Pest proofing your home for winter

Nov 22, 2019, 08:59 AM by Fred Speer

Even though the last month hasn’t felt like it, cooler fall and winter temperatures are coming to California. This means that pest pressure will change, and crawling or scampering pests will likely seek new locations to overwinter that is warmer and has readily available food sources. Their likely target – your home.

Rodents, cockroaches, spiders, and occasional invaders like boxelder bugs will try to make their way indoors as temperatures drop and outdoor food sources become more scarce.

To protect your home from the invading pests all winter long, Clark, your neighborly pest control, lawn care, and termite expert, would like to remind you to drag out the tool box – or, better yet, call the pest professionals at Clark – to perform pest-proofing tips designed to keep those unwanted pests on the outside.

Pests go into survival mode in winter. They will search for a place to call home until they can return outdoors in the spring. Unfortunately, your home is often their top choice, as it provides shelter and easy access to food and water.

Once inside, rodents, cockroaches, and other pests can contaminate food, spread disease, and cause structural damage and hazards. Did you know that a leading cause of electrical fires in homes is a result of rodents chewing on wiring in wall voids?

The Clark Pest Control fall/winter home pest-proofing checklist to minimize the threat of pest incursion includes the following:

✓  Screen attic vents, openings to chimneys, and any other areas that are open to the outdoors, like mail slots and animal doors.

✓  Keep attics, crawl spaces, and storage sheds well ventilated and dry. Consider using a dehumidifier in these areas.

✓  Keep kitchen counters clean, store food in airtight containers, and regularly dispose of garbage in sealed receptacles.

✓  Replace weatherstripping and repair loose mortar around the foundation and windows.

✓  Carefully inspect boxes of holiday decorations (wreaths are an ideal hiding spots for spiders and other pests), package deliveries from your online holiday shopping, and grocery bags for evidence of pests before bringing them indoors.

✓  Avoid leaving pet food bowls out for long periods of time; pet food is a highly desired meal for rodents.

✓  Remove any yard debris around the foundation or near your home. The debris can serve as a home to pests and place them closer to exterior access points.

On the outside of your home, foraging pests will take advantage of any opening in a wall, door, window, or roof opening to enter and settle in. Remember: Mice only need an opening the size of a dime to gain access to the interior of your home.

You should perform a walkaround on the exterior of your home to look for any signs of wear and tear on the outside – and don’t forget the roof. Rodents, squirrels, and other pests will take the high road to find a spot to get inside.

Using caulk, steel wool, screening, heavy duty seals, and other suitable material, you can build a reliable seal to keep pests from finding a way into your home.

Clark would like to remind homeowners that an ounce of prevention goes a long way toward keeping pests out, and it’s far less expensive to invest time and money in exclusion methods than it is to remove pests once they get indoors.

If you have concerns about pests, or need help in excluding them from entering your home, call California’s trusted, friendly pest control and removal expert, Clark, at (800) WE-NEED-YOU (936-3339) or send an email to

Until next time, the pest management professionals at Clark Pest Control thank you for helping to keep unwanted pests out of your home.