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Controlling fleas on uncarpeted surfaces can be a challenge. That’s because you’re limited to using treatments that don’t have water in them. Water breaks down wood and ultimately ruins your floor. But with the right tools and dry treatments, you can properly care for your house and its residents. Just follow these tips on how to get rid of fleas on hardwood floors.
Fleas can get inside the tiny cracks between each wood and stay there.
Sprinkle boric acid
Boric acid is friendly to wooden floors. It doesn’t backfire with stubborn stains, and it doesn’t weaken a wood’s structure. According to eHow, its hygroscopic property can even help absorb water from the water-damaged parts of the wood, protecting it from rot.
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Sprinkle a good amount of the powder on your floor, and leave it there for 1 to 2 days. Make sure to cover the entire floor and not leave out crevices and dark corners. You should also sprinkle this product on your furniture, upholstery and inside wall cracks just in case the fleas are hiding there.
Boric acid has devastating effects on fleas. If ingested, it damages their stomachs and nervous system. Its jagged particles can also slice through the insect’s exoskeleton and wreak havoc inside, absorbing all the moisture and severely dehydrating the flea.
Just remember though. Boric acid or borax can be hazardous to everyone in the house. If a substantial amount is inhaled or eaten, it can cause serious health issues for both pets and humans.
If you want to know more on how to use boric acid safely, read our previous post.
Use Precor 2000
Precor 2000 is designed for any surface even though it’s liquid.
Precor is an Insect Growth Regulator (IGR), not a pesticide. It targets the developing fleas rather than the mature ones. The product works by stopping eggs and larvae from maturing into adults, so it can effectively and steadily dwindle a population down with continuous usage.
Just spray a bottle in an area in your house, and leave it to dry. Don’t let anyone near that place unless it has completely dried. Also, remember to vacuum before spraying. You’ll get rid of more fleas this way. Repeat this every 14 days to make sure no flea eggs and larvae are spared.
Use diatomaceous earth
Another dry treatment is food grade diatomaceous earth. It’s a powdery substance that’s made from the sediments, fossils of diatoms that lived millions of years ago.
Like boric acid, food grade diatomaceous earth is hygroscopic. It also punctures insects’ waxy exoskeletons and absorbs all the water inside their bodies. However, it’s safer and less toxic, making application easier for houses with kids and pets.
Use diatomaceous earth like you’d use boric acid. Toss a good amount on your floor, and make sure to cover all the nooks and crannies.
If you need more info on this treatment, check out our guide here.
What Not to Use on Your Hardwood Floors
There are plenty of suggestions in the internet on how to get rid of fleas on hardwood floors. A lot of them are based on water which might be effective in fleas but can ruin your floors. They double your bills for repairs and professional cleanup jobs, actually doing more harm than good.
- Mopping. What makes mopping disastrous is not just the water you’re using. Its bristles drag fleas and transfer them, not kill them. So you’ll just be displacing these pesky insects instead of getting rid of them.
- Using Steamers. Steamers make water even more potent for wood. With the combination of high temperature and water, the steam can break down the wood’s protective layer, making it susceptible to soaking up more water. This creates stains and invites rot, fungi and even more pests.
- Salt. There’s a salt treatment circulating the internet that claims to get rid of fleas. Even though this hasn’t been proven yet, tossing salt on hardwood floors causes stains that need professional help to clean up. So it makes us wonder whether you should bet on a stain-inducing treatment that hasn’t been proven yet or just go for the better ones.
- Sweeping. If you have a habit of sweeping floors, you better stop. Sweeping disperses fleas and lets them occupy even more areas in the house. You should switch to vacuuming because it eradicates dirt as well as fleas.
Finally, knowing how to get rid of fleas on hardwood floors is only half the battle. You should also treat your pets and use repellents. There’s no rule that says you can’t combine flea killing methods. After all, you can’t win a battle with just one weapon in your arsenal.
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