Our favorite way to spend the cold winters in Utah is by getting cozy inside of your warm and happy family home. We can snuggle up in your beds, next to the fireplace, or in the kitchen while you cook our favorite soup. Some of us may die before winter ends but don’t you worry we will leave behind thousands of eggs as thank you gifts. Then guess what happens come springtime? Bugs everywhere for the family to enjoy!
The best chance for an insect’s survival during winter is to take cover in a warm home, leaving you with pests running around that cause your family discomfort and potentially harm. Come insects die off in the winter but they leave behind infestations that you will have to deal with when the weather heats up. Keep your family happy and healthy this winter season with these 10 tips. Take preventative measures now inside your home to create a comfortable lifestyle you can enjoy instead of the pesky bugs.
1. Seal Up Your Doors
If you were to check your door you would likely see a number of cracks making it an easy path for the bugs to come into your home.
- Install a sturdy aluminum or steel threshold underneath the door. For even better protection add a door sweep to this combination.
- Add weather-stripping or door-seal kits to the perimeter of the frames to keep bugs from getting in on the sides and top of the door.
- Use a clear caulking to seal the door joints where the frame meets the wall.
- Do you have a forgetful family? Consider installing a hydraulic door to make sure the door closes behind people coming and going. All of this work is useless if the door is left open.
2. Add Screens
During winter the fireplace can create a lot of smoke or the house can get stuffy so you open the window for some natural ventilation, then BAM a few bugs sneak in and soon you find them all over the house.
- Install screens in windows to make sure bugs cannot get in the house, choose a 20-mesh or fine screen so the bugs cannot sneak through the holes.
- Make sure there are no holes in the screen or spacing between the screens frame and window seal; these are perfect paths for bugs to sneak in.
3. Maintain Your Yard
Yard maintenance has the biggest effect in bug infestations and is not typically properly cared for due to crazy busy lifestyles.
- Eliminate all wood-to-soil contact around your foundation; be sure to keep firewood and other wood debris from being stacked directly against your home.
- Keep mulch and soil away from the side of your house, create a barrier between them.
- Keep a well maintained lawn if it is not yet covered in snow.
- Make sure gutters drain properly and direct the moisture away from your home.
- Remove any piles of leaves or debris before the snow coats them, this is another ideal place for bugs to keep warm this winter.
- Trim the trees back from your home so they are not physically touching or hanging over the roof of your house.
4. Repair Cracks
Bugs can enter your home through almost microscopic cracks or holes making it extremely important to patch them up.*Good Tip* If a pencil can slide through a gap or crack so can a young mouse as well as thousands of insects.
- To keep the bugs out use cement or mortar to patch foundation and walls.
- Clear away any damaged bricks and replace them with new ones filling the joints well.
- Replace damaged sections of siding or cladding.
- Replace rotting wood pay particular attention to potential termites or damage.
- Use caulk around window frames, any holes/cracks, foundation or siding cracks, etc. Caulking is a cheap way to bug proof your home.
- Repair any roof or plumbing leaks you may have to rid of extra moisture around your home.
5. Seal Around Pipe Penetrations
The utility or pipe penetrations in your walls most likely have large gaps around them accompanied by large holes that had to be drilled for installation. This is a great gap for insects to get inside your home.
- Fill smaller gaps or crack with pipe sealant or caulk.
- For larger gaps or cracks use polyurethane foam with a copper mesh or steel wool as a base in case bug tries to push through the foam.
6. Remove Unprotected Food and Water Sources
The best way to make bugs feel comfortable in your home is by leaving food and drinks out for them on the counter, table, or floor. Stop inviting them to stay!
- Store all of your food in airtight containers.
- Store unsealed food products in the refrigerator whenever possible.
- Limit food consumption to one room in the house, no one wants to find bugs crawling all over the couch!
- Wipe up spills and crumbs quickly.
- Do dishes after use, don’t leave them sitting in the sink or put them in the dishwasher.
- Store pet food in a bug-proof container after meal time.
7. Store Trash Properly
One man’s trash is another bugs treasure.
- Keep food waste in the trashcan in the kitchen and not in wastebaskets throughout the house.
- The trash should be placed in a bin with a lid and emptied every night before bed.
- All bins inside and outside of the house should have secure lids with tight seals that keep bugs out.
8. Encourage Natural Predators
One of the easiest ways to take care of the insects around your home are natural predators, bats and birds.
- Having trees and bushes around your home (maintained still) is inviting for predators to create nests in.
- Have a fresh water sources in the yard, but keep it fresh. Stagnant water attracts more insects.
- Most homeowners would be hesitant to have bats in their yards but they are beneficial in treating insects and sleep all day making them unnoticeable unless you are awake all night.
9. Keep Your Home Clean
Bugs like to hideout in dark and comfortable places making your mess an ideal location to live which is why keeping the house clean is important.
- Hang up your clothing, do not leave it lying on the bed or on the floor.
- Regularly sweep or vacuum in crawl spaces.
- Rid your home or clutter or unnecessary debris such as scrap lumber, old boxes, or old books and newspapers.
10. Cover All Large Openings
You can’t necessarily cover your chimney or roof vents with caulking but you do need to cover them so insects do not get inside of your home this winter.
- To cover these large holes use a fine wire mesh, typically called hardwire cloth. This comes in large rolls and can be stapled over large openings.
- Also cover any grilles, vents, and crawl space holes with the hardwire cloth.
- A prefabricated chimney can also be used instead of the mesh and may be more efficient at keeping out pests.
Or You Could Just…
These are all tips and tricks you can take before and during winter to keep your home free of insects. Seems like an awful lot of work, doesn’t it? Not to mention costly and time consuming to have no guarantee there won’t STILL be bugs. Here is how we feel about it… Just call Beeline! Why put in that much work? We will do it for you and put you at ease.
Let us make your life easier by taking care of pests for you, guaranteed! Keep your home comfortable and bug free this winter by calling Beeline Pest Control today for a free inspection or more information! (801) 544-9200