The most common way pests gain access is from unsealed openings in and around our homes. Ants, spiders, earwigs, and termites are just a few of the insects that take advantage of unsealed openings and invite themselves in. Even rodents such as mice and squirrels enter attics, basements and crawlspaces through unsealed openings. An example is the house mouse that can squeeze through any opening that is larger than 1/4 of an inch. A rat needs 1/2 an inch or more. Rats and mice can climb any vertical surface where they can get a claw hold, this would include any vegetation growing on exterior wall surfaces, and rough exterior wall surfaces like masonry, brick and stucco. They have even been seen descending head first down a rough wall.
How To Prevent Entry
|Seal cracks in exterior foundation walls|
The best way to prevent rodents and insects from getting in to your living space is by periodically inspecting the exterior of your home. Look for worn caulk around windows and door frames. This includes garage vehicle doors with weather strips. If you find the caulk is worn, remove the rest of the caulk completely and reseal with new caulk. Another area to inspect is the exterior walls. Cracks in foundation walls like the one in the picture above should be sealed to keep out not only insects such as termites, but also moisture which can lead to mold growth.
Unsealed plumbing penetrations is another area for observation. Outside water faucets and/or plumbing lines for a central air condition unit check that all wall penetrations are properly sealed. The picture below shows enough space for rodents and insects to enter with ease.
|Seal exterior wall penetrations|
Finally all interior walls should be repaired. If insects and rodents have access to the inside of walls, floors, and ceilings, they can roam through out your house, reproduce and spread germs and diseases. Your pest control professional will check these areas and more to help aid and prevent pest entry.
|Repair interior walls|