5-7

    (Not an pro)
  3. prephelpny2011

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Tue Aug 23 2011 18:52:32
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    These are great questions, would love to see answers.
    We caulked after second treatment because we live in an apartment and our neighbor has bedbugs and we suspect we got them from her. Never thought of all these questions first!

  4. Rosae

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Wed Aug 24 2011 4:43:09
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    It depends on how easy it is to take away the baseboards. If you can remove them without damage you can make the wall underneath smoother with wall filler. I would never try to seal them while they are still attached to the wall, because they only need one tiny opening to create a perfect nest, which you can't approach anymore with your steamer or DE.

    To remove my baseboards (tropical hardwood) I'll need a hammer and a chisel and will make my neighbours nuts for quite some time and after that I'll need to buy new baseboards anyway.

  5. BuggyDad

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Wed Aug 24 2011 8:11:28
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    If you've ever seen an early stage nymph, you'll see that ANY teeny tiny void is big enough for them to hide. If you really seal well with caulk, you might avoid them being chased by treatment from your mattress etc into the walls / behind baseboards. THAT'S JUST MY AMATEUR OPINION. (and I've already made other mistakes)

  6. BugsInTO

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Wed Aug 24 2011 9:48:30
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    We're in a semi-detached house. We did not caulk. Based on reading & advice we got (and the great support from this forum) we decided to leave things "open" so the bugs could come out and cross the poison and die.

    I don't think caulking can "seal" up the bugs so that they literally can't find a way out. The risk is that caulking becomes an obstacle that delays their reappearance, so that they show up after you think you are "clear" and become a "reinfestatation".

    One thing we did do was apply a silicone seal on our bedroom parquette floor. The parquette is laid on concrete and it had lots of little crevices etc. My husband carefully put the silicone between every tile. It really seemed to help. But, the siicone wasn't acting as a barrier. It there were any bedbug nymphs or bedbug eggs in the crevices between the parquette, they were glued into place by the seal.


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