If you suddenly see spiders and spider webs in your house, don’t panic! Most types of spiders are harmless; they’re afraid of humans and will only bite in self-defense. However, the presence of spiders in your home could indicate a more significant pest problem, and they could still pose a potential risk to you and your family.
The good news is that there are a lot of ways to eliminate spiders from your home. There are natural and chemical methods that you can easily do yourself. Or, in the case of a more problematic spider infestation, there are professionals that can help solve your problem. Before you start addressing your spider problem, here’s what you need to know about getting rid of spiders and keeping them out of your house for good.
How To Know If You Have A Spider Problem At Home
The most obvious way to know if you have a spider problem is by actually spotting these critters crawling inside your home — on the floor, the walls, on kitchen surfaces and even on your bed, among other areas. You can also check if there are spider webs and spider nests in the dark, secluded areas of your home like the basement, garage, or attic.
Spiders can also be found in between the cracks and crevices of your walls or inside closets and storage boxes. These areas allow spiders to hide from their predators, and they’re advantageous spots for spiders to prey on smaller insects. Apart from inside the house, spiders can also hide in areas within the perimeter of your home, such as the shed, shrubs, and bushes of your garden.
Having insects such as ants and flies in your house could also indicate a spider problem. Spiders like to feed on these insects, and so, their presence could mean that the spiders in your home are well-fed and thriving. Likewise, spotting spiders in your home could indicate that you have a pest problem that has yet to be addressed or identified.
You might also notice more spiders in your house during a certain time of the year — autumn. Towards the end of summer, the temperature finally starts to drop. Spiders become more active in colder weather because it is mating season. These critters come out of their hiding spots in search of a dry place where they can mate. During this time, you might see more spiders invading your home.
Natural Methods for Getting Rid of Spiders
It’s possible to solve your spider problem through natural methods. You don’t need to use pesticides with potentially hazardous chemicals that can have an effect on you, your family, and your pets. Another good thing about natural methods is that you can use ingredients you probably already have in your home. Thus, you don’t have to spend that much to get rid of all the spiders in your house. Here are the natural methods you can use to get rid of spiders from your home effectively:
Essential oils such as peppermint, tea tree, lavender, eucalyptus, spearmint, citrus, cinnamon, citronella, and rose can repel spiders. According to a study, most essential oils comprise of monoterpenoids that have insecticidal properties. They also produce an aroma that spiders hate.
You can make a natural spider repellent using these essential oils. Just dilute your chosen essential oil with water and place the mixture in a plastic spray bottle. Spray the mixture in areas where you have spotted spiders. These may include cracks and crevices in your walls, as well as window sills and doorways. Apart from repelling spiders, these essential oils are effective in driving away bugs, mosquitoes, and other insects.
Since essential oils can be highly concentrated, remember to dilute your mixture. You also want to use protective gear such as gloves and a face mask to avoid any potential irritation from these essential oils.
After spraying the essential oil solution, open your windows to prevent congesting the room with the aroma as this could be too overwhelming for your children and pets.
On the other hand, if you don’t want to use sprays, you can opt to soak cotton balls in these essential oils. Place the soaked cotton balls in different areas of your house where spiders are likely to be seen.
White Vinegar and Other Household Items
White vinegar is another household item you can use to eliminate spiders in your home. Its odor can effectively repel spiders. Not only that, but white vinegar also contains acetic acid, which can kill spiders upon contact. To create your spider repellent mixture, just mix one cup of vinegar with two cups of warm water. Spray the mixture in areas where spiders are hiding. You can apply it once a day or every week, depending on whether the sprayed area still has a pungent vinegar scent.
You can also use baking soda to get rid of spiders. Unlike vinegar, baking soda is non-toxic, so it will only repel spiders from your home. However, this household item is a safer alternative if you have young children and pets at home.
Dryer sheets can also repel spiders. They have a floral-scented ingredient called linalool, which is a monoterpenoid that has a toxic effect on spiders. This natural method works to repel mosquitoes and other insects as well.
Although, there is some debate over whether this option is effective. Anecdotal evidence suggests that horse chestnuts and walnuts are effective in driving away spiders from your home. Just place them on the corners of your house, on windowsills, or anywhere else you frequently see spiders. Unlike natural sprays that you have to reapply regularly, nuts can repel spiders for a long time without having to replace them. It can be worth a try to see if it works for you.
Cedarwood is another natural ingredient that many claim can get rid of spiders. You can spread cedarwood chips around the perimeter of your home. You can also opt for cedarwood oil and create your spider repellent spray.
Think twice before you throw away those lemon or orange peels. You can use your leftover citrus peels to keep spiders from invading your home. You can leave the peels in areas where spiders are active, or you can rub the peels on windowsills, doorways, baseboards, and shelves. However, the peels will only be effective if their smell is potent enough. You will have to replace the peels every 1-2 days.
Tobacco is another natural ingredient that can repel spiders. You can spread loose tobacco leaves in areas where there are signs of spider activity. You can also mix tobacco leaves with water and use the juice as a spider repellent spray. Or, you can mix tobacco leaves with flour and water to make tobacco balls. Do note, though, that tobacco balls are not recommended if you have children and pets in your home.
Homemade sticky traps are another non-toxic solution for your spider problem. All you need to do is boil equal parts of water and corn syrup. Mix the solution until you have a sticky paste. Spread the paste onto a rectangular piece of cardboard (you can use your empty cereal box for this). Then place the sticky traps in areas where there has been spider activity, such as the baseboards of walls, inside cabinets, or behind your furniture. Upside down duct tape or purchased traps can also be utilized.
If you want to eliminate spiders living outside your house or in your garden, try using diatomaceous earth. Spread a thin layer of the powder on the areas where spiders are active. Alhough diatomaceous earth is a non-toxic ingredient, still wear protective clothing and gear when applying the powder as it can cause skin and lung irritation.
