Skip to Content

5 Pests That Are a Nuisance in the Winter

Besides the cooler temperatures, winter can present various nuisances. While pests cause trouble all year, they tend to increase in frequency during the winter in some parts of the country. However, you can do some things to protect yourself from unwanted visitors.

Today, we’ll look at five pests that cause a nuisance in the winter and what you can do to stop them. Let’s get started.

What Bugs Stay Out in the Winter?

Very few bugs stay out in the winter. Most will seek shelter in any warm location they can find. However, nymph forms of dragonflies, mayflies, and stoneflies can withstand the winter in certain conditions. 

They’ll typically stay near ponds, streams, and creeks and under any ice that forms. These immature insects spend winter feasting and develop into adults in the spring.

Do Spiders Get Worse in the Winter?

Many people believe that spiders somehow infest their homes more in the winter. However, one popular home pest control company, Terminix, confirms that it’s nothing more than a myth. 

You may notice spiders during the winter, but you have a good chance those spiders have been there all year. However, some pests are more common in the winter than others. 

Pro Tip: No matter the time of year, these 5 tips will keep bugs out of your RV.

Close up of a Silverfish
As temperatures drop, pests will seek refuge in your warm home.

5 Pests That Are a Nuisance in the Winter

Humans aren’t the only ones heading indoors to get out of the cold. Some pests will start to look for any possibility of getting indoors when the temperatures drop. Here are a handful of the common pests that are a nuisance in the winter.

1. Mice

Mice and rats will squeeze themselves into pretty tight places to find a warm place to spend winter. If you’re not careful, these pests can establish nests and colonies before you know about them. 

You may see the first signs of a mouse invasion from their droppings and chewed-up pieces of various materials.

You should do your best to maintain a clean home and secure potential food sources. Thick plastic containers will help prevent some foods from attracting mice. 

Go around your home and look for cracks or holes where the pests could fight their way inside. Seal these open spaces and use traps to rid of any bugs that remain. 

Using poison bait is typically not a good idea as the mice could die somewhere, and you’ll have to use your sense of smell to track down the remains. 

Even if the mice find their way out of your home and die, it could cause a hazard to other animals that might find and consume them.

2. Spiders

Spiders are common throughout the year, but you’ll likely spend more time inside during the winter. Inspect boxes, basements, and window moldings regularly. Using traps can help attract pests and help you identify any potentially dangerous spiders living in your home.

If you live in an area with black widows or brown recluse spiders, remember they love establishing themselves in cool, damp locations that receive minimal light. 

While bites from these creatures rarely lead to death, the black widow has a nasty reputation but typically only causes a handful of deaths each year. However, their bites can lead to tremendous pain, discomfort, and hefty medical bills.

3. Silverfish

Silverfish can thrive in various climates but typically start looking for warmer environments when the temperatures approach freezing. These nocturnal, wingless creatures do a great job finding a place to hide during the daytime. 

You’ll likely find them scurrying across your garage or basement floor more frequently during the winter. However, they make themselves comfortable once inside your home. The only reason they’ll move is if their food source disappears.

4. Centipedes

Centipedes are another pest that can’t survive sub-freezing temperatures in the winter. As the temperatures drop, they’ll start sneaking into your home. 

Once inside, they’ll reside in any dark, moist environment. You’ll typically find them in basements and bathrooms. They’ll then hide in crevices, cracks, drains, or rarely-used bathtubs and sinks.

Throughout summer, go around your home and look for tiny cracks where these pests could enter. Inspect the weatherstripping around doors and windows and repair any rips or holes in your screens.

5. Cockroaches

If there’s any creature that will send you running to call an exterminator or to stock up on traps, it’s cockroaches. These nasty pests can survive in temperatures as low as 15 degrees Fahrenheit. 

However, they’ll typically start looking for a dark place to hide, such as basements and crawl spaces, as they look for food. They’ll get a bit more desperate if the temperatures start to dip.

Cockroaches will look for warm spots that have easy access to food. You’ll commonly find them in kitchens as they feast on crumbs that drop or in other hard-to-reach places. 

Additionally, they’ll typically come out at night looking for scraps. Many people discover cockroach problems when they flip on a light and see them scurry across the floor, looking for a safe place to hide.

Pro Tip: Keep your home pest free by using these tips on How to Easily Get Rid of Cockroaches.

How Do You Stop Winter Pests?

The key to stopping winter pests is to prepare for their attacks. Dedicate a day or two during the summer to do a quick home inspection to note any cracks or crevices that need your attention. 

Use a sealant to fill in these gaps. You want to fortify your home before the pests become desperate and seek a place to spend winter.

And finally, ensure you give your home’s kitchen, bathrooms, and storage areas frequent cleaning. You want to identify any potential infestations as quickly as possible. 

This can allow you to immediately take action and avoid the infestation becoming a more serious problem that may require the assistance of a professional.

Should I Spray for Bugs in the Winter? 

You should spray for bugs regularly, no matter the season. Be consistent with pest prevention. Additionally, do a special spray around your home when you see the temperatures starting to cool where you live. This will help provide a solid line of defense and hopefully send any potential pests away from your home.

Have you ever had to deal with winter pests? How did you get rid of them? Tell us in the comments.

Discover the Best Free Camping Across the USA

To be honest with you, we hate paying for camping. There are so many free campsites in America (with complete privacy).

You should give it a try!

As a matter of fact, these free campsites are yours. Every time you pay federal taxes, you’re contributing to these lands.

Become a FREE CAMPING INSIDER and join the 100,000 campers that love to score the best site! 

We’ll send you the 50 Best Free Campsites in the USA (one per state). Access the list by submitting your email below: