Author Topic: Yellow Jackets in House  (Read 3477 times)

stlbrah

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Yellow Jackets in House
« on: October 11, 2016, 05:39:37 PM »
So, I have had a yellow jacket problem for a little over a month.

I would kill anywhere between 10-20 a day inside my house on a bad day, 2-3 on a good day, and I would find carcasses by the windows and in the basement. They would come out of the A/C vents a lot on all floors.

I sprayed some cheap walmart spray and hoped it would help, but it didn't really. I finally had a pest control guy come out and he spotted them going under the siding in 2 different spots. He gave a free quote and left.

The strange thing is that this was last Thursday, and I haven't seen a single yellow jacket (dead or alive) inside the house since then. That Friday, the temperature dropped significantly. It has gone back up since then a bit but I haven't seen any more inside the house, only out in the yard.

He quoted $145 to climb up a ladder and treat the problem areas and it came with a 6 month warranty. I am on the fence at this point about whether or not I should go ahead and have it treated or just wait a little bit longer and see if the cool weather solved the issue. Even if it does, will they just come back to the nests in the spring?

I probably won't do a DIY due to not wanting to be stung. I have had some close calls, but they usually just land on me and don't sting.

Any advice/experience appreciated!

jeromedawg

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Re: Yellow Jackets in House
« Reply #1 on: October 11, 2016, 05:49:34 PM »
So, I have had a yellow jacket problem for a little over a month.

I would kill anywhere between 10-20 a day inside my house on a bad day, 2-3 on a good day, and I would find carcasses by the windows and in the basement. They would come out of the A/C vents a lot on all floors.

I sprayed some cheap walmart spray and hoped it would help, but it didn't really. I finally had a pest control guy come out and he spotted them going under the siding in 2 different spots. He gave a free quote and left.

The strange thing is that this was last Thursday, and I haven't seen a single yellow jacket (dead or alive) inside the house since then. That Friday, the temperature dropped significantly. It has gone back up since then a bit but I haven't seen any more inside the house, only out in the yard.

He quoted $145 to climb up a ladder and treat the problem areas and it came with a 6 month warranty. I am on the fence at this point about whether or not I should go ahead and have it treated or just wait a little bit longer and see if the cool weather solved the issue. Even if it does, will they just come back to the nests in the spring?

I probably won't do a DIY due to not wanting to be stung. I have had some close calls, but they usually just land on me and don't sting.

Any advice/experience appreciated!

That sounds awful! Are there other guys in the area you can get competing quotes from? It might be worth it if you're looking to save some bucks. Did the guy who came out say if they're nesting *inside* the structure? Or is it just that there's a nest nearby and they were flying in for shelter, etc?

stlbrah

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Re: Yellow Jackets in House
« Reply #2 on: October 11, 2016, 05:54:24 PM »
So, I have had a yellow jacket problem for a little over a month.

I would kill anywhere between 10-20 a day inside my house on a bad day, 2-3 on a good day, and I would find carcasses by the windows and in the basement. They would come out of the A/C vents a lot on all floors.

I sprayed some cheap walmart spray and hoped it would help, but it didn't really. I finally had a pest control guy come out and he spotted them going under the siding in 2 different spots. He gave a free quote and left.

The strange thing is that this was last Thursday, and I haven't seen a single yellow jacket (dead or alive) inside the house since then. That Friday, the temperature dropped significantly. It has gone back up since then a bit but I haven't seen any more inside the house, only out in the yard.

He quoted $145 to climb up a ladder and treat the problem areas and it came with a 6 month warranty. I am on the fence at this point about whether or not I should go ahead and have it treated or just wait a little bit longer and see if the cool weather solved the issue. Even if it does, will they just come back to the nests in the spring?

I probably won't do a DIY due to not wanting to be stung. I have had some close calls, but they usually just land on me and don't sting.

Any advice/experience appreciated!

