Phenols and You - How Close is Too Close?

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Apoplexic
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Phenols and You - How Close is Too Close?

Post by Apoplexic » Tue Oct 30, 2018 12:00 am

I have an old house, and we have roaches. I can live with the fact they are in my walls (I'm sure there are plenty of things in the walls I don't want to know about), but I have little tolerance for them elsewhere in my house - and have since declared a War of No Attrition against them after infesting the underside of the black plastic of my most-previous setup.

There are a host of methods to employee to keep them out of the tats and your house in general, but one I'm wanting to try in my bed/crab room is a combo of cypress and peppermint essential oils. Idk what bugs dislike about mint in general but it's a widely-known garden pest control method, and am not too terribly worried about the scent leaking into the crabitat - it's the scent (and particularly the toxic phenols) from the cypress oil that worries me.

My tank is largely sealed - the only holes are where my cords and air tubing run out the back. It is however about 4 inches from an outer wall, somewhere I intend to douse with the stuff. What are the odds that the scent alone (strong though it might be) will permeate my tank and poison the crabs? I would prefer a genuinely knowledgeable response - I will not tear down another tank as a result of these ********, and so "it might just be bad so don't do it" is not going to dissuade me.

Thanks!

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soilentgringa
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Re: Phenols and You - How Close is Too Close?

Post by soilentgringa » Tue Oct 30, 2018 12:04 am

If your tank is fairly well sealed then anything used on baseboards or other surfaces away from the tank isn't going to bother them.

If they are German roaches, I'd suggest Advion, Invict and Gentrol. If there are enough that you're seeing them in the daytime and collecting under and in furniture then the inside of the walls or underneath your home is housing hundreds of thousands of them.

Their feces can cause respiratory issues and are a pain to clean up. (Don't ask me how I know. )

If you have cats or other animals, or even children, you'll want to look into how toxic essential oils can be for them as well. Some commonly recommended oils csn also trigger asthma attacks or breathing issues.



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Re: Phenols and You - How Close is Too Close?

Post by Apoplexic » Tue Oct 30, 2018 12:18 am

Thank you. I still have the "water-housing" mindset where if enough of something gets on the glass it will leech into the water. I'm certain I have an infestation; that is what Terminex and the large swathe of poisons I've used up to this point have been for - but now that I have this new setup, moved all my animal tanks into my bedroom, sealed all the cracks with caulk, etc, I don't want to bring that back in there until I absolutely have to do so.

Thank you for the note on animals, though - I hadn't considered the oils on my cat. I'll make sure he's okay with it first, but I'm also not at opposed to locking him out of there for the sake of the rest of them.

E: Also I really love the scent of evergreens -and- mint, so having my bedroom smell like a candy cane Christmas tree all year is okay by me.

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Re: Phenols and You - How Close is Too Close?

Post by wodesorel » Tue Oct 30, 2018 2:19 am

The problem really is that it just might be bad. There were cases in the past of aerosol products and oil diffusers that were blamed in the death of hermits. They do have sensitive modified gills and we aren't able to see them to have a physical warning when they may be irritated or inflamed. I would have to recommend exercising extreme caution.
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Re: Phenols and You - How Close is Too Close?

Post by Apoplexic » Tue Oct 30, 2018 2:33 am

I was a bit brusque - that wasn't to mean that I won't watch them for signs of sluggishness, lack of appetite, unusual burying, etc. For me, it's more of a chemistry problem. At what concentration do these honestly become a problem? Since naturally hermits can be found in evergreens, it's obviously not "any," but we're enclosed and all that. How much of the smell is actually in the air and not just grabbed by my nose? Aromatic hydrocarbons create scents, but if the phenols are not actually dispersing in any concentrations in the air, are they even getting through my tiny cracks or when I open the lid? The recipe calls for about 125 mL of unspecified salinity salt water, 4/5th of a mL of cypress oil, an 1 mL of peppermint oil. I could do that math when it isn't 3:30 am, but common sense tells you how low that concentration is.

My main problem is looking at is from an aquarist perspective. Over time, glass will absorb contaminants in the air, and this will eventually leech through to the inside. When it's filled with water, that means it spreads through the tank rapidly and effectively. The case is not the same here - I might be worried if I were using a diffuser, but this is a spray I'll be putting along the floorboards of the outer walls of my house, just in particular this room.

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Re: Phenols and You - How Close is Too Close?

Post by wodesorel » Tue Oct 30, 2018 3:31 am

Apoplexic wrote:Over time, glass will absorb contaminants in the air, and this will eventually leech through to the inside.
I'm a little confused by this statement. Glass is impermeable, it's not capable of absorbing or passing anything.


The topic of phenols came up in a discussion last week on a cat group I'm part of. Several members - either they themselves or their colleagues - stated they had seen neurologic issues in cats and kittens that had been in the same location as wax melts that contained phenols, and that the vets had agreed that was the cause. Again, no idea of concentrations, but these were name brand products for home use.
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Re: Phenols and You - How Close is Too Close?

Post by Apoplexic » Tue Oct 30, 2018 6:44 am

wodesorel wrote:
Apoplexic wrote:Over time, glass will absorb contaminants in the air, and this will eventually leech through to the inside.
I'm a little confused by this statement. Glass is impermeable, it's not capable of absorbing or passing anything.
You're right - it's the typical aquarium acrylic and the silicone sealant on glass that absorbs the chemicals. I'm not accustomed to getting actual glass of this size.

The cat bit is troublesome though.

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