Best Natural Ways To Get Rid Of Silverfish Infestation

Best Natural Ways To Get Rid Of Silverfish Infestation

Silverfish are quite harmless, but they are ugly to look at and they are unwanted guests in your home.

These creepy creatures with tons of antennas coming out of their carrot-like bodies prefer to stay in cold, dark, damp places like the basement or under the sink in the bathroom. They like to get out of these hiding places at night and snack on starchy stuff like paper, glue, dry goods, and cereal boxes.

A silverfish infestation is common in kitchens, laundries, bathrooms, attics, and basements.

As these pests are secret, the severity of an infestation may go unnoticed for a long time. However, their destructive eating habits can ruin your important papers, clothes and even wallpaper.

If you have silver bugs living in your home, do not panic. You can hire an expert to deal with the infestation or try the natural methods to get rid of them. While tackling a silverfish infestation, take care of the adult silverfish and their hiding places where they laid eggs.

1. Reduce the Humidity

Since silverfish like wet and damp places, the first step you must take is to reduce the humidity in your home. It’s a sure way to keep them out of the way.

  • Use a dehumidifier in damp places such as the basement.
  • Ventilate the attic and the basement using fans.
  • Install a quality bathroom fan to reduce humidity in the room.
  • Replace or repair leaking pipes and faucets.
  • Put silica gel in the corners, holes, cracks and in the closet under the sink.
  • Always make sure the water runs away from your house.
  • Use plastic sheeting on the floor in the crawl spaces.
  • Use vents on the roof to allow moist air to escape.

2. Reduce the Food Sources and Clutter

Since silverfish like wet and damp places, the first step you must take is to reduce the humidity in your home. It’s a sure way to keep them out of the way.

  • Use a dehumidifier in damp places such as the basement.
  • Ventilate the attic and the basement using fans.
  • Install a quality bathroom fan to reduce humidity in the room.
  • Replace or repair leaking pipes and faucets.
  • Put silica gel in the corners, holes, cracks and in the closet under the sink.
  • Always make sure the water runs away from your house.
  • Use plastic sheeting on the floor in the crawl spaces.
  • Use vents on the roof to allow moist air to escape.

How to Avoid Silverfish Infestation Silverfish are quite harmless, but they are ugly to look at and they are unwanted guests in your home. These creepy creatures with tons of antennas coming out of their carrot-like bodies prefer to stay in cold, dark, damp places like the basement or under the sink in the bathroom. They like to get out of these hiding places at night and snack on starchy stuff like paper, glue, dry goods, and cereal boxes. A silverfish infestation is common in kitchens, laundries, bathrooms, attics, and basements. As these pests are secret, the severity of an infestation may go unnoticed for a long time. However, their destructive eating habits can ruin your important papers, clothes and even wallpaper. If you have silver bugs living in your home, do not panic. You can hire an expert to deal with the infestation or try the natural methods to get rid of them. While tackling a silverfish infestation, take care of the adult silverfish and their hiding places where they laid eggs. 1. Reduce the Humidity Since silverfish like wet and damp places, the first step you must take is to reduce the humidity in your home. It's a sure way to keep them out of the way. Use a dehumidifier in damp places such as the basement. Ventilate the attic and the basement using fans. Install a quality bathroom fan to reduce humidity in the room. Replace or repair leaking pipes and faucets. Put silica gel in the corners, holes, cracks and in the closet under the sink. Always make sure the water runs away from your house. Use plastic sheeting on the floor in the crawl spaces. Use vents on the roof to allow moist air to escape. 2. Reduce the Food Sources and Clutter Since silverfish like wet and damp places, the first step you must take is to reduce the humidity in your home. It's a sure way to keep them out of the way. Use a dehumidifier in damp places such as the basement. Ventilate the attic and the basement using fans. Install a quality bathroom fan to reduce humidity in the room. Replace or repair leaking pipes and faucets. Put silica gel in the corners, holes, cracks and in the closet under the sink. Always make sure the water runs away from your house. Use plastic sheeting on the floor in the crawl spaces. Use vents on the roof to allow moist air to escape. 3. Boric Acid Boric acid is a natural substance that can help kill silverfish and destroy their eggs. This crystalline powder acts as a desiccant that helps destroy their exoskeletons, eventually causing dehydration and death. However, this remedy is not for households that have pets. Mix 1 tablespoon of boric acid powder, 1 cup of oatmeal, ½ teaspoon of white sugar and ¼ teaspoon of salt. Sprinkle the mixture in areas where you see silverfish in the evening. The next morning, clean the area carefully. Repeat daily for at least 1 week to completely eradicate the silverfish infestation. Caution: Wear a mask to avoid inhaling boric acid because it is toxic to the lungs. 4. Food-Grade Diatomaceous Earth Diatomaceous earth food grade (DE) is made up of fossilized remains of diatoms, a class of algae that can help get rid of silverfish. DE microscopic silica fragments can damage the exoskeletons of the pests, eventually, cause dehydration and death. Sprinkle DE around baseboards and other damp places in your home where silverfish can hide. Do it in the evening because silverfish come out of hiding at night. The next morning, vacuum the powder with the dead silverfish. Repeat every day for 1 week to make sure you have successfully controlled the infestation. Caution: Always wear a mask when handling ED, as it can irritate the lungs. 5. Homemade Newspaper Trap You can use old newspapers to make quick and inexpensive traps to catch the silverfish around your house. The newspaper works as an excellent source of food for these tiny creatures, making it a perfect bait. Roll a newspaper and seal the ends with rubber bands. Spray water on the rolled newspaper to moisten it. Before going to bed put the wet newspaper where you often see silverfish wandering. The next morning, the silverfish will have made its way into the newspaper and all you have to do is throw out the logs or burn them. Repeat each night until the infestation is under control. 6. Lavender Essential Oil Silverfish hates the smell of lavender, from which you can use the essential oil to get rid of ugly creatures. Fill a 1-gallon spray bottle with distilled water. Add 10 drops each of lavender essential oil and tea tree essential oil in it. Spray on skirting boards, the area under the bathroom and kitchen sinks, and everywhere you've seen silverfish. Do it every day during the night for 1 week. To keep silverfish away from your clothes put bags of dried lavender in your drawers or cabinet to discourage them. 7. Cinnamon Another safe way to deter silverfish is cinnamon. Its strong aroma helps repel them. This method is especially safe if you have pets or infants in your home. A disadvantage of using cinnamon is that it cannot kill these insects or destroy their eggs. Place cinnamon sticks or ground cinnamon in your drawers, kitchen, bathroom, and office. You can also add ¼ to ½ teaspoon of cinnamon essential oil to 1 cup of water. Soak a few cotton balls and place them in areas where silverfish tend to hide. Repeat once a day for about 1 week. 8. Cloves Cloves also work as a very effective natural insecticide to control a silverfish infestation. The strong smell of whole cloves is an effective deterrent. Place a bowl of whole cloves in infested areas like the basement, pantry or any other wet and dark area. You can also place small pockets of muslin containing cloves in your wardrobe to keep your clothes safe. You can also put drops of clove essential oil on cracks and crevices in your walls or foundations to keep the silverfish away.3. Boric Acid