That sounds awful! Are there other guys in the area you can get competing quotes from? It might be worth it if you're looking to save some bucks. Did the guy who came out say if they're nesting *inside* the structure? Or is it just that there's a nest nearby and they were flying in for shelter, etc?

He believes that the nest is underneath the siding, and from there they are trying to get into the house on cooler days since it is warmer inside the house. However, I didn't see any on the significantly cooler days I mentioned where the temperature was down in the 40s and 50s at night.

As far as the price, I am fine with the $145. I have called a few others and the going rate is pretty much $100-200. Orkin wanted $300, which wasn't surprising being the name brand. At this point, I am wondering if the problem just fixed itself, or if I should still have them treat it?

I also have an HOA, who is refusing to cover it since there is no known phsysical damage to the siding
« Last Edit: October 11, 2016, 05:57:47 PM by stlbrah »

pbnj

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Re: Yellow Jackets in House
« Reply #3 on: October 11, 2016, 06:31:42 PM »
I had a similar problem last year.  Dozens of them every day.  They were coming in where the big electrical cable goes into the house.  I sprayed the shit out of the area to clear them temporarily then plugged it up with plumber's putty for $1.29.  No further problem.

teen persuasion

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Re: Yellow Jackets in House
« Reply #4 on: October 11, 2016, 08:51:05 PM »
FWIW, I just did a little reading about yellow jackets on wiki, and it says that only the queen overwinters, all the others die off.

I'd try to seal up the places that they were getting under the siding, to prevent future infiltration.

lizzzi

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Re: Yellow Jackets in House
« Reply #5 on: October 11, 2016, 09:43:35 PM »
I would call in the big guns and make sure you've gotten rid of those things. Do you really want some child or elderly person to get stung? (Don't know who all lives in your house or comes there.)

I had yellow jackets in the ground, and the four-year-old got stung. Called the exterminator and he used some super poison that I never heard of because it was illegal in the state I used to live in. Cost me $80...well worth it. Then the next year I had a nest under the screened porch, where they started flying around and increasing exponentially. Very scary, so near the house and with three little kids to babysit every day. I called the Bee man, and he sent his son immediately--this was on a Sunday--I was ecstatic they even answered the phone, much less came right out. Another $80 and strong chemical poison--not Sevin, although I don't know what he used--and those things were gone. What a relief. YMMV, but I hate those things and used to worry about not just the kids, but we had an  elderly relative with us who was on a walker and couldn't move fast. Just felt it was better to pay the money and keep everybody safe. Another thought: What if it turns out somebody gets stung and goes into an allergic reaction? Could be life-threatening.

NoStacheOhio

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Re: Yellow Jackets in House
« Reply #6 on: October 12, 2016, 06:37:19 AM »
He believes that the nest is underneath the siding, and from there they are trying to get into the house on cooler days since it is warmer inside the house. However, I didn't see any on the significantly cooler days I mentioned where the temperature was down in the 40s and 50s at night.

As far as the price, I am fine with the $145. I have called a few others and the going rate is pretty much $100-200. Orkin wanted $300, which wasn't surprising being the name brand. At this point, I am wondering if the problem just fixed itself, or if I should still have them treat it?

I also have an HOA, who is refusing to cover it since there is no known phsysical damage to the siding

This seems odd. Exterior pest treatment is totally the HOA's responsibility. Ours sprays like twice a year for carpenter bees and yellow jackets (houses have cedar siding).

Guava

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Re: Yellow Jackets in House
« Reply #7 on: October 12, 2016, 07:16:42 AM »
I have had multiple yellow jacket nests inside my home and I never had that many bees flying around inside. We have done some DIY methods of clearing them out since we could usually see the nests in attic spaces. Hubby took a shop vac to the nest and it seemed to work.  But the queen was inside our house and just kept moving around starting new hives in different spots. It wasn't until she got into the main part off the house and my cat got her that our problem stopped...that and we redid the siding. All in all we had about 15 hives ranging from golf ball to 2ft by 6 ft. Chances are if they are going into your house they are trying to get to their nest and queen and you just haven't seen any because of the cold. Patch the holes yourself and shouldn't have any problems with getting stung thanks to the cold but be prepared for them to get in somewhere in the spring.

