Over the years, I’ve had many conversations with individuals who were concerned about spiders, insects, or rodents in the crawlspace. While certainly the concern is valid, most fears about crawlspaces are unfounded.
The reason? Though the crawlspace is a great, almost perfect environment for some pests, there is nothing to eat down there!
In our years and the pest control industry in Boise area, we’ve seen a lot of evidence of bug problems in crawlspaces, and would not dispute that there aren’t spiderwebs, dead bugs, and even rodent droppings underneath some peoples homes. But it is important to note that we hardly ever find evidence of an existing problem in a crawlspace.
Spiders, insects, and rodents may enter in to a crawlspace and start their webs or dens, but once they find out that food sources are limited, they often head elsewhere for better prospects. So while webs may abound, spiders often do not. Spiders, in particular, will often set up webs in and around the crawlspace vents. This provides spiders with an out of the weather experience, while still maintaining access to outside hunting areas, or to an unsuspecting fly or insect that happens to pass through the vents inadvertently.
Here’s a picture of the crawlspace that I inspected recently:
Notice that in the following picture, the webs are concentrated around the crawlspace vent. Everywhere else around in the crawlspace was spotlessly clean (for a crawlspace):
The way to take care of these problems is by doing regular perimeter treatments with a residual insecticide. This will prevent crawling spiders and insects from getting into your crawlspace in the first place, or from getting in and out between their web and food sources.
Similarly, people are always concerned that a rodents nest is in the crawlspace. While it is true that mice will have dens in crawlspaces, they have to go elsewhere for food and water. Most often, those sources of food and water are inside the living space of your house! Pantries, under stoves, sinks, and refrigerators are the best sources of food and water a rodent can have.
You can prevent rodents from entering into your crawlspace by securing all crawlspace vents, sealing up holes from HVAC protrusions, and doing all else to make sure your home has a tight seal. Also, make sure your landscape is maintained, with grass being cut short regularly, and trees and shrubs regularly trimmed. This helps reduce potential harborage areas for mice and rats. When possible, keep open spaces between your house and where the landscape begins. Rodents are prey animals, and are afraid of aerial attackers! Passing over open ground is a scary prospect for a lowly rodent.
Tamperproof bait stations, with an appropriate rodent bait that are placed by a pest control professional around your home is also a great way to ensure that you get these rodents before they come inside!
If you have any problems with spiders, insects, or rodents in and around your home, give us a call, we are your pros that will get the job done!