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Spring Cleaning Can Contribute to a Pest-Free Home
Weekends throughout April will find homeowners undertaking the tradition of "spring cleaning." Windows will be opened, fresh sheets will replace wool blankets and patio furniture will return to its rightful place outdoors. Although the focus of spring cleaning is typically indoors, the National Pest Management Association (NPMA) reminds homeowners to also partake in spring cleaning activities outdoors so as to prevent pest infestations through the spring and summer months.
"Spring is the season when homeowners begin to notice pests again because the warmer temperatures encourage greater activity," says Jim Fredericks, technical services director for NPMA. "The first step to minimizing potential pest problems is simply prevention. If homeowners focus upon eliminating sources of food, water and harborage for pests within their home, they will be taking the first step in avoiding infestations and the subsequent health and property risks associated with pests and rodents."
As NPMA research shows that spring and summer are when pest problems are of most concern to homeowners, the following pest-proofing tips are offered to assist homeowners in preventing infestations:
- Seal up cracks and small openings along the foundation of the house.
- Eliminate sources of moisture or standing water.
- Keep tree branches and other plants cut back from the house.
- Keep kitchens clean by wiping counters and emptying the garbage frequently.
- Keep all food containers sealed.
- Avoid leaving pet's food dishes out for long periods of time.
- Keep trash containers clean and sealed, both indoors and outdoors.
- Screen windows and doors.
"Early spring provides a terrific opportunity for homeowners to thoroughly inspect their homes as part of spring cleaning practices" advises Fredericks. "If homeowners spot any sign of infestation, contact a licensed pest professional who can help to identify problems as well as prescribe the proper course of treatment."