Did you know that every year, rodents invade as many as 21 million homes in the United States? Pests are a recurring problem for many homeowners. In the spring, many pests reproduce and come out of their hiding spots, causing problems that last throughout the summer.
The key to a pest-free home is to keep it clean and out of reach. If you want to avoid an infestation, check out the following list.
Deep clean the house
Spring cleaning helps to keep pests at bay because it gets rid of those tiny food particles that attract pests. So, vacuum the house from top to bottom. Reach deep into your closets and pull out your large appliances to clean every surface. Then, mop the floors and clean your countertops. Decluttering the house will also help to make it less attractive to rodents. Pests love homes that are full of hiding spots.
Ants, cockroaches, flies, and other bugs love humid environments. Homes that are too humid may also be prone to getting carpenter ants, which may cause a significant amount of damage to your wood. Carpenter Ant Control Toronto experts recommend that you have good bathroom fans and that you use a range hood when cooking food or boiling water. Homes should sit somewhere between 40 and 60% humidity in the summer. If your home is too humid, consider getting a dehumidifier.
Organize the kitchen and pantry
Kitchens are hot spots for pest activity. While you cannot get rid of your food or stop cooking entirely, there are some things you can do to make your kitchen less attractive. Start by emptying out your pantry and giving it a good clean. Then, decant those foods into sealed containers. This will reduce the smell of food in your house. For lasting results, get in the habit of keeping the kitchen clean. Never leave any dirty dishes out on the counter and always take out the garbage at the end of the day.
Seal the windows and doors
Believe or not, many pests get into the house simply by walking through the door. If you don’t have them, have screen doors installed so you can let the air in while keeping pests out. Make sure that your windows have screens as well. Then, weatherstrip the bottoms of your doors to the outside. Mice will often crawl under doors. Finish the job by caulking any gaps you find in the frames.
- Cover wall vents
Rodents can climb walls and chew through vents to get inside. Luckily, you can cover these with mesh to keep the pests out. Use a 16-gauge, galvanized steel mesh because it is weather-proof and too tough to chew. You can also plug weep holes with metal covers from the hardware store. These will continue to allow for ventilation while blocking out pests.
Get a preventative treatment
Pest control companies offer perimeter treatments that help to keep bugs out of the house. The treatment consists of an insecticidal spray that is applied along the edges of the house and around windows and doors. Call your local pest control company or consider using a preventative insecticide from a home supply store.
Keep food out of the yard
Pest problems usually start from the outside in. So, keep your yard tidy and as free of food as possible. Pick up fallen fruit and feed the birds sparingly. If you like to barbecue or eat outside, make sure you clean up any crumbs that fall to the ground. You can also pest-proof your vegetable garden with row covers or mesh.