Moisture problems and pest problems often go hand in hand. If you call in a pest control company to deal with an infestation, they will likely recommend addressing your home's moisture levels as a necessary step towards extermination. And if you call in a waterproofing company for a moisture problem, you'll probably notice fewer pests once your home is dry, too.So what pests can you expect to see if you've been dealing with a moist basement or perpetual leak elsewhere in the home? Here are four of the most likely culprits.
1. German Cockroaches
About 1/2 in. long and brown in color, these pesky roaches can move in and invade a home quite quickly. Although they don't typically bite, they do carry diseases like salmonella and E.coli, and many people are allergic to proteins in their exoskeletons and feces. Cockroaches are sneaky and prefer to stay hidden, so you often notice droppings, a characteristic musty smell, and dead roaches in your home before you see any living bugs.
Moisture is one of the key elements that attract cockroaches to a home. A pest control company may be able to get an infestation under control with insecticides and baits, but since cockroaches are so hardy, they are unlikely to leave completely until you address the issue of moisture.
These bugs are about 1/2 in. long with curled antennae that are about half the length of their body and three spike-like bristles on their rear ends. They are silver in color and downright scary in appearance. Silverfish are not terribly hazardous to humans, but they can cause substantial damage to your home. They feed on starch and may eat through your wallpaper, books, and linens — not to mention your food.
Silverfish reproduce very quickly in homes with high humidity. Their presence may indicate a plumbing leak, another moisture issue, or that your home has become too humid in the summer heat. If you cannot find a specific leak or moisture source, installing a humidifier will help drive them away.
Earwigs are named for the myth that they can climb into your ears and eat your brain. They do no such thing, but they are still not a pest you want to see in your home. These bugs are between 1/4 and 1 1/4 in. long, and they're brown in color with distinct pincers emerging from their front end. Earwigs may pinch a person with these pincers, and these pinches hurt and may break the skin — though the bugs are not poisonous or venomous.
Earwigs often congregate in dark, moist basements. You'll see them more often at night since they are nocturnal. To get rid of them, you typically have to address moisture issues outside as well as inside, as the bugs tend to nest outside of your home before moving in. Make sure your rain gutters are clear, clean up piles of yard waste, and leave a one-foot barrier between any landscaping and your home's foundation.
Moisture is a commonly overlooked attractant for mice. Homeowners often seal up their food, clean up their kitchens, and wonder why mice are still attracted to their home. Often, it's because the home is a good source of moisture, which mice need to survive.
Where there is one mouse, there are usually many more. You may see rodent droppings, hear chewing noises at night, or notice chew marks on food containers before you see an actual mouse. You may be able to trap the mice yourself if you catch the infestation early on. Just make sure you also address any moisture issues, or new mice will keep coming.Keeping your home dry does more than prevent mold growth. It also keeps pests away. If you are experiencing moisture issues, contact H20 Waterproofing. We'll come assess the problem and get your home dry so you don't have to deal with unwanted visitors.