Is Your Damp Basement Becoming A Cricket Campground?

Keeping your basement free from damp can be a tricky business, but one that is well worth the effort. Excessive moisture and humidity in your basement can lead to toxic mold growth, and may even cause serious structural problems. Damp can also make your basement more vulnerable to pest infestations, especially crickets.

Why Are Crickets Attracted To Damp Basements?

Like most insects, crickets breathe through tiny holes in their hard outer shells or exoskeletons. If the exoskeleton dries out, these holes close, and the cricket suffocates. To prevent this, crickets will spend as much time as possible in damp, dark, sheltered areas. Unfortunately, this makes a damp basement an ideal cricket habitat.

Basements also provide a protected, sheltered place for female crickets to lay their eggs. Some species of cricket can lay hundreds of eggs in a few days, so what starts as a small cricket problem in your basement can quickly spiral out of control.

How Can You Keep Crickets Out Of Your Damp Basement?

The best way to keep crickets out of your basement is to keep it as dry and damp-free as possible.

Damp problems in basements can be caused by a number of underlying issues. Cracks in walls and floor slabs can allow moisture to seep in, and poor basement ventilation can increase humidity levels. Your basement may also require a new sump pump or dehumidifier. You should call in a waterproofing contractor as soon as possible to inspect your basement and carry out the necessary work.

If crickets have already invaded your basement, you should act quickly to remove them before they can reproduce. Call in a professional pest control company to inspect your basement. Pest control experts will be able to find access points where crickets are entering your basement and root out the hidden spots where they hide and lay their eggs.

Once your pest control service knows where the crickets are located, they can quickly and humanely exterminate them. They can deploy specialized traps to catch jumping crickets and treat problem areas with powerful, fast-acting insecticides.

If the crickets are already reproducing in numbers, they may also deploy insect growth regulators (IGRs). These chemicals are harmless to humans and pets, but effectively sterilize female crickets, preventing them from laying eggs.

Once the existing infestation has been destroyed, your pest control service will take steps to protect your basement from future infestations. If crickets enter your basement through ventilation ducts and grilles, they can be reinforced with insect-proof mesh screens. Any gaps in walls and floors (such as spaces around dryer vents) can be sealed with expanding, insecticidal foams.  

For more info, contact a local exterminator