Cold winter weather can cause pests to seek shelter indoors, and that can sometimes mean sheltering in your home. Some types of insects, such as stinkbugs and ladybugs, are known as overwintering bugs. This means they may attempt to set up camp in your home until warm weather returns. To help prevent these insects from calling your house a home over the winter, use the following pest control tips.
Schedule A Fall Inspection
Overwintering bugs will look for a home before cold weather hits, so a fall inspection from your local pest control service can help identify any potential problems. Checking the attic, basement, chimneys, and other potential hot spots in your home before winter can help ensure any insects already in the home are dealt with. You may find some pests are already setting up shop for the winter, and it is possible that your pest control company may also identify other potential pest problems at this time. Be sure to ask for a detailed plan for abatement should any overwintering bugs or other pests be identified during this inspection.
Clean Up Your Landscaping
During the fall, leaves piled up on the lawn can provide shelter and a temporary home for some pests. They may choose piles of leaves or debris close to your home to begin overwintering, making the transition indoors easier for the insects as the temperatures drop. Consider cutting back shrubs and bushes close to the exterior of your home. Rake regularly to prevent piles of leaves, sticks, and other autumn debris from accumulating in your yard. This might also be a great time to work with your pest control company to treat your landscaping for potential pests, as this final landscaping step may drive even more pests from your property.
Seal Up Cracks
You likely already look for cracks around windows and doors to help winterize your home, but it's also important to look for other potential points of entry on the exterior of the building. Small fractures in concrete around the basement, for example, can provide a path of entry into your home. Missing roof shingles or damage to the soffit and fascia outside of your home can provide a clear path into your attic for overwintering insects. Even if there is no damage to the roof area, pests can get into the home through attic vents. Adding insect screens can provide a simple solution to this potential problem.
Clean And Repair Gutters
Just as leaves accumulate in your yard, they also accumulate in your gutters. A single fall gutter cleaning project may not be enough to protect your home from overwintering insects, so consider handling this task when the leaf collection on the ground is at its peak and again just before the first frost. By cleaning the gutters more than once before winter, you can help minimize the number of potential pests hiding around the roof and siding of your home. You can also have screens installed on your gutters to keep bugs and leaves out while allowing water to pass through.