ender

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Re: Yellow Jackets in House
« Reply #8 on: October 12, 2016, 07:19:51 AM »
I have had multiple yellow jacket nests inside my home and I never had that many bees flying around inside. We have done some DIY methods of clearing them out since we could usually see the nests in attic spaces. Hubby took a shop vac to the nest and it seemed to work.  But the queen was inside our house and just kept moving around starting new hives in different spots. It wasn't until she got into the main part off the house and my cat got her that our problem stopped...that and we redid the siding. All in all we had about 15 hives ranging from golf ball to 2ft by 6 ft. Chances are if they are going into your house they are trying to get to their nest and queen and you just haven't seen any because of the cold. Patch the holes yourself and shouldn't have any problems with getting stung thanks to the cold but be prepared for them to get in somewhere in the spring.

This is like my worst nightmare.

andy85

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Re: Yellow Jackets in House
« Reply #9 on: October 12, 2016, 07:58:23 AM »
i would literally pay somebody $500 to deal with this. I have a legit phobia of wasps/hornets/yellow jackets...basically anything larger than a honey bee. Just fk that. Burn the house down and collect insurance money.

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Re: Yellow Jackets in House
« Reply #10 on: October 12, 2016, 08:06:48 AM »
Following...  We've had a red wasp nest somewhere in the attic the last 2 years.  I have yet to find it, but a couple of wasps a week make it into the house through an area that is still unfinished.   If I could find the little bastards, I'd deal with them, but I can't.  And I've never seen any evidence of them coming/going either.

stlbrah

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Re: Yellow Jackets in House
« Reply #11 on: October 12, 2016, 10:22:34 AM »
I would call in the big guns and make sure you've gotten rid of those things. Do you really want some child or elderly person to get stung? (Don't know who all lives in your house or comes there.)

I had yellow jackets in the ground, and the four-year-old got stung. Called the exterminator and he used some super poison that I never heard of because it was illegal in the state I used to live in. Cost me $80...well worth it. Then the next year I had a nest under the screened porch, where they started flying around and increasing exponentially. Very scary, so near the house and with three little kids to babysit every day. I called the Bee man, and he sent his son immediately--this was on a Sunday--I was ecstatic they even answered the phone, much less came right out. Another $80 and strong chemical poison--not Sevin, although I don't know what he used--and those things were gone. What a relief. YMMV, but I hate those things and used to worry about not just the kids, but we had an  elderly relative with us who was on a walker and couldn't move fast. Just felt it was better to pay the money and keep everybody safe. Another thought: What if it turns out somebody gets stung and goes into an allergic reaction? Could be life-threatening.

I went ahead and booked the appointment. Mine cost more since it was over 10 ft in the air. I am just hoping that they don't find another place to get in.

Lulee

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Re: Yellow Jackets in House
« Reply #12 on: October 12, 2016, 06:10:29 PM »
OP, I think you have a secondary or perhaps it's the primary problem.  Properly installed HVAC systems should have all the ductwork sealed to prevent heating/cooling losses during normal operation.  You described large numbers of yellow jackets coming out of vents which means they found a way in (perhaps a heat loss from a duct was what was luring them into that part of the structure) en masse instead of just being one or two who bumbled into a vent and then back out.  And in newer structures with proper vapor barriers sealing off the inside, they shouldn't be able to get from the underside of the siding to inside the building.  It might be worth pinging some of the DIY/contactor guys here like paddedhat to get their opinion.

There are companies who can do pressure tests to see how tight your system is --- after the bug guy takes the pests out.  If there's a lot of air loss, they may be able to seal up enough of it to prevent further issues.  The program Ask This Old House did a test on a very leaky HVAC system and the contractor then sealed it up with an aerosolized product pumped through the system which reduced the majority of loss and, in your case, might help keep out the pests.

Best of luck!

