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Tips for Rat Proofing Your Home

With the fall season bringing in cooler weather, rodents and pests will be seeking out warmer shelter. We’ve seen the end of mosquitos and other summer creatures but don’t let the cooler weather trick you into thinking you won’t have to worry about pests! We’ve created the ultimate list for rat proofing your home!

Fall is when many infestations of mice and rats get started. Cooler weather is sending rodents scurrying to find a warm place to shelter. When it comes to rodent proofing your home, you will need to locate all the points that can allow entry to rats or mice and seal all those places. It is also crucial that you maintain proper hygiene and sanitary conditions to discourage rodent infestation. If you don’t want rats to take up residence in your home (unless they are going to pay rent), check out these tips on how to keep them … Read Full Post »

How to Keep Squirrels and Other Rodents Away from Your Pumpkins

October is here and, with it, the family tradition of carving pumpkins has begun. There’s nothing like a fun evening of carving pumpkins with Halloween movies playing in the background. You’ve put all your time and energy into picking out the perfect pumpkin and carving an intricate design that rivals any of your neighbors’ carved pumpkins. Don’t let squirrels and other rodents turn your beautiful masterpiece into a mushy disaster. Here are a few simple ways you can prevent squirrels and other rodents from making a meal out of your festive pumpkin creations:

Spray squirrel repellent. Spray your pumpkins every few days with a standard squirrel repellent. While the spray should keep the squirrels at bay, the main ingredients in most squirrel repellents are putrid, so although your pumpkins may look pretty, they can also smell pretty awful.

Use hot pepper. Blend up some hot peppers or use hot sauce to cover … Read Full Post »

ABC Supports American Heart Association’s Heart Walk

Austin Heart Walk

One in seven deaths in the United States is linked to heart disease. Coronary heart disease, hypertension and stroke—all heart conditions—represent the number one cause of death in the United States. Over 92 million Americans are living with some type of cardiovascular disease or are experiencing the after-effects of a stroke.

Since 1924, the American Heart Association has been working to fight heart disease through research, public health policy and education. The organization has set an ambitious goal for 2020: to improve the cardiovascular health of all Americans by 20% and to reduce the deaths from heart disease and stroke by 20%.

Each year, the American Heart Association hosts the annual Austin Heart Walk to bring the community together to have fun, get inspired and support a meaningful cause. The owner of ABC Home & Commercial Services in Austin, Bobby Jenkins, is on the Board of Directors of the local affiliate.

Austin Heart Walk 2017

ABC … Read Full Post »

Fall Pest Control Tips

During the fall and winter months, you won’t be paying as much attention to the outside of your home as you do during the spring and summer. The weather is cooling down, leaves have fallen off the trees, and plants and other landscaping needs are not as critical.

However, failing to properly maintain the outside of your home this time of year can create an open invitation for many different types of pests, especially as they seek to stay warm inside your home during the cold winter months.

There are many ways to “pest proof” your home, so before the weather gets too cold and winter sets in, consider these helpful tips to assist you in sealing your home up tight for the winter.

Seal Any Openings Around Your Home.

Utility openings where wiring or pipes come into the foundation or siding of your home are common entry points, as well as areas around … Read Full Post »

Landscaping Ideas Houston Homeowners Can Use to Transform Outdoor Spaces

Landscaping Ideas Houston

A well-landscaped yard can bring balance, peace and harmony to your space, creating an oasis right at home. Wanting an aesthetically-pleasing lawn is one thing; making it happen is something else entirely. With our hot, humid weather, inconsistent rainfall and occasional flooding here in Houston, it can feel like a challenge to decide which flowers or plants will work best and how to get started on your landscaping project.

Before you begin, you’ll need to learn more about your soil type and think about what plants would survive our climate. On average, Houston gets 18 days each year with temperatures below 32° and 99 days above 90°. Our growing season lasts an average of 300 days, which can be great for growing a wide variety of plants and flowers. However, you have to make sure the plants you choose are heat tolerant.

