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Preparing for fumigation

December 14,2021 | Posted By Flavia Brown in Real Estate
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PREPARING FOR FUMIGATION:
Some items on this list won’t apply to everyone; some will apply only to building owners. Some items are for tenants. The company hired to fumigate will provide their checklist. Following is a compilation from several fumigation companies.

A few days before tenting:
+ Make accommodations to stay in a motel or other place for three days and nights.
+ Contact the gas company for shut-off on the day of tenting.
+ Contact the post office to stop delivery for three days.
+ Notify neighbors to make them aware of your upcoming fumigation treatment.
+ For condos and townhouses, notify the HOA or management company of upcoming fumigation.

The day before or just before tenting:
  • Unlock and open all interior doors, cabinets, drawers, desks, attic hatches, closets, and safes.
  • Raise all blinds and drapes.
  • Be sure the gas is shut off before the tent is installed.
  • Turn off all pilot lights and flames – fireplaces, water heaters, ovens, furnaces, refrigerators, washers, dryers.
  • Detach any fences that contact the building.
  • Remove all food from refrigerator, freezer, and pantry.  Or double-bag food and put back in the refrig. The fume company will provide the plastic bags.
  • Remove unsealed food and medications. Sealed foods are canned foods and sealed jars.
  • Trim plants and trees that touch the building.
  • Water the soil up to 12 inches surrounding the building.
  • Drench all plants and trees that can’t be removed.
  • Rake gravel and dirt around the house to be sure the tent is secure around the building. Some termite or fumigation companies will do this kind of prepping. 
  • Leave open all air pockets, like waterproof covers on mattresses.
  • Leave one window open in each room (5 inches).
  • Remove all linen and sleeping pads.
  • Remove or double-bag clothes, then wash thoroughly when returning to your home after the tenting.
  • Retract awnings. 
  • Remove or lower antennae, weathervanes, chimney stacks.
  • Unplug all appliances, computers, heaters, etc.
  • Mattresses don’t need to be removed, but after re-entering your home (after three days), wipe down your mattresses with a wet cloth with a 50-50 vinegar and water solution.
  • Remove vehicles from attached garage
  • Remove all valuables
  • Remove all living things (even lizards and Geckos).
  • Turn off all timers, a/c, and sprinklers.
  • Remove all interior plants.
  • Water outside plants.
  • Turn off all electrical heating elements, like heaters and pet habitats.
  • Refrigerators can stay on.
  • Turn off security/burglar alarms.
  • Move out, lock entrance doors, and give house keys to a tenting crew member

After tenting is completed:
  • Re-enter when the fumigation company says okay, and retrieve house keys. 
  • NOTE 1:The fumigation company should not say it is safe to re-enter the building until a clearance test is completed. A clearance device measures the toxicity dissipation of the fumigant. Usually, you can't re-enter for eight hours after the tent is removed.
  • Contact gas company to restore services. Let the gas company remove the clearance notice on the gas meter.
  • Turn back on devices and timers.
  • Wipe the floors, doors, windows, shelves, and countertops to rid the surfaces of any chemical residue. Empty and wash ice cube trays, sealed jars and cans.
  • NOTE 2: Some fumigation companies say there is no need to wash dishes, linen, and clothing.  Others say you should wash all utensils, clothes, and bedding to rid them of the fumigation chemicals – even those sealed away. Supposedly, toxic chemicals dissipate three days after fumigation is completed, but there may be remaining residue. But to be sure and if you are concerned, please research fumigation chemicals.
                Flavia Brown, Realtor                                                                 
 

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