How to Keep Pests Out of the Basement
A huge variety of bugs like to get inside your house and wreak havoc on your sanity. No area of your house is safe, whether it’s your living room, bathroom, or kitchen. Some of them will even get inside the walls, making them very difficult to find. The basement is another area to be concerned with.
A number of insects love that area of your house. We’ll take a look at why they like it so much and what you can do to lessen their numbers.
Why Bugs Love Basements
One reason why certain insects will try to get into your basement is due to the moisture and darkness inside. Cockroaches, for example, crave areas with low lighting. That’s why they hide behind boxes and under your refrigerator.
Unless you have a finished basement, this is the perfect place for these disgusting critters to call home. Plus, there’s something to be said about the moisture to be found here. If your basement is damp, this means there’s a good water supply that the insects can use. The bottom line is that the environmental conditions of your basement make it very attractive for some types of bugs.
This goes with a pair of insects that some homeowners are, unfortunately, very familiar with. The first is termites, which seek out your basement because not only is it dark and damp, but because there’s plenty of wood for them to feed on.
If not exterminated in a timely manner, the colony will grow to tens of thousands of individuals, which can cause considerable damage to your house. Due to the sheer size of a colony, the use of a professional pest control company to get rid of them is often necessary.
The second creatures that you need to be concerned with because of the wood in your basement are carpenter ants. Although these ants don’t actually eat the wood, they chew through it as they travel. These insects won’t typically cause as much damage as termites, but it’s still something to be aware of.
6 Ways to Protect Your Basement
Keeping basement pests out of your house is an ongoing challenge for any homeowner. Between the ones that contaminate our food, send chills up our spines, and literally destroy our house’s foundation, preventing pests from invading the sanctity of your home can be a difficult task. Here are some tips to help you protect your basement from pests:
#1: Remove moisture areas
If you want to keep insects out of your basement, the first thing you need to do is remove any areas of moisture. This is what draws many of them down there. Without a water supply, most insects won’t see your basement as a viable habitat.
#2: Get rid of trash
If you really want to take control of pests in your basement, the first step is to stop making it so attractive for them. Pests go where the food is, and garbage serves as the perfect odor to draw them in. Even if you can’t smell the rotting trash, be aware that many pests have a heightened sense of smell.
#3: Clear out that clutter
Basements that have a lot of clutter serve as perfect hiding places for pests. Everyone at some point in their lives has moved a box or stack of papers only to jump back as a cockroach or spider scurried out from beneath it.
Pests don’t like to stay out in the open, and if you have a lot of clutter in your basement, somewhere among your belongings may be a pest or two.
#4: Seal the cracks
Every home is bound to have cracks and gaps around its outer walls, windows, and doors. Many homeowners take great pains to seal these problem areas to help improve their home’s energy efficiency. A side effect of this improvement is to take control of pests by not allowing them to have easy access into your home.
#5: Apply a granular pesticide around the perimeter
If you have pets, exercise caution with this one. Using a granular pesticide is often more beneficial than a spray because it is longer-lasting. Regular applications of a pesticide that is meant to treat several types of pests can go a long way to keeping your basement free of them.
#6: Screen your vents
To get inside your basement, pests must obviously have a conduit in which to do so. One way to take control of pests and keep many of the smaller ones out is to place a screen over any vents that lead outside. This will stop a number of insects and arachnids from getting inside so easily.
If these techniques don’t work, and the bugs are getting out of hand, it might be time to call a professional.
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