If you named the top pest that people hate, it won’t be rats, mosquitoes, or even snakes. It is going to be spiders. These pests lurk in the dark, can be poisonous, and when they crawl along the floor they look incredibly menacing. Don’t grab a shoe or the hair spray and a lighter when you encounter your next spider. Use this guide and you will know how to get rid of spiders for good.
Spiders live on every permanently populated continent in the world today. There are one of the most diverse creatures on the planet with almost 40,000 different types, but there is something that almost all spiders have in common: they hate water. You might find spiders hanging out in your bathroom, but you won’t find them hanging out around a body of water. Only a few spiders actually live in or around the water.
Many people think of spiders as insects, but they are actually arachnids and arthropods. All spiders have 8 legs. Although different types of spiders may have different eye profiles, most spiders have four sets of eyes. Male spiders tend to be smaller than female spiders, but these pests are very prolific. A female spider may lay up to 3,000 eggs over a lifetime.
Spiders might be scary since some can be poisonous, but they also provide the strongest material in the world. The silk that spiders can produce can’t even be synthetically created because it is so complex. Every spider creates some form of this silk and uses it to create the classic web, which it uses to catch food.
Here’s one fact that you’re sure to love: a jumping spider can leap up to 50x its body length. You might want to duck!
Signs of Spiders
The classic sign of a spider infestation is the presence of the webs that these pests create. Some webs can be very thin and difficult to spot, but eventually they will begin to congregate along the edges and corners of a wall. You may see these webs dangling from the ceiling as well. Look for webs in exterior doorways, in particular, to see how many spiders might be coming in.
The changing of seasons will also bring about an increase of spiders. These pests will move in when the weather grows cold outside. They’ll also move in when the weather gets too hot for them outside.
Many spiders prefer to live in dark, damp places. This is why you’ll typically find spiders lurking underneath piles of wood, storage containers, or underneath shelves in a shed or garage. Spiders don’t like to be disturbed and will flee most of the time, but some species may attack if they feel threatened.
If you don’t have many other insects buzzing around your property, then this is also a good sign that spiders are about. Spiders will eat many of the other bothersome insect pests thanks to the stickiness of their web and a healthy appetite.
How To Kill Spiders
When asked what’s the best way to kill a spider, many people will say: “With whatever tool I happen to have.” Most homeowners have a reactive strategy when it comes to killing spiders. When one is spotted, they squish it. You actually don’t want to kill most spiders because they’re going to help clear out your unwanted house guests. Some spiders are dangerous, however, so identifying them and then eliminating them is important to good home health.
The three most common dangerous spiders that are found in homes around the world are these three species.
- Black widow spiders.
- Brown recluse spiders.
- Redback spiders.
Wolf spiders and hobo spiders can be problematic not because of their venom, but because of the strength of their bite. These spider bites are very painful when they occur and a large red welt develops quickly. It can hurt for up to a week, be extremely itchy, and may not even respond to traditional bite treatments.
Most dangerous spiders are going to remain hidden during the day. Brown recluses in particular rarely come out of hiding. You have to disturb them for them to become dangerous. Others come out at night. Hobo spiders tend to be the most active during the day and will likely be your greatest problem. If you do need to kill dangerous spiders, then an insecticide is going to be your best solution. These come in spray form and in dust form.
There are also natural items that can also kill spiders. Diatomaceous Earth is a common natural dust treatment that is used and even comes in food grade for homes that have pets and kids. If you have a cat around, then sprinkle some of the cat litter into areas where spiders live to reduce or eliminate their numbers. This works because the products dehydrate the outer shell of the spider and eventually the pest just dries up.
Certain essential oils have also been shown to be effective against spiders. Peppermint oil tends to be the most popular, but that also means it can be the most expensive. Tea tree oil or lemon oil can also be used. The benefit of using this particular method is that they are harmless to you, your kids, and your pets and the spiders hate it. Eucalyptus oils and saponin are other options to limit the spider population within the home.
Spiders also tend to keep to similar habitats within a home. After you’ve eliminated the spiders and their webs, apply an insecticide layer that is safe for your home to prevent the pests from coming back to live once again. As a final step, using a vacuum cleaner is a pretty effective tool for getting rid of bothersome spiders without having to touch them.
If you’re really in a hurry, a heavy book or a forceful smash with a shoe is always effective too.
