Indoor Pest Control

Indoor Pest Control, also known as Structural IPM, is a method and management system for preventing, reducing, and eliminating the presence of unwanted pests in human structures, such as schools, homes, and offices. The places where we sleep, eat, learn, and work are where many spend the majority of their time. Therefore, it only makes sense to have the knowledge to keep these areas safe and free of pests and the harmful chemicals that many use to control them.

Similar to IPM methods used to control outdoor pests in gardens and agricultural areas, indoor pest control holds true to the mentality that IPM is an ongoing and continuous process where prevention is of utmost importance and using the least toxic controls is a high priority. Through planning, pre-emptive actions, and monitoring, people can stop the problem before it starts, creating healthy environments for us to live, work, and play in.

In this section you'll find information on the steps that you can take to prevent pest outbreaks in your building, detailed fact sheets and documents on how to stop pest problems once they begin, as well as a variety of tips and information on topics related to keeping your home, office, and school pest free.


Helpful hints for stopping pest problems before they start:

INSIDE

  • Clean up and properly dispose of food waste and scraps immediately.
  • Keep all kitchen areas including appliances, washing areas, counter tops and floors free of food
    scraps and grease.
  • Repair or replace broken windows, entryways, holes, or other small areas where pests could.
    enter from the outside. Pay special attention to cracks or holes in the foundation and basement
    as these are common entry points for pests.
  • Install door sweeps on all doors leading outside.
  • Close blinds at end of the day to prevent insects from being attracted by interior lights to your
    building.
  • Vacuum regularly. Doing so can not only remove miniscule food scraps and debris that pests feed on but also the pests themselves.
  • Store pet food and supplies in tightly sealed containers away from human food.
  • Immediately repair leaks in plumbing or the roof. Continually wet areas may attract pests that favor moist environments.

OUTSIDE

  • Prune branches of trees, shrubs, and other plants away from exterior walls.
  • Clean leaf litter and other debris from gutters and downspouts regularly.
  • Make sure that water coming off of gutters and downspouts flows away from and does not pool
    up near buildings.
  • Pull mulch and dirt away from exterior walls of the building. Many mulches harbor pests and
    hide foundation cracks where they can enter. Lay a 1-2 foot wide path of gravel, crushed shells,
    or other rock around the foundation to deter pests.
  • Replace high wattage, white outdoor lights that attract insects to buildings with low-watt or
    yellow light bulbs.
  • Store garbage and garbage containers away from building entrances and windows.
  • Make sure that all garbage containers have tightly closing lids to deter pests.

Indoor Pest Control Fact Sheets


Resources



The Best Control 2 is a reference manual based on exhaustive research in the field of nontoxic pest control or IPM. This guide will teach you how to implement nontoxic alternatives to pesticides safely and easily by yourself. This information is provided as a free resource to encourage the spread of safe alternatives to chemical poisons, and thus reduce contamination to ourselves and pollution to our environment.

Author Steven Tvedten has over 3 decades of pest control experience and is a world renowned expert on IPM and non-toxic pest control. Learn more about the author by clicking here

References


Home Owner's Guide to Indoor Pest Control: A Guide for Structural Pest Control by Homeowners." 2008. University of Florida Extension. 25 Sept 2008. <http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/IN044>.

"IPM Tips." 2007. Montgomery County Department of Environmental Protection. 26 Sept 2008.
<http://www.montgomerycountymd.gov/deptmpl.asp?url=/content/dep/IPM/ipmtips.asp>.

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