Pest Prevention Tips
Identifying and correcting conducive conditions is the focal point of Integrated Pest Management (IPM). By eliminating attractive feeding and nesting conditions, pests are much less likely to infest your home or business. By following some of these simple suggestions, you can reduce the need for extermination services.
Some common conducive conditions include:
- Sources of food such as unsealed containers in the kitchen/pantry, pet food left in the open and unsecured garbage/compost either inside or outside.
- Sources of moisture such as leaky plumbing or roof, hot tubs, and stagnant water resulting from poor crawlspace drainage, clogged gutters, overwatered grass/gardens, bird baths, etc.
- Unclean and/or unsealed air ducts.
- Missing or damaged vapor barrier in crawlspace or gutters filled with debris.
- Insufficient ventilation in attic and/or crawlspace.
- Open entry points such as windows, crawlspace openings, foliage or wiring touching structures, open eves/chimneys, holes or cracks larger than a quarter-inch in the structure.
- Piles of debris such as wood, stones, bricks, leaves, etc. near the structure.
- Dead wood near the property such as stumps, railroad ties, logs, etc. which can attract wood-destroying organisms such as Carpenter Ants and Termites.
- A pre-existing pest condition which has not been corrected (ie, ants can attract spiders).
Tips for Pest Prevention
- Keep food sealed tight and stored correctly. Only feed pets as much as they can eat in one sitting. Do not let pet food sit overnight and only feed them indoors when possible.
- Routinely remove garbage and compost from the kitchen. Ensure your garbage and compost areas are secured.
- Remove/correct any sources of moisture issues such a leaky roof or plumbing, clogged gutters, poor crawlspace drainage, etc.
- If you have a hot tub, set it up as far from the home as possible. While they’re great for us, they are also an ideal harborage place for carpenter ants, termites, rodents and more, as heat and moisture are an attractive combination for many pests.
- Water lawns and gardens as minimally as possible. Or be hip and join the brown lawn brigade! (Tip if you insist on having green grass: Put an empty tuna can out with the sprinkler. When it is half-filled with water, you’re done!).
- Have air ducts cleaned and maintained regularly. Ensure there are no leaks in the duct work.
- Have your crawlspace and attic inspected every six months by a pest control technician for signs of moisture, open entry points, and possible pest activity. Invest in a crawlspace and/or attic restoration to protect your home’s health and help prevent pest issues.
- Remove wood that is not necessary outside the structure (ie, boards, railroad ties and logs which are being stored or used for decoration).
- Keep firewood as far from the structure as possible. Stack it off the ground and do not allow it to lean against other structures.
- Trim shrubbery and other foliage so it is at least 6-8 inches from homes/garages/sheds.