Fall is a very active time for pests like ants, spiders, roaches, centipedes, and other creepy crawlies. As the temperatures begin to drop, pests start looking for a warm place to overwinter, your home is the perfect winter home for them. The key to fall pest prevention is making your home as inhospitable and inaccessible to these pests as possible. Here are a few fall pest prevention tips to keep your home pest-free this winter.
We’ve all heard of spring cleaning, but fall cleaning is just as important. Roaches, ants, and flies are opportunistic creatures. They love a free meal and can often be found hanging around the kitchen, dining on yesterday’s dinner. The easiest way to reduce your pest population is to clean up around the kitchen.
Sweep up any crumbs, clean up any leftover food, and properly store your food. Make sure your leftovers are in sealed containers and regularly take your trash out. If you have pets, try not to leave their food out for too long. Always keep your trash in a tight-sealed container and keep it far away from your doors and windows to make it more difficult for pests to find their way into your home.
Next, we need to deal with the water situation. A great way to control the pest population is to turn your home into a literal desert. Many pests, like millipedes and cockroaches, like to live in damp places with lots of excess moisture. Check around your home, in bathrooms, and under sinks for leaky pipes or faucets. It’s also a good idea to use a dehumidifier in damp areas, like the basement.
Once you’ve taken the appropriate measures inside your home, it’s time to turn your attention to the exterior. Start with the foundation of your home. Check the foundation for any weak points, like holes or cracks, and seal them up. Pests can find their way into your home through the smallest cracks so make sure you thoroughly seal it up. You should also watch for pooling water around the foundation. Pooling water is a beacon for pests and the water can cause damage to your foundation, providing pests with easy access.
It’s not uncommon to find fall pests collecting on the side of your home, around windows and doors. Boxelder bugs, brown marmorated stink bugs, and Asian lady beetles congregate in large numbers, looking for a way into your nice warm home. If you have a gap around your door or a damaged window screen, then they’ve probably already made their way inside. Check your windows and doors for any gaps or cracks and fill them with caulk. Make sure you evaluate your window screens as well. If there are any holes or scratches, then repair or replace them. Turn your home into a virtual Fort Knox by sealing up all of your entry points.
Another way pests can enter your home is through gaps, holes, and cracks in your roof. At the end of the year, it’s important to check your roof for any damage. Repair or replace damaged shingles and seal up any weak points. While you’re up there, clean out your gutters. Mosquitoes love to lay their eggs to overwinter in the leaf matter and backed-up water in a clogged gutter.
Finally, you can extend the pest-free zone into your yard, further reducing pest populations and keeping your home free of pests throughout the year. Clean up any piles of leaves, sticks, and twigs as these are perfect hiding places for ticks and other pests. Trim trees and shrubs away from the side of your home to prevent pests from getting close to your home. Some pests, like fleas, love to hang out in tall grass, so make sure you mow your lawn up until the grass stops growing.
The best fall pest prevention is to invest in perimeter pest control from the experts at Harvest Lawn Care. Combined with our outdoor flea and tick control services, we’ll help create a protective barrier around your home and yard to keep pests out.