Silverfish slither into homes for shelter and food. Once they find plenty to eat and moist living conditions, it’s difficult to get rid of them. If you’re tired of turning on the bathroom light at night and spotting a silvery bug slither across the floor, here’s how to stop silverfish from invading.

What Are Silverfish?

Small, flat, wingless insects, silverfish are named for their quick fish-like movements. The slender bodies are about one-half inch long with bristly legs and long antenna. Many are a silvery gray color, but some are brownish or white. Often found in bathrooms, basements, and underneath sinks, these nocturnal creatures hideout in cracks and crevices during the daytime. They love moisture, and they love leaky pipes.

What Harm Do They Do?

These prehistoric looking pests don’t bite or carry disease. However, they harm your home by eating through materials. Their starchy diets consist of linens, papers, cardboard boxes, wallpaper, and dead skin cells. In the kitchen, they’ll get into flour and other carbohydrates. Silverfish also attract other insects. Spiders and centipedes prey on silverfish. If you’re home is infested, expect other unwelcome guests to show up for dinner.

Stop Silverfish with These Steps

Trap them. Roll up some newspaper and tape up the ends. Wet the middle of the roll and leave it out overnight. In the morning, throw out the roll. You’ll probably also be throwing out silverfish that ate into the moist paper and then stayed inside for shelter. Alternatively, use a glass jar with a small piece of bread to trap them. Wrap masking tape around the jar, so silverfish shimmy up into the jar, but find it too slippery on the inside to get out.

Repel them. Silverfish can’t stand the smell of cedar, cinnamon, cloves, and other spices. Sprinkle around floor boards, or put cedar shavings outside around your house’s foundation. Inside, put cedar shavings in socks or sachets and put them in closets, kitchen cabinets, or other locations pests frequent. Use essential oils like cedar, lavender, or lemon. Dilute the oil in water and spray the solution in cracks and crevices inhabited with silverfish.

Pest-proof your home by cleaning up clutter like piles of papers or cardboard boxes. This not only eliminates a food source, but also hiding places. Vacuum regularly, especially in cracks and crevices to get rid of food crumbs as well as the actual bugs, their nests, and eggs. Then, fill in cracks with caulk. Check pipes under sinks and fix any that leak creating a moist environment these pests love. Silverfish love humidity. Put a dehumidifier in damp areas like basements. Lastly, keep all food in sealed containers.

Kill them using store-bought traps or make your own using boric acid or diatomaceous earth. Sprinkling boric acid around floorboards or crevices kills silverfish and their eggs. Because the substance is slightly toxic, use a mask when applying and keep it away from children and pets. A non-toxic powder, diatomaceous earth kills many creepy crawlers, not just silverfish, but won’t harm humans. Use sparingly near children and pets, though. A chemical pesticide may be necessary for a serious infestation.

We Can Help You Stop Silverfish

Unfortunately, silverfish in your home is a tell-tale sign of moisture issues, such as leaky pipes or mold growth. At the first sign of an infestation, call in an expert. Contact Free Spray Lawn Care today at 419-529-5296 and we’ll stop silverfish and other pests once and for all.