How to Deal with Household Pests


From ants marching across the kitchen to wasps’ nests in the eaves, prompt action is needed if your home is besieged by pests or vermin. Many infestations can be stopped as they occur, but for some longer term or potentially hazardous problems, an expert will bring greater peace of mind.

Common pests

Ants

Spray ants – especially lines of ants – with ant-killer. Follow the trail back to their nest, and pour boiling water on it. Follow this up by leaving ant traps by their nest, or use a slow-acting spray. Ants covered with spray will introduce the poison to other ants in the colony.

Prevention: keep floors and worktops clean and mop up sweet spills immediately, especially in hot weather.

Cockroaches

Cockroach infestation has mostly been confined to commercial kitchens and premises but in recent years has also been found in domestic houses. These are among the most difficult household pests to eradicate, and it is essential to deal with them very thoroughly. As well as having an unpleasant smell, cockroaches carry bacteria that may cause food poisoning. They need food, water, warmth, and dark places to hide in – behind and under sinks, in the motor compartment of refrigerators, and under tabletops. Spray them with specialized pesticides. Remove dead insects, clean the area, and then repeat the treatment as an extra deterrent to stop them coming back.

Fleas

If you own a cat or dog, there’s a big risk that the animal will carry fleas – which then jump off the animal to bite you. There are many methods and products available to keep your pet and your home free from fleas, and your vet can advise you on the best way to deal with it. Common treatments include a liquid applied to the animal’s skin, and a powder that is added to food. Both of these render the fleas sterile. More traditional methods include powder pesticides to treat animals and bedding, and the use of flea collars. Your pet shop will have a range of suitable products.

Flies

Reduce the presence of flies in your house by keeping your rubbish bin lid tightly closed and by putting away food. If you have convenient corners, hang old-fashioned slow-release fly-killer strips. These are very effective. Regularly check and remove insects. If there is a particular problem in the kitchen, try a plug-in fluorescent trap that draws flies to the light, then zaps them.

Mice

Unless you have a cat, which will bring you direct evidence, you may not know you have mice for some time. Look for signs of nibbled food or chewed wiring, usually in the kitchen, basement, or attic. To tackle the problem, you may want to contact your local pest control services. They will use poisoned bait placed in small boxes away from children and pets. Alternatively, you could employ a private pest control contractor or buy traps and poison from a DIY shop to use yourself.

Moths

The plain, brown clothes moth lays eggs that hatch into white grubs. These grubs then eat holes in anything containing wool – carpets, furnishings, and clothes – and usually focus on a favourite sweater. To eradicate them, use a specialized moth killer.

Mosquitoes

Mosquitoes and gnats can be a big problem when the climate is hot and humid. Kill them with a specialized insecticide. If your home is near water you can reduce their entry by placing mosquito screens on windows and doors or keeping windows shut. Mosquitoes breed in standing water, so cover any reservoirs used to collect rainwater, and put petroleum jelly in gutters to prevent water from collecting in pools and stagnating.

Silver fish

These are small crawling insects that eat starch and glue. They like to hide in dark places, especially if it is damp, and are often an indication of lack of ventilation or low-grade damp. They may damage wallpaper and paper in picture frames and book covers. Destroy with insecticide.

Wasps

A few wasps can be dealt with using a specialized spray. Large numbers indicate that you may have a nest under the eaves, or around the base of your house. Employ a contractor who will remove the nest.

Woodworm

Woodworm attack furniture and cause holes the size of pinheads. In older furniture, some damage may have been done years ago. To see if woodworm is currently active, look for very fine sawdust that falls from the holes when you touch them. It is important to act promptly, because woodworm can move easily from one piece of furniture to an adjacent piece. You can treat an isolated infestation in furniture with woodworm eradication kits, but if you think any part of the house may have an infestation, it is better to contact a contractor.

Be Sociable, Share!

Related posts:

  1. How to Control Wood Pests
  2. How to Safely Kill Ants
  3. How to Get Rid of Ants Naturally
  4. How to Eradicate Fleas without Using Chemicals
  5. How to Deal with Pests and Disease in Window Garden

Filed Under: Home & Maintenance

Tags:

About the Author: Jason Prickett loves to write about home maintenance and stuff you can do yourself instead of hiring any professional. His step by step guides will assist you in completing your home maintenance tasks.

RSSComments (0)

Trackback URL

Comments are closed.