Try These DIY Tips For A Clean, Pest-Proof Home

Don’t let flies, mosquitoes and cockroaches breed in your living spaces

Mohini Mehrotra Updated: May 10, 2020 12:36:19 IST
Try These DIY Tips For A Clean, Pest-Proof Home Photo: Shutterstock

Bugs and insects are the harbingers of infections that can cause serious harm to your family’s health. From allergies to respiratory problems to itching and serious illnesses, they are carriers of diseases, and it is wise to eliminate them. While you can always call the pest-control services when needed, taking these everyday steps can also help you keep the bugs at bay.

Dust Mites

They feed on dead skin cells and are mostly found on your beds, carpets, upholstery and children’s toys. Not visible to the naked eye, these mites can cause itching, irritation and allergies, which can be especially dangerous if you have respiratory problems, such as asthma.

While it’s not possible to completely remove dust mites, you can stop them from multiplying through regular cleaning.

Make sure you vacuum your furniture and carpets regularly, especially if you have kids and pets at home. Change your bedding at least once a week and wash all the linen and your kid’s toys in warm water with a good anti-bacterial detergent. Dust mites thrive in humidity, so keep your living spaces dry and airy; natural summer sunlight helps too.

Fruit Flies

These pesky creatures always find their way to your fruits and vegetables, especially overripe/decaying ones.

So, to prevent them from entering your home, make sure you remove all overripe produce from your kitchen counters. Cover your fresh fruits with a mesh or store them in the refrigerator. Dispose of your garbage regularly and wipe down your counters and tables with a disinfectant spray to get rid of alcohol and food spills and residue after every meal.

House Flies

Not only are they a great nuisance with their constant buzzing, house flies are also potential disease carriers. Flies thrive on excreta, garbage, and contaminate everything they sit on, thereby spreading diseases and infections.

Make sure you dispose of your garbage regularly. Keep strong-smelling plants, such as lavender, thyme, basil and mint, near your windows as they can repel flies. You can also spray your house with essential oils—the fragrance acts as a repellent for flies.

You can install mesh windows and doors to keep flies away while allowing natural ventilation.


Besides causing itching and being immensely annoying, mosquitoes can spread viruses, leading to various illnesses and in rare cases, even death.

During the mosquito-breeding season, apply a good repellent spray or ointment. Keep mosquito repellent dispensers on all day and night and also spray a repellent or use coils around corners of rooms. Keep doors and windows shut, especially at night, unless there’s a mesh installed.

Watch out for any stagnant water in your house—in your flower pots, buckets, coolers—for those are places where mosquitoes tend to breed. Oils of lemon and eucalyptus can also keep them away.


Other than causing allergy and triggering asthma symptoms, cockroaches can carry and spread diseases, like salmonella.

Cockroaches usually enter through and live inside the cracks in your walls, drain traps and electric sockets. Although they prefer feeding on meats, sugary foods and starches, they are also known to feed on other things such as hair and decaying matter.

Make sure you store all your food items in air-tight containers. Keep all the counters in your house—kitchen, study tables or dining table—clean and clutter-free. Avoid leaving dirty dishes unattended for long. Seal the gaps between walls and cabinets with a sealant. Use a repellent spray or a gel in the corners of doors and along the cracks to stop cockroaches from breeding there.

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