Arrow Exterminators offers tips to help homeowners pest-proof their home

Spring is the perfect time of year for "out with the old and in with the new." The warmer temperatures and extra daylight provide a perfect setting for the annual rite of spring cleaning.  As homeowners are making their to-do lists, a little pest proofing can go a long way to help avoid an infestation of unwanted guests.  Arrow Exterminators' pest expert Shay Runion suggests taking a room-by-room approach to spring cleaning and pest proofing to prevent pest problems that could occur now or later in the year.

Kitchen: Often providing a source of food and water to pests, it's no surprise that the kitchen is one of the most popular places for pests to hide.  Keep an eye out for ants, cockroaches and Indian meal moths which are among the most common pests found in the kitchen.  Beyond being a nuisance, these pests can contaminate food and spread bacteria.  Prevention Tip: Store all food in airtight plastic or glass containers, immediately wipe spills and empty the trash frequently.

Bedrooms and Bathrooms: Planning to clean out the closets? Moths may have taken up residence feeding on natural fibers like silks, cotton and wools. Additionally, silverfish are also commonly found in bedrooms and bathrooms causing damage to synthetic fabrics as well as books and other paper products.  Prevention Tip: Make sure to wash and iron or dry-clean garments before storing them for the summer and run fans or dehumidifiers to eliminate damp conditions.  Also, pick up all wet towns and dry out bath mats regularly.

Living Spaces: While kitchens and bathrooms are the most likely areas to harbor pests, common living spaces are not off limits.  Pets can bring in fleas and ticks and mice can settle behind floorboards and under furniture.  Prevention Tip: Keep living areas crumb free by removing snacks and vacuuming floors and under furniture regularly.  Also, keep the family pets groomed and their flea and tick prevention current.

Garage: Stored boxes and sporting equipment in the garage provide the perfect winter harborage for many pests like squirrels, mice and rats which can cause significant damage by chewing through wires or nesting in the walls and may also spread diseases.  As you are gearing up for outdoor activities and unpacking your spring and summer gear, keep an eye out for signs of nesting and rodent droppings.  Prevention Tip: Use airtight plastic storage bins for seasonal items and store them off the floor when possible.  Also, be sure to sweep out the garage regularly.

Outdoors: Spring cleaning and proper pest-proofing the outside of your home goes a long way in keeping pests such as cockroaches and termites outside where they belong and controlling the population of other pests like mosquitoes.  Prevention Tip: Seal all cracks and small openings around the foundation of the home including entry points for wires and pipes. Eliminate sources of standing water and moisture.  Keep garbage collection areas clean and ensure all receptacles are tightly closed and trim back branches and shrubbery away from the house.

"There are so many pests that can enter the home this time of year," said Runion.  "The spring cleaning most homeowners undertake should include the necessary steps to identify unwanted pests and the conditions that welcome them inside.  Even the smallest crack in a foundation can provide an easy opening for pests, making a top-to-bottom spring cleaning evaluation of your home very important."