Eco-Friendly Solutions for the Top 5 Pests
Dealing with pest infestations in your home can be stressful. While there are plenty of exterminators that can use toxic chemicals to rid you of your problem, sometimes you want a less harmful solution. Luckily, there are some DIY, eco-friendly methods and natural products that can effectively keep pests out of your home. Below, we're discussing some easy-to-use, natural pest control options for the most common household pests.
Bed bugs are among the most prevalent pests to infest homes, and they're among the most stressful for homeowners to manage.
Luckily, there's a simple DIY solution you can use to kill bed bugs in their tracks. Sprinkle baking soda around the areas you believe to be infected, including around the base of your beds and couches, especially near the legs.
When bed bugs inevitably try to traverse the powder, the baking soda will naturally dry them out and can kill them before they get to you to feed. Let the powder sit for about a week before vacuuming it up and disposing of the dead bed bugs.
Pro tip: baking soda is effective against cockroaches as well!
Termites feed on wood and often burrow into the framing of your home to feed, gradually causing damage and potentially compromising the structural stability of your house.
Many pest control companies use bait stations with potentially harmful chemicals to kill termites, but you can often get a successful treatment using vinegar and lemon juice. The acidity will either deter termites or kill those that are exposed to it.
Simply mix a cup of white vinegar with the juice from four lemons, and place the mixture in a spray bottle. Apply the solution to areas where you see termite damage or believe the insects may enter your home. Reapply regularly to ensure thorough treatment.
Whether you live in a rural setting, or an urban sprawl like New York City, mice, rats, and other rodents have an uncanny ability to find a way into your home. However, many of us still feel bad about using poison or rodent traps to kill or capture them. Thankfully, there's a much simpler method for keeping rodents out that won't cause them any harm.
Mice and rats naturally stay away from certain scents, and peppermint is one of the odors they detest the most. Soak some cotton balls in peppermint oil and place them around your home where you believe the rodents are entering. The smell can help keep them at bay and may make them decide to relocate entirely.
If you have a major infestation you can't solve on your own, don't hesitate to look for eco-friendly pest control companies in cities like New York that use non-toxic solutions and integrated pest management. Their treatments often have better results than homemade repellants while remaining safe for the environment.
It's never pleasant to find ants in your home, and keeping them outside where they belong is often straightforward, even without harmful insecticides.
Ants leave scent trails to help others locate food sources. Aside from eliminating potential attractions in your home like garbage, crumbs, or unsealed food, destroying the scent trail is an excellent way to ruin their chance of finding a meal in your house.
The acidity and pungent odor of lemon juice can wipe out a scent trail. Spraying some around areas where you notice ants entering your home can help deter them altogether.
Mosquitoes are just about the only thing that can ruin a beautiful, sunny day in your yard. Most pest management companies can spray pesticides to keep them at bay, but these can be harmful to you, your family, and other beneficial insects on your property.
Luckily, there's an eco-friendly solution that can keep mosquitoes away for weeks on end. Mix about two cups of mint-flavored mouthwash, three cups of Epsom salt, and three cans of stale, non-alcoholic beer (yes, really!). Spray the solution around your yard, avoiding only flowers.
The zero-toxicity repellent can deter mosquitoes entirely, leaving you to enjoy the outdoors in peace.
DIY pest control solutions can be an environmentally-safe way to take back control of your home and your yard. Many of the remedies we've described above can be implemented today with things you already have around the house, so you can be on your way to a pest-free home in no time.
Ed Spicer has been working in the pest control industry for years helping 1,000's of homeowners navigate the world of insect and rodent management. He now manages Pest Strategies, helping homeowners around the world.