DIY Spider Killer and Control
If you have dangerous or biting spiders in your home that need to be eliminated, then these are essential products that you’re going to want to have. Be careful, however, because these products will also kill the beneficial spiders that you might just want to keep around.
The problem with many spider control solutions is that they smell bad. You place them in your home and it smells horrible for at least a week. This insecticide from Tempo, which also works on spiders, is completely odor free. It isn’t going to stain your walls either like some products wind up doing, and it will last long enough that you don’t need to apply it twice. This item can’t be shipped to New York or Connecticut, but it can be used indoors or outdoors to control spider populations. One 8 ounce bottle of concentrate will give you 30 gallons of spray to use. It’s a good price for a proven product.
Sometimes the easiest solution is also one of the best solutions. You’ll get 30 boards that can act as spider traps with this product. You can keep traps together to create one larger one or break them apart individually. What makes them so useful against spiders is that their design includes an adhesive backing that will let you stick the trap to the wall or ceiling. The spider crawls into the trap and the glue prevents it from crawling back out. If you want something that you can set and then forget about without poisons, then this is the product for you.
Spiders like to have a nice, peaceful existence. Once you start disrupting that existence, they begin to look for other places to live. This product not only emits an ultrasonic sound that drives pests away, but it also changes the electromagnetic fields of your walls by sending pulses through the wires. This irritates the spiders and makes them disappear back to the outdoors pretty quickly. There can sometimes be an increase in spider sightings once this unit is installed, but that’s because the spiders are trying to escape! As an added bonus, you’ll get a nice nightlight out of the deal too.
Spider Extermination Cost
Controlling spiders through extermination generally fits into the basic insect control services that are offered in most communities. If you’ve never had an extermination service before, then the costs are generally $100-$300 for a first-time application. Should there be dangerous spiders that need to be removed, the costs may be as high as $700 for the first services that are rendered.
For this price, you’ll receive exterior and interior services that will kill spiders now and prevent more spiders from moving in later. After the first-time services are implemented, follow-up services are generally $10-$25 per person.
This may be useful for homes that have large populations of dangerous or bothersome spiders. For the average homeowner, however, the best DIY methods will be much cheaper and just as effective at clearing out this pest.
Spider Repellent and Prevention
Spiders are pests that will find the smallest opening to your home and find a way to get in. Sometimes the spiders that you see in the home have come from eggs that were already left. Either way, securing your outdoor vents, caulking windows and doors, and making sure everything properly seals will help to stop the easiest ways a spider can find their way into a home.
Spiders can also fit into the cracks that may exist in a foundation, a roof, or masonry. You’ll want to seal up these cracks to prevent spiders from coming into the home.
What these pests really enjoy is a dark, musty place to live. If you have a pile of firewood or lumber around your home, then you have the perfect place for a spider to call home. Garden spiders will find homes in trees, rain gutters, and any bushes or landscaping that you have around your property. By limiting piles of cellulose material and keeping the immediate areas around your home free of debris, you’ll be able to limit the spider invasion as well.
Natural Spider Repellent and Killer
If you’ve got spiders hanging around in the corners of your home, then it’s time to break out the vacuum cleaner. If you have a bagless vacuum, remember to not place your hands into the debris in case the spider is still wandering around in there. Dispose of the debris and you’ll be disposing of the spider at the same time. Problem solved!
Washing the walls with a mild disinfectant can also stop spiders from wanting to form webs. Anything from bleach to a pine-scented floor disinfectant will not only remove the dirt from your walls and make them sparkle, but it’ll cause those spiders to flee. If you don’t want to use chemicals, something as simple as dish soap and some warm water can accomplish the same thing.
If you have dark, musty places where you suspect dangerous spiders might be living, you might not want to explore much to see if these pests are lurking about. Throw in some kitty litter and let it sit for about a day. Wear leather gloves, long sleeves, and pants when you access the suspicious area a day later just in case there are still spiders around. Clean up the area as soon as possible to remove the habitat.
Being proactive about removing spider webs is also effective at driving spiders away. Take a broom and sweep down webs as soon as they are found. You can do this outside as well, but if the spider isn’t dangerous, then consider leaving it alone so it can eat other pests for you.
Knowing how to get rid of spiders doesn’t take any special skills. It just takes a little work and a few special tools. Stop being reactive to spiders all the time. Become proactive and those dangerous, biting spiders won’t be taking a bite out of you.