Have you found that you’ve been carrying some extra, unwanted passengers recently? If so, it makes sense that you’d want to get rid of whatever intruding critters have been invading your space. Whether you’re dealing with spiders, ants, fleas, bed bugs or flies, there’s always a solution.
How and why do these bugs come into your car?
Insects, bugs and parasites can enter your car in a number of ways: through some less obvious routes, such as through the cracks between the window and the door, and between the door and doorframe, and also in the ways you’d expect, such as through the door when it’s open, through the window while you’re driving, and are also transferred when they’re attached to people, or objects (especially plants) which come into the car.
A number of things can increase the likelihood of acquiring these pesky passengers. If it’s particularly cold, or rainy, or even too hot, outside, then bugs are likely to view your car as a safe refuge, a sheltered haven away from harsh weather conditions. Moreover, if you keep food in your car, or have spilled something on the floor of your car (especially, if it’s something sugary) then you’re likely to attract certain bugs, like ants, who will come and feed on the contents if given half a chance. More than this, some air freshening devices for the car are sweet smelling to the point where insects are confused into thinking that there’s food in the car, when there isn’t.
Can these bugs live permanently in your car?
For the most part, bugs use our cars in the same way we do: they get in the car, go on a journey, then eventually leave the car again, since (clean) cars can’t provide a sustainable source of food for most bugs. However, bed bugs, for example, can make a permanent residence out of your car, as long as it’s in regular use, since their food source human blood. While other insects and creepy crawlies might lay a nest of eggs in your car, and it’s something you should be aware of, it’s unlikely, since there’s no food source to sustain the offspring. When it comes to bed bugs, however, your car provides the perfect laying spot.
(Note that if you do keep food in your car, and fail to clean up spillages, you may create a home and a nesting spot for more than just bed bugs- e.g. ants.)
Vacuum your car.
The vacuum you use should have powerful suction- if a high-powered vac isn’t something you own, some gas stations offer a pay-per-use service of car vacuums. Or, you could choose to rely on professional exterminators to use their own specialist hoovers to deal with the problem. Vacuuming deals with a number of bug-related issues at the same time: it can suck up live critters which continue to use you as a taxi service, as well as relieve you of any carcasses that may have been deposited- lastly, it can remove eggs, which will serve to ensure that the problem doesn’t propagate. Make sure to open the doors and vacuum around the seam to remove any spiders, cockroaches, ants or other critters that might be hiding out in there, as well as remove any eggs that may have been laid there, since it provides a good laying spot as there is often an accumulation of dirt and fluff.
Wash the floor mats/any removable upholstery.
Fabric is a great place to lay eggs- at least in the mind of your invaders. More than this, under these removable features of your car, bugs can hide and take refuge, so you need to make sure you remove them when you vacuum and clean the interior, lest any insects take refuge underneath. Washing these also helps to ensure that any eggs that have managed to survive the vacuum, or any faecal matter which the bugs may have left as a parting gift, is removed from your car.
Wash the exterior of your car.
Bugs can cling to the exterior of your car, eventually making their way to the interior. A common example of this (and easy to spot) is on your wing mirrors- you’d be hard pressed to find someone who hadn’t had a spider’s web on their mirrors at some point. You can wash your car by hand, or take it to a car wash.
Use bug-specific chemicals to give the inside of your car a ‘once over’.
If you have a specific pest in mind that you want to target, you can use pet-specific remedies to deter the creepy crawlies, which will make them want to exit your vehicle ASAP. For example, eucalyptus spray deters cockroaches, a water and lemon spray deters spiders. Unlike most pests, you need to contact a bed bug expert to conduct a heat treatment. Learn more about bed bug heat treatments here. All other pests can generally be swatted or you can use a bug trap under your seats to catch them.
Have the professionals come and deal with your bugged-up car.
There’s not a more sure-fire way to ensure that your car is pest-free (and stays that way) than to call professional exterminators. They can easily identify the kind of pests that they’re dealing with and act accordingly- if they find that you have a specific insect problem they can use specialist vacuums and chemicals to target them and their eggs, as well as take measures to repel pests in the future. If you call an expert you generally want us to take care of your home. If you are only worried about your car most DIY pest control tactics can work except for bed bugs. Either way give your local overland park pest control company a call and we will give you a free quote.
What kind of preventative measures should you take?
There are a few simple measures which you can take to reduce the risk of suffering another such invasion:
Don’t bring food or sugary drinks into the car.
Even if you manage not to spill anything on the floor or car seats, the aroma of certain foods can cling to the upholstery and stick around in the air for some time after they’ve been consumed, which is enough to attract certain insects into your car.
Clean your car regularly.
Run your car through a car wash when you can find the time, and don’t forget to clean and vacuum the inside, too. More than this, if you make sure there’s no clutter, rubbish, or dirt stored in your car for long periods, then you reduce the risk of bugs laying eggs in your vehicle, since these are considered prime laying spots by the critters.
Now that you know how to get rid of any bugs or insects in your car, you can get started with a solution, whether that be to deal with the problem yourself, or bring in the professionals.