Longer days and warmer weather are the makings for a fun summer, but unfortunately, this time of year also attracts some unwanted visitors into our homes – pests!
Insect and pest activity will increase with warmer weather as many start to forage for food.
And you should take immediate action to prevent a real problem from taking over your time and your space. Although annoying, preventing an insect infestation doesn’t have to take over your time or your wallet!
We have some easy tips and DIY tricks that you can apply to keep your house pest free all summer long!
The National Pest Management Association cites the three most common summer pests as mosquitoes, ants and ticks. While there are certainly more annoying guests that can invade your home, we’ll focus our tips around these three.
For most Texans dealing with mosquitoes in the summer is nothing new, but particularly in North Texas, the problem can be really harmful.
While these pests don’t necessarily invade your home, they will interfere with your outdoor BBQ or relaxing deck time.
Some of the easiest ways to limit exposure to mosquitoes include:
- Staying inside during peak mosquito times, usually dusk and dawn.
- Drain standing water from birdbaths, gutters, ponds, etc.
- Install yellow ¨bug lights¨ on outside deck areas that don’t tend to attract as many bugs as incandescent lights.
- Invest in a large fan for your deck, as mosquitoes are generally weak fliers the strong wind will keep them away.
- Regularly check windows, screens and doors for any issues to keep mosquitoes out of your home!
Possibly the most annoying home invader, ants can cause serious issues if they get in and remain undetected.
While not directly detrimental to your health, a growing ant colony can lead to lots of stress and potential structural damage to your home.
Check out these easy, inexpensive ways to keep these unwanted guests out of your home!
- Clean, clean, clean. Keeping a clean home (especially areas around windows, sinks, and cracks). A great natural home cleaner is one part vinegar and three parts water.
- Keep food stored and crumbs off the floor.
- Seal cracks and small holes on the exterior of your home.
- An excellent, inexpensive tool (and safe for homes with pets or children) is cornmeal. If you find the entry point of a colony of ants in your home, leave a plate with some cornmeal on it and wait. Ants can’t digest this, and it will slowly kill a colony.
Remember, if you have a total infestation then it’s time to call a professional.
For those who spend a lot of time outside or have pets inside the home, you’re more susceptible to ticks.
Accumulated dust, hair and dirt in carpets or rugs in darker areas of the house that don’t get fresh air or sunlight are all factors that ticks thrive on.
- If going out, use a product with at least 20% DEET, wear long pants/sleeves and a bandana if going into wooded areas. Be sure to check yourself and family members thoroughly upon returning home.
- Mow your lawn regularly.
- Remove leaf litter, like sticks, grass clippings, or leaves.
- Create a barrier between your yard and wooded areas by adding wood chips or gravel, which make an uncomfortable obstacle for ticks to cross.
These tips should serve as a solid base of preventive measures to take in protecting your home and your loved ones from these pesky creatures all summer.
If you find yourself with more than the basic pest issue, don’t hesitate to seek professional services.
Let us know what measures you’re already taking to keep your home pest free!