Keeping out mice and bugs is a common thought that runs through every storage unit renter’s mind. Unwanted critters can be a problem if you have an indoor or outdoor unit. They move inside to seek shelter, no matter if it’s in a climate controlled indoor unit or outside. Thankfully, there are easy ways to keep your unit and your valuables pest free.
When it’s colder outside, your outdoor unit runs a greater risk of pests coming in to seek warmth. Protect your storage unit this winter with these tips from Albuquerque Self Storage.
What you pack your things in makes a difference in how protected they are from invaders. Use plastic storage containers with lids or new cardboard boxes, as their structural integrity is sound and will last for years.
Avoid using boxes you got for free from grocery stores or restaurants. These boxes more than likely transported food items and were stored in colder environments. The condensation from the cold more than likely damaged the box’s structural integrity and preserved the smell of food on the cardboard. The smell can attract pests and the weak points are perfect for them to burrow through to get into your items.
Always cover your mattresses and upholstered furniture. The most common way for bed bugs to get into your unit or your home is through an unprotected stored mattress or uncovered pillows, chairs and couches.
Rodents prefer to nest in warm, dark and soft areas, making your cushions a prime target. If you leave them uncovered, you run the risk of them being destroyed.
Mattress and couch covers can be found online. Make sure you measure your coach to find the cover that fits it best. If you own a sectional, you will need more than one protective covering.
Keep Food Out of Your Unit
Never store food inside of your unit! Food is the number one thing that will attract rodents and cause them to burrow into your boxes.
Even if you’re not storing food, be sure you do not eat anywhere in or near your unit.
This step goes beyond eating. Sweep out your unit before loading anything into it. Leftover crumbs from the old tenant or debris pushed in by the wind can attract critters as well.
Before you pack any kitchen items, clean them thoroughly to remove all stains, debris, and smells.
Use a Pest Deterrent
After you’ve ensured everything is properly sealed in new cardboard boxes or plastic containers, your furniture is covered, and you cleaned your unit, try using pest deterrents to keep curious critters out.
The importance of finding and neutralizing or preventing an infestation cannot be understated — mice and rats breed quickly and they often return to places they feel safe. If bugs settle in, it’s harder to get rid of them than you may think, especially if a spider nest forms in the back corner of your unit.
There are natural and chemical solutions you can use to drive away unwanted pests.
Keep Mice and Rats Out of Your Unit
Cotton balls soaked in 100% peppermint oil or lavender oil have a chance of repelling mice and rats if they are left in generous quantities on the ground. Mice and rats do not like the smell of either substance, however it is not always as effective as chemical deterrents. While it may work well at first, smells tend to rise and dissipate over time.
Avoid using mothballs, as they are not effective at repelling mice and rats and can leave a foul odor on your belongings, as well as the belongings in other units.
Ultrasonic rodent repeller devices do work for a short period of time, but they require a power source to run. After awhile, the rats and mice will adapt to the sound and it will not affect them as intended.
Do not use baited traps. Baited traps can attract them to your unit instead of having them avoid it. Your goal should be to repel mice so they don’t enter your storage unit at all.
The best way to keep them out is prevention and regular visits to your unit to ensure no unwanted guests made their way inside.
How To Have a Bug-Free Unit
Cockroaches, bed bugs and ants are equally destructive to the items within your storage unit. Fruit flies and spiders can be a nuisance as well, but those are typically harmless to your items and only bothersome to you.
If you use cardboard boxes, carefully seal every open seam with heavy-duty tape and consider using wooden pallets to keep your boxes off of the ground.
Spray the unit with a bug repellant of your choice before moving into it to add a layer of protection against unwanted crawlers. Like with mice, visit your unit regularly to respray around the door. Do not spray anything directly onto your cardboard boxes, as it will weaken their structural integrity.
Before choosing a storage unit company, scope out the grounds. A well-maintained, secure, and well lit area with regular trash collection is less likely to have a pest problem than one that leaves open garbage containers close to units. Albuquerque Self Storage uses concrete block construction that secures your unit from people and pests alike. Contact them today for all of your storage needs.
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