Local soil is typically either clay or sandy. You’ll … Read Full Post »

Austin Trail of Lights 2017: A Complete Guide

Trail of Lights Austin dates

The holidays are marked by fun traditions and memory-making outings. Here in Central Texas, one of the must-dos on many of our holiday lists is the Austin Trail of Lights.  Strolling through two million twinkling lights and 40 incredible light displays can get even the Grinchiest member of your crew into the holiday spirit.

If you have never been to the Austin Trail of Lights, 2017 is the year to see what everyone’s been talking about. Whether you are a first-timer or a seasoned pro, you’ll want to read our complete guide to this year’s Trail of Lights to know what to expect, what’s new this year and how to make the most of your time at the trail.

Trail of Lights Austin 2017: What’s In Store This Year

The 53rd year of the light show, sponsored by H-E-B, will run Saturday, December 9 through Saturday, December 23. This year’s Trail will include updated … Read Full Post »

7 Things You Need to Know About Ants

Ants, they are more of a nuisance than a pest. Well, that does depend on which area of the south you live in as some can pack a nasty bite. There are more than 10,000 known ant species found across the globe, and are very common almost anywhere you live. However, certain species of ants are truly unique and can provide insight on a range of topics from social behavior to traffic patterns. Check out some of our interesting ant facts below.

Ants Are Incredibly Strong

Ants can carry between 10 and 50 times their own body weight!  The amount an ant can carry depends on the species. The Asian weaver ant, for example, can lift 100 times its own mass. Because ants are so small, their muscles are thicker relative to their body mass than in larger animals. This allows ants to carry objects much heavier and bigger than them. To put it … Read Full Post »

Should I Upgrade My Electrical Panel?

Do I need to upgrade my electrical panel

Owning a home has many benefits. Unfortunately, one of the disadvantages is that things break. Sometimes, you have no clue why something isn’t working. Diagnosing the problem is only half the battle. When it comes to electrical issues, most homeowners have little idea what exactly the problem is, much less how to fix it.

If you’ve had trouble with electricity or appliances working properly, this post will shed some light on if you need to upgrade your electrical panel, how to determine your panel’s capacity, how you can change your electrical panel yourself if you so desire and why hiring an electrician is probably the best way to go.

What Is a Breaker Panel?

Before we discuss how and why your electrical panel might not be working, let’s talk about the breaker panel itself. An electrical panel is the central point that connects the wires from outside to the wires inside your home … Read Full Post »

Mealybugs: A Complete Guide To This Lawn Pest

mealybugs

Have you ever found something on a houseplant that you first thought was a tiny piece of cotton, but then you realized was a living thing? Mealybugs can ruin the appearance of your indoor and outdoor plants and can cause a significant amount of damage. When left unchecked, mealybugs can eventually kill a plant. For such small creatures, mealybugs can be surprisingly hard to remove. They are found in warm, moist climates and can be introduced to your home and yard by new plants, tools or other materials.

Mealybugs: A Complete Guide To This Lawn Pest

In this post, we will tell you everything you need to know about mealybugs, including what they look like, their favorite hiding spots, their impact on our green spaces and, perhaps most importantly, what you can do if you find them feasting on your plants.

Tiny White Bugs On Plants Can Be Harmful

Those tiny white bugs you noticed … Read Full Post »

Moles In Texas: How To Control This Lawn Pest

moles in Texas

When something is burrowing in your yard, it can be hard to know what you’re dealing with. Those mounds of dirt can seemingly pop up overnight, displacing plants and flowers or creating ugly tunnels. One of the possible culprits for this type of lawn damage is a mole. What kinds of moles live in Texas, and what should homeowners know about these creatures? In this post, we’ll tell you everything you need to know about these animals, including how to discourage them from making your property their home.

Moles in Texas: How To Control This Lawn Pest

Knowing the difference between gophers, moles and voles, and which is damaging your lawn is helpful in determining the best course of action. All three burrow underground but differ in appearance and diet. When any of these animals take up residence on a golf course or another large tract of land, it can be very … Read Full Post »