As much as you detest pests, they’ll always find their way into the crawl space of your DC home. You know very well what these critters can cause. If they don’t chew your fine linen or soil your carpet, they will contaminate food and destroy your fixtures. Damage can run up to hundreds of dollars. Plus, they will become a menace with all their scratching, gnawing, or scurrying sounds, meaning you can’t have a peaceful night.
Encapsulate the crawl space
Consider sealing your crawl space with a plastic vapor barrier to stop moisture and pests from entering this space. Your contractor will likely use a 20-mm barrier on the floor and on the walls. When done properly, encapsulation can remain intact for many years, ensuring your crawl space is completely free of gnawing pests.
Use mouse traps
After months, you may realize the number of mice and rats is ballooning. You can effectively knock down the mice population by setting different traps within and around the crawl space. Aim for entry points, nests, potential hideouts, and tunnels. Check your traps from time to time and reset any that are tripped.
Seal venting and openings
You may be tempted to think rodents and pests use only known routes or entry points to access the crawl space. The truth is, critters can use vents on the crawl space walls drains or squeeze themselves through loose door seals. A mouse needs a small opening to gain entry to this area. So check and seal every hole that’s likely to let pests into the crawl space and into your home.
When the number of pests swells, it makes sense to take drastic action. Tracking or chasing down pests down their holes and exit points may not yield much, using pesticides is the better option. Spray their nests and hideouts with pesticides and bait their food with poison. You’ll see their numbers coming down after some time.
Clean the crawl space
It’s pointless to seal the crawl space without cleaning it first. Debris, dirt and damaged insulation as well as the existing moisture all create the perfect condition for pests to breed. By removing dirt and organic materials, you’ll disrupt their nests and make the crawl space less habitable for them.
Keep food away
Even if you don’t store food close to the crawl space, pests can trace smells right to your kitchen or pantry. Next thing you know, they’ll be foraging your kitchen and nibbling on food in your cabinet. Lock this place and dispose of any leftovers properly and clean your kitchen daily so it doesn’t attract pests.
Remove organic materials
Are there cardboard boxes, wood, old newspapers and tree branches or firewood near the crawl space of your DC home? Remove them as soon as possible. These attract insects and crawl space pests such as rats and mice. Within no time, they can turn them into hideouts and start breeding.
As long as your crawl space remains humid, it’s always going to attract pests during hot and dry summer months when water is scarce. We recommend you install a self-draining dehumidifier. This way, you will be able to keep moisture at desirable levels.
What are the signs of pest infestation?
Sometimes, homeowners are blind to the problem of pest infestation in their crawl space. It’s only when the damage has been done that they realize pests were present all along. If you notice scratch marks or hear gnawing or scurrying sounds, chances are pests have taken over the crawl space. Droppings and fur are other telltale signs you shouldn’t ignore. Holes or tunnels, nests and tracks that show pest activity are also unmistakable points to a potential pest problem.
Worried that pests may have taken over your crawl space? Not sure what to do to stop pest incursion? Schedule a free crawl space inspection today and find out how you can prevent pest infestation. Friendly and knowledgeable crawl space experts are always ready to answer your questions and help you with any crawl space issue.