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Storage Units In Nashville Could Be Pest Breeding Grounds

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At the time of this writing, the self-storage industry is booming. We can thank spiking rent costs for that. When Nashville residents don't have the finances to rent an apartment, they find themselves leaning on friends and family for a place to live and they store all of their belongings until they find another solution. We don't know what the economic conditions are for you and your storage unit business as you read this, but we know one thing for sure: when your customers trust you to protect their stuff, you're going to make every effort because you know how much these belongings mean to people. Pests don't. Not only do pests not know that our belongings matter to us, they also don't know which things are ours and which are not. To make matters worse, pests aren't house trained. When pests get into storage units, they contaminate stored items with their waste. Some pests don't just damage items with their waste but chew holes in wood, fabric, and other materials. While most pests will get into storage units and go right back out, some are able to breed and reproduce indoors, increasing the amount of damage they do. Our topic today is pests breeding in Nashville storage units. We'll look at which pests do this, what you can do to keep them out, and how Nashville pest control can help.

Can Bugs Live Inside Your Garage Or Storage Unit?

Can bugs live in these places? Some can. While any bug that gets into a storage unit can make a mess, the bugs that are able to breed and reproduce are going to make more of a mess. Here are just a few of the destructive pests that are capable of turning a storage unit into a breeding ground.

Cockroaches: Public enemy number one in storage units is the German cockroach. These cockroaches have adapted to living indoors and are able to create a large population in a small space. Their ability to grow a population will be dependent on food sources that are available. Unfortunately, roaches don't just eat human food. They eat paper products, glue, toothpaste, hair, dead skin (dust), and many other things found in storage units. As they grow a population, they'll leave more and more black feces on items. They'll also damage the items they're feeding on. 

Silverfish: If silverfish can find humid conditions, they can live indoors. In a storage unit, these insects can find plentiful food sources. They eat books, bindings, wallpaper, clothing, upholstery, dead insects, and more. These pests are a serious threat to vintage clothing and priceless books, which are common items found in storage. As they explore a storage unit and find things to feed on, they'll deface items, create holes, attract mold to the surfaces they've damaged, and leave their waste.    

Clothing Moths: These pests have a reputation for damaging clothing, and they have earned it. If a clothing moth finds its way into a storage unit and lays eggs on an item, its larvae will cause damage as it feeds. When it becomes an adult, it will breed and reproduce. The result of this will be a swarm of moths laying eggs everywhere they can. Any items made from wool, fur, feathers, silk, leather, and felt are at risk.  

Carpet Beetles: Don't let the name mislead you. Carpet beetles don't damage only carpets. They can damage all the items a clothing moth can damage and they breed in the same way. Larvae do all the damage and when they become adults they reproduce and create more larvae. It is a compounding problem.   

Ants: There are some ants that can become a problem. The type of ant to watch out for is the carpenter ant. When carpenter ants get into a storage unit and find a soft wood source, they can excavate tunnels in the wood and create a nest. Of all the pests listed here, these are the least likely to create problems.

Stored Product Pests: These are Indian meal moths and several species of beetles and weevils. Often referred to as pantry pests, these insects are known for their propensity to lay their eggs in food sources. If one of these pests finds stored food in a storage unit, they can go from package to package and contaminate all the food. The good news is that most customers will store food in sealed plastic containers before putting them into storage if they consider storing food at all.  

All insects that get into storage units can cause damage, even the insects that don't reproduce inside, such as Asian lady beetles, stink bugs, and box elder bugs. The goal of your pest control is to keep all pests out.

Can Rodents Survive Inside Storage Units?

Yes. Rodents can survive inside storage units, but not permanently. Mice and rats are not likely to find plentiful food sources in a storage unit, but they can get inside and create a nest. These structures offer a protected location for nesting and breeding. So, while rats and mice will go outside to find food, they'll be more than happy to grow a population inside a storage unit. As their populations grow, you can expect them to cause more damage.

  • Rodents soak stored items with their urine.
  • Rodents contaminate items with their feces.
  • Rodents get into the soft innards of cushions, pillows, and other household items.
  • Rodents chew on things to test and see if they're food.

Of all the pests that plague businesses that offer storage units, these two are the worst. They damage stored items and create conditions for illness to occur.

How To Properly Pest Proof Your Storage Unit

Exclusion work is essential for keeping units pest-free. Here are several tools for this job.

  • Expanding foam is good for quick and easy patches. While rodents can chew through this material, they may not be motivated to try. Use foam in areas where you're not concerned about having an unsightly mess.
  • Caulking works the same way expanding foam does, only it looks better. You can get silicone caulk that matches the color of the materials you're patching. Rodents can chew through this material but may not. A rodent tends to make small holes larger. Since caulking is used to seal tiny holes that insect pests can use, it is great for keeping rodents out as well.
  • Steel wool, hardware cloth and metal flashing are the materials you'll use to bolster your protection and stop rodents from chewing through.

Once you've sealed potential entry points, take time to consider conducive conditions. When pests are given a reason to explore the exteriors of storage units, they're more likely to get inside. 

  • Look for moisture problems. Damp conditions attract pests and allow certain pests (like silverfish) to find a desirable place to live and breed.
  • Remove leaves, dead branches, plant debris, stacked wood, and other organic items. Pests hide underneath these to shelter themselves from the sun.
  • Keep dumpsters and trash receptacles well away from storage units. Many pests are drawn to rotting organic matter.
  • Keep white exterior lights away from storage units. Many insects are attracted to white light. If you're not able to move lights away due to security issues, consider replacing white lights with yellow lights. Insects aren't able to see yellow light.

These steps may be all you need to keep pests out and guard against pest damage. When more control is needed, contact CIMA Solutions for assistance. We offer industry-leading commercial pest control in Nashville, and our team has the experience and professionalism to help you guard against pest damage.

Professional Pest Control For Nashville Storage Units

What can you expect when you contact CIMA Solutions? We will send a service professional to inspect your property and evaluate pest activity, pest routes, potential entry points, conducive conditions, and other relevant factors. Based on our findings, we'll suggest a customized treatment plan to establish pest-free storage areas. Your service may include some or all of the following:

  • We'll apply exclusion materials to seal the holes pests will use to get inside.
  • We'll apply liquid application around the exterior of your storage units to make it hard for pests to live near these units or attempt to get inside.
  • We granulate your property to reduce pest activity and prevent certain pests from reaching the exterior of the storage units.
  • Where needed, we can treat the interior of storage units to repel pests and make these indoor spaces unfavorable for insects. The products we use are kids-safe and pet-friendly.

The services we provide are applied monthly, bi-monthly, or quarterly, depending on the products used. We work with you to find the right solution to reduce pest activity and prevent breeding inside your storage units. If you live in Nashville, reach out to CIMA Solutions for commercial pest control services you can trust. We use eco-friendly products and field-tested methods to get the best protection possible. Your customers deserve no less. Connect with us today to learn more or to schedule service.