For many people, the holidays bring back a sense of childhood wonder and excitement. Holiday decorations play a big part in creating that ambiance. There’s just something about twinkling lights, decorated trees, candy canes, and gingerbread houses that create a sense of warmth and belonging. As a bonus, decorating the house can be a fun activity to do with the whole family.
But if you’re not careful, you could actually bring bugs into your home along with the mistletoe and pine cones.
Actually, anytime you bring new things into your home (from outside or from storage) you risk pest infiltration. While your holiday decorations sit in your garage or your attic, they are exposed to different kinds of pest activity that could eventually threaten your entire house. Properly storing and inspecting your decorations can avoid this and save you a lot of trouble down the road. Here’s what to keep in mind this holiday season:
Moisture and Food Sources Attract Bugs
Nothing screams, “I want a pest invasion” like improperly storing food and water.
If you have a food storage supply, keep everything sealed in airtight containers—and no, cardboard and plastic packages are not adequate. Invest in sturdy, sealable containers. In addition, make sure you have no pipe or air conditioning/heating leaks and definitely do not leave piles of leaves, brush, or pet food out… ever.
Even if your storage areas are completely free of food and standing water, they may not be free of edible sources for critters.
Some pests thrive on wood, paper, cardboard, or even clothing.
If you’re storing wood or furniture, wrap it up in plastic wrap before putting it in your storage area. If you must store clothes, use vacuum-sealed bags. Carefully seal any newspapers, magazines, or other paper keepsakes in airtight containers. If it can be avoided, don’t have any exposed paper or cardboard laying about the area.
Trust us, it’s better safe than sorry!
Pests Can Burrow into Cardboard
Look over your boxes before bringing them inside.
Seriously, we’re begging.
Way too often infestations occur when small pest populations living inside boxes are unintentionally invited into homes during the hubbub of decorating. There are a lot of bugs that will chew right through your boxes, including silverfish, earwigs, ants, roaches, and rodents.
Look over your boxes for small holes, droppings, dead bugs, leaves, or brush—anything that might indicate an insect residence. This probably goes without saying, but if you have an infested container, throw it out… all of it. Even with sturdy containers, an incorrectly closed lid can spell doom for their entire contents.
You May Not See Insect Activity until It’s Too Late
Pests like rodents and cockroaches will sneakily invade your home, leading you to believe the infestation is minor. Don’t be fooled: you can assume that if you see even one or two rodents or roaches, you have a larger problem.
Call a professional service the minute you start seeing either of these two pests lurking around your home or storage areas so you can begin damage control.
Keep an eye on outdoor insect activity, too… it can be a good indicator for what is preparing to come inside of your home. It’s much easier to contain pest activity that has not yet breached your walls.
Don’t let bugs get in the way of a magical holiday season—stay three steps ahead of them! When you take these steps, you’ll be able to rest easily knowing that your house will only be home to good dreams and happy memories. If you have any questions about preventing pest invasions or proper storage techniques, we’d be glad to help you out!
Sources: https://www.pestworld.org/pest-in-the-house/garage/ https://www.thestorageplacesocal.com/resources/self-storage/keep-bugs-out/ https://www.storagefront.com/storagetips/troubleshooting/spiders-roaches-ants/