Top 10 Spring Cleaning Tips

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Spring cleaning is the perfect time to get rid of household clutter you no longer need — and to make sure your home is completely pest-proof. Bugs and rodents tend to come out of hiding when the weather starts warming up, so make sure to follow the suggestions below to keep insects, pests and rodents out of your house and prevent termite infestations.

Tip 1: Make A List And Take It One Step At A Time.

The number of tasks that come up in the spring can be overwhelming, so keep yourself organized. Make a to-do list for every room in your home and remember to tackle pest hotspots as you move down the list. Your kitchen might be likely to attract ants and beetles, while cockroaches and spiders may be busy hiding in your bathroom. If you know what you’re looking for in every room, you’ll be prepared for any pest that might have taken up residence in your home.

Tip 2: Get Acquainted With Pests.

It’s hard to identify and remove a pest problem if you don’t know it’s there. Use PestWorld’s useful “Pest in the House” tool[1] to figure out why insects and rodents might be making themselves comfortable in certain rooms of your home — and what termites and other common pests look like — and you’ll be well on your way to getting rid of roaches and ants for good.

Tip 3: Inspect Your Pantry.

As you set out to thoroughly clean your house this spring, go through your pantries to make sure that you get rid of any stale or rotting foods. If you find anything with existing insect damage, or past its expiration date, throw it out; that’s exactly the kind of thing that draws the attention of ants, meal moths, flour beetles and even mice. Once you’ve gotten rid of all at-risk items, clean out the crumbs that have probably found their way into your pantry and make sure all of your dry foods are stored in completely sealed, airtight containers.

Tip 4: Protect Your Cabinets.

Cleaning out cabinets in your kitchen and bathroom is just a first step to keeping your house pest-free. If you really want to make sure that ants and other critters aren’t hiding out of sight, repair any damage to your cabinets and line them with shelf paper before storing dry foods, cleaning supplies or other items.

Tip 5: Keep An Eye On Water.

Spring cleaning is also a good opportunity to make sure you don’t have any leaking or broken faucets, or you might end up with a stubborn ant problem on your hands. Just remember: spiders, ants and other insects would love to use faulty pipes to sneak into your home.

Tip 6: Put An End To Clutter.

Clutter makes it hard to see more than just your floor. It can hide cracks and crevices that might be an open invitation for pests trying to get inside. As PestWorld points out, any room with clutter is more likely to attract ants, cockroaches, flies, mice, rats and other pests. Look around your home — are there spaces filled with boxes collecting dust? Or clothes lying all over the floor? Tidy up, get rid of anything you don’t need and seal any cracks or crevices.

Tip 7: Animals May Attract Pest In The Yard And House.

Having animals like dogs and cats are great to have but can invite unwanted pests into your home. Dog feces will attract pests such as flies to lay eggs and constantly add flies to your environment. Picking up after your animal daily will greatly reduce the number of flies you will have.

Tip 8: Avoid Cardboard Boxes.

While you’re spring cleaning, it might be tempting to de-clutter by putting everything you don’t regularly use in cardboard boxes, but this is a mistake. Rodents, spiders and other critters love to hide in dark spaces that they can easily get into — especially in rooms like your basement, where many boxes often end up. Instead, use airtight plastic bins. Anything you are not going to keep, get it out of your house. Donate usable items, and throw away the rest.

Tip 9: Outdoor Spaces Are Part Of Your House, Too.

Once you’ve dealt with your house’s interior, it’s easy and convenient to forget about outdoor cleaning jobs, but these are some of the most important spring cleaning tasks. Insects like termites are particularly attracted to decaying wood, so fix up any roof shingles that may have deteriorated during the winter. Fix any ripped or broken screens that are making it possible for pests to get into your home, and clean out gutters and spouts to make sure they’re working as they should. Finally, trimming bushes, branches and other greenery away from your home and roof can also make your home less attractive to bugs.

Tip 10: Maintain Long-Term Habits To Keep Your House Pest-Free.

Spring cleaning is a great opportunity to perform household tasks that you may not always have time for, but there are simple things you can do everyday to keep your home clean. Wipe down counters after every meal, and regularly wash your linen and shower curtains. You should also periodically inspect your home for any repairs you might want to make, so they don’t get worse over time. It’s also worth taking inventory of your clothes, spices and other household items multiple times a year, so you can get rid of anything that might attract pests.

If you follow these suggestions, you can make sure that your house is a healthy environment for you and your family year-round, and pests won’t be nearly as tempted to find their way inside.