Tag Archives: pest prevention

Pest Control Begins With Prevention

A homeowner’s first step in pest control is always prevention. Pests find certain environments more inviting than others, and you want to ensure that your living space isn’t one of them. Though insects and rodents don’t solely target unkempt households, the more meticulous you are with maintenance indoors and around the perimeter of your home, the less you should have to worry about pest infestations causing chaos and property damage and negatively affecting your health. Eliminating appealing elements and sources needed for survival (food, water, and shelter), along with having periodic inspections from a pest control professional, will help you avoid the nuisance of uninvited critters.

Food Sources

Roach On Cracker

It’s no secret that a bite to eat is what a majority of pests are looking for when they enter a home, so properly storing food and cleaning up any remnants of crumbs can help to send them in another direction. Wipe down kitchen counters, don’t leave dishes in the sink, clear up spills quickly and sweep and vacuum the floors regularly. Limit meals, snacks and beverages to the kitchen and dining areas to cut down on the number of places food residue can potentially be found. Keep pantry and leftover food in tightly sealed containers that aren’t vulnerable to gnawing teeth and holes that allow creepy crawlers to enter. Frequently wash out garbage bins (those that are kept inside as well as outside), make sure they are always covered with lids, rinse out all recyclables before tossing them out and take out your kitchen trash daily.

Water Sources

Ant Drinking Water

There are several different kinds of water sources around a property that will attract pests if homeowners aren’t careful. Don’t leave pet bowls out all day and night, thoroughly wring out wet mops, clear out slow or clogged drains and take extra notice of any leaky plumbing indoors. Outside, be sure to clean out all gutters and drainage pipes consistently, fill in any holes that could allow for standing water and keep an eye on decorative landscaping accessories like birdbaths and fountains that can easily become a breeding ground for pests. Humidity may also capture the attention of insects and rodents, making it important to keep your home well-ventilated and to routinely check attics, basements and crawl spaces for signs of dampness.

Shelter Sources

House Mouse Concrete

Sometimes vermin just need to take shelter in a cozy place, but you don’t necessarily want that to be your place. Keep your preventive pest control efforts up by blocking entry points that would give them access indoors. Secure mortar around the foundation of your home, reinforce stripping around doors and windows, install screens, caulk all holes and cracks, repair damaged roofing materials and keep vents closed off or appropriately covered. It’s also a good idea to keep all vegetation well-trimmed and away from the home and to store wood further away on the property, as these things can provide the perfect hiding spots for pests.

Practicing these methods of prevention will assist you in keeping the insects and rodents at bay. But at the first indication of a problem, it’s to your advantage to call in the help of a pest control professional before matters get any worse.

About the Author

Tiffany Olson lives in beautiful Northern California and blogs regularly on pest control and home related topics. When she is not researching or blogging you will usually find her on a weekend road trip or hanging out with good friends.

Staying Pest Free In The Winter: 4 Tips To Help You Reclaim Your Home

As fall fades away, families spend more time indoors talking, playing games and gathering around the fireplace. However, they aren’t the only ones who want to seek shelter from the cold; many pests, like mice and roaches, are also interested in staying warm and comfortable. Naturally, you don’t want anything in your home that doesn’t belong there. The following tips will help you reclaim your living space from these little intruders.

Use Plastic, Not Paper

It is important to store your pantry food in a container that pests can’t gain access to. The paper boxes you purchased the food in, therefore, are not going to work. Instead, place your food in a plastic container. Rodents will be hard pressed to chew through them, and they have the added bonus of keeping your food much fresher over time. Remember, one of the reasons that pests are entering your home is because they want easy access to food. If you take away that access, they will have to go elsewhere in order to survive.

Clean Regularly

If nothing else, pick up your home each evening so the floor space is clean. Anything you leave laying around is a haven for pests; they can hide in it and will consequently feel comfortable putting down roots in your house. Completing a quick pick up will make your living space look better and should also discourage pests from making your house their home.

Seal Up Holes

Walk around the perimeter of your house, and take the time to closely examine the walls. If you see a hole or a crack, make sure to close it up. Even larger pests, like mice or rats, can squeeze into very small spaces, so it is important that you don’t neglect to fix any openings that you find. A bit of caulk should solve most problems, but if you have a particularly large hole, you may need to bring in a handyman to take a look at the situation.

Check Your Screens

If you have mesh screens covering your doors and windows, periodically check them for any holes or tears. Much like a crack in your foundation, a hole in your screen will allow all different types of pests to get into your home. These screens are useful, though, for allowing fresh air to flow into your space, so you shouldn’t discontinue their use altogether. Simply be vigilant about maintaining them properly.

While many people think of summer as being the prime season for pest problems, the truth is, winter can be quite difficult as well. If you are struggling to control the pest population in your home, try the four tips above. With enough time and effort, you should be able to get rid of pests once and for all.

Morgan is a proud mother who enjoys spending her days discovering fun and interesting things to do with her young son. At night, she is an avid writer and solves all her pest problems with the help of a Jersey City Pest Control company.

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.