There are an estimated ten quintillion insects on our planet. These bugs are always on a look out for food and a comfortable place to live and breed. Most bugs would love to share your home. Unfortunately, they are scary, annoying and a health hazard. To keep them away, you need to bug-proof your home.
Getting rid of bugs is a three-tier process. It involves preventing bugs from entering, making sure they don’t breed in the house and killing those that may have already invaded your home. To accomplish these objectives, you must essentially deny bugs food, water, and shelter. Here are ten ways to prevent bugs from breeding in your home.
1. Seal Your Doors and Keep them Shut
Many bugs find their way into homes through unsealed doors. Deny bugs entry by properly sealing your doors. Examine your entrances and deal with the easy bug-entrance paths. There are many door-sealing techniques you can use. A steel or aluminum threshold and a door sweep under a door can prevent crawling insects. Similarly, adding weather-stripping to the door frame will bar insects from entering. After sealing your doors, make sure to close them. Self-latching doors are an excellent choice if you're living with kids.
Bugs can squeeze in through tiny cracks. They can also hide and breed in small crevices.Examine your home’s exterior and repair cracks in foundations, damaged sections of siding, rotted wood and crumbling bricks. You can fix the holes using mortar, cement, and caulk.
3.Deny the Bugs Food and Water
You can deny bugs food and water by doing the following:
- Limit where you take meals
All members of your household should eat either in the kitchen or the dining area. There will be fewer areas with crumbs and food residue, and this will discourage bugs from invading and breeding in your home.
- Clean your floor daily
The kitchen and dining area floors can carry a lot of food crumbs. Sweep the floors or vacuum clean them daily to eradicate the bug-attracting mess.
- Deal with spills promptly
Clean kitchen spills immediately. If need be, move furniture and appliances to tackle all the mess.
- Wash the dishes
Dirty dishes smell can beckon irritating bugs. Don’t keep dirty dishes or even soak them for more than a day. Wash your dishes, drain any dish water and make sure to wipe down the sink.
- Clear the drain
Drains can be bugs’ watering holes. If you have a slow moving drain, clear and clean it. Repair leaking sinks and drains too.
- Wipe down food bottles and jars
Residue on the side or lid of your honey, syrup, butter and oil containers can attract insects. After opening such containers wipe down the outside of the container and its cover.
- Store food properly and dispose of spoiled food immediately
Store your food in tightly sealed packaging. Keep the unsealed food in the refrigerator. Check out your fruits and vegetable and throw away the rotten ones promptly. Flies love the smell of rotting food.
- Keep pet food out of bugs’ way
Pet food can attract insects such as ants and cockroaches. Put the food away after meal times or feed your pet in a bug-proof container.
4. Manage the Yard
Insects such as mosquitoes and fleas can invade your home through the yard. Best practice yard maintenance requires you:
- Prune foliage close to the house
You should take care of bushes, trees, shrubs and flower beds near the house. Trim back such vegetation to reduce the chance of an infestation.
- Eliminate pooling
Stagnant water offers bugs perfect breeding grounds. Common water collecting areas include holes, discarded children’s toys, and birdbaths. To eliminate pooling, drain out stagnant water, improve drainage, add fill dirt to holes and maintain regular drainage channels. Change the water in birdbaths and fountains regularly. As for the swimming pool, make sure to keep it chlorinated and filtered at all times.
5. Store and Dispose Trash Properly
Your trash can be bugs’ feast. You need to handle and dispose of your garbage in the right manner. To keep away bugs make sure to:
- Clean out the recyclables
Sort out your trash and rinse out any reusable plastic, glass and metal containers.
- Clean garbage containers
The trash and recycling containers require a minimum monthly wash. Wash the insides and outsides with a scrubbing brush, detergent, and water.
- Put a lid on your garbage
Fitting lids on garbage effectively keep smells in, bugs out and infestations away.
6. Add and Check Screens
During the warm months, bugs can invade your home through open windows and doors. To keep the insects where they belong, add fine screens to your windows and doors. Screens can keep out most common household insects and pests. Remember to maintain your existing screens. Make sure to repair or replace any broken screens.
7. Encourage Natural Bugs’ Predators
Predators are a natural way of maintaining balance. You can bug-proof your home using this biological pest control method. Plant trees and bushes where birds can make nests. Birds such as swallows and warblers love feeding on mosquitoes. Bats are also excellent insect killers. They can feed on bugs such as mosquitoes, flies, and wasps. If you are not afraid of them, you can encourage them by installing a bat house in the yard.
8. Clean Clothes Before Storing Them
Dirty clothes can be bugs’ magnets. Before putting clothes in the closet, wash or dry clean them first. It’s also good to store the clean clothes in properly sealed containers. If you suffer an infestation, the clothes will be safe, and it will be easier to manage the situation.
9. Keep Foundations Clear
Keep your foundations clear and protected to reduce the risk of termites, ants, and fleas infestations. Keep the foundations dry to discourage bugs that breed in wet places. Avoid holding items such firewood, piles of leaves, mulch or grass clippings near the house. You should also check for gaps and repair them. Treating your foundations with termiticides and other non-toxic treatments can also offer a level of protection against bugs.
10. Cover Large Openings
Large openings in your home’s exterior can provide bugs with easy entrance. Look for ways to cover the large holes. Some fine wire mesh and pre-fabricated caps can adequately cover those openings.
Despite your best efforts, bugs can still win. You should always be alert for signs of an infestation. If you notice bugs in your house, try to eradicate them using available chemical and safe extermination methods. You can also consult pest control and fumigation experts for thorough pests removal.