Have you been finding alien-like bugs with flat, oval-shaped silver bodies, lots of long antennae, and six crawling legs around your home? You have a silverfish infestation.
While these creepy crawlies are relatively easy to exterminate, they may be a strong indicator of bigger humidity problems in your home. At ABC Home & Commercial Services, we have treated plenty of silverfish infestations. Here are some silverfish facts every homeowner should know.
Destruction Caused by Silverfish
Silverfish eat just about anything. Since their bodies are so flat, they can squeeze inside containers of food or bindings of books and start chomping. They will eat carbs, sugars, starches, and cellulose. This means they are a danger to unsealed food in your kitchen and household belongings and décor such as books, photos, carpet, curtains, clothing, sheets, wallpaper, and even important documents. They also like to feast on human dandruff, which means you could find one crawling in your hair when you wake up. They will eat mold, and are particularly attracted to moist areas. If you see silverfish around your home, the problem could be bigger than simply the infestation itself.
What a Silverfish Infestation Means About Moisture
Silverfish prefer moist places for breeding and laying their eggs. If you are finding an abundance of them in your home, look for several other problems that go hand in hand.
- Leaking Pipes – If water is leaking from the pipes in your walls and collecting moisture somewhere, it could be drawing the silverfish to that spot. Inspect your pipes for any potential sources of stray water.
- Water Damage – If there is a leak happening somewhere in your home, it could be causing water damage to walls, ceilings, floors, or cabinets. Wood, carpet, or drywall saturated with moisture would make a perfect nest for these pests.
- High Humidity – Even if you don’t see any leakage or water damage, the humidity levels in your home might be a bit too high. The ideal level of humidity for indoor spaces is between 30% and 45%. If it exceeds 50%, there will be too much moisture in your air, which can attract silverfish and also damage your property over time. Consider investing in a dehumidifier to fix this problem.
How to Get Rid of Silverfish
To deter silverfish from continuing to eat, breed, and live in your home, it helps to remove the things that attract them. Here are some tips to help keep silverfish out of your house.
- Reduce Moisture
First and foremost, get to the root of the moisture problem. Check for leaking pipes or appliances, water damage, or mold growth in every nook and cranny of your house. Purchase a dehumidifier to remove the excess moisture in your air.
- Seal Food Sources
Silverfish can slide easily into a cereal or pasta box and eat the food in your pantry before you have a chance. Seal up dry goods in airtight containers so that they can’t get inside. You may also want to store other loose foods in your fridge temporarily.
- Clean Up
Get rid of old paperwork and put books, magazines, and journals away. Silverfish are always looking for places to hide, so don’t make it easy for them by leaving clutter around your house.
- Use Diatomaceous Earth
Diatomaceous Earth (DE) is a great natural source of pest control. It consists of fossilized material and looks like a white, crumbly powder. It destroys the outer coating on insects so that they dry up and die. Sprinkling some around your baseboards can help get rid of a silverfish infestation faster. You can get DE here.
- Use Silverfish Traps
If these prevention strategies aren’t getting rid of silverfish quickly enough, try setting some traps or baits out to poison them. Be very careful that pets or children do not come into contact with these traps. You can find them online, or at your local hardware store.
Need a helping hand with silverfish infestations?
If you are having trouble getting rid of silverfish in your home, ABC can help. Give us a call today for faster pest control results!
For pest infestations in your home, count on ABC Home & Commercial Services. We have your summer pest solutions.