Basements can be a challenge not only can they be damp and dusty, but they can harbor hidden dangers such a dead rodents, which can be diseased, or mold that family members may be allergic to. |
If you have an infestation of basement bugs, the best way to rid your basement of these insects is through the use of insecticides or bug sprays. Keeping the basement clean and free of debris and food particles may be a deterrent as well. Depending upon which basement bugs have invaded the area, there are certain sprays or even natural deterrents such as eucalyptus, cinnamon, or mint that can help keep insects out of your basement. Forming some type of barrier by caulking or other means may help as well. Always wear gloves and a mask when cleaning a basement that has either of these problems. If using a vacuum, empty it outside, still wearing a mask, and place the bag directly into a trash bag, tie and put in the trash container immediately.
A good idea is to first do a thorough assessment of your basement to learn which insects are inhabiting the area and how you can keep your basement clutter free. In many cases, spiders, centipedes, and other creepy crawlies like to hide in dark corners and behind boxes, cartons, and other bulky items. Moisture and dampness may also attract certain basement bugs. Try running a dehumidifier in your basement to see if that can improve your situation. Keep it spider-free
Most spiders are harmless, and will actually help keep your basement free of pests. But two kinds of spiders, the brown recluse and the black widow, have venomous bites that can seriously injure or kill humans and pets. Keep an eye out for these. If you regularly dust and sweep corners, you shouldn't have a problem with spiders. But you should also keep your basement as neat and tidy as you can. Keep those window wells clean
OK, so keeping your window wells clean is an important part of basement waterproofing. But cleaning out debris can also prevent corrosion and cracks in the glass. A window well full of leaves is also a great place for bugs and other household pests to nest. Keep those floors clean
If your basement floor is concrete, you can keep it clean by sweeping up any debris, and then scouring it with a mixture of one cup of bleach and one gallon of water. If that seems too harsh — for instance, if you have painted or finished floors — try using dish soap instead of bleach. Mop it once to clean it, and then again to dry it off. Check your pipes
Pipes that lose their insulation can "sweat" water into your basement, creating optimal conditions for mold growth. The same goes for pipe fittings that come loose. Every three years, you should check all the plumbing connections in your home and make sure they're properly insulated. Check your ducts
If your home is heated by warm air forced through ducts, you should check those ducts when you check the pipes. Ducts with loose fittings, or ducts that aren't properly insulated, can waste energy and keep your heating bill higher than it needs to be. Check your support beams
If your home's support beams develop gaps or cracks, they're not properly supporting its weight. Make sure all your beams are healthy and free of gaps; fill in any gaps with shims, or pieces of metal or wood.
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