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3 DIY Methods to Control Pests

Every homeowner would rather avoid pest problems and keep their home pest-free, no matter the type of pests you've got.

That's why we're providing ways you can protect your home from all kinds of pests, including:

  • Rats
  • Mice
  • Cockroaches
  • Ants
  • Spiders

Household Ways to Keep Pests Away

1. Make Your Home Less Attractive

Lawn Upkeep

Most of the pests we deal with are prey to other animals. That means they're good at hiding from you. Your yard is the first place they'll look to keep away from predators, so make sure you clean up your yard well to reduce harborages.

Firewood piles, compost piles, garbage bins, and any other necessary structures or piles should be at least 20 feet from the home. Garbage cans should close or seal well when they are closed and may require rope or bungee cords if they don't seal well. Firewood and compost piles should be on a platform raised one foot off the ground and placed 20 feet away from the home.

Anything in your yard fallen from trees, including fruit, berries, branches, or leaves, should be cleaned right away, or else rodents, spiders, and hundreds of other pests could find harborages there. Dog poop should also be cleaned up, especially during the summer, to prevent flies from breeding there.

House Upkeep

The first thing that pests look for is almost always food, no matter where they are. They enter your home mainly because they want shelter, food, and a place to nest or lay eggs.

All your food that isn't in a refrigerator or freezer should be placed in a sealed plastic container. Put these containers on a high shelf to make them more difficult to access.

These animals don't hide in your house because it's dirty. They hide where they won't be disturbed, so if you constantly clean in areas where they typically like to hide, it makes your home hazardous for them, and they will either leave or avoid your home in the first place.

Clean cracks and crevices where the carpet meets the wall, under and around all kitchen appliances, including the stove and refrigerator. If possible, consider purchasing an automatic vacuum cleaning system that can run at night when most of these species are active.

Use an over the counter cleaning chemical to flush out the gunk in drains, especially kitchen sinks and shower or bath drains. Drain and fruit flies like to lay their eggs in the grime there, otherwise.

2. Find and Reduce Common Entry Points

Lawn and Yard

If you're having problems with animals invading your yard, some of the best ways to keep them out are to set up row covers over crops and erect 10-gauge, 1/4 inch steel screening around your gardens and plots.

For raccoon prevention, it's a good idea to bury part of the fencing to ensure they don't gain access. Bend the screen 12 inches from the bottom so that it makes a 90-degree angle. Bury the 12 inches one foot under the ground and tamp it down to make it more difficult for a raccoon or other animal to find a way into your garden.

Home and Interior

If you block the usual entry points insects and rodents use to get inside your home, this can produce results overnight, depending on the pest. Use silicone caulking, steel mesh, copper wire mesh, and steel wool to block any places you see.

Look for cracks and crevices around entry points, including doors and windows, sill plates or foundations, garage or shed doors, and even gaps in siding. The seal around utility pipes, including air conditioning units, can sometimes wear down and allow entry.

Ants, cockroaches, and small spiders can crawl into even the smallest cracks and gaps. Mice only need a gap as small as one-quarter inch to gain access almost anywhere.

3. Products to Consider

Most of these products can be found at a hardware store, garden supply store, or online. Be careful when applying them, because some can cause adverse reactions in the elderly, children, or pets.

Diatomaceous Earth

This product is extremely abrasive against the waxy cuticle on the outside of an arthropod's exoskeleton. It breaks open the cuticle and allows water to evaporate from them, which causes them to die of dehydration.

Use a light layer of dust in areas where you don't want ants, cockroaches, or virtually anything with an exoskeleton. It can be harmful when inhaled, so use caution.

Traps and Baits

These are available for rats, mice, cockroaches, ants, and termites. We don't recommend using live traps for rodents or other wildlife. A nonprofessional could receive serious injury or disease from a trapped animal.

Boric acid

This chemical is commonly used in household detergents and soaps. It wears down and dissolves the exoskeleton of virtually every insect and other arthropods out there. It can be purchased in a dust form and is very effective against them.

Soap Insecticide

Create a spray of your own by mixing soap and water in a spray bottle. When cockroaches or other pests scuttle across your counter or kitchen, spray the pest vigorously. Cleanup is efficient, and the takedown effect is immediate and humane, depending on the ratio of soap to water.

Essential Oils

There are essential oils, like peppermint and eucalyptus oils, that are scientifically proven to repel rats and spiders and other pests. Consider purchasing an essential oil humidifier and placing it in areas where spiders and rodents are potentially a problem, like basements and attics.

Natural Enemies

Some natural predators of bugs can be released into your flower gardens to reduce pest populations. Ladybugs, green lacewings, mantids, spiders, centipedes, and even wasps are all enemies of usual garden pests.

Other Over-the-Counter Products

Chemical pesticides have developed a bad reputation because of poor practices during the last century. Over-the-Counter pesticides labeled properly will direct the consumer to use it safely, properly, and without adverse effects on your family or the environment.

Before You Call the Professionals

Not all problems can be resolved on your own, although these measures cannot be replaced, no matter the pest management techniques or programs you choose.

Fox Pest Control company provides you with effective control experts in the field who can assess your situation and rid your home of disgusting pests.

We get the job done right the first time: No Bugs. Simply Better.

Posted on January 28, 2020.


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My experience with Fox Pest Control has been the best experience I had with a pest control company. Technician, Harry, did a good job of going over the process thoroughly, ensure that I understood everything going on. I would recommend them to anyone looking for good, quality, fast, friendly, and affordable pest control services.

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December 7th, 2019

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June 27th, 2019

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At Fox Pest Control our guarantee to you is 100% satisfaction. That's why we created our robust home protection plan. The barriers that we put into place to protect your home or business against pests naturally break down over time. Over the course of the year, we reapply treatments to maintain those barriers. If for whatever reason any new pest problems do arise, call us and we will take care of the problem immediately and at no additional charge. Immediately means just that, immediately – not when it’s convenient for us.

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Midland & Odessa Pest Control & ExterminatorsFox Pest Control proudly provides expert pest control and bed bug control in Midland & Odessa. We have helped over 20,000 homeowners manage and exterminate their pest problems and look forward to putting over 8 years of experience to work for you.

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