How to Get Rid of Silverfish

Silverfish are a type of small, nocturnal insect. These pests are annoying and can be destructive. Learn how to get rid of silverfish and prevent their return.

Silverfish are a type of very small, nocturnal insect. They are normally darker in color, ranging from silver to dark gray and blue. They have legs, antennae and a fishlike tail. So, what happens when you find these insects inside your home?

Fortunately, silverfish can’t threaten your safety, but they can impact your home by quickly destroying clothes, wallpaper and books, as well as contaminating food. Here are some solutions to help you get rid of silverfish:

  • Decrease your home humidityWhy do you have silverfish bugs in your house? Humidity might be the culprit. If your home is between 75% and 95% humidity, you have a higher chance of discovering these insects in your home. Try running dehumidifiers in damp areas, along with fans and your air conditioning.
  • Seal or remove food—In addition to humid homes, plentiful food sources that are high in polysaccharides and starches make great environments for silverfish. If you have food that is not tightly sealed, consider purchasing airtight containers or throwing out items that do not have a seal. If you don’t take these precautions, silverfish could get into your food and contaminate it.
  • Reducing clutter—When you have clutter in your home, you are creating a habitat for silverfish. As mentioned above, these insects love feeding on wallpaper, books and anything paper-related, which means your stack of old paperwork or your “recycling pile” of newspapers could be a perfect home. By getting rid of these items, sealing them in airtight containers or frequently recycling, you can help prevent encounters with silverfish.
  • Eliminate standing water—Silverfish are attracted to wet areas in your home, which is why you may discover these insects in your basement, kitchen or bathroom. Eliminate the environments that silverfish love by making sure your home is free of standing water.
  • Deep cleaning—Deep-clean your home to prevent an infestation of silverfish or to stop the spreading of your current problem. By vacuuming carpeting, furniture and baseboards, you can proactively suck silverfish eggs out of your home. Your air vents may be hiding silverfish eggs too; check out these tips for cleaning your air vents.
  • Silverfish traps and sprays—Store-bought silverfish traps are a great way to catch these insects in your home. Other substances that silverfish hate include dichotomous earth, boric acid, liquid pyrethrin spray and cedar shavings. All these options can quickly help control your silverfish problem. Just make sure to regularly vacuum and to replace any traps until your silverfish infestation is handled.

Where Do Silverfish Bugs Come From?

Now you know how to get rid of silverfish, but you’re probably still wondering, where do silverfish bugs come from in the first place? Many times, the insects spread after being accidentally brought into the home. If you bring a box inside from outdoors or grab some old items from your garage, silverfish can transfer from these objects into your home. Silverfish can also get in through cracks in your home’s structure.

Once these insects get in, they head straight to any moist areas or to your available food sources. Silverfish are nocturnal, so here are a few signs that silverfish are in your home, even if you can’t see them:

  • Dark, damp spots or areas in your home
  • Dark black, small excrements
  • Small holes or stains on clothes, paper products or food boxes
  • Silverfish skin shedding

Trust Rainbow International® to Keep Your Home Clean and Dry

If you have encountered a silverfish infestation, it’s likely that your home is experiencing a water damage issue or could use a deep cleaning. The experts at Rainbow International are here to help with expert water damage restoration, duct cleaning and carpet cleaning services. Call (855) 724-6269 or request an appointment online to learn more.

It's not just indoor pests; outdoor pest invasions can wreak havoc on your lawn and garden. Learn how to proactively manage outdoor pests with these tips from The Grounds Guys. Like Rainbow International, The Grounds Guys is a part of the Neighborly® community of trusted home services brands.