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Found a pco

(9 posts)
  1. Beth

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Fri Jul 30 2010 9:37:22
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    So, I am at my wit's end with these things. The DE doesn't work 100%, though it is helping. But it is also dehydrating to my lungs and the dehydration seems to be contributing to my uti. This stuff cannot be on my floors forever. My plan was to seal my floors, but that will take a lot of time and in the meantime, I am beyond stressed out. It seemed no good fair company existed in WNY. Well, I found one. I don't know if they are good, but they use Bedlam and Phantom, come out twice for $375 and $125 after that. They send a prep sheet, though do not use steam, etc. and did not mention a dust, though I have that covered with DE in the outlets and phone jacks.

    I am comfortable with Phantom being used as it is not a neurotoxin and is effective. I am not as comfortable or impressed with Bedlam. My bugs don't respond to pyrethrins, though I do, with sinus infections at the very least, and I am wondering if I can ask them simply to not use it and instead use a contact killer I have on hand, like the Eco Exempt or Orange Oil. What do you think?

    I really didn't want to go down this route. But I see no other solution. I cannot afford $2600 for thermal nor the backbreaking work of diy any longer. DE is good and may do the trick, but I can't wait for months with this gunk on my floors that makes me so dry.

    thanks-
    Amy

  2. spideyjg

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Fri Jul 30 2010 9:54:42
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    Sorry to hear of your problems Amy.

    I get labeled a worry wort, alarmist, crack pot or PCO conspirator and got thrown under the bus on Yahoo because I will not agree with the hucksters and other folks that say food grade DE is 100% harmless and keep beating the drum about it.

    As you now know firsthand it can lead to problems. It is an agent that kills things Nothing that does that is 100% safe.

    Jim

  3. Beth

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Fri Jul 30 2010 11:33:54
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    hey Jim,

    I think DE appropriately applied is very safe. I just think with the amount of cracks in my wood floors, literally between every thin panel, too much is needed for someone with asthma. Even the floors in my kitchen are wood.

    That said, it has worked very well and I am going to keep using it in strategic spots unless the pco says otherwise, like outlets, phone jacks, entrance to my bedroom. It's a good dust. I just think I need a chemical as well b/c of my floors and Phantom would make me very happy.

    Yes, DE made me dehydrated, but it didn't make me severely ill or send me to the er. All of these things have the potential to make us ill, I agree Jim. Aside from moving naked, there is no surefire safe way to beat these things. I am scared for the chemicals to come too, but feel more comfortable allowing someone else apply them and vacating for 24-48 hours.

    The company I am working with seems to be good. I asked them all of my questions and hope we can work together with my chemical sensitivities.

    The next step is going and getting the stuff I want this year from storage so my place is not reinfested, packtiting it and leaving it in my place for treatment. Then, to seal the wood floors. Whoa boy will that be tons of fun in this space. I wish I could seal them before the pco comes, but it doesn't look likely. That a tremendous project for someone who knows nothing about flooring.

    peace-
    Amy

  4. spideyjg

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Fri Jul 30 2010 11:46:47
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    Beth - 9 minutes ago  » 
    hey Jim,
    I think DE appropriately applied is very safe. I just think with the amount of cracks in my wood floors, literally between every thin panel, too much is needed for someone with asthma. Even the floors in my kitchen are wood.-
    Amy

    The key things is appropriately applied. My place has lots of strategic places dusted. I love DE and dusts in general but respect the risks.

    There is a thread how I assembled furniture using DE and sealants to make them resistant to infestation.

    Jim

  5. Beth

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Fri Jul 30 2010 12:13:37
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    cool, I will have to check that out. I am about to purchase a sealant from AFM Safecoat, DuraStain I think it is, for my wood floors. It says not to be applied by the average user, which would be me. Now I am thinking I will have to hire someone to seal my floors!? I don't think I am in health to undertake such a large project. It's very low VOC, no formadehyde, but even the manual labor might get me. I pretty much have enough wood flooring here as a small house. My partner is a carpenter but out in WA and we are flat out too broke to travel with this problem going on.

    Is sealing difficult Jim? What other strategic spots do you have the DE besides outlets and phone jacks? I also put some under heat vents (though not in them!)

    thanks-
    Amy

  6. Beth

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Fri Jul 30 2010 15:50:02
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    omg, my pco is going to use Sterifab in place of Bedlam, and Phantom. Sterifab and Phantom. And is ok with me having used DE in outlets. You can't get a better low toxin bed bug elimination program unless you have thousands for thermal.

