Certain insects thrive in environments where moisture is abundant. A centipede is one type of bug that seeks out water in addition to food and shelter. Wherever all three life essentials are plentiful, centipedes will flourish. A home with centipedes may be a home with water damage.
Bugs of all varieties search for water. When a building offers pests a constant supply of moisture, the insects tend to make it a home. Cockroaches, crickets, mold mites, millipedes, earwigs, termites and brown recluse spiders all feed off of moisture. Centipedes, too, need a water source to survive.
Do centipedes thrive on moisture?
Centipedes are tiny insects spanning just one to one-and-a-half inches in length. With 15 pairs of long legs, adult centipedes seem to be three or four inches long. Centipedes run incredibly fast because the last pairs of legs on either side are twice as long as their bodies.
Displaying an erratic running style, centipedes dart about in a zigzag pattern. Adult centipedes may reproduce in a home, and the young insects resemble adults with fewer legs. The bugs are unsettling, and can be found in the basement, bathroom, and crawl spaces of a home.
Water is a centipede’s primary source of nourishment. Unlike other insects, centipedes do not have a moisture-preserving cuticle. Due to the lack of this special cuticle, centipedes must search for water to replenish their reserves. Without a constant water supply, these bugs will dry out and perish.
Humid environments allow centipedes to hunt and remain active. In dry settings, centipedes are unable to engage in life-sustaining activities for very long. As moisture-seeking insects, centipedes are attracted to dark and damp areas that remain humid all year round.
Centipedes are drawn to buildings with high humidity levels. This means that certain areas of a home are more suitable to serve as centipede habitats. Bathrooms, basements and, sometimes, kitchens produce abundant humidity or moisture and attract the leggy bugs.
The only way to prevent a centipede infestation is to reduce the excess moisture inside the home. Homeowners should inspect the home from the attic to the basement. Look for signs of water leaks, which could be a cause of the surplus moisture and the exploding centipede population.
What are causes of water damage?
- Leaky Pipes
Several scenarios frequently cause water damage within a home. Leaky or burst pipes are the most common causes of water damage. Uninsulated pipes can burst when temperatures dip below freezing. Aged pipes deteriorate as a result of normal wear and tear.
- Plumbing Problems
Plumbing issues can be a source of water damage. When pipes are located behind the walls, the water leaks will be difficult to detect. However, homeowners should be aware of and promptly repair dripping faucets, toilet leaks, overflowing toilets, and leaks around the shower or bathtub.
- Faulty Appliances
Appliances, like a washing machine or water heater, may deteriorate over time and cause water leaks. Refrigerators and dishwashers are also susceptible to malfunctioning. Whether a washing machine hose breaks or the dishwasher leaks, immediate repairs should be done to prevent extensive water damage.
- HVAC System
A lack of routine maintenance can lead to the accumulation of moisture within the HVAC unit. The moisture will likely result in a water leak. Any excess moisture coming from inside the HVAC unit will be a source for mold and mildew growth. Plus, the dampness will attract moisture-seeking bugs.
- Overflowing Gutters
Unmaintained gutters are another potential cause of water damage inside the home. When blocked by leaves or other debris, the gutters overflow. Water trickles down the siding of the home and accumulates around the foundation. Cracks in the foundation allow moisture to seep inside.
What Can I Do About Unwanted Moisture?
Unwanted moisture can infiltrate a home in both natural and manmade ways, attracting unsettling pests, like centipedes. The most important tactic for eliminating the long-legged bugs is to find and repair the moisture source. Without water, the centipedes will look elsewhere for nourishment.
Homeowners are encouraged to set up and run a dehumidifier in areas with high humidity levels. The dehumidifiers pull out excess moisture from the air via condensing coils and fans. If a water damaged area is large, multiple dehumidifiers may be needed to control the moisture levels.
Drafts within humid areas of the property may also be an entryway for water-loving bugs, like centipedes. Seal off entry points through which centipedes may enter the home. Examine the basement, attic or crawl space, paying special attention to the windows and door frames.
Centipedes seek a dependable source of moisture in order to survive and reproduce, so a centipede infestation means water damage in the home is likely. Plus, if the water damage remains unfixed, the centipedes will have little reason to move out.
Water damage of any extent must be professionally remediated without delay. When water damage is left unaddressed, building materials will rot, stain, and warp, and mold will grow. ServiceMaster Disaster Associates, Inc, is ready to return your water damaged property to its pre-loss condition fast.
While water damage attracts centipedes, any associated mold growth will draw hungry mold mites. Avoid the intrusion of further pests by repairing the water damage right away. Our team of experienced crews prevent existing water damage from spreading and more bugs from inviting themselves in.
Skilled technicians from ServiceMaster Disaster Associates, Inc, arrive immediately after your call. We assess the extent of water damage and develop a flood damage cleanup plan. Restoration begins to return the property to a habitable state as soon as possible.
Our water damage cleanup specialists utilize powerful water extraction equipment to eliminate all traces of excess moisture in the area. Equally advanced dehumidification machinery is run to remove moisture from water damaged materials. Specialists monitor the drying process until completion.
Water mitigation services provided by ServiceMaster Disaster Associates, Inc, are comprehensive. We also handle content cleaning, carpet drying and mold removal. We are proud to serve the communities of Stoneham, Massachusetts, with speed and efficiency. Call to schedule quality flood damage cleanup.