Madison
58° F
Overcast
Overcast
Advertisement

Winter thaw leaves homes vulnerable to pests

Published On: Feb 04 2013 11:08:09 AM CST
Updated On: Feb 20 2013 03:19:30 PM CST
Rat

(NewsUSA) - Spring doesn't officially begin until March 20, but the National Pest Management Association (NPMA) advises homeowners that it's not too early to take stock of the damage their homes may have sustained during the winter months. Typically, the winter weather trio of ice, snow and wind leave houses full of new cracks and openings, rolling out the red carpet for invading springtime pests.

"The effects of melting snow and ice can create cracks and crevices in the foundation and roofs, which leave houses vulnerable to infestations of rodents, ants, cockroaches and other pests," said Missy Henriksen, vice president of public affairs for NPMA. "Homeowners should take steps to ensure that the snowy winter does not lead to serious pest issues a few months from now."

The first step toward keeping spring pests outdoors is to repair any obvious damage from winter storms. The NPMA recommends the following advice for preventing infestations and recognizing them before it's too late.

* Look for missing shingles on the roof, ripped window screens and clogged gutters.

* Seal visible cracks and holes, including entry points for utilities and pipes.

* Replace weather-stripping, and repair loose mortar around basement foundation and windows.

* Ensure that basements, attics and crawl spaces are well ventilated and dry.

* Vacuum doors and windows. Windows and doors are key entry points for eager pests, so keep them vacuumed to catch invaders like spiders, silverfish, earwigs and beetles.

* Inspect garage and outbuildings. If rodents have moved in, it's time for eviction. Organize cluttered debris, boxes and random items along the walls where mice may hide or nest. Does spring cleaning call for a new shelving unit?

"However, because pests can find their way in through the smallest of openings, homeowners should contact a pest professional to perform a thorough inventory inside and outside the home to ensure they are protected against a spring invasion," advised Henriksen.

Advertisement
  • Marysville Pilchuck school shooting 4

    KOMO

    2 dead in school shooting near Seattle, sources say

    A school shooting has been reported at Marysville-Pilchuck High School in Marysville, Washington, about 35 miles north of Seattle.

  • Craig Spencer

    America's Ebola patients

    An American doctor who was working with Ebola patients in Guinea was been diagnosed with the disease after returning to New York. Learn more about him and America's other Ebola victims.

  • Hot peppers

    Karimala/iStock

    Notable food recalls

    A North Carolina producer of peppers and hot sauces is voluntarily recalling 6,215 pounds of fresh serrano chili peppers because some tested positive for salmonella. Here are other notable food recalls that made headlines.

  • jack-o-lantern Halloween pumpkin

    Juliet James/SXC

    Halloween

    Games, recipes, trick-or-treating, scary movies and everything else you need to make your Halloween extra spooky.

  • Politician, politics, debate, election

    iStock / bns124

    Election Coverage

    Get up-to-date on political stories, Reality Check the latest political ads, learn about the candidates and find election results in our special section.

  • Ebola virus pink

    CDC

    Ebola special coverage

    Get the latest news on the Ebola outbreak and resources to help you learn more about the deadly virus.

Advertisement