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ZONING OUT PESTS

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Who says harsh chemicals are the only way to say good-bye to the creepy crawlies in your home? Khevna Pandit brings you fuss-free DIY pest control methods that you can use to keep your home bug-free

No matter how hard you try, simply keeping your home dust-free isn’t enough to keep it sparkling clean. Pest control is equally necessary to drive away unwanted tenants that make your house their home. However, exposing yourself to a host of chemicals is not just expensive, it can also be harmful for your health. So, if you find yourself vehemently spraying bug spray in every corner, only to find those pesky critters, spiders and ants ambushing your home after a while, we sympathise.

There are many all-natural ways to say good-bye to this recurring problem, and many of them use simple ingredients found in our homes. But, keep in mind that if the problem is beyond control, you may need to seek professional help. However, if you want to give it a go yourself, here are a few easy DIY ways to get started with pest control for your home.


FOR ANTS

Although harmless, ants can create a nuisance. Besides, who wants ant bites? Keep sweet food items covered or store them in air-tight containers to keep ants at bay. Another way to keep ants away is to sprinkle some coffee powder around your windows and on the ground where you see them. But, probably the best way to get rid of marauding ants is this:

  • Mix one cup of borax (boric acid powder) with one cup of dilute sugar water.
  • Pour this mixture into a jar, and close it with a lid with holes.
  • Leave it overnight. Ants will be lured to this solution, and it acts as a natural ant killer.


FOR COCKROACHES

Cockroaches are not only disgusting, they are a common carrier of diseases too. Often seen swarming near leftovers and scraps, cockroaches are known to build colonies in dark, damp spaces. Here are some easy ways to get rid of this pest infesting your kitchen and home.

  • Pour some beer into a saucer.
  • Place this saucer near entrances and openings or any places that you find cockroaches.
  • For some reason, beer acts as a repellent for cockroaches.

FOR BUGS
The fact that you might have bugs in your home can be infuriating, since most are barely visible to the naked eye. They can cause rashes, allergies and sometimes even serious skin infections. You can keep bugs such as fleas, ticks, flies and chiggers away by making use of essential oils. Here’s how:

  • Choose essential oils such as lavender, citronella, lemongrass, peppermint or tea tree oil.
  • Mix two-and-a-half tablespoons of any essential oil of your choice with one cup of grain alcohol.
  • Pour this mixture into an empty spray bottle.
  • Spritz it around your home to keep bugs away.

FOR SPIDERS
Spiders can be found hidden in the darkest corners of your home. You may not notice these critters until you run into a slimy or a dusty cobweb. While most spiders rarely bite, they can contribute to making your home dustier. Here’s how to keep spiders away.

  • Mix vinegar and water in equal parts in a spray bottle.
  • Spray this mixture around your home, coating the cracks in walls, openings in windows and doors and other places from which spiders may enter.


FOR TERMITES

It might seem as though termites are more difficult to get rid of than other pests, but it really isn’t! The good news is that once you locate them, they are easy to get rid of. You don’t have to turn to toxic chemicals; there are numerous non-toxic alternatives that are just as effective. Here’s one way to get rid of termites.

  • Cardboard contains cellulose that termites feed on, so moisten some corrugated cardboard and roll it into a tube.
  • Put these tubes near the termite infested areas.
  • When you find termites feeding on the cardboard, discard (or burn) the cardboard rolls.
  • Repeat this until no more termites are lured into the trap.


FOR BED BUGS

Pesky, annoying and painful, bed bugs are dangerous pests that can easily hook themselves to clothes or other fabrics and can be transferred from one place to another this way. These bugs breed in damp or dark places, so make sure to air out your sheets from time to time. Also, open your windows to get sunlight in. Get rid of bedbugs with this hack.

  • You can use steam to get rid of bed bug infested areas. First, thoroughly vacuum the area that you plan to steam.
  • Then steam the areas you think are the most infested. Make sure the fabric is damp, but not wet.
  • Steam kills the bed bugs because they cannot survive the high temperatures.
  • Let the sheets air dry.
  • Repeat this until all the bed bugs have been eradicated.


PREVENT PESTS FROM TAKING OVER

Don’t wait until the last minute to start with the cleaning. With these simple tips, you can stop your home from being infested.

  • As soon as you finish using them, wipe down kitchen countertops with a solution of vinegar and water to get rid of odours and food particles.
  • Fix leaky faucets in your home. Water attracts insects and pests.
  • Make sure to keep your food items covered at all times. Store them in air-tight jars or containers if you need to.
  • Use a trash can with a lid.
  • Rinse used containers before disposing of them.
  • Make sure that there is no leftover food debris in your drain.
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