Home Improvement Expert Danny Lipford

Do Ultrasonic Electronic Pest Repellents Really Work?

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ultrasonic electronic pest control device

Ultrasonic electronic pest and insect repellent devices claim that their high frequency sound waves are intolerable to rodents and insects. However, simply plugging in one of these devices probably won’t end your pest woes. It’s important to understand exactly what these devices can do before investing in one.

In 2001, the Federal Trade Commission sent a warning to manufacturers of ultrasonic pest control devices, demanding that claims of effectiveness must be backed up by scientific research. Thanks to the FTC intervention, package claims on ultrasonic rodent and insect devices are a little less preposterous than they used to be, and many product websites have links explaining their research methods and results, such as these from Green Shield and Victor.

If you dig a little deeper into the various products, you’ll find that the studies have mixed results. Overall, some ultrasonic pest control devices show some results with certain pests – how’s that for convincing? These products are by no means a quick fix, and none of them claim 100% effectiveness on any pest, so they need to be kept in perspective as a possible contributor to an overall pest management system, not as a magic weapon.

Sonic PestChaser box
If you’re thinking of adding electronic repellents to your pest-control system, keep in mind:

  • Keep Trapping: The best results for both rodents and insects come from using ultrasonic pest repellents along with trapping. Simply put, the sound waves cause the pests to scurry around, which drives them right into your traps.
  • Expect Diminishing Returns: Pests such as rodents become accustomed to the sound from ultrasonic devices over time, so results may only be temporary.
  • Have Realistic Expectations: Even the successful research on ultrasonic pest control devices shows a percentage of decrease, not a total elimination of rodent and insect pests.
  • Device Location: The sound waves from ultrasonic pest control devices are short range and very weak, so they’re easily blocked by furniture, walls, and corners. To test out the location of your device, place a lamp next to the device, turn off all the other lights, and note the beams and shadows from the lamp. The repellent sound waves will pretty much only be active where the light reaches.

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One Comment on “Do Ultrasonic Electronic Pest Repellents Really Work?”

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  1. Kimberly Reed Says:
    August 19th, 2011 at 9:17 pm

    I just bought a Ultrasonic Pest repeller..I am wondering if it gets rid of “earwigs” down here in FLorida. I get a lot of them come up to cracks of my front door and back sliding glass doors. I have a plug outlet near my front door..maybe a good place to plug it in. Will it keep them from coming undr my front door if the device is just inside the front door?…also…Had a small snake outside my front door..does it get rid of them too?

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