How to Get Rid of Roaches
Once cockroaches make themselves at home in a house, it can be very difficult to kick them out. They can snack on your food, damage wallpaper, books, and electronics, and some species of cockroach also spread germs to humans. Serve these pests an eviction notice and keep them from coming back by choosing a bait, insecticide, trap or barrier approach that works best for you.
- Cockroaches must have a source of water. Depending on the temperature and their size, they can live for a month without any food, but no more than a week without water. Find all the water leaks in your house, and fix them. Once their water source(s) have been eliminated, they will be much more interested in eating gel-based baits you set out.
- Clean your house thoroughly. A clean house is key to keeping cockroaches away, and the first place to start is the kitchen. Wash your dishes and put food away promptly after meals. Clean up crumbs and spills right away, and generally keep the area clean. Pay special attention to range tops, as cockroaches love grease.
- Keep food containers sealed, and don’t leave food out for extended periods. Don’t leave dirty dishes out overnight, and don’t leave fruit on the countertop.
- Mop the floor routinely to clean up crumbs and sticky spots. Do not slop water against the walls; remember, they need water.
- Take out the trash regularly. Have one trash can for food in your house. Don’t let it sit for too long. Use a trash can with a lid, rather than one that stays open. Keep it in sealed containers that aren’t sitting right next to your house.
How to Get Rid of Scorpions
Scorpions are common household pests. These arachnids are typically found in the southern United States, with the largest varieties dwelling in desert regions. Scorpions prefer to stay in dark spaces during the day, and come out at night to find food and water. You can get rid of them by hunting them at night, removing their sources of food and shelter, introducing predators, and using sprays. Read on to learn more about how to get rid of scorpions
- Eliminate excess moisture. Scorpions enter homes looking for water. Keep floors, corners, closets and crawl spaces dry and free of leaks. Refrain from allowing water to stand in puddles or containers near the exterior of your home.
- Get rid of bugs in your house. Scorpions feed on insects, so if you have an issue with roaches, ants, or other bugs in the house, you’ll need to solve that problem before the scorpions will go away. Here are a few good ways to keep the insect population down in your home:
- Clean up crumbs and do dishes promptly so bugs don’t have a food source.
Sprinkle borax or diatomaceous earth around the baseboards and under the sinks in your home; these natural substances kill insects.
Consider spraying insecticides around your home to kill insects. Do research and approach this method with caution, since some insecticides are poisonous to humans and pets.
Keep the population down outdoors as well, since scorpions prefer to live outside.
- Remove scorpion shelters. Scorpions like to hide in dark places, especially during the day. Get rid of structures in and around your home that could be used as a convenient hiding place by a scorpion. Take the following measures to keep scorpions from hanging around:
- Store cardboard boxes on shelves instead of the floor.
Don’t keep clutter around your home or under the beds.
Keep your closets and bedrooms neatly organized. Scorpions like to hide in shoes and piles of clothes on the floor.
Outdoors, trim back bushes and foliage that scorpions can hide under. Get rid of piles of wood, rocks or yard clippings. Trim back vines and other potential hiding spots.
- Seal your home. Scorpions can slip through an opening the size of a credit card. Sealing your home is an important method for keeping them from invading. In order to make sure your home is secure, take the following measures to seal the doors, windows and foundation:
Use caulk to fill in holes and cracks in your walls, baseboards or the foundation of your home.
Make sure your windows close tightly and the screens are sealed so scorpions can’t climb in.
Get door seals to prevent scorpions from coming in under the doors.
- Get the right equipment. The best way to get rid of scorpions as fast as possible is to hunt for them at night, when they’re most active. It’s not for the faint of heart, but killing them one at a time is a good way to reduce the scorpion population around your home, fast. To hunt scorpions, you need the following equipment:
A black (ultraviolet) light. They glow in the dark, so you’ll be able to see them clearly by using a black light to search them out. Get a flashlight or headlamp with a black light bulb.
A tool you can use to kill them. In parts of Arizona, long-handled tweezers used to break the scorpions’ exoskeletons are the weapons of choice. You can also use a long knife or wear a pair of heavy boots to step on them.
- Search around your property for scorpions. Look on exterior walls, at the bases of walls and fences, under bushes and other foliage, under rocks, and other outdoor cracks and crevices close to your home. Shine your black light in all of these areas to set scorpions aglow.
Scorpions don’t normally reside in grass, so you probably won’t find many there.
You can also look indoors in your attic, along baseboards, and in any other areas where you’ve seen a scorpion.
- Kill the scorpions you find. Use long-handled tweezers, a knife, or the bottom of your boot to kill the scorpions. Then put them in a trash bag, tie it up and discard it with your regular trash.
