How to Keep Spiders Out of Your Home
A beautifully spun web can be something to behold, but the arachnid it belongs to? That’s a whole other story.
Yes, household spiders can be beneficial. Yes, they prey on many common indoor pests, like flies, roaches, and even other spiders. Yes, most species are harmless to humans –unless you’re dealing with a dangerous one like a brown recluse or black widow.
Still, you probably don’t want common household spiders setting up their homes inside yours. Knowing things like what attracts spiders into your home, how they get inside, and where they like to hide can help you know which tactics are most effective for getting rid of them.
What Attracts Spiders to a Home
Spiders enjoy many of the same things that you do, including food. They are predators by nature, catching their prey using a web or by hunting, depending on the species. Their food of choice includes insects and other spiders, and even the most well-kept home can have the pests they seek. Getting rid of one source of their food is one of the first things to consider when you want to get rid of the spiders themselves. Other things that attract spiders indoors are water, shelter, and warmth. This is why you may find spiders hiding just about anywhere in your home, from the basement, to the attic, to in and around kitchen and bathroom sinks.
How Spiders Get Indoors
Spiders can fit through tiny spaces, so even a small opening around a window or door, a barely noticeable crack in your home’s foundation, or an open pipe or vent may serve as an invitation to wander on in. Spiders also can make their way into a home by piggybacking onto everyday objects. Storage boxes brought in from a garage or shed, firewood or lumber, thrifted items, and even groceries and grocery bags can act as impromptu transportation for spiders.
Where Spiders Like to Hide
Spiders are naturally attracted to dark, undisturbed places, including corners, cupboards, closets, storage boxes, piles of paper, cardboard, and clutter. Some spiders may even take refuge in bedding, laundry, or toys. It never hurts to shake out items that have been sitting awhile just to make sure there are no spiders hiding out.
How to Get Rid of Spiders in Your House
As far as pests go, spiders are among the easiest to control—once you find them, that is. Here are three simple steps to help control the spiders that are already in your house and keep the rest where they belong: outside.
Seal off entry points.
Since spiders can easily find their way indoors through the smallest crack or crevice, add or replace weather stripping around doors and windows, caulk holes and gaps, and repair or replace torn and damaged screens.
Create a long-lasting bug barrier.
To get rid of both indoor spiders and many of their food sources, apply Ortho® Home Defense® Insect Killer for Indoor & Perimeter2 around windows, doors, cabinets, and baseboards, as well as along your home’s entire foundation. Spiders won’t be able to cross the barrier and survive. Plus, it’s non-staining, odor-free and protects for up to 12 months when applied to non-porous surfaces.
Eliminate outdoor hiding places.
Fewer spiders outside lead to fewer spiders trying to get inside, so get rid of the places they like to hide and lay eggs. Trim overgrown plants, pick up and dispose of trash and debris, and move stored lumber and firewood far from your house. Then, apply Ortho® Home Defense® Insect Killer for Lawns Granules on your lawn, ornamentals, and flowers to kill spiders and other listed bugs outside before they can come inside.
More Steps You Can Take
Here are a few additional, simple things you can do to make your home less attractive and inviting to spiders.
Sweep and/or vacuum regularly to remove dust, fluff, cobwebs, and other debris. Make sure to get under and behind appliances, mattresses, furniture, and pleated drapes or bedding. If you’re a fan of essential oils, you can also spray the areas where spiders commonly hide with Ortho® Home Defense® Crawling Bug Killer with Essential Oils, made with cinnamon, clove, Geraniol, cornmint, and castor. Just be sure to wipe up excess product after spraying around sinks, drains, pipes, appliances, and cabinets.
Get rid of stray piles of clutter—including piles of papers to be filed or shredded; cardboard, magazines and newspapers to be disposed of; and storage boxes to be stowed—before spiders turn them into home base. Take a few minutes a day or part of a weekend morning to sell, donate, trash, or recycle the things you no longer want.
It’s much easier for spiders to infiltrate a storage box made of cardboard than plastic, so make the switch if you haven’t already. Also, since spiders can find their way into linen and other storage closets, transfer any soft goods like bedding and blankets to sealed containers.
It’s okay if spiders don’t creep you out. But if they do, use these quick, easy ideas to help you get rid of them.