How To Figure Out If You Have Pests – And What To Do About It
If you love your home and want to protect it against pests, you aren’t alone. There are very few people on this planet who are happy to live side by side with creepy crawlies. We all assume that if we had pests in our home we’d know about it straight away – but in actual fact, by the time we notice them, they can already be out of control. Pests are not only unwelcome because they give us the heebie jeebies; they are also carriers of diseases, and they cause serious damage to our homes too. In this article you will find tips on how to figure out if you have pests, and what to do if you discover critters living under your roof. Let’s get started!
Are there rats or mice in your home?
You would thank that the signs of mice and rats in your home were obvious; however, these creatures are more elusive than you think. If you see a rodent in your home, it’ll look like the flash of a shadow; plus, by the time they are scurrying around in front of you, the chances are they have been living in your house for some time.
What are the early signs of rodents in your house? Here are the key signs.
- A strange smell. Rats and mice leave behind an ammonia-like odour that will likely linger wherever they enter and exit your home. This could be in corners, around your skirting boards or door frames.
- Chewed-up drywall. If your drywall is crumbling or breaking away in a corner of your home, you might think it’s just wear and tear. Look closer. This could actually be being caused by a rodent gnawing at the wall in order to create a passageway.
- Your pet is acting weird. If you have a cat or a dog, they will know before you do that there is a mouse in the house. If your pet is hanging around a particular area of the house, scratching at the floorboards or poised in a corner as if they are going to pounce, they likely hear and smell a rodent.
- Scratching noises. Particularly at night when all is quiet, if you hear a strange scratching sound, however quiet, you might have a rodent in your wall or floor. This can provoke a fearful reaction – just remember they are more scared of you than you are of them!
How can you get rid of rodents?
Rodents are hard to get rid of. This is because they can survive on very little food, fit through tiny gaps and burrow into your walls and floors. If you suspect you have rodents – even if you haven’t actually seen one – you should contact a pest control professional straight away.
A pest control professional will come to your home and assess the signs. If they suspect mouse or rat activity they will provide you with advice on how to drive the rodents out of your home, such as placing cotton balls soaked in peppermint oil in the area (this overwhelms rodent senses – they hate it) or putting expanding foam in the cracks the rodents are squeezing through.
In addition to contacting pest control, ensure you are keeping your home squeaky clean, putting all food in sealed containers and regularly taking out your trash.
Do you live with crawly critters?
As you may be aware, rodents aren’t the only pests that can wreak havoc in your home. In fact, some may argue that an infestation of bugs can do more damage to your home than a couple of mice or rats. Bugs such as cluster flies, moths or termites can be more difficult to detect, and can cause bad structural damage to your home’s foundations, your upholstery and clothing, and to the general hygiene of your home.
Here are some signs you have an insect problem.
- Termites: termites are problematic critters because they usually go undetected for far too long. Termites live inside drywall. Signs you have termites include small holes in your walls like pin pricks; a hollow-sounding wall when you knock on it; unstable floorboards that don’t take weight well.
- Moths: moths usually live inside fabrics, causing irreparable damage to your clothing, curtains and upholstery. Signs you have moths include holes in your clothing, tiny cocoons and maggot-like larvae, and seeing crawling moths in your clothing or laundry.
- Cluster flies: cluster flies are the most easily identifiable infestation because they will linger in your living space. If you have cluster flies that are lingering on your ceiling, the chances are you have far more flies living in your ventilation system.
What’s the best way to get rid of bugs?
Methods of exterminating bugs depend on the type of bug you are dealing with. For termites, you should immediately seek the help of a termite damage control company that will likely fumigate your home to kill all the bugs. This can be a lengthy job which might even require you to vacate your home for a few days.
For moths, there are easier home-remedies that might drive them out. Smells like cedar are repellent to moths and will likely drive them away. In addition, you could purchase a sticky trap that attracts the moths, then adheres the moth to it when they get too close. You could additionally contact a pest control company if your moth problem is out of control.
Cluster flies are also easier to be rid of than termites. You can purchase treatment sprays online that will kill the flies; this might take a while to fully exterminate the lot of them, but continued use will do the trick. Additionally, keep all sugary foods like fruits and confectionary out of the open air and away in sealed cupboards.
Having pests in your home can make you feel anxious and disgusting; they even provoke fearful reactions in some people. To make sure you spot signs of pests at the earliest possible time, use this guide to inspect your home on a regular basis.