- Use another hunting approach. Hunt at night with a UV flashlight and Raid ant and cockroach spray. Spray each scorpion directly with the spray. This spray has the fastest activation.
If the scorpion is high up a wall or on the ceiling, spray with Raid wasp and hornet spray to reach.
How to Get Rid of Termites
Out of all the countless insects, rodents, critters and other pests that disturb and discomfort homeowners everywhere, none is more dangerous than the termite. Only termites can single-handedly ruin and destroy a house’s very foundation and character in just a few short years. The first destructive handiwork of termites may not even be noticeable for the first five years after their infestation. By then, it may be too late. Your home is likely the largest investment you have ever made and the most important. Therefore, it is necessary to take the proper steps to protect your home from termites, and to rid your house of them immediately if they have already invaded your property.
- Look for signs of an infestation. You may not see direct evidence of termite infestation, but that doesn’t mean you should remain ignorant of it. Sagging floors, holes in woodwork and hollow parts of your foundation are all serious warning signs of termites. You may actually see the termites themselves, as well.
Take a screwdriver and flashlight with you to your basement, and examine crawlspaces and foundation beams by tapping on the wood to check for hollowness and to push the screwdriver into the wood to test for strength. If the wood gives easily and falls apart, you may have a termite problem on your hands.
When performing this examination, also be sure to keep an eye out for termite wastes. Termite droppings are wood colored or darker brown pellets of excrement. The presence of these droppings near weakened wood could indicate an infestation.
You may also find a termite nest on your property; a subterranean termite infestation will build a system of tunnels and tubes of mud, while a drywood termite infestation will present itself in a nest inside the wood.
- Determine the type of termites you have. There are two general types of termites that might infest your home: subterranean and drywood termites. The former are found in both the soil around your home and the wood of your home, while the latter thrive solely in wood (not soil). Subterranean termites are found mostly in warm, coastal regions – primarily California, Texas, Louisiana, Florida, and Georgia. Drywood termites can be found anywhere in the states.
Subterranean termites can be found in wood and compost piles around your home, in addition to the foundational wood.
Subterranean termites typically do much more damage to a home than drywood, and may require different treatment methods.
How to Get Rid of Mice
Block up holes in interior and exterior walls. Start with the interior walls; it’s best to leave a way out for the mice. They may leave your home or apartment for easier pickings elsewhere. If trapped within the walls they may chew new holes.
- Find the places the mice are using. Sometimes there will be greasy stains, and there will almost always will be faeces near an entryway. There is also a characteristic odour. Mark the holes with chalk and clean the area.
- Seal the entryways with scouring pads. The usual recommendation is steel wool. Unfortunately, steel wool rusts and is not a permanent solution. Instead, use green kitchen pads (those used for cleaning pans and such) cut to the right size, or copper scouring pads. The pads must be secured to the sides of the hole or the mice will eventually pull them out. Large holes will need to be repaired.
- After a couple of days, look for evidence of continuing mouse activity. If there is any, check the holes that you sealed, and look for more holes. Seal as needed.
- Once you are sure that the interior walls are secure, seal any holes on the exterior of your building. You may use plastic scouring pads, but in some cases walls may need tuck-pointing or other repairs.
Repelling and removing rodents from your home can be a hassle; but here are some quick and easy instructions to keep the rodents away in their natural habitat.
- Keep your home clean. If there is nothing to eat, they will be less likely to stay. Keep all food stored properly in airtight containers and in places that are safe from mouse attack.
- Put your trash cans as far away as possible from your home. Mice smell it and get attracted to your house.
How to Get Rid of Bed Bugs
Dismantle the bed and stand the components on end. Things to look for are the bugs themselves and the light-brown, molted skins of the nymphs. Dark spots of dried bed bug excrement are often present along mattress seams or wherever the bugs have resided. Oftentimes, the gauze fabric underlying the box spring must be removed to gain access for inspection and possible treatment. Cracks and crevices of bed frames should be examined, especially if the frame is wood (bed bugs have an affinity for wood and fabric more so than metal or plastic).
Successful treatment of mattresses and box springs is difficult and infested components may need to be discarded.
Alternatively, place a bed bug proof mattress cover over an infested mattress to trap the bed bugs inside and starve them to death. This will eliminate the need to purchase a new mattress/boxspring and make treatment and future inspections easier. (Starving the bugs CAN take up to 400 days, so make sure your cover stays sealed for at least that long.) 
Bed bugs also hide among items stored underneath beds.
