Home Pest Control 101

cockroach

cockroach (Photo credit: Squallwc)

Because there are so many types of pest that come in all shapes and sizes, your home pest control needs to address a wide range of critters from termites, ants, and roaches to mice and raccoons as well. There are a number of pests that can make themselves at home in with little or no announcement.

Of course the best way to get rid of pest is by keeping them out in the first place. This is normally done by caulking around windows and joints, and using barrier products. Additionally keeping food sealed and removing any standing water will help control pest problems. However, it is inevitable that at least one pest will find its way into your home.

Below are a few points to remember when trying to prevent pests:

Seal points of entry.  Nothing wants into your home more than a foraging pest.  Bugs and rodents can find the smallest crack or gap in your foundation and slip under an unsealed door or window to find something to eat or a place to sleep.  Because of this caulking around your windows and doors can save you from an infestation while at the same time saving you on your energy bills.  Also be sure to check vents and where pipes or wires enter the home because there are often small gaps at these points.

Treat regularly. Preventive pesticides come in a number of forms including: liquids, granules, and bait stations. Use of these in conjunction with the other methods listed here will ensure that pests don’t invade your home. The most common application method for a liquid pesticide is to spray around the base of your home or near other points on entry.

Granules are another great way to keep pests out. Because they’re heavier and cannot be carried away by the wind or rain, granules don’t have to be applied frequently. Granules work when foraging pests picks them up. They are taken back to the colony, where these pesticides through their transitive properties and cause the colony to collapse. The best way to distribute granules is with a broadcaster, much like the one you use for seeding grass or flower seeds.

Bait stations work in much the same way as granules but they are placed in set positions through out the yard or home. But regardless of the type of pesticide you’re using applying it as dictated by the manufactures’ instructions is very important.

Keep food sealed. Food is a huge draw for many types of pest. One of the biggest in-home attractions for pest is unsealed food. But even if the containers were sealed mice and rats can chew through cardboard boxes.  And a number of pests can be missed even after they’ve enjoyed your hospitality. One way to stop this is through the use of airtight solid containers epically ones made out of glass and hard plastic. In addition to sealing you food make sure you don’t leave any out.  You should also cover your garbage cans.

Clean your sinks and tubs. Don’t leave water in the sink.  Sinks are dumping grounds for foods and drinks and when not cleaned consistently, breading grounds for bugs and bacteria.   Roaches are one of many types of pest that like dampness.  Keeping these areas clean (and dry) will reduce the likelyhood that pest can find water or food.

Keep exterior dry.  A nice green lawn is something that you work really hard to get.   And to keep your yard lush and green it will often require that you irrigate you lawn. But it is important that you keep the water off your house.  Soaking your house can attract pests who thrive in the damp while at the same time allowing the growth of mold.

This aritcle was written by Crystal C., a DIY specialist from Florida. Crystal advocates do-it-yourself pest control and recommends DIY home pest control to her readers as an alternative to expensive exterminator services.

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