In Texas, where the warm climate allows insects to thrive throughout most of the year, homeowners have to be extra vigilant to protect their homes from insects. Taking a few simple measures can help to stack the playing field in your favor, and potentially help you to avoid needing to calling the exterminator.
Remove Standing Water Outside
Standing water outside around your home can be a breeding ground for insects, especially mosquitoes. Be especially aware of areas of standing water in your yard or garden, bird baths, clogged gutters, leaky hoses, buckets, toys, etc. Either remove the offender completely, or make sure that fresh water is cycled daily.
Remove Standing Water Inside
Standing water can also be an issue inside your home. Like other living beings, insects need water to drink and sometimes breed, so don’t make it comfortable for them to live in your home. Pay attention to dishes in the sink, leaky faucets, water bowls for pets, plants, basement puddles, etc. for stagnant water and remove the offenders.
Secure Interfaces Between Outside and Inside
Insects in your home originate from the outside, and they often sneak in through interfaces between the outside and the inside such as windows, doors, utility pipes & wiring, vents, cracks, drains, etc. Start by making sure that all of these areas are properly sealed with caulk and well-fitting fixtures.
Do you have a water faucet that doesn’t get used very much? Insects can use the pipes to enter your home. Be sure to routinely check all faucets, vents, windows, doors, etc.
Insects need to eat to survive, and inside homes, they often live on uncleaned messes. Make sure to clean all spills, crumbs, dirty dishes, etc. as quickly as possible to avoid attracting unwanted visitors. Vacuum carpeted areas weekly and thoroughly clean all kitchen surfaces.
Make sure all of your stored food is securely stowed away in a sealed container or in the refrigerator. Open snack containers in your pantry provide easy meals for unwanted insects.
Be on Alert for Scouts
Ants send out scouts to locate their next home, so seeing one could be an early indicator of a future problem. Use the opportunity to make sure the area is clean and lay down some ant deterrent.
Call the Exterminator
When all else fails, pest control professionals can be very effective at eradicating insect problems from your home. Most operate on a quarterly schedule of spraying in and around your home to help eliminate the problem. Be sure to ask what chemicals they will be putting down, as some can be dangerous for your family and pets. You might consider more eco-friendly options to help reduce the risk to your health and the environment.
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