- Empty nightstands and dressers. Examine them inside and out, then tip them over to inspect the woodwork underneath. Oftentimes, the bugs will be hiding in cracks, corners and recesses.
- Check upholstered chairs and sofas. Pay close attention to the seams, tufts, skirts and crevices beneath cushions. Sofas can be major bed bug hotspots when used for sleeping.
- Check other common places. These include along and under the edge of wall-to-wall carpeting (especially behind beds and furniture), cracks in wood molding and ceiling-wall junctures. Bed bugs tend to congregate in certain areas, but it is common to find an individual or some eggs scattered here and there.
- Use a flashlight. Inspectors sometimes also inject a pyrethrum-based “flushing agent” into crevices to help reveal where bugs may be hiding.
How to Get Rid of Flies
Flies enjoy the great indoors––it’s warm, there’s often food on offer and the weather isn’t bothersome! They fly in through open doors and windows that don’t have screens and seem to find it hard to fly back out again. Their constant buzzing around is annoying, and even worse, they are potentially unhygienic. If they don’t find their way back outside again, you’ll find lots of fly corpses for the upcoming weeks. Here are some tried and true methods for getting rid of flies in the house.
- Clean the kitchen thoroughly. Remove all sources of food or prevent access to food that has to be left out. Flies will hang around the kitchen if there is a food source, so put away or thoroughly cover cakes, cookies, cut fruit, any food no longer being immediately used to prepare dishes, etc.
Wash dishes immediately after use.
Scrape crumbs and leftovers into the bin or in-sink disposal after eating.
Teach children to wash up and clean up after using the kitchen for food preparation or eating. All your hard work can be undone by one person failing to attend to the need to keep the kitchen clean.
Put rotting food outside or in a compost pile. The flies can lay eggs on rotten fruit.
- Keep compost buckets covered. All scraps meant for adding to your compost heap or bin must be kept covered when in the kitchen. This is a main attractant of flies and can result in homegrown maggots if flies have access to it.
- Keep pet food covered or remove uneaten pet food. Pet food will attract flies wherever the food is left out. Even dry food can attract desperate flies. Always keep pet food dishes clean; particles of food are enough to keep flies happy.
Praise your dog or cat if it eats flies. Pets can be a useful source of pest control if they’re interested!
- Keep all bins covered. This includes the diaper bin or pail. Anything with stinky refuse in it is a siren call to flies. Shut the lid and if it’s stinky enough for you to smell it, dispose of the garbage outside immediately.
Keep your bins and disposal pails fresh with regular cleaning and disinfecting.
How to Get Rid of Mosquitoes
There’s nothing quite as annoying as the whine of a mosquito next to your ear, and the knowledge that in a few minutes you’ll have a fresh bug bite where your skin is exposed. Mosquitoes plague areas with high humidity, and in many parts of the world they’re responsible for spreading disease. Whether you’re determined to stay bite-free on your next camping trip or you want to keep the mosquito population down in your yard, this article has a method that can help. Keep reading to learn how to get rid of mosquitoes and keep them from coming back.
- Slap them with a swatter. A mosquito swatter, usually made of a thicker metal or plastic than a regular fly swatter, is mounted on the end of a springy wire. This dramatically increases your chances of hitting a stationary mosquito by increasing the momentum of the swat.
Any item that will make your arm longer, and therefore your swing faster, will suffice if you don’t have a swatter. Try a rolled up magazine or newspaper.
No swatter handy? Kill the flying mosquito with a double-handed clap. Using two hands is more effective than one, as the air coming from each hand will blow the mosquito into the opposing palm.
- Wear chemical mosquito repellent. Keeping mosquitoes away from your body is the best way to avoid getting bitten. Use insect repellent on uncovered skin surfaces and on your clothing when you’re outdoors, especially during the day. When using sunscreen, apply it before insect repellent.
Repellents containing 30% to 50% DEET (N,N-diethyl-m-toluamide) are the most popular type of repellents, and are recommended for adults and children over 2 months of age and are effective for several hours. Repellents with lower amounts of DEET offer shorter-term protection and must be applied more often.
Repellents containing up to 15% picaridin, which must be applied often, are available in the US. Picaridin is odorless, has a pleasant feel, and doesn’t plasticize like DEET. Studies have shown it to be as fully repellent to mosquitoes as DEET and can also be applied on infants as young as 2 months.
Protect infants less than 2 months of age by using a carrier draped with mosquito netting with an elastic edge for a tight fit rather using a repellent.
- Use an oil-based repellent. The safety of using chemical deterrents manufactured by combining synthetic chemicals in the laboratory has been questioned, and there are many natural solutions you can use instead. Citronella oil, cinnamon oil and castor oil are reputed to keep mosquitoes away. Most natural repellents require more frequent application or use than the chemical versions.
