A Do-It-Yourself Guide to Pest Control

Summer is winding down and as we move towards the fall, we opt to spend more time outside. A good barbecue or fireside hangout is no place for pests. When it comes to pest control, there are a number of do-it yourself actions you can take to help prevent pests from invading your space. Trying to keep pests from finding their way into your yard and home does not have to feel overwhelming. Thanks to the expertise of our certified professionals, we have compiled an easy to follow do-it-yourself guide to pest control full of more than a dozen tips and tricks for homeowners. 

6 Outdoor Pest Control Tips 

The Lowcountry is a breeding ground for mosquitoes.

Eliminate standing water to prevent the formation of mosquito breeding grounds.

  1. The Lowcountry is a breeding ground for mosquitos, but there are ways to make your property less appealing to them. The easiest way to deter these annoying pests is to eliminate all standing water because this will prevent formation of their breeding grounds.   
  2. Make sure you seal around conduits and piping, as many rodents and insects follow power lines and pipes to gain access to a home.  
  3. Keep your gutters clean and free of leaf and natural debris and ensure the gutter drains divert water away from your home’s foundation. This will discourage moisture build up and termite attracting conditions.  
  4. While you are at it, keep your yard clean and always prune excess vegetation touching the home and foundation. This includes pine straw, mulch, shrubs, vines, and other plants.  
  5. Bugs – including Formosan Termite swarms in May and June – are attracted to lights, so keep exterior lights off when not in use.   
  6. And finally, keep your garage doors closed and garbage cans cleaned and sealed. 

7 Indoor Pest Control Tips  

  1. Seal all doors and windows to the outside and make sure no light can be seen. If it can then insects can gain access to your home.

    Air tight containers prevent insects from tampering with leftovers.

    Keep pests away by properly storing all food.

  2. Keep air filters clean and check your A/C drip pan for excess water. Bonus homeowner tip: mold and/or mildew build up is a breeding ground for tiny insects. 
  3. Check for plumbing leaks and seal off any gaps around plumbing pipes behind cabinetry. Do not let water accumulate anywhere in or around your home.
  4. Inspect the grout around your bathtubs, showers and toilets. A good caulk seal will ensure small insects such as silverfish and ants cannot enter these areas.  
  5. Examine your attic for unnecessary clutter, ensure gable vents are screened and seal up any cardboard boxes to prevent insects and rodents from entering and nesting inside. 
  6. What about those leftovers from dinner last night? Make sure to store all food in tightly sealed containers or better yet – in the fridge! Open food attracts both insects and rodents so keep your pantry neat and tidy.   
  7. Refrain from leaving your pets food out overnight and check for pests hiding in or on packages or delivery boxes before bringing them into your home. 

If these 13 do-it-yourself tips are not enough… 

Give one of the options below a try! 
Plan your garden to deter insects.

Chrysanthemums contain an ingredient commonly used in natural insect repellents.

  • Plan your garden! Did you know certain plants can help keep bugs away? Here is what works: Chrysanthemums. Chrysanthemums contain pyrethrum, which this is a common ingredient in natural insect repellents. Pyrethrum can kill and repel ants, roaches, ticks, fleas, spider mites, Japanese beetles and even bed bugs!   
  • If gardening is not your thing, use a dryer sheet to help repel bugsResearch shows that many commonly used dryer sheets include ingredients that have characteristics that repel some all-to-common insects. Their use can help repel certain mites, food-infesting beetles and weevils, German cockroaches, and even fungus gnats!   
  • If wasps are a problem pest for you then give this temporary do-it-yourself solution a try and see how it works. Mix simple soap and water in a spray bottle to temporarily combat these annoying critters. Spray the solution directly on the nest at dusk – the solution will clog the breathing pores and kill the wasps.  
  • Make routine inspections of your attic vents and openings in all areas of your home a top priority, especially as the seasons shift. When cooler months approach, mice, rats, and other wildlife seek refuge which usually entails them turning your home in to theirs! Keep an eye out for obvious holes and entry points for pests and do not overlook the evidence they leave behind (droppings, nesting rubble and stains). Sealing access holes is your secret weapon for easy and effective do-it-yourself pest control!  
When all else fails, call the professionals at Old South Exterminators – we have over 50 years of experience protecting homes and businesses in the Lowcountry!