7 ways to keep your home pest-free this monsoon

Here are a few ways you can get rid of household pests and enjoy the much-awaited pour

Komal Anwar July 15, 2015

Monsoon can be a challenging time to preserve your health, as the rainy season offers the ultimate breeding ground for germs, bacteria and one of a homemaker’s worst nightmares, pests. According to a state-wide poll of Kentucky, 93 per cent expressed concern over finding insects within their home, and we’re in the same boat in Pakistan. As compiled from home.howstuffworks.com and thehealthsite.com, here are a few ways you can get rid of household pests and enjoy the much-awaited pour.

Boric powder for cockroaches

Worried about cockroaches encroaching upon your food in the kitchen? Mix a teaspoon of wheat flour and boric powder, add a little water and make a mixture out of it. Form this mixture into small balls and place them in every corner of the room to keep roaches out of your sight.

Repair cracks

Given the tiny size of bugs, it’s important that you seal the cracks on the exterior of your house. To keep bugs at bay, use mortar or cement to patch foundations and masonry walls. Clear away damaged bricks and add new ones, filling the joints with mortar.

Seal around pipe penetrations

Utility installations are quite common in almost every household. Whether it’s a new cable line, internet service or telephone wiring, you’ll have to get your exterior walls drilled for the wire to pass through. Fill smaller gaps or cracks using pipe sealants or caulk. Michael F Potter, Extension Entomologist University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, suggests using good quality silicone or acrylic latex caulk, which can clean up easily with water, and are paintable.

Add screens

Given the ongoing load-shedding, many people leave their doors and windows open to avoid being suffocated inside their home. Unfortunately, this gives an open invitation to mosquitoes, fleas and other pests at home. To enjoy the feeling of fresh air without the annoyance of insects, install screens in windows and doors. If the screen has simply come loose along one side or corner, use staples (for wooden frames) or a splining tool (for aluminium frames) to reattach it to the frame.

Clear out stagnant water

Stagnant water gives birth to many dangerous pests and diseases, which may completely ruin the excitement of enjoying the anticipated showers. It can be a major reason for causing malaria as it serves as a breeding ground for mosquitoes. Always look out for stagnant water near your house and garden, and try to get rid of it before it attracts insects.

Keep your bathroom clean and dry

A damp bathroom can attract earthworms. Although these aren’t harmful, keeping your bathroom neat and dry is crucial. Don’t allow puddles of water to remain in the bathroom. If you keep plants in the bathroom, make sure there’s no surface water on the soil, or puddles in the drip tray after watering.

Store trash properly

Keep food trash in the kitchen and not in dustbins across the house. The trash should be placed in a can with a lid and should be emptied each night. Exterior cans should have self-closing lids along with tight seals to keep insects out. Both the interior and exterior of the bins should be cleaned and sanitised regularly, especially if they’re exposed to spills.

Published in The Express Tribune, July 16th,  2015.

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