With the onset of winter, you may be wondering how necessary it is to maintain pest control in the colder months. You're probably thinking that skipping this service this season is a great way to cut costs. If this is your case, I am sorry to inform you that the weather will not be able to do much to prevent these pests from establishing themselves and multiplying in homes or businesses.
With the arrival of cold, pests seek to protect themselves from low temperatures, so they tend to move to homes, companies, offices or commercial premises. This is because they seek the heat of rooms, houses or other spaces such as kitchens or basements to hide and find shelter and food.
In the same way, it must be taken into account that winters, in a large part of the country, in recent years have become more extreme, so that the warm climate that favors the proliferation of pests does not disappear completely, which favors that some persist even in this season.
Therefore, it is essential to keep an eye out for signs that could indicate that there is a pest problem in your home, office or business, and be prepared to work on its prevention and/or management.
Here we list some of the most common in the winter season, as well as some recommendations to avoid their appearance.
Pests can be a big problem in any season, and winter is no exception. Some, such as moths or termites, can cause a lot of headaches when trying to eliminate them, and can also cause serious material damage, which can take a long time to repair, as well as being expensive.
If you decide not to carry out your fumigation service this season, much of this damage can go unnoticed for a long time, at best until you hire the next professional service, and at worst, until the damage is irreparable. Scheduling a routine checkup with a professional can save you a lot of time, money, and stress.
For many pests, it is very easy to slip unnoticed in spaces that are rarely used or used, such as cellars, basements, and then move to other spaces. By performing regular pest control for cockroaches, termites, rodents, and other pests in your home, office, or business, you can be confident that any pests that begin to establish themselves won't become a serious problem.
Winter is the perfect time to prevent problems in the future. The cooler months can be used to catch up on maintenance, which will help prevent pest problems. When spring arrives, you will feel safe and secure, knowing that you have taken the necessary steps to enjoy a safe and pest-free space.
Some of the most common pests you should be prepared for in winter are:
Rats and mice
Mice and rats are major carriers of disease, and they can infest your space during any season of the year, but you may see an increase in rodents during the winter because they are looking for food and shelter. They can fit through holes the size of a quarter, and if they are pregnant, they can start a whole pest problem of their own.
These insects, like rats, transmit many diseases and can trigger allergies and asthma. They can also appear more frequently during the winter months because they cannot survive outside in cold temperatures, especially if the temperature drops below 15 degrees. It is enough for them to find a place with a controlled temperature to live, reproduce and develop during the cold winter months. They will eat almost anything, so it is necessary to keep surfaces clean and store food safely.
Cold weather can also cause an increase in the number of spiders. Although they often work to trap other pests and are harmless to humans (excepting black widows and brown recluses or "fiddlers"), the webs of these insects can be disturbing to some people. Our recommendation is not to expose yourself to bites and keep them under control so as not to allow their reproduction to increase.
Bed bugs are an all-weather pest, but they can appear during the winter, as it is a time when many people travel and stay in different places. It is necessary to inspect the rooms of places of accommodation, especially in the bedding, in search of any sign that indicates the presence of these insects. If you discover you have a bed bug infestation this winter, contact a professional, as you won't be able to get rid of them yourself.
Ants can often find their way indoors during the winter months through cracks in walls, foundations or through decorative vegetation, and although they are harmless, they can become a problem very quickly. If you start to see a lot of them, it will also be necessary to call in a professional pest control technician.
Next, we teach you keys to avoid the appearance of pests at any time of the year.
1. Do a thorough house cleaning
One of the best keys to prevent insects or rodents from appearing is that the house is perfectly clean and collected. But it is not just about sweeping, scrubbing or using the cloth as you usually do.
It is about doing a deep cleaning in which, at least once a month, you check the less accessible areas of the house (behind the sofa, under the fridge, the washing machine, etc.), to eliminate any remains of food that may have been trapped and to locate a hole that they can use as a hiding place or burrow .
Emphasize cabinets or low cabinets in the kitchen and bathroom, as these places are prone to moisture and therefore a breeding ground for mold and insects.
2. Use trash cans with lids
Just as important as throwing it away when it is full is to use a trash can with a lid. With this simple action you avoid attracting flies, mosquitoes, cockroaches and rodents . This measure is even more important if you live in the countryside, in towns or in urbanizations with gardens.
3. Seal any cracks in your house
Cockroaches or silverfish, two common household pests, live underground and in dark, damp places. Sealing any cracks that appear or have at home is essential to prevent them from taking over your home. Also, if you ventilate your home daily, you will help the air to flow and ventilate all the rooms in your home.
4. Control the pantry
Cleaning the house is the first step, but it is useless if we do not have our food properly stored in the pantry or cabinets. Have you heard of little bugs in rice, noodles or flour? They are the weevils and are also considered a pest. It is best to store these foods in clean, airtight containers or glass jars.
It is also important that foods such as cereals, cookies, toast and, in general, all those that are rich in sugars are perfectly sealed. In this way, insects and rodents will not be able to access them easily and will go to look for another place.
Oh, and one last important rule, pick up crumbs and any spilled liquid on a daily basis. Remember, these are the main methods of prevention. If the pests have already made an appearance in your house, you should resort to specific home remedies for each one of them.
5. Cover drains when not in use
Another way to avoid the appearance of pests is by controlling the areas where water can accumulate. Without food it is difficult for a plague to spread, without water it is practically impossible. Places such as bathrooms, kitchens or gardens are prone to the accumulation of residual water. For this reason, we recommend you do a periodic review of the pipes, drains or irrigation systems in case of leaks or breakdowns.
In this way, we will prevent insects or rodents from not having water sources to drink from and, as was the case with food, from having to travel to other places to look for it.
6. Use insect repellent
There are natural repellents that are hand of saint to keep pests at bay at any time of the year. The best known and most effective are insect repellent plants such as lavender, basil, mint, citronella or rosemary. You can have them at home or directly make bags with them and place them in conflict areas such as windows, doors or low cabinets that tend to get humid.
7. Do not store wood near home
The dreaded termites are our main enemy when it comes to preventing the appearance of any pest. In addition to being destructive, it is one of the fastest spreading pests in a home. To prevent them from appearing, limit their food source and store woodpiles away from home.
8. Wash clothes before putting them away
There are very frequent mistakes when putting on the washing machine and when storing clothes after washing and drying them. For example, if you keep your clothes wet, you will generate a bad smell in the closet and on your clothes. In addition to attracting the attention of moths, bugs from the smoke and even cockroaches.
To avoid an infestation, we recommend that you wash and dry your clothes thoroughly before storing them, especially with the seasonal wardrobe change. In addition, it is convenient to carry out a frequent cleaning of the clothes closets.
Although it can sometimes be difficult to keep pests out of homes or businesses, there are several things you can work on to prevent an infestation from developing. Some of the actions you can take are:
9. Periodically use a preventive pest control service
A professional like Tacoma pest control can find where pests are coming from, get rid of them effectively, and help prevent them from coming back by excluding your property for you. They can find entry points for you and seal them with mouse-proof materials. Technicians are trained to recognize the signs of an infestation and get rid of pests very quickly. Many companies also provide warranties with their service, so if the mice return, the technician will return to fix the problem.
As you can see, there is no better option than to be prepared, since prevention is always easier and more accessible than having to attack the problem when it has already been generated or is uncontrollable by your own means. However, if you already have signs of a pest, it is best to contact professionals who can help you manage the problem.