Last updated on April 26th, 2022
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Slugs can be a huge burden in your garden and especially in your home. Most of the time we only realise we have a slug problem when we see the trails across our floors, and maybe even up our walls. If you’ve accidentally stepped on one you know that it’s probably one of the grossest experiences.
How do they get into your home? And more importantly, how can you stop them from coming into your home in the future?
What brings slugs into a house?
Older homes are often attractive to slugs because of the crevices and cracks that allow them to get inside, and inside it’s dark, cool and sometimes wet, providing them with the conditions they love.
Slugs might show up in the morning and usually in your kitchen. They have a good sense of smell, which is why they end up in these areas. If you leave your dog food or cat food out, they’ll smell it and come crawling in on a rainy spring evening in search of food. If you have food in your kitchen or in your pantries they might even come looking for that.
How do they get into my house?
Slugs are soft and this means that they can squeeze through even the smallest of cracks. They’re able to climb up vertical surfaces and in some cases travel upside down. Usually they get in through space under your door, joints in your walls, cutouts you might have in a wall for your dryer duct or holes that are drilled in your floor specifically for gas pipes or water pipes.
How do I stop them from coming into my house?
This requires a multi-faceted approach. You’re going to want to use a flashlight or a torch to find the dried trails from where they invaded because this will lead you to the entry points. Only by finding the entry points can you really rectify the problem.
Start by looking in joints or holes, any gaps you have around doors or vents, underneath your cupboards, or along your walls. Realistically you need to seal any of these gaps you find.
Sealing larger gaps with expanding foam
If you have larger gaps you can use expanding foam like polyurethane foam or a silicone sealant for smaller cracks. The polyurethane foam comes in a can and it will expand as it cures so any voids you have are filled with this foam and it creates a waterproof and slug-proof barrier.
It’s also great because it not only prevents the slugs from getting in but it seals the hole against any winter cold, rodents, or outside noise. This is something you should use around any pipes, any ductwork, or any extra joints where there are spaces around the edges of your skirting boards or your doors.
When you use this product make sure you are wearing old clothes, just in case it gets on your clothes because it will stick once it gets there. It will also stick to your hands or your hair, so keep your hair tied back and wear gloves. There is no easier way to fill larger spaces, we highly recommend that you put down some newspaper or some plastic protective sheets to catch anything that falls out of the nozzle as you are working. Once it hardens in place you can cut away any excess using a serrated knife. If it is a visible area still use this expanding foam to seal the region but then paint over it. It’s very easy to do and very effective.
Using silicone to fill in smaller cracks
As mentioned if you have a smaller area, gaps thinner than a pencil you can use a silicone sealant instead of foam, be sure to use waterproof sealant if using in cracks that lead to damp exposed areas.
Squeeze some of the silicone into any areas around your door trim, the joints, floorboards, or any hole or space you have in your wall or floor. This comes in a tube that you literally just squeeze into place, like a tube of toothpaste, so it’s much easier to use in a tight space.
Physical door seals
There are physical door seals that you can use if you don’t want to make a permanent adjustment to your house. These are physical barriers that you place between the inside and outside of your door jamb so that the door rests in between the two foam barriers that run along either side.
They do the job well and are very easy to install. You slide it under your door, however, it won’t work as effectively if you have carpet. It does of course cut down on any draughts or noise as well, and you can usually trim the inner or outer sections to fit your door.
Alternative methods to stop slugs coming into your home
Sprinkling diatomaceous earth on the slugs
If you don’t want to use a physical sealant you can always use organic methods of dealing with slugs, for example, sprinkling diatomaceous earth on the slugs.
You can always introduce ducks or chickens to your garden who will seek them out and eat them, plus as a reward, you will also get free eggs. And of course, you can kill them with salt, but killing them with salt is quite messy.
Slug bait seems like a good idea, you put the pellets down and they get lured by the pellets and eat those instead of eating things in your house. Newer versions of these baits are non-toxic to pets, children and wildlife. The slugs crawl to it, they eat it, they crawl away and they die a few days later.
The problem of course here is that sometimes they might die in your home and what’s worse, if you put the slug bait in your home, they end up still indoors. You can always place the baits around your garden, as long as it’s far enough away that by the time they leave and die they don’t do so inside of your home.
Laying slug traps near where they are entering your home
Slug traps are very effective if you can find where they are entering your home and you can set up the traps there.
Overall, there are plenty of options out there for handling a slug problem and keeping them out of your house. If you are really worried about the problem and you want to nip it in the bud, try to employ multiple methods at once by blocking up any gaps and then setting traps outdoors to catch them before they enter your home.
Read next: How to stop flies coming into your house
Last update on 2022-03-17 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API