5 ways to help keep your home pest-free this summer

(BPT) – Nothing beats spending time in your backyard or opening all the windows in the summer for some fresh air. However, the warmer weather also brings about prime bug season, meaning you’ll likely have uninvited guests in and around your home.

If you’ve struggled with unwanted pests in the past, you’re not alone. According to a survey by The Harris Poll, 85% of homeowners in the past year reported seeing or having trouble with pests inside their homes such as ants, mosquitoes, spiders and cockroaches. So, what can you do to help protect your house from infestation? Check out these five tips to help you and your family defend against bugs this summer.

1. Regular lawn maintenance

If you have a lawn, you know it can be a chore to maintain it, but doing so will help reduce pests around your home that can enter through open windows and doors. Some bugs prefer the shade of tall grass, so make sure you’re mowing it weekly to remove any hiding spots. If you have bushes, trees or tall plants, trim them so they don’t touch your home, otherwise pests will use them as a highway to the indoors.

2. Check and replace screens

Fine mesh window screens allow you to open the windows and enjoy the fresh air while still having a barrier between you and outdoor pests. However, screens will rip and tear over time, so it’s important to inspect them and repair or replace damaged ones before bugs can sneak into your home.

3. Use bug sprays

If you already have bugs inside your home, you’ll need pest control products to deal with these unwanted house guests. Luckily, for the 65 million Americans seeking an alternative to conventional pest solutions*, new bug spray line STEM is rooted in nature and optimized by science to help protect families against pests this summer. Made from plant-derived active ingredients, STEM™ offers a range of insecticides effective against ants, roaches, wasps and more that are safe to use around kids and pets, when used as directed.

These entomologist-tested products are formulated with botanical extracts and are free of added dyes, fragrances and harsh chemical odors, offering a great way to help protect your home as well as your summer plans from insect interruption.

4. Plug up any holes

While you may not be able to see them easily, insects are experts at finding gaps in your home’s structure to get inside. Any small hole around window frames, doors and vents can become an entrance, resulting in a bug infestation. You can remedy this by going to your local hardware shop and buying silicone or latex caulk. Use a caulking gun to seal the cracks in your home and prevent bugs from entering.

5. Remove standing water around the home

Mosquitoes and other insects often thrive in cool, damp areas and will lay their eggs in standing water. Prevent swarms by taking a walk around the outside of your home and making note of any pools of water inside planters, buckets, bird baths, toys and other containers. Remove or turn these items over to reduce the risk of bugs populating near your home.

Bonus: Use mosquito repellent

Evicting pests from your home is well and good, but you’ll still need to protect yourself when you’re in their natural territory. STEM Bug Repellent Sprays and Wipes are engineered with plant-derived active ingredients like lemongrass, peppermint and rosemary oils that work together to safely and effectively keep mosquitoes away from your family, when used as directed. Apply these mosquito repellents anytime you go outdoors, and every 90 minutes following, so you can enjoy the sunshine without getting bitten.

In using these tips throughout the summer, you can help create a bug-free environment that allows you to spend less time battling unwanted pesky houseguests and more time doing the things you love with the people you care about most.

*OMNI Audience Explorer: IRI Purchase-Based Data Set. Dec 2021