Don't underestimate the little guys. Although small, there are approximately 1.5 million ants on Earth for every human being. With such large population numbers, it's a lot easier for ants to find their way inside your storage unit than you'd think. If you don't want to be in a situation where you have to deal with exterminating a whole colony of ants, you'd best make sure that you have taken appropriate steps to keep these pesky little insects away. Here are 3 highly recommended tips that you should keep in mind.
Steam Clean All Furniture
When a single ant finds a food source, it will leave a pheromone trail to signal others of its discovery. You only need one ant to find crumbs of food in your storage unit before attracting the entire colony. With that said, you'd be surprised at how many crumbs and food stains find their way onto heavily used furniture, like sofas and couches. In fact, don't be surprised to find food stains on the surface of your upholstery.
As large furniture tends to be left exposed within the storage unit, you definitely need to make sure that there are no crumbs or food stains present. Your best bet will be to have all of your furniture professionally steam cleaned before moving it into the storage unit. Inspect the crevices of each piece of furniture to make sure that it is completely clean. If possible, wrap your furniture with plastic wrap.
Thoroughly Clean All Kitchen Appliances
Large furniture is not the only place where a food source for the ants may be located. All kitchen appliances need to be thoroughly cleaned as well before getting stored in the unit. While you can just throw your dinnerware and utensils, like your forks, knives and spoons, into a dishwasher, you'll have to put some elbow grease into cleaning your toaster and microwave oven manually. Even if you haven't used the kitchen appliances or dinnerware for some time now, give them a quick cleaning before packing them for storage. Allow the kitchen appliances to fully dry before you pack them away.
Store all of your kitchen appliances in sealed cardboard boxes or plastic containers just to be extra safe. This way, even if you have missed a crumb or two within the appliance, the crumb will be sealed away, so that it will avoid detection by the ants.
Check for Holes and Cracks
Ants are only going to make their way into your storage unit if there is a path into the unit for them. Inspect your unit to make sure that there are no holes and cracks – especially in the corners of the unit or where the walls and the floor meet. Even the smallest holes and cracks will easily allow ants into your unit.
You can temporarily fill in any holes or cracks that you see with caulk. You'll want to speak with the manager of the self storage facility if there are any large holes or cracks, as it will be their responsibility to perform the repairs needed.
Ants can be quite a nuisance. Once they have found their way into your unit, getting them out can be rather difficult. In fact, there's little chance that the ants will be leaving on their own. You'll have to spend a lot of time exterminating the ants or having a professional do the job for you. By implementing the tips above, you'll be able to save yourself from the headaches and heartaches associated with having to deal with ant infestations. You'll also better protect your personal items and valuables stored within the unit. For more information on self-storage units, contact a company like All American Self Storage.