Ridding Your Home of Insects

Boxelder Bugs: How To Fight This Common Summer Pest

by Ted Miller

When summer rolls around, a few things are for certain. Temperatures will climb, and you'll find boxelder bugs -- probably lots of them -- around your home. Even though these oblong bugs don't bite, they can be a real nuisance, leaving marks on door frames and other home materials. How do you keep them away? Start by following these tips.

Eliminate Debris in Your Yard

Often, boxelder bugs are first attracted to piles of landscape debris. They lay their eggs in the debris, and when these eggs hatch, the adult bugs end up all over your home. Go through your yard and clean up all of the fallen leaves, sticks, and other landscaping debris before it gets too warm out. If you have a wood pile, try moving it into a shed or covering it with a tarp as this will make it less appealing to boxelder bugs looking for places to lay eggs.

Spray Your Home With Soap

Soap is unappealing to boxelder bugs, but it won't damage most building materials and it is safe for you to use around pets and kids. Dissolve about a teaspoon of liquid castile soap in a bottle of water, and then spray the solution onto the exterior of your home. Make sure you moisten the entire surface. Repeat this process every week or two during the summer to help keep bugs away.

Get Rid of Extra Shade

Boxelder bugs prefer shady areas, which is why you often see them under patios and awnings. While you can't get rid of your awning, you should do whatever you can to eliminate sources of shade around your home. Trim back any tall bushes or trees that cast shade on your home. If your awnings are retractable, keep them retracted more often to cast more light on your home.

Spray Off the First Ones

If you get rid of the first few boxelder bugs when you first see them, you can often keep more from congregating on your home. So, the second you see boxelder bugs, get out the garden hose and spray them away. With any luck, you will drown the bugs and they won't come back.

If you continue to see any bugs in your home after following these tips, contact a pest control company like Falcon Pest Management in your area. They can apply pesticides and use other measures, as needed, to get rid of the bugs.