Pest Proofing Your Home for Winter

Oct 20, 2016, 11:18 AM by Fred Speer

The shorter days and cooler evenings tell us that fall is in full swing. They also serve as a reminder to California homeowners to take steps to protect their homes from unwanted pests that seek a place to wait out the winter.

With the new season comes different pest challenges to face and another round of pest proofing. It’s an important action that can help your home stay pest-free and keep your family protected from unwanted and potentially harmful pests.

Common household pests – mice, rats, cockroaches, spiders – will look for shelter in warm structures as the weather grows cooler. This is why the Clark Man encourages homeowners to include pest proofing into their home maintenance routines this fall. 

Besides being a nuisance to you and your family, these pests can pose serious risks. For example, rodents, particularly mice, are a more common fall pest and can spread such pathogens as Salmonella, contaminating food in your kitchen. Mice also can damage the drywall and electrical wiring in your home with their gnawing, which can increase the risk of an electrical fire.

In addition to carrying pathogens, cockroaches can trigger allergies and asthma, especially in children. Some species of spiders may bite if their hiding spot is discovered.

Proactive and vigilant winter pest proofing is crucial in preventing pests from coming indoors. The best defense is a strong offense. This “offense” we’re talking about is conducting a simple check of your home and performing any necessary maintenance.

The Clark Man recommends the following home pest-proofing tips for winter:

  • Check screens on attic vents and around chimney openings to make sure there are no tears
  • Eliminate moisture sites, including leaking pipes, clogged drains and broken irrigation systems
  • Seal cracks and crevices on the outside of the home using caulk and steel wool, paying close attention to where utility pipes enter your home
  • Store food in airtight containers and dispose of garbage regularly in sealed receptacles
  • Replace loose mortar and weatherstripping around the basement foundation and windows
  • Store firewood at least 20 feet away from the house; keep shrubbery well-trimmed
  • Install door sweeps and repair damaged screens
  • Inspect items for signs of pest activity, such as boxes of holiday decorations and grocery bags, before bringing them indoors

If you have questions about pests trying to gain access to your home, call or text (800) WE-NEED-YOU (936-3339) or drop me an email at

Until next time I’m the Clark Man, and thanks for helping me keep unwanted pests out of your home.

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