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Lawn & Garden

Bugs and Insects in the Home


Our home is our safe haven. We come inside often to escape the elements of the outdoors. Sometimes we come inside to escape the rain and sometimes it is the summer heat. Often times we come inside to escape the biting bugs that the summer heat brings and to get a drink from a hard day’s work in the yard.

The last thing you need, is to deal with the same bugs and pests that you were trying to escape outside, inside. When temperatures and conditions deteriorate outside, pests often look for shelter much like you do. Knowing which pests you are dealing with in the house will help you make the safest, most effective decision when it comes to eradicating them. Here is a list of the most common household pests and the best and safest products to make our safe haven safe again.



With over 12,000 different species of ants, no matter where in the United States you live, you can rest assured that your house can become prone to any number of these species. One thing that home invading ants have in common is that they are looking for water and food, often sugar. Keeping surfaces cleaned and disinfected is the best prevention for ants. Keeping the house sealed from unwanted, outside pests, as well as treating the yard regularly for ants is the best way to keep them from coming in the house. Many outdoor insecticides for ants will prevent them for 3 months and longer.

 If you find them coming inside the house then here are your best options. Raid ant and roach spray will kill and prevent ants and a number of other household pests for 4 weeks. There are some things that have baits to attract ants but aren't we trying to not attract them? Some people prefer baits but I rather kill and prevent.

I use products like Ortho Home Defense or Spectracide Bug Stop inside, which kills a wider variety of bugs while preventing them for 12 months. Where these things work well, they are not organic. DE Powder is an incredible organic chemical free insecticide that lasts years in dry areas. This sticky powder is made from plankton and is actually made from food grade. DE powder will stick to insects and cut them to pieces within 48 hours. I use this in my basement, the place where most household bugs gain access to the house.

Camel Crickets and House Crickets

Growing up I would have to crawl to the back of the crawl space to light the pilot light for whatever reason. These crickets that are really no threat to anyone or anything are simply scary when trapped in confined spaces with them. They do not have wings like some crickets nor do they have the organs to make noise like other crickets. 

House crickets are harmless except when you are going to bed and they decide to chirp all night. These crickets make noise by rubbing their front wings together and it can become harder to overlook than that dripping faucet or the chirping smoke detector with a dead battery.

An infestation of either of these crickets can become a problem simply due to their sheer numbers. They are usually found in basements, crawl spaces and utility rooms. They are nocturnal therefore prefer to jump on you in the dark. Ortho Home Defense is a great inorganic option for killing camel crickets quickly. Cricket Traps and DE Powder are a safe organic way to kill crickets.

Cockroaches and Palmetto bugs

Roaches can survive nuclear radiation. They can live for a week without a head and they can survive submerged under water for 30 minutes. Let this be clear that roaches are tough and often hard to kill. There are over 4,000 species of cockroaches and they are said to be as old as 280 million years old.

These insects are adaptable. Keeping surfaces cleaned and disinfected is the best prevention for cockroaches, as well as keeping all food sealed. Raid ant and roach spray will kill and prevent roaches and a number of other household pests for 4 weeks. Chemical sprays like Ortho Home Defense  or Spectracide Bug Stop work well alone but when used in conjunction with DE Powder, or Boric Acid, I find that you have a faster kill with better prevention power. Put a light dusting of DE powder under and behind your appliances (Stove and refrigerator) where roaches like to hide.

Bed Bugs

These microscopic bugs are usually not seen but more so, suspected once you wake up with bites all over you. Bedbugs are usually brought home when staying at a hotel that has them. Nobody wants to spray chemicals where they sleep. Where there are some sprays for bedbugs, there is no single better solution for bed bugs than DE Powder.

Read the reviews on this product from our customers that used it. Read the bed bug section of this DE powder article.  


Flea infestations must be treated outdoors first. Treating the inside of the house does not work well until the outside is treated. The dog or cat that brought them inside must also be treated before the inside of the house. Once we are ready to treat the inside, what do we use?

As a dog lover with 2 labradors and as a person who has had dogs for the 41 years of his life, I have dealt with fleas in the house plenty of times. I have used chemicals like Triazicide and Bug B Gon with great results outside.

As a person who values a good organic insecticide, I prefer hitting the inside of the house hard with flea foggers. Although not organic, it will save you from fighting this battle multiple times. Pick up everything off the floors and open the interior doors, get everyone, including the pets and leave the house for a few hours while the foggers are doing their thing. Cover the fish tanks as well. If you insist on an organic approach then 

DE Powder would be one of the best options.


Scorpions are by far, the scariest looking critter that you will find in the house. Scorpions are arachnids like ticks and spiders and are more commonly found in the south and southwest United States. Chances are that the scorpion that you find in the house are non-poisonous. There are over 1200 species of scorpions in the world and only 2 of those that are found between Texas and California are considered poisonous.

Scorpions are more active in warm weather and although considered a desert critter, scorpions are often found in forests and wooded areas as well. The Home Depot carries a whole host of scorpion killers. Ortho Home Defense  or Spectracide Bug Stop is a great instock option for killing scorpions and DE Powder is a great safe organic option.

Black Widow and Brown Recluse Spiders

There is no pest less welcome in the house than these 2 spiders. A quick inorganic kill is preferable to most, rather than a safer slower kill. There are several spider killing sprays that work well. I often use Ortho Home Defense or Spectracide Bug Stop simply because it kills and prevents spiders and most other household insects for up to 12 months. A shoe or magazine is probably the best organic options for spiders. Spiders are beneficial outside, as they eat many of the other bugs that we do not want to deal with outside.

Stink bugs

Stinkbugs get their name from the bad odor that they put off when startled or crushed. Stinkbugs only recently became a problem since the mid 1990's. They are not known to bite but they can invade your home in large numbers and cause quite a stink. Look for these pests in the fall and seal up small cracks and door jambs to keep them out of the house. If they find their way in then check with your local store to see if they have Harris Stink bug killer

House Centipedes

Centipedes found in the home are not usually the same ones that you will find outside. The house centipede has longer legs and will usually have 15 pairs of them, although some  centipedes can have up to 177 pairs of legs. House centipedes come in different colors but most of them are usually a brown or reddish orange. These insects eat other insects and spiders and are considered beneficial. Since bugs are beneficial only outside then you will need to pick up some Ortho Home Defense or Spectracide Bug Stop on your way home.

These critters do not bite humans but if you try to crush them then they will try. DE Powder is a great organic option for killing house centipedes. House centipedes are associated with moist areas, therefore a dehumidifier will help keep them away.


Being nocturnal, you may only stumble across them if you find their hiding spot. They prefer environments like bathrooms, basements and attics where there is high humidity. They like old newspapers or magazines as well as grains and fibers like flour, cereal, cotton, silk and even glue. A dehumidifier will help prevent silverfish. Don't store books and papers in damp places and keep your cereals and grains in sealed containers. If you have silverfish in the house then you will need to get either Ortho Home Defense or Spectracide Bug Stop. DE Powder is a great organic option for killing silverfish.


This insect is not as scary as it looks. Its pinchers on the back of its abdomen is to defend itself against other earwigs and harmless to humans. Like silverfish, they are nocturnal and prefer humid environments. This insect is just over 1/2 inch long and is usually reddish brown with light brown legs.

A dehumidifier will help eliminate this bug inside. Because this bug is is attracted to light, you will find them outside on the side of the house if the lights are left on. If you find earwigs in the house then spray them with Ortho Home Defense or Spectracide Bug Stop. For a good organic option DE Powder will kill them within 48 hours.

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Posted 2017-06-04T16:28:40+0000  by Ingar_HD_ATL Ingar_HD_ATL