Pests are eating away at America! In a 2021 survey, more than 14 million American homeowners reported seeing roaches or rodents in their homes in the last 12 months.
You should expect to have a pest in your home sooner rather than later. Yet you can reduce the pests you have and prevent them from damaging your property through pest control. Before you call the professionals, take a few steps by yourself to drive pests away.
How can you keep pests from entering your home? How can you destroy their nests and trails? What should you do if they sneak their way inside?
Answer these questions and you can take control of your home from pests. Here are five tips you should follow.
1. Seal Your Home
Pests are small enough to enter your home through any gap in your walls, windows, or doors. You should inspect each window and door on the first floor and basement of your house with a magnifying glass. If you notice holes in your caulking or large gaps between your door and the frame, you should fill them in.
You can use weather strips around your windows. This will keep pests out and let you trap heat inside your home during the wintertime. If weather strips are too expensive, you can use steel wool, especially near the edges of your windows where pests can sneak in around corners.
You should also seal any containers you have, especially if they have food in them. Pests can crawl inside cans and boxes and make nests in them.
2. Move Your Belongings Around
Bed bugs, moths, and other pests like to build nests inside stationary objects. Mattresses, wooden furniture, and old clothes provide stable homes for pests to sit in.
Move your belongings around every few weeks or so. Even transporting an object from one end of a shelf to the other end will make it harder for pests to settle down.
Never place objects on the floor where pests can access them easily. Move them onto high shelves or place them inside sturdy containers.
You should do your laundry at least once a week. Laundry machines can kill eggs and small insects and destroy nests. Place your folded clothes in drawers that you can close completely.
3. Keep an Eye on Your Yard
Most pests enter a home through the yard. You can identify common pests and kill them by keeping your grass short. Pull out any weeds you see, and move your sprinklers around so the water can disrupt the paths that insects use.
It is okay to have a pile of mulch or compost in your yard. But you should contain your pile inside a box that is hard for pests to enter.
If you spot rodents or spiders, you should move your mulch right away. You should also remove anything in your mulch that has mold in it, which can hurt your living plants.
If a branch falls in your yard, you should break it down and remove it as soon as possible. A fallen branch may be a sign that your tree is dying, which can lead to an infestation of beetles and larvae. Even if your tree is still alive, a branch can be home to ants and worms.
4. Maintain Natural Repellents
Several plants can keep insects at bay. Plants with a strong odor or taste can repel insects if they eat them. Try growing spearmint and rosemary in your garden or placing these plants in pots inside your home.
You can get rid of spiders and other large insects with carnivorous plants, which can devour them whole. You can grow Venus flytraps inside your house, though you should grow them inside acidic soil, not mulch. If you cannot find Venus flytraps, you can grow sundews and monkey cups.
Spreading extract from lavender and lemongrass plants can also help. Smear some extract around the perimeter of your house and along the edges of your garden. You can mix the extract with water so it enters the soil and deters insects that have burrowed underground.
If pests have already entered your home, you can make a natural bug spray. White vinegar can drive ants away while citronella can deter mosquitoes and flying insects. A humidifier can fill the air with steam, making it harder for insects to breathe.
5. Call Pest Control Professionals
You may have an infestation without knowing about it. Pests can conceal themselves inside walls and floorboards, making it hard for you to notice them.
But they can give away a few different signs. They may eat your furniture, causing it to become chipped and unstable. You may spot tracks of crumbs or nesting materials on the floor.
An infestation means dealing with hundreds, if not thousands, of insects. You can get rid of these pests on your own, but you may get an infection from them.
You should call pest control experts who can use pesticides to get rid of your insects. Ask someone to visit your house and hire them to do an inspection of your home.
They may need to use strong chemicals, which means you may need to leave your home for a few hours or days. Take clean clothes with you and go to someone else’s house for a little while.
Start Pest Control Today
Pest control isn’t just about pouring pesticides on your floors. You should close off all entryways so pests cannot enter your home. You should move objects around so it is harder for insects to build nests in your fabrics.
Spiders and rodents like to set up bases in yards before entering homes. Basic upkeep of your garden and yard will keep them away. You can grow natural deterrents, but you should get professional help if the deterrents don’t work.
An infestation can occur at any moment, so stay informed. Read more pest control guides by following our coverage.