How to Stop Pests From Gaining Access to Your Central Maryland Home

couple watching their kids play on the floor

When it comes to pests such as spiders, ants, earwigs, and centipedes, you may not expect to see these critters crawling around your central Maryland home or business when the temperatures get cooler. These bugs are attracted to our homes for the shelter, warmth, and privacy they seek when the cold temperatures begin to force them indoors. Having one or two bugs inside your home is inevitable, but infestations of pests are entirely preventable. In this article, American Lawn and Tree Specialists offer several ways to combat and prevent pests and insects from gaining access to your home.

Clean Area Outside Your Central Maryland Home

One of the best things you can do to help keep pests out of your home is to keep the area surrounding your home clean and free of debris. Firewood and stagnant water are huge magnets for pests, so keep containers such as flower pots, wheelbarrows, and buckets empty. If you have birdbaths or pet water bowls near your home, change the water out every few days or use mosquito dunks that naturally kill mosquito larvae. Mosquitoes lay their eggs in standing water and, within 7 to 10 days, will hatch.

Try to keep debris around your house, such as grass clippings and leaves, cleaned up as much as possible. Grass clippings, wood, and leaves make an attractive nest for many different kinds of wildlife. If you store firewood outside your house, keep it as far away as possible. Firewood is one of the most common ways insects obtain access to your house. Never store firewood inside your home unless you plan to burn it immediately.

Keep Trees and Shrubs Trimmed and Kept Away From The Side of Your House

Insects are getting ready to find shelter for the winter in your trees and shrubs. Branches can act as bridges and gateways to your home, allowing little pests to find their way into your attic or crawl spaces. You can help prevent this by trimming any trees touching the outside of your house or windows.

Clean Out Gutters

Gutters serve an essential purpose. They help keep water that gathers on your roof from collecting and transport it away from your home. But bugs love the added privacy gutters give, and a clogged gutter full of debris and water not only creates a magnet for mosquitoes but it also makes an excellent home for other bugs and critters. Keep them clean and help prevent pests from using them as shelter and gaining access to your home.

Check All Doors and Windows

The older your doors are, the less likely they are to seal correctly. You are unwillingly inviting pests into your home if you can see sunlight through the sides or under your door. Seal all cracks with caulk or weather stripping. Use a door sweep to seal the bottom of the door and fix or replace any screens that have holes, rips, or tears. Pests like stink bugs, boxelder bugs, and Asian lady beetles gather outside your windows, soaking up the sun, looking for a place to spend the winter. So make sure your screens are up to date and free of rips and holes.

Give Your Central Maryland Home a Thorough Cleaning

Who loves food more than we do? Pests! In a household filled with the laughter of kids and the joy of pets, it’s normal to have crumbs fall on the floor and under appliances. So take a few hours this fall and give your home a deep, thorough cleaning. Sweep any crumbs from all hard-to-see places, such as under the fridge or stove, behind couches, and under beds. Keep dishes clean and out of the sink. Wipe down counters, inside microwaves, toaster ovens, and air fryers. Discard old boxes, newspapers, and items simply collecting dust. Purchase containers with a lid for sugar-based foods such as cereals, pasta, and snacks. Clean out messy closets and donate old clothes. By focusing on the following areas of your residence, you will save the most time and prevent pests.

  • Kitchen
  • Kitchen pantry
  • Under-sink in kitchen and bathroom
  • Dining room
  • Basement
  • Attics
  • Crawlspaces
  • Closets
  • Cupboards where food is kept

Eliminate Excess Moisture

Fix all indoor plumbing issues as soon as they arise. Several types of insects, including cockroaches, are attracted to the damp areas of your home, including wet piles of clothes, spills, and moisture from broken or damaged pipes. The less dark, damp spaces your central Maryland home provides, the fewer chances pests will seek shelter.

Clean Your Drains

Speaking of moisture, clean those drains. Sink drains are one of the last things we think about because they are simply out of sight. We can’t see down into the drain to know what is growing or living there. But the truth is as drain sludge builds up from soap, hair, skin oil, food, and other substances, it collects in the drain and stopper. While we may find that disgusting, this is prime real estate for a bug. They use that sludge as a food source and nursery for their eggs. To prevent this, it’s important to keep drains thoroughly cleaned.

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