Pets and Other Insects
Having pets can also help get rid of spiders in your home. Cats, in particular, won’t be able to resist catching spiders. Having a pet can dissuade spiders from coming inside your house. As for outside your house, you might want to have some ladybugs in your garden. These ladybugs will feast on the insects that spiders love. Without much prey to feed on, the spiders will move on and find a home somewhere else. Known as a natural control method live ladybugs are available for purchase online.
Chemical Alternatives for Eliminating Spiders
Though the natural methods listed above are very effective in getting rid of spiders, there are times where you need something stronger. You might want to switch to chemical alternatives if your spider problem is getting out of hand. These chemical-based spider repellents tend to last longer, so you won’t have to keep spraying your rooms or replacing spider traps like you would with the natural methods.
Insecticide treatments, insecticide aerosols, insecticide dust, spider elimination kits, and other pyrethrin-based pesticides are just some of the products you can use in case of moderate or serious spider infestation in your home. A lot of these options are readily available at your nearest supermarket or hardware store, so they’re pretty convenient to use. If you keep these toxic pesticides at home, though, remember to store them in an area that’s out of reach of children and pets.
If you decide to use chemical solutions, make sure to take all the necessary safety precautions. Including reading and following all the instructions listed on the product label as well as wearing protective clothing and gear when applying insecticides. Spray the chemicals on the foundation of your home, on door and window frames, around cable pipes and wires, and other areas where spiders and spider webs are located. When spraying, pay attention to door thresholds and other areas where spiders might be able to enter your home.
When Should You Hire Professionals?
If previous attempts at eliminating spiders from your home have not been effective, it might be time to call in the professionals. Professional pest control is ideal if you already have a severe spider infestation, and all the natural and chemical methods you’ve tried before did not deliver promising results. These signs indicate a bigger pest problem that would be better served by professionals. Check out our guide on pest control companies here.
On the other hand, pest control is also a good alternative for those who want a hassle-free way of eliminating spiders from their homes. Professionals can help determine the kind of pest problem that you’re dealing with. They can also identify the type of spiders infesting your home and have the appropriate solution for dealing with them. Because it’s their job, they’re most likely to be updated with the latest methods for eliminating these pests.
Apart from solving your spider problem, they will also have recommendations for making sure that the spiders stay out of your home for good. While this might be a pricier option, it will give you peace of mind because you won’t have to worry about spiders coming back and re-infesting your house. Use our exterminator search tool to help get in contact.
Tips for Keeping the Spiders Away for Good
Getting rid of spiders is one thing, but keeping them away for good is a different matter. While getting rid of your spider problem at home is certainly a cause for celebration, you shouldn’t simply rest easy. You still have to follow certain precautions to make sure these spiders aren’t just waiting for another shot at invading your home. Here are some tips for keeping the spiders away for good.
1. Seal Cracks and Crevices
Use a caulking gun and sealant to seal all the cracks and crevices inside and outside of your house. By doing so, you’re eliminating potential areas where spiders can hide. Also, patch up cracks or holes that spiders might use to get inside your house. Check if your door and window screens are damaged, and if they are, repair them. You might also want to use a mesh to cover vents.
2. Clean Your House Regularly and Thoroughly
Keeping your home clean and tidy lessens the likelihood of a spider infestation. Make sure to sweep the floors, wipe all surfaces, and vacuum all the nooks and crannies of your home. Use a dusting pole to clean the ceilings, lights, and corners of your rooms. Also, don’t forget to clean window shutters, lighting fixtures, and other areas outside your house.
Clean the boxes and shelves in your storage areas in the basement or attic where spiders and other insects tend to live. As much as possible, try to minimize the clutter in these areas. Regular cleaning is also beneficial because it allows you to remove spider eggs before they hatch and release hundreds of spiderlings in your home.
3. Make Sure That Food Is Properly Stored
To prevent spiders, insects, and other pests from contaminating your food, make sure they are sealed in plastic containers or placed in the refrigerator. Also, do not leave leftover food lying around. Dispose of all food scraps. Similarly, properly close and seal the garbage bins and compost bins. If you leave food lying around, it will attract ants and other insects. These insects are what spiders love to prey on so it’s like giving an open invitation to spiders to have a feast in your home
4. Keep Your Garden Neat
If you keep having spider problems, it might be because you aren’t keeping your garden neat and tidy. Spiders love hiding in tall grass, overgrown shrubbery, ivy, trees, piles of wood, and under rocks. When the weather starts to cool, they will start crawling into your home. So, as a precaution, it’s better to mow your lawn as well as trim your trees, plants, and shrubs regularly. You might also want to keep the plants farther away from your home to lessen the chance of spiders coming inside.
5. Turn Off Outdoor Lighting at Night
Outdoor lights can make your home safer at night, but these lights tend to attract the bugs and insects that spiders love to consume. If you want to eliminate spiders in your home, consider turning off your outdoor lights at night. However, if turning off these lights is not an option, you can use yellow lights which are less attractive to insects. Another alternative is keeping these lights farther away from your home.
Apart from black widow and brown recluse spiders, most types of spiders are harmless. There’s no reason to freak out if you see a couple of spiders in your home. However, if you’re noticing more uninvited guests than usual, it might be time to take matters into your own hands — especially since a more significant spider problem or underlying pest infestation can pose a risk to you and your family.
You can choose from a variety of natural methods to chemical alternatives or even professional pest control. These measures are effective in getting rid of spiders in your home. If you want to keep them out for good, it’s also essential to keep your home clean and tidy. With all the information presented, you’re in a much better position to eliminate spiders and, hopefully, never see them again in your house.