Because they can come in with you, on plants, in groceries and by many other means, you will never be able to spider-proof your house well enough to ensure that you never see another arachnid inside. You can, however, greatly minimize the number of spiders you share your home with by sealing entry points, keeping the house clean and eliminating spider attractants. If you're tired of living with spiders, take a weekend and do what you can to keep them out.
Things You'll Need
- Window screens
- Vacuum cleaner with hose attachment
- Yellow light bulbs for outdoor fixtures
- Food-grade diatomaceous earth
Step 1: Seal Cracks
Spiders often find their way into homes through cracks in the foundations and around windows, plumbing and doors. To keep them out, seal cracks and holes with caulk.
Check your screens when examining your windows for cracks and replace any damaged ones. Screens keep out both spiders and the insects they use for food.
Step 2: Clean and Declutter
Sealing the cracks may keep spiders out of your home, but it won't eliminate those that have already found their way inside. To get rid of them, clean your house thoroughly, vacuuming up any dust or old spiderwebs that have accumulated on baseboards, in corners and under furniture. Clutter gives spiders a place to hide, so eliminate as much of it as you can. Keep storage boxes away from walls and off the floor whenever possible.
Sealing storage boxes will help keep spiders from taking up residence inside them.
Step 3: Tour Your Yard
Fewer spiders in your yard means fewer spiders in your house, so be sure to include outdoor spaces in your spider removal cleanup. Spiders take cover in dense foliage, leaf piles and wood piles, so keep those hiding places well away from your house. Since bugs are a food source and attract spiders, consider moving outdoor lights or installing yellow bug lights, which draw fewer insects.
Step 4: Use Natural Pesticides
Because spiders eat bothersome insects and are a beneficial part of the ecosystem, kill them only as a last resort. If you are overrun and need to take drastic measures, however, sprinkle diatomaceous earth around your home's foundation. Diatomaceous earth, the granulated fossil remains of prehistoric algae, has very sharp edges which hurt spiders and other insects when they walk across it. Though harmful to spiders, food-grade diatomaceous earth is safe to use around children and pets. Also try essential oils such as mint, rosemary, garlic and eugenol, which comes from olive oil. Simply add 10 to 15 drops of oil to a spray bottle filled with water and spray it around your home's foundation. These oils interrupt spiders' neurotransmitters, which can be fatal to them. Essential oils are safe for use around people.