How to Pest Proof Your House in the Fall

Pests are a huge problem for homeowners, and the fall is when they start to come out in droves. This article will discuss how to prevent pests from coming into your home this fall. Many of us have probably had an experience with some type of insect or rodent getting inside our homes at one point or another–but why do these creatures seem so attracted to our houses? The answer has less to do with what we’re doing wrong than it does with what we’re not doing right.

The most important thing to do in pest-proofing your home is to make sure that you’re not giving off any scent signals. Pests are looking for the closest place they can get a bite to eat and a warm spot to sleep–and if they smell food or see a light on, then that’s a quick ticket to a happy home.

The Pests of Autumn

The pests of autumn are of four types, but the most common are rodents. Rodents are attracted to houses because they offer shelter from the cold fall weather. Rats come out during the fall because it’s their mating season. Raccoons are also a common pest of the fall because of how warm the homes are during this time of year.

Mice may seem like a minor pest at first, but they can cause major problems for homeowners. Mice carry bacteria that can cause diseases if ingested by humans and pet animals. These diseases include salmonella, hantavirus pulmonary syndrome, and leptospirosis–so you can see why mice are something to be dealt with swiftly.

Mice typically come out during the fall because of their mating season. In order to prevent them from coming inside, make sure you seal holes as small as a nickel. Some mice may be able to squeeze through a hole as small as 1/4 inch. Mice can also chew through electrical wires, so if your house has been without power for a long time, this may be why. You should also make sure you don’t allow food to sit out because it will attract mice.

If you’ve ever seen raccoons in your yard (or even your house), then you know that they’re just about the cutest creatures on earth–but not when they’re tearing apart your home to get to food. These creatures are usually nocturnal, so they do their most damage during the evening and early morning. Raccoons have been known to tear apart drywall, insulation, vents, chimneys, attics–basically anything they can get their hands on.

To ensure that you won’t have raccoons tearing apart your home, remove any food sources and seal off access points to the inside of your house. These creatures typically enter homes through chimneys or gaps in the wall where pipes come into the house. Raccoons can also climb up downspouts and use them as a way into your home.

Keeping Your Home Safe

Keeping your home safe can be a challenge. You might not consider it, but there are many things you can do to make your home more secure. For example, it may seem like an inconvenience, but using weather stripping and caulking by doors and windows is a good measure for preventing bugs from entering the home.

Secondly, screens should be placed on all windows; this will help keep insects out of the house. Other handy tips include: removing firewood from the home (and preferably away from the house entirely if possible), and making sure that food is never out in the open where pests can get to it. The last two tips are specific to attempting to deter mice or rats. To discourage these rodents from climbing up exterior walls, bricks should be placed at the foot of those walls. Trees should also be cut back around the home so that they are no longer leaning against or reaching over it.

Remove all food sources

It may seem like an inconvenience, but removing food sources is one of the best ways to pest-proof your home. This includes taking away all pet food and cleaning up any crumbs after cooking in the kitchen. Other places where pests may find food include: under furniture cushions, in cabinets and drawers, and underneath appliances such as refrigerators and stoves.

Place screens on all windows

Putting screens on all the windows will help keep insects out of the house. Make sure that they are firmly in place so that they can’t be pushed up from the outside.

Seal all openings

In order to pest-proof one’s home it is important that all openings are sealed shut by weather stripping and caulking. These include: doors, windows, baseboards, pipes, holes in walls where utilities enter the house, and any gaps between floorboards.

Remove firewood from the home

Since many insects become active during the fall, it is best to get rid of any firewood that may be lying around. When bringing wood into the house, make sure that it’s off the ground and far away from walls. Keep in mind that spiders hang out where there is wood because they can eat their prey there.

Cut back trees around the home

Trees should be cut back from the house because it can attract pests. Branches that are too close to the house could offer access points for raccoons, mice, and other rodents.

 

Pests in the home can create a lot of problems. They’re often difficult to get rid of and they can cause expensive damage, which is why it’s important that you pest-proof your house this fall. The best way to do so is by removing all food sources, sealing off access points inside the house, and trimming trees away from the exterior walls or roofline. If you want to do things yourself, remember that weather stripping and caulking can make a big difference. Some last tips include: don’t leave food out in the open, place bricks at the foot of exterior walls so pests go under instead of over them when trying to get inside your home, and cut back any trees around the home. By following these tips you can be sure that your home is protected from pests this fall.