    They are affordable and know what they are doing and won't poison me and are working with me rather than apart from me. Whoa. Do you think this nightmare may actually end for me?

    And my partner, after I nearly broke down on the phone today, has agreed to fly out to help me seal my floor and do some work here while she looks for a job out here. We just have to find a bit of money for that to happen, probably not for another month.

    Pco comes Wednesday and I'm actually...excited?! Omg, I will do everything they say. Dance around in bunny slippers if it's the orders (after having packtited them of course).

    One person cannot cover so much floor area alone. That is why I am bringing in a pco. Besides that you can't use Phantom in NY without a license (and I wouldn't want to). I am so hopeful this works; I may finally have a reference to give people up in Western NY.

    Pray.

    Amy

  7. Beth

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Sat Jul 31 2010 18:13:03
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    the pco hasn't even gotten here yet and all of my work is already paying off. My old bites are healing and I am rarely, if ever, getting bitten. It is actually hard to tell; everytime I have an itch in a place I don't remember an old bite I think it's a new one. I also have a few mosquitos as there is a gap in my window I have to fix so it's hard to tell when I get a bite what it is now. I did see two bedbugs here before I laid the DE so know they are here, but I also have a few flying friends. But I haven't seen any new obvious bed bug bites or bed bugs in a day or so and I was getting eaten alive before I isolated the bed and gave the DE time to work. As I have been spraying orange oil on the floor near my computer, they are not bugging me there either. The DE in every single floor crack in the bedroom has been amazing. I am still having the pco come just for extra assurance that Phantom will provide. I will ask them when they come if I can lay down some DE strategically afterwards and what else I can do that won't disturb the pesticide. Tomorrow I am going to pick up some of my stuff from storage and packtiting it before the pco comes and have ordered some more caulk to do the entire apartment. In terms of wood filler and sealant, I am thinking of going with Elmer's carpenter's glue wood filler and AFM Safecoat's DuroStain. That is going to be a long process though and so glad my partner will be helping. I will also be repairing some holes in the wall and repainting the kitchen and foyer and must figure out what to do aboout the tremendously big cracks in my staircase. My home will be bed bug proof, or at least resistant. The pco here said they are exploding around here, she said it's "out of control" and it seems so. I am not convinced actually that they weren't here when I moved in.

    I have to say, orange oil, DE and steam are very good tools.

    What a process! Keep praying. It ain't over till it's over.

    Amy

  8. bugnut

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Sat Jul 31 2010 18:27:15
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    Beth -

    Prayers over the internet!

    So glad you have found relief and are moving in the right direction. My PCO used Phantom and I won't say we are in the clear yet (mosquito bites? sand flea bites? - hard to tell) it is much better. Have not seen any of the buggers.

    Re the floors: my husband and I are DIY'ers to the nth degree. Google"sealing your floor" and watch a YouTube or other video on how to - folks make their own all the time. Get a sealant applier (sort of like a sponge mop) and watch how they apply, keep working over the wet edge. Very important to vacuum very well before hand or "stuff" will end up in the sealant.

    BTW my sister moved into an apt in NYC that a "hoarder" had lived in and it was crawling with carpet beetles. They ended up sealing the floor to cure the problem. Hope it works for you too!

  9. Beth

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    Posted 8 years ago
    Sat Jul 31 2010 19:01:08
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    hey bugnut,

    it sounds as if you are moving in the right direction as well.

    I have to say, at this point, it's a little surreal to me to be winning. Like, what, what was it? I have been battling for 10 months? What did I do RIGHT this time that failed me all those other times? All I can think is the DE and super ocd bed isolation and ocd spraying. But it's all important. The biggest difference? I exhausted myself. I plain went all out and put every cell of energy I had into this place and will continue to have to do so. It's amazing people who beat these who have jobs and kids. What a huge unnervy learning curve. I am not convinced the little jerks are gone though, no. I won't be convinced probably for quite awhile that one is not lurking somewhere just waiting to pounce.

    Phantom I believe is good. I betcha are if not already, soon you will be free and clear. It is AMAZING and TREMENDOUS the amount of work that is needed to kill these things. Manual labor by individuals, regardless of whether you have a pco or not. It isn't fair to people with physical disabilities.

    I have not seen a bedbug in a couple of weeks and most of my bites are about a week old at this point, nearly disappeared. So strange. It just all seems so strange and like a bad B movie. Really bad B movie. Amy vs. the bedbugs.

    peace-
    Amy


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