Tips for Defending Your Home.
Veteran homeowners know that along with postcard-worthy scenes, winter brings a host of worrisome hazards. Frozen pipes, downed trees and power lines—these are the problems that most homeowners dread. The truly wise, however, dread something else too.
Rodents and other pests seek warmth and shelter during winter, so it is important to ensure you don’t roll out a welcome mat for these home invaders True, mice and rats, cockroaches and spiders are notoriously relentless intruders, often breaching even hairline cracks in the home exterior. But, you can go a long way toward effectively barring unwanted houseguests and it’s worth the effort. Indeed, the “ick” factor may be the least of your concerns. Household pests are capable of causing extensive, and expensive damage.
Once they enter your home, insects and rodents gnaw through wood, wires, and drywall, gradually leaving destruction in their wake. Even their nesting—in dark, warm, often moist crevices—typically results in rotten wood and mold growth, which undermine the integrity and longevity of your home. There’s one silver lining in all this. The measures you need to take to minimize the likelihood of an infestation are the very same measures you should take to maximize the energy efficiency of your home. That is, in one fell swoop, you can pest-proof your home and help lower your monthly utility bills. In a tightly sealed, properly protected home, warm air stays indoors while cold air—and pests—stay out. Check out OPC’s TAP Insulation as an option.
Recognizing the Risks
Though you may not be dealing with an infestation right now, recognize that the risk of a pest invasion never really goes away—especially in winter. So, keep an eye out for storm damage as the weeks pass, and consider acting on the following best practices for pest prevention: or contact OPC Handyman Services for help
- Trim back trees to bar rodents from easy access to the underside of your roof overhang.
- Declutter the basement, attic, and any utility rooms so as to eliminate any potential nesting grounds.
- Examine the fascia board along the roofline, replacing any areas of rotted wood.
- Repair loose mortar and replace worn weather stripping around all windows and doors.
- Store food in sealed containers and keep crumbs off the floor.
- Seal any and all cracks or gaps on the home exterior with a silicone-based caulk.
- Store firewood at least 20 feet from the home, off the ground and covered.
- Hire a professional chimney sweep to clean the stack, inspect the flue, and install a cap over the chimney.
Recognizing the Signs
Certain signs can suggest the presence of an ongoing infestation—chewed box corners or piles of sawdust where you wouldn’t have expected to encounter them. At the same time, remember that many people whose homes suffer pest damage don’t realize there’s a problem until it’s too late.
If you’re concerned about insects or rodents on your property, don’t hesitate to call in a professional. Trained to pinpoint the obvious and not-so-obvious signs of an infestation, licensed pest professionals can advise you on how best to ensure the continued protection of your home from its foes.
Visit OPC Pest Services today for a full suite of tools and information on keeping your home pest-free. With options like TAP Pest Control Insulation, OPC Handyman Services from licensed professionals, OPC’s Crawl Space Care and a Four Seasons Program that will keep your home and property pest-free all year round, OPC is here to fight current and future invasions!