Guava

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Re: Yellow Jackets in House
« Reply #13 on: October 13, 2016, 07:00:26 AM »
I have had multiple yellow jacket nests inside my home and I never had that many bees flying around inside. We have done some DIY methods of clearing them out since we could usually see the nests in attic spaces. Hubby took a shop vac to the nest and it seemed to work.  But the queen was inside our house and just kept moving around starting new hives in different spots. It wasn't until she got into the main part off the house and my cat got her that our problem stopped...that and we redid the siding. All in all we had about 15 hives ranging from golf ball to 2ft by 6 ft. Chances are if they are going into your house they are trying to get to their nest and queen and you just haven't seen any because of the cold. Patch the holes yourself and shouldn't have any problems with getting stung thanks to the cold but be prepared for them to get in somewhere in the spring.

This is like my worst nightmare.

It was a contributing factor to tearing off all of the siding and using 15 tubes of caulk and 10 cans of spray foam to fill holes and cracks before adding a vapor barrier. We were also terrified. I am deathly allergic to stings.

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Re: Yellow Jackets in House
« Reply #14 on: October 13, 2016, 08:52:18 AM »
I just had a very similar problem at my house. I found about a hundred of them dead or almost dead in my basement! I carried an EpiPen for 17 years (insect stings) and I have a baby in the house, so I called in the pros. It was around $185. He put on a suit, climbed up a ladder and had a duster with a product called Tempo Dust that seems to have completely eliminated the problem. They get covered in the stuff and carry it back to the nest, wiping out the entire colony. They were infiltrating my house in two areas around the siding near the bedrooms and dining room of my house.

I have read other DIY sites about people buying Tempo Dust themselves (maybe around $30) and self-performing the operation...I paid the pro due to my past history. One of the little punks flew up his pant leg and stung him during the operation, so I'm glad I stayed out of it. Good luck!

redbird

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Re: Yellow Jackets in House
« Reply #15 on: October 13, 2016, 10:57:12 AM »
i would literally pay somebody $500 to deal with this. I have a legit phobia of wasps/hornets/yellow jackets...basically anything larger than a honey bee. Just fk that. Burn the house down and collect insurance money.

Same. I'm not allergic, but I had a bad encounter with a yellow jacket as a kid. I was on a swing and it flew into me. I guess it thought I was attacking it and it got angry and stung me repeatedly. Between the swelling from the repeated stings, the pain from the sting, and the pain I got from falling off the swing while trying to get away, I've been scared of bees, especially the aggressive ones, ever since.

Knowing my husband, he'd probably try to DIY something first (he's not scared of bees), but if it took too long for him to solve, I would absolutely insist we pay for pros to handle it.

Spork

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Re: Yellow Jackets in House
« Reply #16 on: October 13, 2016, 05:47:54 PM »
OP, I think you have a secondary or perhaps it's the primary problem.  Properly installed HVAC systems should have all the ductwork sealed to prevent heating/cooling losses during normal operation.  You described large numbers of yellow jackets coming out of vents which means they found a way in (perhaps a heat loss from a duct was what was luring them into that part of the structure) en masse instead of just being one or two who bumbled into a vent and then back out.  And in newer structures with proper vapor barriers sealing off the inside, they shouldn't be able to get from the underside of the siding to inside the building.  It might be worth pinging some of the DIY/contactor guys here like paddedhat to get their opinion.

There are companies who can do pressure tests to see how tight your system is --- after the bug guy takes the pests out.  If there's a lot of air loss, they may be able to seal up enough of it to prevent further issues.  The program Ask This Old House did a test on a very leaky HVAC system and the contractor then sealed it up with an aerosolized product pumped through the system which reduced the majority of loss and, in your case, might help keep out the pests.

Best of luck!

It depends... One common method used in new construction is to not plumb the returns at all.  The envelope is 100% sealed and you just cut a hole in the drywall and put a register on it.  The HVAC system just sucks the return air from the attic.  If there is a path back to the attic, you have an instant return.   This leaves lots of places the critters could crawl out of.