Fall is firmly in session and, as the colder weather takes root pest activity is set to increase as insects and small animals seek to find warm, safe spaces to shelter from the cold. After all, who can blame them? The winters in South Carolina can be surprisingly harsh. If you’re not careful, you could notice pests like rodents, cockroaches, and spiders (beyond the usual house spiders) in your home—your basement and crawl space especially. Thankfully, there are some very easy steps you can take to ensure your home stays pest-free.
4 Simple Steps to Keep Your Home Pest-Free
If you follow these quick and easy steps, you should be able to keep pests out of your home during even the coldest weather.
Identify All Hotpots
Your home has everything that a pest needs in order to set up a base and thrive: food, shelter, water, heat and places to hide. Nonetheless, there are certain places that will be more attractive and susceptible to pests. These hotspots include trash cans, your basement, your crawl space, your garage and utility rooms. As such, the first step in preventing pest infestation is identifying and monitoring these hotspots.
Clutter and debris provide ideal clutter for pests to make nests in, so you should do the most you can to clear up hotspots. You should especially focus on removing organic debris and cluttering, things like unused furniture coverings, wooden furniture, and cardboard boxes (especially if they have become damp). Since certain crawl spaces can be used for storage, along with your basement, it’s important to verify that all these areas are tidy. Clearing clutter will not only remove the likelihood of pest infestations, but uncover any existing infestations.
Reinforce the Perimeter
Pests have to get into your home before they can set up shop, so reinforcing your perimeter and pest-proofing your crawl space and foundation is an incredibly effective way to prevent infestation.
Investing in quality vent covers will help bar pests access, and you can also look into getting your basement or crawl space properly encapsulated. Not only will this keep out pests, but also invasives of mold and moisture overall. You can cap this off with insulation that’s treated to resist termites. Rigid panels are a better alternative to soft fiberglass insulation that pests love.
Inspect your walls for cracks and crevices, especially around crawl space vents, access points, and utility penetration points. Fill any holes with sealant to keep pests out, and maintain your yard’s landscaping well into the fall. After all, pests often use vegetation as a staging or feeding site.
Implement a Sanitation Routine
This may seem obvious, but a pest removal or inhibition sanitation routine is different from everyday cleaning. For example, pests will feed on the residue inside drains, so sanitizing them regularly with organic cleaner to remove debris and buildup. Furthermore, you should seal garbage away tightly and sweep up food waste quickly.
These simple steps will help you avoid the formation of a pest problem or infestation in the first place. However, if you have found droppings or seen pests and suspect you may already have one, it’s time to call in professionals to clear the infestation and repair the damage it has caused.
What Damage Does an Infestation Do?
The damage an infestation can do to your home depends on the type of pest, the size of the infestation, and how long it has been going on. The most common damages caused by infestation, however, are:
- Damaged wiring
- Damaged carpet and upholstery
- Wood damage
- Ruined soft furnishings
- Bad odors
When left unchecked, pests may even cause damage to your foundation. You’ll need to turn to the experts to make sure any lasting damage is reversed, so your home remains stable and waterproof.
Of course, infestations also pose a real risk to your health. The bad odors are a symptom of droppings and waste, which can become airborne.
When To Call For Help
If you’re looking to repair the damage left by an infestation, or you’re trying to pest-proof your home, it’s worth checking out a professional’s help. By booking a free inspection appointment, you can get a checkup on the health of your home and receive advice without worrying about cost.
An inspector will check your basement for all kinds of problems and damage before providing you with a written quote that details their suggested repairs and the cost of that work. This means you can shop around, safe in the knowledge that you know exactly what you need.