Published June 2022
Most homeowners engage in at least some sort of spring cleaning each year. Others like to commit to doing that quarterly. A good deep clean is a great way to refresh the home and take care of tasks that aren’t typically included in day-to-day cleaning. Spring cleaning is also beneficial for pest control. In fact, there are several cleaning steps we recommend for those looking to better protect their homes against pests this year. As you finish up your spring cleaning, we urge you to keep the following in mind.
Not all household pests enjoy “human food,” but many do, including ants and moths. Ants, in particular, love carbohydrates. Anything containing sugar (bread, cereals, fruit, etc.) is especially enticing to them. Pantry moths also love grain products but will feast on nuts and pet food as well. So, it’s important to keep kitchens especially clean and organized to avoid welcoming these pests into your home. Daily, this looks like disposing of produce turning bad, cleaning up crumbs and spills immediately, and taking out trash regularly. When it comes to spring cleaning, there are a few extra tasks we recommend to increase your pest protection.
Through daily use, cabinets and pantries often collect crumbs and other debris. Spring is a great time to remove everything from these spaces and give them a good wipe down. Also, for shelves lined with shelf paper - spring is ideal for replacing that paper if needed or at least scrubbing down the existing paper with soap and warm water. Be sure to dry shelves thoroughly before restocking. For those lucky enough to have a walk-in pantry, vacuuming the space after cleaning will collect any crumbs that fall to the floor in the process.
Many pests LOVE water - silverfish and cockroaches to name a couple. So, bathrooms are a natural place for those pests to appear as there is easy access to water in multiple places. Regular cleaning and deep spring cleaning can both help prevent that from happening. Start with looking for any moisture collecting near the sinks, toilets, or showers. Moisture in these areas may mean pipes or faucets are actively leaking. If that is the case, reaching out to a local plumber can often resolve the issue. Cleaning out medicine cabinets and any closets or shelves is also advised. Like in the kitchen, dust and debris collect in these areas and create a desirable environment for pests. Lastly, wash any shower curtains and liners - replacing any that are beyond cleaning.
Keeping pests out of your home often starts with the exterior. Winter weather can be rough on a home, so start with a walk around the entire structure to note any damage that may have occurred this winter. This can include clogged or bent gutters, damaged window screens, and cracks in the foundation or around windows and doors. All of these present issues when it comes to pest control, so getting them fixed as soon as possible is wise.
On the landscaping side, there are also a few tasks to up your pest protection during spring cleaning. Trim any bushes or tree branches that have made it too close to the home’s exterior - keep them cut back so as not to come within 18 inches of the home. Landscaping that uses mulch should also not sit directed next to the structure, as mulch is a common habitat of many pests eager to make it inside
Basements are known to often get damp over time. Cracks in the foundation and lack of ventilation both contribute to this. Similar to risks in the bathroom, dampness in basements attracts those pests that thrive in a humid environment. Basements that are also dark and packed with items also make it enticing to spiders and rodents that love to hide in corners and behind objects. As you’re spring cleaning this year, check out your storage areas. If there are items stored in cardboard boxes, transfer those to plastic bins. As you do this, dispose of any items you no longer use to avoid excess clutter. Lastly, check the perimeter of the basement for cracks in the foundation. Even the smallest crack is big enough for some pests to make it through to the interior of your home. Seal these cracks with a silicone-based caulk to prevent that as much as possible.
Along with its other benefits, spring cleaning is a great opportunity for homeowners to discover any existing pest issues and seek treatment for those before they escalate. If you discover signs of an infestation this spring, the team at Knockout Pest Control can help. Our trained team of experts treats our customers like family. In cases of an infestation, we treat the situation as we would if it were happening in our home.
This means a thorough inspection and assessment of the problem - identifying the pest and noting considerations such as visible nests or potential entry points to address. From there, we work with you on a plan tailored to your specific issue and needs. Once that is created, we begin implementing solutions identified in your treatment plan, including treating the current infestation as well as taking some proactive steps to prevent re-infestation. If you discover an infestation in your home this year, we encourage you to reach out as soon as possible to prevent the situation from escalating.