As mentioned on another blog (When DIY Pest Control Won’t Cut It), we believe that the homeowner should let a professional handle their pest control needs. However, there are some things that a homeowner can do to help the pest professional keep their home pest free.
Many pest control applications create a chemical barrier between your house and the outside in order to keep insects from coming into your house. Trees, bushes, and vegetation that come into contact with the house can allow ants and other insects to bridge the chemical barrier. Thus, we recommend that homeowners trim trees and bushes so that the leaves do not come in contact with the house. We also suggest that the homeowner keep their lawn trimmed around the house in order to reduce the insect activity in those areas. It is also a good idea to remove ivy and any other vegetation that may be growing along the outside walls of the house. We also suggest that the homeowner use mulch, such as Cedar or Cypress, that has already been treated for insects. These steps will improve the effectiveness of the pest control applications and help to keep the bugs out of your house.
The homeowner should also be aware of entry points to their house for insects. Various pests can enter the house through cracks, crevices, holes in screen doors, and holes around air conditioning lines. Sealing entry points by caulking, replacing screens, patching the holes around air conditioning lines, and replacing the weather stripping on doors can limit the entry points for the insects. These steps will improve the effectiveness of the applications from your pest professional.
Keeping your house, garage, crawl space, and gutters clean will improve the effectiveness of your pest control service. A garage or crawl space that is cluttered with boxes, furniture, and other items is conducive to pest activity (especially spiders). In addition, a crawl space or garage that is cluttered is difficult to inspect and the clutter makes a proper pest control treatment difficult to complete. Gutters that are clogged by leaves and debris are an excellent breeding ground for ants and other insects. Thus, regularly cleaning your gutters can reduce your ant problems. Keeping your kitchen and cabinets clean will eliminate a food source for many insects such as ants and roaches. Vacuuming your carpets on a regular basis will aid in the control of fleas and spiders.
These steps, by themselves, will not keep your house pest free. They will, however, create an environment that will allow your pest control professional to peform pest control applications with maximum effectiveness.