The garage shelters your car, tools, sports equipment, and everything else you want out of sight. As the temperature drops in the Kansas City Metro, we also know how much we appreciate the warmth of the garage when starting up your car in the morning. Unfortunately, we’re not the only ones who enjoy the extra storage and winter warmth. Garages are naturally attractive to pests. The wide open doors allow easy access, so there are plenty of dark, dusty spaces to hide and nest. Not to mention there’s little disturbance due to minimal cleaning. Since we rarely spend time in our garages, getting rid of dirt, debris, and old junk is never a priority. But take a look at the circus of pests that might be hiding out in your garage, and you might start to think again.
Why Dirt Attracts Pests
Garages often house unused items such as boxes, outdoor furniture, yard supplies, and extra junk you can’t seem able to get rid of! Some of the things you store in your garage may no longer be useful and can thus be classified as dirt. Here are some reasons why pests love dirty garages:
- Dirt Offers Protection
The dirt in your garage offers pests and bugs protection from dangers like frigid winters, inclement weather, summer heat, and natural predators. The piling dirt provides an excellent hiding and breeding spot for the pests.
- It Stimulates the Pests’ Natural Environment
Your garage could be pest-infested because the dirt stimulates pests’ natural habitat. It provides a dark, warm, and moist environment for pests to burrow and nest.
- Bugs are Attracted to Smell
With time, the piling debris in your garage may rot and smell. When that happens, this attracts odor-loving pests in droves, such as flies, gnats, cockroaches, and vermin.
Common Garage Pests
Many types of pests could invade your garage, but the following pose the most significant threat:
These pests may seem harmless but can cause some real damage when they infest your garage. There are three main species of garage ants:
- Carpenter Ants
As the name suggests, these ants burrow into wood and nest inside garage fixtures like doors and shelving. Severe infestation can lead to lasting damage to your garage.
- Odorous House Ants
Although these ants don’t pose a significant threat to your garage, they can be bothersome. Odorous House ants’ colonies might be attracted to scraps of sugary food that don’t quite make it to the trash and often nest under wood and debris.
- Pavement Ants
These ants feed on food items and have a stinger. They’re likely to invade your garage if it serves as storage space for birdseed or pet food. Food or trash in your car can attract pavement ants. They burrow into walls and floors, causing significant damage.
Rodents such as rats and mice are among the most common garage pests, and they’re also dangerous because they can burrow and chew into your belongings, as well as spreading mites and fleas. Unlike many insects and arachnids, these pests are highly clever, so if you suspect a rodent infestation, professional help is the best–and probably only–fix-all solution.
Due to their large size and eerily fast scurry, these critters often send homeowners’ skin crawling. Cockroaches favor dark areas of the home as they look for food sources such as human food, human and animal waste, and dead animals. While regular garage cleaning means eliminating these pests as much as possible, the sighting of one cockroach often means others are nearby, so it’s better to look into long-term solutions.
Kansas City experiences cold, windy, and snowy winters. The brown recluse spiders common in the area often retreat into garages as temperatures fall. Unlike other spiders, the brown recluse spiders build their webs in hard-to-reach and undisturbed locations such as ductwork, storage boxes, piles of clothes, and general clutter that’s warm and dry. While some house spiders might be a natural and expected occurrence, brown recluse spiders are no joke. While non-aggressive, these spiders will attack if troubled and have venomous bites that can lead to skin necrosis, sickness, and even death.
How To Keep Pests Away from Your Garage
Although garages are susceptible to pests, there’s so much you can do to prevent infestation, including:
Keeping the Door Closed
Leaving your garage door open allows pests to enter unobstructed. Closing the door when you’re not taking your car in or out can help keep bugs at bay.
Reorganize Your Storage
Reducing your plastic bags, paper bags, scattered items, cardboard boxes, and other items you store in the garage helps eliminate hiding and breeding spaces for pests. Reorganizing your storage can help keep your garage pest free – and helps you in the process! An easy way to do so is by storing your items in sealed plastic containers to minimize the clutter.
Clean the Space Thoroughly
Since dirt is the leading cause of pest infestation in garages, cleaning out the space can help eliminate mess and unnecessary items that provide breeding and hiding spaces for pests. Old bottles and cans, boxes, unused furniture, and other dirty items hide bugs.Getting rid of these items can help keep pests at bay.
If your kids and pets don’t visit your garage, setting some ant baits and glue traps can help catch pests and prevent potential infestation. Often this is most useful to identify the pests that are invading your home but isn’t a permanent solution for their removal.
Hire a Pest Removal Company
At some point, most homeowners need a pest removal company if the local pests have created a home base in your garage or home. Our pest removal experts can identify and eliminate entry points, breeding grounds, and hiding spots to provide a lasting solution to your pest problem.
Let’s Help You
If you’ve been struggling with garage pests, the pest removal experts at Advantage Termite & Pest Control are here to help. We serve homes and businesses in Lawrence and Kansas City metro and handle all types of pests. Request an appointment today to find a long-lasting solution to your pest problem.