Oil of lemon eucalyptus is sold as a product called Repel®. Repel is a 40% formulation of naturally-derived eucalyptus and has a pleasant scent and feel without any plasticizing properties. It is also effective at repelling ticks.
Tea tree oil may be another useful natural repellent. Look for commercial repellents that include it.
Try Skin Armour Deep Woods Outdoor soap. A combined effort from the researchers in Australia and China who have worked extensively over the last decade to find a competent mosquito protection product resulted in this product. It’s is a completely natural product made from a group of powerful natural oils and may help to you keep yours safe from the attack of mosquitoes while you’re working or camping outdoors.
- Wear loose, full coverage clothing. Long-sleeved shirts and long pants will help to protect you from mosquitoes when you’re outdoors. Covering your skin is a key approach to repelling mosquitoes.
Clothing may also be sprayed with repellent containing permethrin or another EPA-registered repellent for greater protection. Do not use permethrin directly on your skin.
Avoid wearing heavy, dark clothing in warm weather. Mosquitoes are attracted to warm bodies, so staying cool is an effective way to avoid bites. They also appear to like black, blue and red the most.
Don’t wear scent when outdoors during mosquito season. Mosquitoes are attracted to sweat, but the act of sweating can mask more effective attractors of mosquitoes, such as perfumes.
- Use mosquito nets to protect yourself at night. If you’re sleeping in a mosquito-infested area, get a mosquito net to drape around the bed or mat so that it touches the floor on all sides. This is the only really effective way to prevent them from getting inside to bite you, especially if there are open windows or doors in the vicinity.
Check the net for holes regularly; even overly long toenails can tear a hole in them during sleep.
Make sure you are not touching the net anywhere while you sleep.
Kennels and other pet refuges should also be covered with mosquito nets when you are experiencing a mosquito infestation.
- Insect-proof your home. Check your screens and repair any that have holes or tears in them that would let mosquitoes fly in. Silicon caulk or screen patches work well. Use weather stripping to seal door gaps, especially under the doors. There’s no sure way to prevent mosquitoes from coming in, but taking these measures can really help.
- Stay indoors when mosquitoes prefer to be outside. They tend to come out at dusk, dawn and in the dark, so if you can, stay safely inside during these times. When you do go out during times when mosquitoes are most active, wear more layers to protect your exposed skin.
How to Get Rid of Ants
Prevention Is the Best Cure
The common mistake everyone makes is that they start looking for ways out, when the problem has occurred. Why not prevent its appearance? Especially when it is not that hard. In order to prevent ant infestation, keep to the following tips:
- Keep your house clean, especially the kitchen, as ants get attracted by food sources. Cover attracting substance tightly and clean the furniture surface.
- Sweep the floor after meals, even little messes can attract ants.
- Always cover the foods you don’t hide in fridge. Never leave dirty dishes in the sink. Wash them up after each meal.
- Keep trash cans and bins far from your house. Take the trash out every day.
- Don’t allow moisture to accommodate on counters and other surfaces, as ants keep looking for water out wherever they can find it and stay near its sources.
How to Get Rid of Ants in Your House: Finding the Nest
For those, who want to know how to get rid of ants, looking for their nest is the first step to take. To find the location of their nest, follow the worker ants. Leave a sweet item outside, and after they catch a bite, follow them to the nest. Of course, the procedure requires time and patience, but the result is worth the efforts. When you find the nest, spray boric acid powder between the walls or behind a tile. This will kill all the ants in the nest. Why not use pesticides? The reason is very simple: some ants may hide or run away. If they have pesticide remains on them, they will spread them all over the house.
Top 5 Natural Repellents
- If you don’t manage to find the nest, you can sprinkle cayenne pepper near the opening where ants enter you home. This is the most effective natural repellent.
- One more option is blending water and citrus peelings in a food processor or blender. Lemon peelings are the most effective. However, lemon can also be used in a quite different way: take its juice and mix with water. Pour in a spray bottle and spray the mixture on the places, where you used to see ants.
- Placing instant grits along the path of the ants is another effective repellent. Eating grits ants start dying as grits work as dehydrators, absorbing all the water for ants’ bodies.
- The safest homemade remedy is a mixture of water and white vinegar. Spray the substance along the paths of the ants that are coming to your place.
- Other effective products are cinnamon, pepper, strong perfumes, cream of tartar, tea tree oil, etc. Mixing them with water and spraying all around, you will get rid of ants in a few days. Knowing how to get rid of ants’ population in the house you prevent their armies from destroying the peace of your home.