Pests can be a nuisance and also damage your valuables and property. Besides invading your interior living spaces, they can also wreak havoc on your foundation and crawlspace and jeopardize the integrity of your building. Some of the common pests that threaten your building’s foundation include carpenter bees that burrow into wood, rodents like rats, termites that feed on wood, and carpenter ants, which are usually black or reddish. To help you protect your building from destructive pests, consider implementing the measures below.
1. Minimize Moisture
Most insects and pests have trouble regulating their body temperatures. They, therefore, seek damp areas around your home to help them keep cool. Moist areas are also great breeding grounds for insects like flies and mosquitoes. Keep the areas around your foundation dry by cleaning your gutters, checking for leaks and drips in your plumbing, and directing downspouts as far away from your foundation as possible. You should also keep your mulch at least 12 inches away from your foundation to avoid harboring pests like termites and ants, and opt for gravel and rocks instead of organic mulch.
2. Clear Around the Foundation
Having clutter around your foundation is one way to invite pests and set it up for destruction. Keep the areas around your foundation free of clutter, and avoid storing firewood near your building. Also, trim your plants and shrubs a few feet away from your building. Mow your lawn regularly to keep your grass short, and always rake debris and leaves away from your building. By keeping the areas around your foundation clear, you discourage pests and bugs and minimize the possibility of destructive pests getting into your foundation.
3. Repair Cracks and Openings
Pest and critter get access to your foundation through openings and cracks in and around your foundation. The crevices also make it possible for moisture to get into your home, making it an ideal environment for dangerous pests. If you notice cracks along your foundation, you can seal them using caulk or polyurethane foam. Be especially keen on areas that may be vulnerable due to plumbing, AC lines, electrical wires, and cabling. If the cracks are more than an eighth of an inch, it is always advisable to contact a professional for inspection and repairs.
4. Inspect Your Foundation
Regular inspection of your home can help you establish entry points of the pest into your foundation, including spaces and cracks on your doors and vents. Exterior entry points like foundation vents may also let destructive pests into your building, putting your foundation at risk. With regular inspection, you can seal up openings and ensure possible entry points are in good condition. It also allows you to catch a pest infestation in its early stages before it becomes worse and lets you know when to pest-proof your building.
5. Keep Your Home Clean and Clear Left-Over Food
Pests usually gravitate towards dirt and messes, including leftover foods and trash. Always keep your building clean and tidy, and empty your trash cans frequently to avoid attracting pests. You should also avoid leaving your pet’s food outside or bird feeders around your home. Doing so attracts rodents and other bugs and leads them to your building’s foundation. In case of leftover foods, store them in tightly sealed containers.
6. Apply Pest-Repellants around Your Building’s Foundation
Applying pest-repellants around your foundation can help keep away bugs like ants and burrow bees from getting into your foundation. Most bugs don’t like strong smells. As such, you can spray bug-repellant solutions like soapy water to kill existing ants and keep away future intrusions. If you notice ants anywhere around your building, dust spices like cinnamon, mint, red chili powder, or turmeric. Lastly, consider setting up traps for rodents like rats to eradicate them and protect your home’s foundation.
7. Replace Timber Elements with Steel, Masonry, or Concrete
Since most pests destroy the wood in your foundation, one way to protect your foundation is by switching up the elements when building or conducting a renovation. Instead of using wood, consider using masonry, concrete, or metal that termites, carpentry bees, and carpentry ants cannot chew or burrow through. Because termites can attack metal if there is food, avoid placing wood in contact directly with soils.
8. Hire Pest Control Professionals
The best way to control destructive pests is by hiring pest control professionals to take care of the problem. Not only are they experts at what they do, but they also provide long-lasting and reliable solutions to pest problems, including rodents. When hiring a pest control professional to help with an infestation, ensure they have the experience and license to practice in your location and deal with your specific pest problem. Your pest control expert will also give you the advice you need to protect your home from bugs depending on the type of pests threatening your building.
The above tips can help you protect your building’s foundation from destructive pests. If you notice dangerous pests like termites or have a severe infestation of rodents and ants, it is advisable to hire pest control professionals to eradicate them.