Anyone who lives in Oklahoma knows that as summer turns to fall, spiders, ants, flies, and cockroaches have a nasty habit of finding their way into our homes—no matter how hard we may try to keep them out. Houses are warm and dry, after all, and must be pretty attractive places to bugs and spiders who want to escape the cold and damp. Unfortunately, self-storage in Oklahoma isn’t completely immune to these pesky invaders either, so while we here at Storage ‘R’ Us do everything we can to make sure that the outsides of your unit are proof against creepy crawlies, there are a few tips that you can follow inside your unit to help discourage unwanted pests.

Maybe the most obvious thing to do is not to store food in your storage unit. That includes making sure that any furniture or other items, like your camping gear, are carefully cleaned and vacuumed before they go into storage. Even tiny crumbs of food can attract critters. Another thing that you can do if you’re particularly concerned about insect-sized pests is to put down sticky traps or tape, what we used to call “roach motels.” The key with these, however, is to make sure you change them out frequently. You don’t want a lot of dead bugs in your unit, any more than you want a bunch of live ones.

When we’re talking about self-storage in Oklahoma, one of the most common pests we face—especially in the late summer and fall—are spiders. While other insects may be attracted to food or even to the cardboard or other items that you store in your unit, spiders are likely just trying to get in someplace dry and safe to build their webs. Fortunately, the majority of the spiders that we have here in Oklahoma aren’t venomous, but most people still don’t want to find them in a box of their stuff. And of course, if you do run into either a brown recluse or a black widow—the two most common venomous spiders in Oklahoma—it’s not a pleasant experience.

So what’s the best way to keep spiders out of your self-storage in Oklahoma? Keeping your storage unit neat and tidy is the first step. Spiders love clutter, because it gives them plenty of places to hide and spin their webs. Leave “breathing room” between the walls of your storage unit and the items that you store, and aisles between the items themselves, and keep these areas clean and clear. What you don’t want to do is spray a bunch of harmful chemicals around. After all, this is your stuff that you’re storing, and a storage unit is an enclosed space, so insecticides aren’t the best idea. If you can’t discourage eight-legged invaders with some cleaning and tidying, try putting together a home-made spider repellant by combining essential oils such as citrus, peppermint, citronella, lavender, or clove with some dish washing liquid and water. Spray the mixture around the entrance to your storage unit, and anyplace else you’ve seen spiders, and voila, spider-free self-storage in Oklahoma!