One of the best ways for any insect to survive during the winter period is to take refuge in a warm and cozy house, which leaves the homeowner with unwanted pests roaming around, resulting in discomfort for your family members and even leading to potential harm in some cases. Some insects will actually die during the winter period however they leave behind thousands of eggs that will hatch and become a nightmare during the change in weather. Here are a few things can you can do at home to protect your family and prevent these pests from entering your home during winter. You should always take preventative measures in your home instead of having to deal with the pesky bugs after the fact.
Seal Up All External Doors
If you were to take a closer look at your doors, chances are that you would see some cracks that could be potential easy entry points for bugs to get into your house. It is suggested that homeowners get a steel or aluminum threshold that is sturdy and install it beneath the door. You can also go a step further for additional protection and install a door sweep to the threshold. Door seal kits or weather stripping should also be added to the perimeter of the door frames to prevent the pests from entering through the top and sides of the door. You can seal the joints of the doors where the frame of the doors comes into contact with the wall using clear caulking. What some persons have done is install a hydraulic door closer to ensure that the door will always close after persons have opened it, this is great for persons that have elderly persons living with them that might at times forget the door open.
The fireplace during the wintertime is used a lot more and at times this can create smoke or inside the house could become stuffy, so the windows in the house get opened to clear it out and provide ventilation, this is when the pests take advantage and enter the home. The installation of the screens in the windows will ensure that the bugs are unable to get into the house, it is recommended that you use a fine screen or a 20 mesh so that the really tiny bugs are not able to crawl through the holes of the screen. During installation ensure that there are no spaces between the window seal and the frame of the screen, this is simply an easy way for the pests to get in.
Maintain Your Yard
Yard maintenance, unknown to many, has one of the largest impacts on the infestation of bugs into your home, unfortunately, it is also not on the top of the list for persons to do due to busy lifestyles or because it is time-consuming. Around the foundation of the home, you should make certain that there is no wood to soil contact, also do not stack firewood or any other wood debris directly against your house. Soil mounds and mulch should be removed from next to the house and a barrier should be created between them and the house. If the lawn is not yet covered in snow, make sure that it is well maintained and all piles of leaves or any debris on the lawn is removed prior to it being covered in snow. Any trees that are close enough to touch the house or hang over the roof of the house should be trimmed back and the gutters cleared and ensure that they are draining properly, all moisture is to be directed away from the foundation of the home.
Repair All Cracks
Insects can get into your home using practically microscopic holes or cracks in the walls, a good tip to remember is that if a pencil can pass through a crack or gap in your home, so can young mice and if a mouse can pass through, so can thousands of bugs. Use mortar or cement to repair and cracks in the walls or foundation, any damaged cladding or siding need to be replaced, damaged bricks should also be replaced, and the joints of the new ones sealed up properly. Caulking is an inexpensive way to seal cracks or holes in siding, foundation, or window frames. Plumbing or roof leaks should be repaired to eliminate the possibility of moisture around the house.
Pipe Penetrations Should Be Sealed
There could be utility pipe penetrations in your walls, this usually means that there is spacing, where it was drilled for access, around them and that means holes for pests to enter. The smaller spaces can be sealed with caulk or even pipe sealant, you should ensure that this was done at the time of installation, for the larger holes, polyurethane foam with steel wool or copper mesh at the base, in case the bugs try to push through the foam, can be used.
Remove Water And Food Sources
Stop inviting pests into your home by leaving food around from them. Of course, you have to feed your family pet, but make sure that they are not leaving behind any messes and store the pet food in containers that are bug proof directly after each meal. Clean up all crumbs and spills immediately, do the dishes after they have been used instead of leaving them in the sink. It is suggested that you try to limit the consumption of food to just one room in the house, this will also minimize the spread of bugs throughout the house.
Store Trash Properly
You should always keep waste from food in trash cans preferably in the kitchen and not throughout the house in wastebaskets. The trashcans should always have a cover that is practically airtight and emptied at the end of each day prior to going to bed. The garbage bins on the outside should also have airtight covers as well.