8 expert tips for spider-proofing your home this autumn

spider proof home, cobwebs in door frame
How to spider-proof your home this autumnHoward Ferrier - Getty Images

The arrival of autumn marks the start of spider mating season, meaning you're likely to spot these creepy crawlies on the move in your home. But how exactly do you get rid of spiders in the home for good?

'Like all species, spiders need water and moisture to survive. From sinks to dishwashers, you're likely to find them in the kitchen and bathroom,' says Mike Norton, trade and projects director at Magnet Trade.

'Supermarkets charge anything from £5 to £11 for spider repellent. Using houseplants and natural tricks to do the work for you is not only cheaper, but the chemical-free method makes your home look and smell amazing.'

Take a look at how you can naturally deter spiders below...

1. Use peppermint oil and water

Spiders hate the strong smell of peppermint, so it's the perfect weapon to naturally ward them off. Since spiders use the tiny hairs on their leg to sense vibration and smell, they find pungent peppermint incredibly unpleasant.

In order to keep the bugs at bay, simply transfer peppermint oil into a spray bottle and dilute it with some water. Then, spray around your window and doorframe to deter them from making an appearance. You may also find it useful to grow peppermint plants in your kitchen.

spider proof home peppermint
Dragos Rusu / 500px - Getty Images

There are lots of aromatic plants that can naturally deter spiders. Take a look at our full list of the best plants proven to repel spiders naturally.

2. Seal any cracks

One of the best ways to spider-proof your home is by caulking and sealing any cracks. You can do this yourself by applying silicone or acrylic latex caulk, using enough to completely cover the crack.

'The best way of getting rid of spiders is by keeping them out in the first place. Start by sealing any cracks or openings around your windows and doors with caulk, weatherstripping or sealant to reduce the chance of an initial invasion,' explains Mike.

'With the cold weather approaching, getting this done now has the added benefit of retaining heat better in your home and saving energy through reduced central heating use and temperatures.'

spider proof home, window seal
John keeble - Getty Images

3. Use vinegar and water

Spiders are sensitive to vinegar's odour and sour taste, making it another brilliant natural deterrent. To repel spiders from the nooks and crannies of your house, simply spritz a little vinegar and water solution in hidden corners.

'Spray half water and half vinegar all over the crevices of your window, being careful to avoid varnished surfaces as vinegar can be harsh on these,' adds Adam Pawson, head of digital at Safestyle UK. 'Not only will you be keeping spiders out, vinegar is a great repellent for anyone struggling with ant infestations.'

4. Scatter cinnamon sticks

Cinnamon sticks are also great for deterring spiders, thanks to their strong scent. 'Dot cinnamon sticks around your home or grab yourself a cinnamon scented candle to burn and you'll be sending those spiders packing in no time,' suggests Mike. 'If cinnamon isn't your preferred scent, any candle that contains citronella will do the trick.'

spider proof home cinnamon quills
Enrique Díaz / 7cero - Getty Images

5. Gather citrus peels

Spiders dislike citrus fruits, including lemons, oranges and grapefruits. If you want to keep them out of your home, mix your leftover lemon, lime or orange peel with water to create a paste. Rub over your windowsill and say goodbye to the creepy crawlies for good.

'This is one of the easiest and most effective tricks, costing around 14p compared to a £10 readymade spider repellent,' continues Mike. 'Rub lemon peels all over the windowsills or anywhere spiders tend to perch, such as on skirting boards and bookshelves. The strong citrus scent will repel them away and give your home a lovely fresh scent.'

6. Turn off the lights

Despite spiders preferring to hide out in dark corners, they are drawn to bright light bulbs (they hope to find insects hovering around the light). To keep them out of sight, simply hit that light switch off before climbing into bed.

Adam explains: 'Like many insects, spiders are attracted to light. Making sure that your lights are turned off overnight and while you're not in the house is a fool-proof way to make sure you're not inviting spiders — and you're keeping the bills down. You can also frequently dust and clean any particularly light and airy spaces to ensure no bugs get a chance to set up camp.'

7. Maintain a regular cleaning routine

Spiders like to have cosy places to hide, so one of the best ways to prevent this is by keeping your house neat and tidy through regular cleaning.

'We mustn't forget to keep on top of cleaning every nook and cranny around our windows to get rid of existing cobwebs and prevent them from reappearing,' says Adam. 'Simply grab your vacuum cleaner to quickly get rid of well-formed cobwebs and grab a damp cloth and some everyday cleaner to wipe over the rest of the area.'

If you do spot an eight-legged visitor hiding in the corner, why not pick up a clever spider catcher, such as this sell-out version from Lakeland. Without harming spiders, it sucks up bugs but makes it easy to release them outside.

8. Find some conkers

'If all else fails, it's an old wives' tale that spiders fear the strong scent of conkers,' reveals Adam. 'Since conkers are in abundance at this time of year, head out to find a chestnut tree and hide some conkers in and around your windows in the hope that it keeps the bugs at bay.'

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