02/24/2017 | Are You Accidentally Bringing Pests Into the Office?
There are a million ways for pests to get into your building. Some of these ways in, like gaps in the insulation, foundation, or windows, are obvious. Others are not. For having brains about the size of a bread crumb, pests are alarmingly clever. They’ll use just about anything as a means of infiltrating work. Including you!
Luckily, there are ways to prevent pesky pests from taking advantage of you as a taxi service in the future. Here are four of the most common exploits pests use to sneak into your building with you… and how to avoid them.
Pests like fleas, flies, roaches, spiders, pillbugs, and more all love house plants. They’re the total-package: they provide food, moisture, warmth, shelter, and even a hiding place. If you bring plants into work, it’s possible pests burrowed into the dirt, clung to leaves, or hid on the stalks in order to bum an easy ride. They could even use the pot itself as transport.
Before you bring a plant into work, carefully inspect it. Check the dirt for signs of burrowing or movement. Check the leaves, stems, stalks, and flowers. Check the pot too, especially the underside. Pests love to drink the water you meant for your house plants, so keep an especially close eye on plants you water frequently. If you find pests, look into ways to get rid of them before taking the plant to work.
Think about what you bring into work everyday: a briefcase? Computer bag? Backpack? Lunch box? Pests can get into virtually any form of carrying case. Bags are warm, dark, and good for hiding. Pests will be particularly attracted to bags with food or crumbs in them.
It’s a good idea to empty your bags at the end of the day, every day. Clean out and wash your travelling bags every week or two. Even tiny crumbs are like a beacon to pests, and once they’re in, you’ll carry them with you everywhere. Make sure food you keep in your bags is sealed. Keep your bag securely closed whenever it isn’t in use, and be careful about where you keep your bag at home. A sealed bag on a hanger or shelf is much harder for spiders, bedbugs, and roaches to get into than an open bag on a kitchen countertop.
Sorry to gross you out, but sometimes little pests sneak into a workplace by clinging to people’s clothes. It’s hard to see bedbugs on your shoes or the bottom (or even inside!) of your pant leg. You probably know that moths eat fabric, but clothing is also a good place for bed bugs, pillbugs, and other small pests to nest and lay eggs.
Keep an eye on clothing you don’t wear often. We think of dress clothes as particularly clean, but it’s just as possible pests moved into your suit since the last time you wore it. Consider washing or at least running clothes you don’t wear often through the dryer before putting them on, even if you washed them before you put them away. Check clothing you wear on outdoor activities especially closely. Opportunistic pests like ticks and fleas love to grab hold of your clothes while you’re out and about.
It sounds obvious, but it’s easy to forget: pests are attracted to food. If you bring a lunch to work, make sure you aren’t carrying anything decidedly unappetizing along with it. Pests are totally fine with chewing holes through bags to get at your lunch; they aren’t as picky as we are.
A lot of “brown baggers” put fruit into their lunch bags without sealing it in plastic or tupperware. That’s a big mistake, because pests are especially attracted to sugars. If you’re bringing carbs or sugars, make sure they’re secured where pests can’t easily access it. Dispose of food before it gets stale, and don’t leave anything in the open over night. Even if you followed all these steps, double check your lunch bag before leaving for work every day.
Remember: if you follow all these steps and still wind up with pests in your workplace, don’t panic. There are a ton of ways pests worm their way into offices and other buildings. They’ll never be able to prove this is all your fault anyway. If you need some help with an infestation, give Assured a call today. We have the experience and technology to find and fix your particular pest problem and make sure it doesn’t happen again.