Summer Pest Control Guide
Bugs and rodents may have their place in the world, but that place certainly isn’t your home.
When it comes to controlling pests, many homeowners opt to use pesticides, but the chemicals found in many pesticides can be health hazards especially when sprayed in and around living spaces. Inhaling these chemicals may lead to health problems for children and adults alike.
Here are some alternatives for how to keep bugs out of your house.
Mosquitoes breed in standing water and can often be found in high concentrations around any water source—even small puddles. To prevent mosquitoes from gathering near your home (and sneaking inside), be sure to regularly eliminate sources of standing water. Rainwater can gather in empty buckets, flowerpots, and other containers.
Citronella, which does not contain strong chemicals, is another effective mosquito control method. Citronella candles, torches, and topical spray make it possible to gather on the patio and keep the mosquitoes away. Just be sure to apply the spray to your clothing, not your skin.
Keep Ants and Roaches Out
Dealing with pests often means learning how to keep ants out of the house as well as roaches. Keeping these invaders away is often a matter of maintaining a clean, dry home. Sweep, vacuum, and disinfect regularly, taking special care to clean up food spills right away. Also, be sure to immediately fix leaks from pipes, dishwashers, refrigerators, and other indoor water sources.
Since these critters often come in from the outdoors, carefully search your home for cracks, crevices, and other openings around baseboards and cabinets. Fill in any openings with caulk.
How to Keep Rodents Away
As with ants and cockroaches, one of the best things you can do to keep rodents at bay is to tidy your home and make sure all your food containers are sealed. Pet food and water left out overnight can also attract unwanted guests.
You may not see the creatures themselves, but they'll leave evidence behind in the form of droppings. The most effective, pesticide-free way to solve a rodent problem is with spring or glue traps.
How to Prevent Fleas in Your House
At least once a week, vacuum the areas your pets frequent and dispose of the vacuum bags immediately so fleas can't escape inside your home. If possible, put washable blankets or towels on the floor in areas where your pets lounge; flea eggs drop onto these materials, which then go straight into the washing machine.
Another tactic for how to keep fleas out of the house is to give your furry friends weekly baths. This is especially important if your pet is prone to flea outbreaks, as baths can instantly kill most fleas and bring relief to your pet.
How to Keep Bugs Out of Your House
In addition to the general tips above, we’ve put together some more detailed tips for cleaning your home to prevent pests.
Clean Inside and Outside
Decluttering may also help with keeping bugs and rodents away. These pests don’t like being out in the open. Think of clutter as potential hiding places for bugs and rodents.
This principle goes for the exterior of your house, too. Pests come from the outside so if you have hiding places for them near your home, it may be only a matter of time before they find their way into your house.
Dealing with Trash
Your garbage may be a lure for pests. Discarded food can draw bugs and rodents into your home. Storing trash properly may go a long way towards keeping pests away. To keep rodents and bugs away, put food trash in wastebaskets that are covered. Avoid leaving food in open trash cans throughout your home’s interior and exterior.
Inspect Your House for Entry Points
Check inside your house for any cracks where bugs may come in. Do the same around the exterior of your house. Seal any cracks you find. Pay close attention to any points where things like pipes enter the house.
Check Doors and Windows
Weather stripping around your doors and windows is important for keeping your home insulated. They also help keep bugs and ants out of the house. Check your doors and windows to make sure all stripping and seals are in good condition, free of cracks or tears.
Window screens and screen doors are made mainly for the purpose of keeping pesky bugs away. If they are broken, they might not do the job very well. Check all your screens for tears and replace or repair as necessary.
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