One moment your electrical system is working fine and the next thing you know it isn’t. When you try to get a closer look, out runs a bug sending you screaming or staring in terror!
Sure, it’s the stuff of horror movies, but bugs in outlets are very real, common, and dangerous for your electrical system.
What did they want and how do they get in?
It doesn’t matter if your home is generally clean or perfectly sealed. Bugs are determined creatures who only need the tiniest of cracks to get in. And when they do, they find a home and hide there. Several insects and bugs have some sort of attraction for electrical hardware. Here are the most common intruders;
- Fire ants
Fire ants love to gather in traffic signal boxes and electrical outlets. While living in these spaces, they chew on wiring sheaths and release alarm pheromones once electrocuted by the exposed wiring. The pheromones summon more ants who in turn get electrocuted and before you know what’s happening, a short circuit develops from the large number of dead ants!
- Bed bugs
Bed bugs are lovers of soft, comfy places like the mattress. But they can also go lurking into books, clocks, dresser drawers, and electrical outlets. This spread usually occurs in homes with a high number of bed bugs. They crawl into outlets, especially those closest to beds. They love the tight, warm, and dark space. As the bed bugs thrive in these outlets, they leave wastes, residues, and dead bed bugs which quickly cause corrosion or degradation of electrical contacts and circuit boards.
Yes, cockroaches inhabit outlets too. They crave environments that are dark, warm, and tight and allow their shells to touch their bodies. This is why you can find cockroaches in table legs, under furniture, and so on. Disgusting, you say? It gets worse. While in the outlets, they produce secretions that can corrode the receptacles and start a fire. Not to mention the smell you might get a whiff of when close to such an outlet.
How to deal with the invaders
- Call pest control ASAP
As soon as the infestation has been discovered, waste no time in contacting pest control. It’s better to leave the eradication to these professionals as they ensure a thorough job and that the bugs never return. However, if the infestation is mild, dusting boric acid on the outlets can get rid of the bugs.
- Call an electrician
When pest control is settled and over, it’s vital you call an electrical technician to check for any damage to your electrical system. These should be fixed and sealed quickly
- Protect your home
The final step is to ensure your home is properly sealed. Spray foam insulation is highly useful in this step. Seal gaps, cracks, outlets, and so on to prevent a reoccurrence. Overall, keep the house clean.