There’s nothing quite so obnoxious as dealing with a bug infestation in your home. And by “infestation” we don’t necessarily mean hundreds of critters crawling around. Because when it comes to pests like cockroaches and spiders, even a couple of these critters may seem like an overwhelming home invasion.
If you find yourself in this frame of mind, then brace yourself. Winter is on its way, and it’s during this time of year that pests such as cockroaches and spiders will target your home as a refuge of their own. In the pest control world, we refer to this as harborage. In fact, winter is typically a time when we see an increase in pests entering homes. And, in fact, they will start the process of coming indoors even now during the fall, which is why we see fall pest control numbers increase every year.
But why is that? One of the answers may seem obvious, but there are many reasons. And there are also things you can do to make your home harder to access and less hospitable for those bugs that do manage to get inside. But before we get to that, let’s first answer the question: Why do bugs come in during the fall and winter?
There are typically three reasons why pests come into your home in increasing numbers during colder weather. And they are the same reasons you stay indoors:
That’s right, bugs feel the bite of the cold too. They sense the drop in temperatures that happens every fall and understand that colder days – including freezing temperatures – are on the way. That is why now is the time they seek shelter in order to survive and – most unfortunately – lay eggs in preparation for the spring.
The fall is also a drier time of year, especially in north Georgia and metro Atlanta. And that is why Georgia cockroaches may also make their way into your home – in search of moisture. Just like us, most insects need water in order to survive. And they can often find it in your bathroom and kitchen – anywhere faucets or plumbing are used consistently.
Food also starts to grow scarcer during the fall and winter, which is bugs may come inside as they forage for readily available sources – such as crumbs left on a countertop or sugar spilled on a table. Meanwhile, common Georgia spiders follow their prey, which means they come inside looking for the bugs that were so plentiful outdoors until recently.
So, with that knowledge, what can you do to avoid your own little home invasion by pests this fall and winter? There are several steps to take.
- Get rid of entry points
Since pests like roaches and spiders can squeeze themselves through even slight openings, you need to ensure that there are no cracks and crevices visible in your doors or windows. That means replacing any eroded weather stripping and ensuring a tight closure point by reapplying caulk or silicone to any gaps. This also means that you should repair or replace any broken screen doors or storm windows. It’s also a good idea to install screens over any chimney and/or attic vents.
- Eliminate excess moisture and food sources (food and drink)
Ensure that you do not have any standing water/leaks present in your home – especially in the basement, garage, or attic. It is a good idea to keep these areas well ventilated – consider using a de-humidifier. Also, avoid piling up wet rags or allowing standing water in seldom used sinks. At the same time, you should also ensure that you seal up any easy food sources for insects. This means utilizing air-tight food containers, as well as covering up and sealing garbage receptacles. You should also keep your kitchen countertops and tables clean of crumbs and cooking oils.
- Be careful of what you bring into your home
Whether it is groceries, wood for the fireplace, or the latest delivery from your favorite online retailer, be sure to give the package a good one-over in order to make sure there are no pests hitching a ride. Pets can also unwittingly be a conduit for bugs – either by hitching a ride on your furry friend or by taking advantage of you opening and closing the door for Fido or Fluffy.
- Contact a pest control expert
A professional pest control contractor can help eject any creepy crawlies that may be invading this fall and winter – and also utilize tools and techniques that will keep your home bug free through even the coldest winters.
So, if you’ve noticed an increase in pests, have done in the past, or are concerned about what the colder months ahead could mean why not contact a pro and see what they can do to help you now? An experienced and knowledgeable pest control professional will know exactly where to look in order to keep cockroaches, spiders, and any other unwanted winter houseguest out for good – as well as have the means to quickly and safely dispose of the bugs that have already taken up residence in your home.
Zone has been providing expert pest control solutions to households throughout north Georgia and metro Atlanta for more than 20 years, and we would be happy to help you evict those nasty invaders for good. Simply contact us today at 770-904-5432 and we’ll help you clean your house as soon as possible.