Keep Your House Clean To Deter Pests
Pests hate clean homes, so make sure yours is spotless all year round. Here we provide vital tips to keep pests at bay.
Don’t give unwanted visitors an excuse to invade your living space
Pests of all shapes and sizes from tiny mites and bugs to large rats are a modern menace, and every day householders wage some sort of war against an unwanted visitor. Prevention is a key step to take in discouraging pests and having a clean and tidy home is a good start.
Maybe you’ve got a pest infestation; if so, help from a professional pest controller should be sought to remove it whether rodents, bugs or insects. Once completed, keeping your home clean will help to prevent a recurrence; here’s how to put up an important first layer of defence against pest invasion:
A favourite part of the home for pests to thrive as it can be a major food source if not kept clean and tidy.
Clear food debris – it doesn’t take much food debris to attract pests; a handful of crumbs fallen on the floor would be a significant part of a small mouse’s daily food intake for example.
Therefore, clear away any food debris from surfaces, floors and especially check inside cupboards. Small spillages of flour, sauces and more are a potential magnet for pests, so keep cupboards clean.
Periodically emptying cupboards and wiping them down with soapy water will not only clean them but destroy any chemical trails left by pests, such as ants, so helping prevent future intrusions.
Don’t leave plates and saucepans with food debris on them lying around; wash up as soon as possible or put them straight into the dish washer if you have one. Leaving them to soak is asking for trouble as you’re providing a pest’s twin attractions of food and moisture.
Clean the kitchen bin regularly; even if you use bin liners it’s possible for food waste to slip through and into the bin itself.
Cleaning – vacuum and clean the floor regularly and keep hobs clean; even a small residue of grease or burnt on food could be an attraction to unwanted guests.
The main pest threats here are bed bugs and moths.
Bedding – ensure your bed clothes are changed regularly and washed at higher temperatures (at least 40℃). After you strip the bed, vacuum the mattress thoroughly.
Clothing and wardrobes – to combat the moth threat, ensure the interior of wardrobes are kept clean and dust free by vacuuming in the nooks and crannies.
Carpets – in general, vacuum carpets regularly throughout the house to avoid dirt and grit build up and don’t forget those tucked away areas. Pulling furniture and beds away from walls and vacuuming behind will help prevent the build up of dust in the more hidden areas that can provide a home for various pests.
Left unchecked, dirty carpets can harbour bugs such as carpet mites so keep on top of carpet cleaning. You can hire effective carpet cleaning equipment or use a professional service – choose one that’s a member of the National Carpet Cleaners Association (NCCA).
Clutter – along with regular cleaning, decluttering your home is key step to take in discouraging pests. Even a build of paper in a darkened area such as a pile of old magazines or newspapers in the cupboard under the stairs for example, can provide a haven for mice and cockroaches.
Don’t neglect the exterior of your home; many pests can take up residence outside if you unwittingly make it attractive enough for them. Piles of rubbish, unfastened bins and general clutter can be attractive to all manner of undesirable creatures especially mice and rats.
Rubbish – ensure bin bags are fully fastened and preferably stored in your refuse bin with the lid securely on and empty them as frequently as possible.
Clutter – clear away paper, old wood, garden refuse and any other clutter.
Clean gutters – keep gutters clear of leaves and other debris so they can effectively channel water away. A build up of moisture from overflowing or leaking guttering can provide a ready water supply for pests.
Working at height is of course hazardous, so you might prefer others with suitable ladders and other equipment to clean the gutters for you. Many window cleaners offer gutter clearing as an add on service and there are also specialist guttering maintenance companies; an online search should yield plenty of options in your area.
Little and often
While a spring clean and maybe also an autumn clean are worthwhile to ‘blitz’ your home, regularly cleaning and keeping things tidy can help keep pests at bay