Have some pesky varmints in your house? Let’s review how to determine what type of pest you have and where they are entering your home. Then find a few tips and tricks to send those pests packing!
Things You’ll Need:
- Notepad & pencil
- empty glass jars
- petroleum jelly
- anise extract
- garlic cloves
- boric acid
To get started, determine what type of pest you have and where they are entering your home. Take a pad of paper and pencil, walk around the outside of your house and check these 10 places:
1. If you have a chimney, does it have a cap? If not squirrels, birds, and raccoons could be settling in.
2. Are there any gaps between your chimney and outside wall?
3. Are any of your roof ridge vents loose?
4. Check your attic vents and flashing for loose spots
5. Are any of your window frames coming loose or pulling away from the house?
6. Check your siding for any loose pieces
7. Look at the entry points for your utilities such as phone, cable and electric, are there any gaps?
8. Do your outside faucets have gaps around them?
9. Are your dryer vents completely sealed and guarded?
10. Does your foundation have any cracks or gaps?
Once you’ve identified possible means of entry, arm yourself with some caulk and screws then plug and repair any places on the outside of your house that are inviting to pets. To keep moths away, place dried lavender around your door ways, on your window sills and in your closets.
Did you know that empty paper grocery bags and cardboard boxes can bring cockroaches into your house? The roaches love paper and glue, so bags and boxes often become infected with eggs which can hatch in your home. If you suspect more than a few roaches are nesting in your home – call a professional. If you just have a few, take an empty jar and pour in a little bit of beer. Then add a few slices of banana and finally a few drops of anise extract. Wrap the outside of the jar with tape so the roaches can easily climb in, then smear petroleum jelly around the inside rim so they can’t get back out. Leave in the cupboard under your kitchen sink for a couple of days and then throw the jar away!
Do your houseplants have aphids or other bugs? A simple solution is to press a garlic clove into the soil near the root of the plant. If the garlic sprouts just cut back the shoots. If you suspect that you have ants or termites, your first line of defense is to repair any roof or plumbing leaks. Moisture in the home attracts and retains these invaders. Before you call a professional, try sprinkling a line of chili power as a barrier defense. You can then place a teaspoon of boric acid mixed with some jelly onto an index card and leave on your counter or under your cabinet for a few days. You should notice the ant population dwindle immediately. Be CERTAIN to keep this card out of the reach of pets and children.
Do you have a raccoon that you just can’t keep out of your garbage? These animals hate the smell of ammonia. So, before you put the garbage cans outside spray a small amount of ammonia over the bags.
Got a squirrel or chipmunk in your chimney? Fill a flat baking pan with ammonia and place in your hearth with the flue open. The fumes will waft upward and drive away your intruders.
Have you tried trapping a mouse with a glue trap or spring trap, but just can’t seem to catch him? Mice have a great sense of smell, so handle all traps with gloves to keep your human scent off. Place the trap near the wall…mice have bad vision so they hug the walls when moving. To make your bait more tempting, try gumdrops or crisp bacon, maybe even a little dried oatmeal.
Getting rid of most minor pest problems is easily done yourself. But I also recommend that you have the phone number of your contractor referral service close by. You may find a problem that’s either too difficult to properly diagnose or makes you uncomfortable tackling it yourself.
- Wear rubber gloves and a mask when using ammonia and boric acid.
- Keep all suggested methods AWAY from children and pets