It’s that time of the year when flowers bloom and the temperature goes easy on everyone. Unfortunately, the mild temperature goes easy on bugs too and you might just find swarms of them inside your home. Here’s how to protect your home against bugs.
The dark and often-overlooked space that is your basement could provide the perfect refuge for critters this spring. This is especially true if you have a slew of cardboard boxes full of items you’ve never laid hands on for the longest time.
To make sure your basement won’t become a haven for these critters, go over those cardboard boxes and eliminate stuff that you're not using (those old clothes have to go—if you aren’t using it now, it’s very likely you won’t use it ever). This will reduce the clutter and that will mean less hiding places for the bugs.
If humans consider the kitchen the heart of the home, bugs can follow suit. After all, who can say no to sumptuous food? Not those bugs for sure. And between those crumbs on that kitchen table, that leftover food on the rubbish bin, overripe fruits in the countertop, liquid spills on the floor, and baking ingredients on the cabinets—those critters will have a feast.
To prevent them from hanging around your kitchen scavenging on treats, check your kitchen cabinets and pantry first. Remove stale food items and store the remaining items in airtight containers. Wipe the interior of the cabinet and pantry area and put a shelf paper before placing the remaining food items back inside.
Cover the rubbish bin, scrub down the countertop and floor using a sponge with a squirt of dishwashing liquid. Wash the dishes right away as soon as you finish your meal. When vacuuming the kitchen floor, move appliances away from to wall to clean those hard to reach spaces as well. The idea is to eliminate food and water sources that can lure those little bugs inside your kitchen.
The room may harbor insects like bed bugs, fleas, cockroaches, spiders, and ants. And nobody wants those critters as roommates. To shoo them away, make sure you properly store your dirty clothes and sheets in the laundry area.
Encase your mattress with a protective cover to deprive bed bugs of a possible hiding place. Vacuum regularly and try to reduce clutter by going over all the stuff in your closets and getting rid of things that you haven’t used.
If you’re fond of eating inside the room, make sure to clean up after you’ve had your midnight snack. Otherwise, ants and cockroaches will see those leftovers, empty chip bags, and crumbs as an invitation to clean up after you.
Bugs like silverfish, mold mites, drain flies, and cockroaches are attracted to water sources. Cockroaches, for instance, can live without food for weeks but can’t live without water for more than two days. So to make sure the bathroom won’t make an appealing hub for these bugs, check the pipes underneath the bathroom sink and make sure there’s no leakage.
Also, remove the gunk—those black film that accumulates inside the drain—regularly. Bugs love a moist and humid environment so ensuring ample ventilation inside the bathroom is an easy way of preventing those critters from making a home out of your bathroom.
Your living room could play host to bugs like house flies, pavement ants, carpet beetles, and bed bugs. If you have a fireplace, that will be the first place to check if you notice an onslaught of unwelcome guests showing up while you’re hanging out with your family or friends. An old fireplace may have cracks, which will serve as an entryway for beetles and ants. Larger pests stink bugs, rodents, and raccoons can also make their way into your house through the chimney. Insects like termites could find its way into the house by hitching on the firewood.
When vacuuming the living room, pay extra attention to the carpet. This could make an excellent haven for insects like carpet beetles. To prevent them from causing damage to your carpet and other fixtures in the living room, mix white vinegar and water and apply this to shelves, window sills, and other furniture. Sprinkle this mixture on the inside of the carpet as well.
Once you’ve made the necessary preventive measure for your home's interior, it’s time to inspect the perimeter of your property to check for other weak spots. Here’s a list of things you need to take care of:
Trees. While they provide excellent shade for your yard, branches that have grown close to your house could serve as bridges for those litter critters to your roof or windows. Time to prune or trim those branches.
Roof and gutter. Winter may have brought about serious damage to your roof and gutter so you also need to inspect these. Rotting roof shingles and fascia could be all that the insects need to lure them in and feast on the rotten wood. Additionally, make sure that the gutter is not clogged up and the downspout is draining water away from your house.
Water sources. Check your outdoor faucets, sprinklers, and pipes and make sure there are no leaks. Stagnant water also makes excellent breeding grounds for mosquitoes and other insects so you have to get rid of this as well.
Outdoor lights. Some bugs are attracted to lights. So instead of using the standard bulbs for your porch and exterior lights, use halogen lights since they are not as appealing to bugs. Specifically, look for halogen bulbs that have an orange, yellow, or pink tinge to keep bugs from congregating near your door.
Nesting spots. If you are concerned with pesky critters taking over your home, take the offensive and figure out where they’re making their home in your property. Ants can have their nesting spots under the ground, termites have an affinity for wood, while wasps can build their nest just about anywhere—under the porch, trees, and underground. Once you have identified their nesting ground, you can easily control their population using insecticides or other remedies.
Lawn. Maintain a clean and well-trimmed lawn. While winter doesn’t bring much growth, your lawn could be stockpiled with branches, leaves, and stagnant water, which are excellent hiding places for bugs. When working on your landscape, trim overgrown bushes and keep mulches at least 15 inches away from your house as they can attract termites.
Foundation and window screens. Inspect the foundation of the house for cracks. Seal up those cracks and crevices to prevent the onslaught of those little critters that can fit through even the smallest of space. If you notice torn window screens, replace or repair them at once.
Spring is the time of the year when everything seems to fully come alive and unfortunately, bugs can take on that feeling of cheeriness as well. But the good thing is, you can take preemptive measures to make sure they won’t spoil the season for you.
To have your home inspected for pest risks and signs of insect damage, please contact a WIN Home Inspection expert near you by clicking here. You may also call (800) 309-6753 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and one of our experts will contact you promptly.