Safeguard Your Home Against Pests During Colder Months
If you thought pests were only a problem in warm weather, think again. Mice and other rodents are looking for a warm and cozy place to stay when the weather gets cold. That’s why infestations tend to begin in the fall.
Surprisingly, mice can enter your home through cracks and holes that look much smaller than you’d think possible. They can also enter through cracks near windows, sewer lines and drainage pipes, and even holes around oven gas lines.
The bad news: once a mice colony discovers the warmth of your home, they’re not likely to return outside to the cold. Unfortunately, they reproduce quickly, so what began as a few mice can multiply into the hundreds in a few short months.
Winter is coming fast, so you have to make sure your home is safe and secure from these unwanted guests. Here are four guidelines to help you maintain a pest-free environment:
1. Seal your house
Keep your doors closed, especially at night when mice are most active. If you like the nice breezes of summer to come through your house, install screen doors, so you won’t have to worry about mice running inside. Keeping doors closed extends to your garage door as well.
Sometimes homeowners will leave garages open longer than necessary, and this gives mice a perfect entryway. Even if you haven’t left the garage door open for long, be sure to check the wall separating your garage door from the rest of your house. Since garage doors can be tougher to seal than regular doors, mice can get in this way.
Seal all cracks and holes with cement or metal. Make sure that all doors and windows close properly. If a window won’t close all the way, or there’s a slight gap, seal it with steel wool or hardware cloth. Did you know that mice are very good climbers? They can often get in through first-floor windows, so you’ll want to keep your windows closed or use a screen at all times. Check that your screens aren’t torn – do an all-over inspection – especially if you have been using them for a long time.
2. Keep your kitchen clean
It’s important not to leave food out, including dog or cat food, because this will attract mice. Store foods in glass or metal containers with tightly sealed lids. Do this with foods like pasta, cereal, nuts and other dry foods. Never store boxes of food on the floor. Always keep them in cabinets or on high shelves. Also, dispose of all garbage quickly. Be sure to get a trash can that has a lid, because the smell of trash will appeal to mice. Also, take out your trash frequently; don’t let it sit inside for too long.
It’s always a good rule of thumb to clean up spills immediately. That spilled tomato sauce will be attractive to mice after you go to sleep.
3. Get rid of clutter
This is good for many reasons, including keeping mice away. Rodents love any place that would make a good home. Piles of clothing make perfect mice nests, so store any clothes you’re not wearing for the season in a plastic bin with a sealed lid or wooden chest.
Think about areas like corners of basements or closets that are filled with clutter. Clean these areas out so they don’t invite mice. Maybe you’ve been thinking about selling some items at a yard sale but haven’t gotten around to it. Did you know that the boxes of old cookware or small appliances could be attracting mice in your basement or storage closet? Other things make great nests, too, such as piles of newspapers and magazines.
A few more household things to examine: cardboard boxes, old furniture (especially cloth), cans or bottles (residue smell attracts mice), and anything that could unknowingly provide a house for a mouse. Remember, even balls of dust and hair can be used to make a mice nest, so keep all corners and often forgotten places in your home clean and clutter-free.
4. Inspect your home’s foundation
Since mice can enter through cracks in walls and other points of entry, take a close look around your house to examine it for holes or cracks that mice may use to get inside. Any holes that are bigger than ¼ inch need to be sealed. As mentioned above, use solid repair materials like sheet metal, concrete mortar, or hardware cloth. Don’t settle for a cheap material, because mice may be able to chew through it and still get inside.
Stuff stainless-steel pads into any openings around cables and pipes, and seal all holes with caulk. Also check your chimney, vents, cable and drain outlets.
Remember, professionals like Bug Bully have access to heavy-duty materials that can help, if DIY projects aren’t your thing.
If you find your home has already been infested with rodents or other unwanted guests, don’t hesitate to contact the professionals at Bug Bully.
We offer a multi-strategy rodent control program that not only eliminates your mice problem, but maintains and prevents your home from future infestations. Schedule service in less than 60 seconds!