Boric acid is a natural substance that can help kill silverfish and destroy their eggs.

This crystalline powder acts as a desiccant that helps destroy their exoskeletons, eventually causing dehydration and death.

However, this remedy is not for households that have pets.

  • Mix 1 tablespoon of boric acid powder, 1 cup of oatmeal, ½ teaspoon of white sugar and ¼ teaspoon of salt.
  • Sprinkle the mixture in areas where you see silverfish in the evening.
  • The next morning, clean the area carefully.
  • Repeat daily for at least 1 week to completely eradicate the silverfish infestation.

Caution: Wear a mask to avoid inhaling boric acid because it is toxic to the lungs.

4. Food-Grade Diatomaceous Earth

Diatomaceous earth food grade (DE) is made up of fossilized remains of diatoms, a class of algae that can help get rid of silverfish.

  • DE microscopic silica fragments can damage the exoskeletons of the pests, eventually, cause dehydration and death.
  • Sprinkle DE around baseboards and other damp places in your home where silverfish can hide.
  • Do it in the evening because silverfish come out of hiding at night.
  • The next morning, vacuum the powder with the dead silverfish.
  • Repeat every day for 1 week to make sure you have successfully controlled the infestation.

Caution: Always wear a mask when handling ED, as it can irritate the lungs.

5. Homemade Newspaper Trap

You can use old newspapers to make quick and inexpensive traps to catch the silverfish around your house.

The newspaper works as an excellent source of food for these tiny creatures, making it a perfect bait.

  • Roll a newspaper and seal the ends with rubber bands.
  • Spray water on the rolled newspaper to moisten it.
  • Before going to bed put the wet newspaper where you often see silverfish wandering.
  • The next morning, the silverfish will have made its way into the newspaper and all you have to do is throw out the logs or burn them.
  • Repeat each night until the infestation is under control.

6. Lavender Essential Oil

Silverfish hates the smell of lavender, from which you can use the essential oil to get rid of ugly creatures.

  • Fill a 1-gallon spray bottle with distilled water.
  • Add 10 drops each of lavender essential oil and tea tree essential oil in it.
  • Spray on skirting boards, the area under the bathroom and
    kitchen sinks, and everywhere you’ve seen silverfish.
  • Do it every day during the night for 1 week.
  • To keep silverfish away from your clothes put bags of dried lavender in your drawers or cabinet to discourage them.

7. Cinnamon

Another safe way to deter silverfish is cinnamon. Its strong aroma helps repel them. This method is especially safe if you have pets or infants in your home.

A disadvantage of using cinnamon is that it cannot kill these insects or destroy their eggs.

Place cinnamon sticks or ground cinnamon in your drawers, kitchen, bathroom, and office.

You can also add ¼ to ½ teaspoon of cinnamon essential oil to 1 cup of water. Soak a few cotton balls and place them in areas where silverfish tend to hide. Repeat once a day for about 1 week.

8. Cloves

Cloves also work as a very effective natural insecticide to control a silverfish infestation. The strong smell of whole cloves is an effective deterrent.

Place a bowl of whole cloves in infested areas like the basement, pantry or any other wet and dark area.

You can also place small pockets of muslin containing cloves in your wardrobe to keep your clothes safe.

You can also put drops of clove essential oil on cracks and crevices in your walls or foundations to keep the silverfish away.

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About the Author: Jaya Krishna

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