Insects, spiders, and other pests, not to mention rodents, have always been an issue in large farmhouses and outhouses in the countryside, and if you do reside in such a building, you may well also have more rigorous and industrial ways of keeping them out.
However, if you are living in an urban area and are experiencing an infestation of one type or another, then the good news is that there is a myriad of things you can do to help control the outbreak and, in some cases, to try and eradicate them.
With this in mind, here is a complete guide to making your home pest-free throughout the winter months.
Usually arriving in the warmer summer months, large numbers of ants can be an incredible nuisance when they find their way inside your home and tend to congregate around the back and front door entrances.
Even though normal garden ants are exceedingly unlikely to bite you, never carry any disease that can be transferred to humans, and cannot cause any damage, save for a hole or two in the skirting boards, ants are one of the most frustrating insects to take up residence in a home.
The best way to prevent ants from entering the property is to place a small pot of fresh mint outside your front and back doors, as they cannot stand even a hint of the smell. Sprinkling ground coffee granules along the bottom of the doors on the outside will also help, as will ensuring that no food is ever left out, especially on the floor.
The common furniture beetle and the powder post beetle are the two main types of beetles which are found infesting the homes of people up and down the country, and if you have one or more rooms with timber flooring, this could well be the reason.
If your infestation of beetles seems to be consistent each year, regardless of how many new products you invest in to try to deter them, then switch your wooden floor to carpets and consult with a reputable carpets in dulwich supplier.
To know whether you are experiencing an infestation of woodworm, either in your flooring or else in a piece of furniture, you should look for the tell-tale signs of small round holes, especially in the corners and the seams. Additionally, in the dust of the bits of wood they have eaten, you may well be able to see small, egg-like pellet shapes left over.
Aside from replacing any wooden floors with a soft and practical carpet covering instead, other proven-to-be effective ways of eradicating woodworm include ensuring that no part of the wood is damp or even moist and using an electric heater to warm the wood to a higher temperature. Brushing the infected pieces of wood with white vinegar, whilst not killing the existing eggs, will prevent the woodworm from multiplying any further.
Another group of insects which are a huge nuisance in the homes of people across the country is moths, which are particularly common in the summer months, especially in the evenings.
Common clothes moths tend to leave their eggs on virtually any material, from clothing in your wardrobe to throws and blankets in the living room and duvets and quilt covers in the bedroom. You need to pull everything out of your wardrobes and clean each item of clothing thoroughly, as well as wipe out the wardrobe itself and vacuum the corners.
Additionally, as moths love the heat, you should try to keep your central heating down and only use it when necessary, especially if you currently have an infestation of moths in the home. Keep your home clean and as clutter-free as possible and place strongly scented lavender bags in the corners of each room and your drawers, cupboards, and wardrobes. Moths cannot cope with the smell of lavender.
You may well be the biggest animal lover you have ever known and adore anything small and furry, but even if you have had pet mice or rats in the past, unwelcome visitors in the skirting boards and the attic are never as cute.
Mice infestations occur when one brave mouse finds its way through the smallest of holes or cracks in the structure of the home itself and usually via the house’s foundations or flooring. Often, mice are found in homes in big cities and towns, especially in older houses and usually not of the detached variety (unless you live on a farm).
It is important to be aware that, if you do find some mice in your home, this is no indication of how dirty, or conversely how clean, your house is and a testament to the bravery and cunning of your average mouse. To prevent mice and for that matter, rats, from entering your property, you should methodically go around each room and thoroughly close all visible cracks in the walls and holes in the flooring and skirting boards. In addition, focus on the areas in and around the windows and windowsills and any air vents, especially in the kitchen.
Ensure that you have trimmed back, as much as possible, any overhanging branches or large shrubs from a neighbour’s garden and sweep your patio slabs to remove any dead leaves and other debris that little mice can hide in. If you have any trees bearing fruit in your garden, or else strawberry or raspberry plants, although this may be upsetting, if you are seriously concerned about possible mice infestation, you should remove them, or at least cut them back.
Additionally, place large pots of mint around the front door and the back door, as mice and rats both despise the smell, as they also do peppermint, so purchasing some good quality peppermint oil and running a small but unbroken trail around the attic beams is also advisable. If you are still having issues, then contacting a professional is worth considering.