The temperatures plummet, the grocery store shelves are empty of bread, eggs, and milk, and you’re ready to hunker down for a long winter. Although it may not seem like any pests can survive this weather, it’s certainly not time to let your guard down. While you seek shelter in the warmth and comfort of your home, you’re not the only one. An army of pests will stop at nothing to take part in the cozy atmosphere of your sanctuary, but your neighbors at Got Bugs won’t leave you without defense. Check out our best tips for keeping pests away all winter long.
Common Pests That Seek Shelter in the Winter
While not all pests are looking to make your home into theirs during the winter there are some that do. Here are the most common pests that will try to make their way into your home and how to detract them from your home.
Able to fit through openings as small as a dime, rodents can easily find their way into your home through small cracks and holes. Typically hiding in dark, untouched areas like your attic or basement, these pesky creatures can spread diseases like Salmonella, putting your family at risk. They can also cause damage to your home by chewing through your electrical wires. To properly protect your home from rodents:
- Seal any small openings with steel wool or caulk
- Reduce clutter
- Keep your eye out for droppings, chew marks, and nesting materials.
- Store any firewood at least 20 ft away from your home to avoid giving rodents a place to nest
Eight-legged pests find their way into the comfort of your warm, inviting home. They prefer to hide in untouched areas of your home, so take the time to properly seal the belongings in your attic and basement in plastic bins with tight lids. Keep clutter to a minimum and vacuum frequently. Make your home less attractive to the bugs that spiders eat by minimizing indoor and outdoor light whenever possible.
Keeping cockroaches away boils down to keeping your home clean and properly storing your belongings. Cockroaches like to hide in clutter, so keep what you can off the floor and store the rest in plastic containers (roaches love cardboard boxes!) They are also attracted to excessive moisture, so regularly check for leaks in your pipes to keep roach activity to a minimum.
While ants are most active in the spring and summer, these pests are also looking for warmth and food in your home during the winter. While you can use baits and traps to eliminate ants, these are often ineffective and can allow more time for ants to invade your space. What's more, DIY methods are often used incorrectly, putting your pets and your family at risk. For quick and effective relief, call your local pest control company.
How to Prevent Pests From Entering Your Home
Inspect Your Home for Access Points
Inspect the outside of your home for any access points. Seal all cracks and crevices with silicone caulk. Fill larger gaps with steel wool. Keep in mind rats can enter the home through holes as small as a quarter and mice gain entry through holes as small as a dime. You’ll also want to screen attic vents and chimney openings to prevent access.
Use Proper Landscaping Techniques
You should keep shrubbery trimmed and ensure mulch is located at least fifteen inches away from your home’s foundation. Rodents love to use bushes and shrubs to access holes in your home’s foundations and as a means of cover when scurrying about. Also, mulch attracts rodents and draws them to your home.
Keep Your Home Neat & Tidy
Be sure to keep kitchen counters clean and store food in airtight containers. You should also dispose of garbage in tightly sealed receptacles. Keep pet dishes up and pet food containers sealed. If pests can’t get food at your home, they won’t be as likely to invade.
Be Mindful of Decorations & Deliveries
If you store your Christmas decorations, you may want to inspect the boxes before bringing them in the house. Also, inspect all items delivered to your home. Pests are very creative about finding unique ways to get inside your home. You need to shake out or look over anything that has been left or stored outside.
Trust a Professional Pest Exterminator
The simplest way to ensure you and your family live pest-free all winter is to get an inspection from a professional exterminator and have your home treated regularly for long-term relief. With our effective, eco-friendly treatments and satisfaction guarantee, our team at Got Bugs can help you defend your home against cold weather pests.