DIY Pest Control

By: Lucy Huber How to

One guest most homeowners are not happy to host is a pest. If unwanted pests take up residence in your home, try these natural, DIY solutions for getting rid of insect infestations of all types. From cockroaches and ants to silverfish and carpenter bees, here are homemade methods to get rid of pests and solutions to prevent them from coming back.

Roaches

DIY pest control: how to get rid of roaches
  • Make homemade insecticide—Mix together borax and sugar in equal parts. You’ll want to avoid inhaling the mixture, so wear a face mask at all times. Apply the powder along baseboards, in cracks, and under sinks. When roaches ingest the mixture, the borax damages their digestive system and outer skeleton, ultimately killing them. Boric acid is often found in commercial pest control solutions, but this method is less expensive. Since borax is slightly toxic, keep the mixture away from children, pets, and food prep areas, baiting only areas that your family or pets won’t come into contact with.
  • Use coffee grounds—Trap roaches by filling a jar with one cup of water and two tablespoons of dry coffee grounds. Line the edge of the jar with petroleum jelly. Roaches will climb in to get the coffee grounds but will be unable to climb back over.
How to prevent a cockroach infestation
  • Roaches hate the smell of essential oils. Make a preventative spray with ½ cup of water and 8 drops of citrus or peppermint oil. Pour the solution into a spray bottle and target dark, moist areas of your home, like your basement baseboards and bathroom floors.
  • Clean all dishes after meals, seal food in containers, and wipe down kitchen counters.
  • Leaky faucets will attract roaches, so check your plumbing system and fix leaks as soon as possible.
  • Check your home for cracks in door frames, windows, countertops, and walls. If you find any holes, seal them with caulk.

Ants

DIY pest control: how to get rid of ants
  • Create a homemade ant repellent—When you spot ants, spray them with a mixture of equal parts water and white vinegar. Wait a few minutes and wipe up dead ants with a wet paper towel.
  • Attract ants with boric acid—Boric acid is a slow-acting poison and an effective ingredient in ant bait. You can purchase boric acid at your local pharmacy. Create a mixture of one part corn syrup and one part boric acid. Spread this mixture on a piece of paper and wait for ants to eat it. Keep boric acid away from children, pets, and food prep areas.
  • Mix together baking soda and sugar—Make a mixture of three parts baking soda and seven parts sugar. This solution will react in an ant’s digestive system and kill it. Leave the mixture in small containers for ants to eat and take back to their nests.
  • Use food-grade diatomaceous earth—While non-toxic to humans and pets, food-grade diatomaceous earth is extremely poisonous to ants and will dehydrate and kill them. Sprinkle this powder anywhere you see visible ant trails. Only use food-grade diatomaceous earth, as other forms are poisonous to humans and other animals.
  • Use essential oilsMix a few drops of peppermint, tea tree, or clove oil with water. Put this solution in a spray bottle and target visible ant trails around your home.
How to prevent an ant infestation
  • Clean up after meals (wash dishes right away, wipe down counters, and take out the trash) and seal all leftover food in containers.
  • Don’t leave out pet food, as this may attract ants.

Want more tips on how to get rid of ants? Check out the House Method guide to ant control.

Flies

DIY pest control: how to get rid of flies and fruit flies
How to prevent a fly infestation

Want more tips on how to get rid of flies? Check out the House Method guide to fly control.

Bed bugs

DIY pest control: how to get rid of bed bugs
How to prevent a bed bug infestation
How to get rid of moths in the home

Moths

DIY pest control: how to get rid of moths
How to prevent a moth infestation

Want more tips on how to get rid of moths? Check out the House Method guide to moth control.

Spiders

DIY pest control: how to get rid of spiders
How to prevent a spider infestation
Live termites eating wood. Frass or wood droppings present.

Termites

DIY pest control: how to get rid of termites
How to prevent a termite infestation

Want more tips on how to get rid of termites? Check out the House Method guide to termite control and prevention.

Silverfish

DIY pest control: how to get rid of silverfish
How to prevent a silverfish infestation

Fleas

DIY pest control: how to get rid of fleas
How to prevent a flea infestation

Want more tips on how to get rid of fleas? Check out the House Method guide to flea remediation.

Carpenter bees

DIY pest control: how to get rid of carpenter bees
How to prevent a carpenter bee infestation

Want more tips on how to get rid of carpenter bees? Check out the House Method guide to carpenter bee removal.

texture of traces of termites eat wood

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