Different Methods of Bug-proofing your Home

Female Mexican fruit fly insect

Simply put, bugs do not belong in the home. From unsanitary conditions to annoying buzzes, bugs provide absolutely no benefits when residing within the confines of a house. The best way to prevent these vermins from infesting your home is to keep them out in the first place. Cut off their access. Cut off their food supply. Do whatever it takes to keep your home free from these pests. Here are different ways to bug-proof your home:

1. Seal any entryways where bugs might be able to enter your home. Install a steel or aluminum threshold under the door or even add a nylon door sweep for extra protection. Add door-seal kits to the perimeter of each door to seal off any gaps along the sides, top, or bottom of the door/door frame. If you have forgotten children, install a door closer that automatically closes and latches your door after it is opened.

2. Add screens for each door and window. This allows you to bring in fresh air for your home, while still keeping the pests out. A 20-mesh or finer screen is recommended to keep out household pests. 

3. Maintain your yard. For example, mosquitoes breed in stagnant water, so any pooled water would be perfect breeding grounds for them. Eliminate these stillwater breeding grounds and you will lower the mosquito population, leading you to avoid the annoyance of mosquitoes in both your yard and home. Make sure to maintain regular drainage channels, regularly chlorinate and filter your pool, and change the water in your fountains or birdbaths at least twice a week. In addition, remove any piles of leaves or debris in your yard as these also provide perfect breeding grounds for insect infestation.

4. Seal off any cracks in your home. Insects can literally fit through anything, so you have to make sure that even the smallest of holes are sealed off. Here’s a rule of thumb. If you can fit a pencil in a crack or gap, a young mouse or a line of insects can fit as well. Caulk is the recommended material for sealing up any cracks or gaps within your home. 

5. Make sure to seal around pipe penetrations. For small gaps, use sealants or caulk. For large gaps, use expandable polyurethane foam.

6. Cover large openings with fine wire mesh or hardware cloth. Make sure to check your roof for large holes, especially areas that present vents.

7. Get rid of bugs’ favorite amenities. The most prominent amenity would be unprotected food and water sources. Seal off your food in airtight containers or packages and make sure to quickly get rid of spills, dirty dishes, and other water sources. In addition, a cluttered home provides a perfect, secretive breeding ground for insects, so make sure to regularly get rid of clutter in order to avoid giving bugs a chance to increase their population.

8. One man’s trash is another man’s treasure. In this case, that is not a good thing. Keep food trash in the kitchen and placed inside a can with a lid. Empty these trash bins regularly. If these bins are exposed to spills, make sure to sanitize them immediately. Make sure compost bins are securely closed with a lid and even lined with hardwire cloth for extra protection. Fully composted material should be removed every three to six months.

9. Keep your home’s foundations clear and protected. Keep moisture, debris, leaves, wood, and other insect breeding promoters from building up in these areas. Check for any gaps in your foundations as well and seal them up accordingly. If you want to treat your foundations, use boric acid, diatomaceous Earth, chemical insecticides, or termiticides.

10. Encourage natural predators to get rid of bugs for you. For example, lots of birds and bats eat small insects, especially pests. Provide trees and bushes for their nesting grounds and add a fresh water supply to keep the birds hydrated. Add a food source as well in order to supplement their insect-based diet. Bats may seem scary and unappealing, but they do all the insect-killing work at night when you won’t even notice them. While you’re asleep, bats are hard at work getting rid of bugs for you. Install a bat house or roost in your yard. 

Last update of the article: 07/13/2020