Q:

Do electronic pest repellers work?

A:

Quick Answer

While electronic pest repellers claim that the sound waves they emit drive away insects and rodents, the scientific research does not suggest that they provide an effective solution. Even the packaging on these devices, which rely on ultrasonic waves, indicates that their effectiveness is limited.

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Full Answer

Before 2001, many electronic pest control devices contained claims of total success with eliminating insects and rodents from internal and external environments. However, the Federal Trade Commission warned manufacturers of these machines that they had to support their claims with scientific results. As a result, the claims became more modest. It is true that some devices work well with some pests, but there is no device that claims to get rid of any particular pest 100 percent of the time as of 2015.

This does not mean that people should not use electronic pest repellers, but it does mean that combining them with other pest control methods yields the best results. Combining these devices with traps is one example of a more effective solution. It appears that the sound waves do cause the insects and rodents to start moving around, making the traps more likely to work. Over time, though, pests grow accustomed to the sound, so it does not agitate them for very long.

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