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Rentokil advises on how prevention is better than cure when it comes to pests this festive season

Unwelcome guests such as flies, ants, cockroaches and rats can put families’ health at risk over the holiday period. Although getting rid of pests may seem simple while browsing the pesticide isle of the supermarket, one needs a trained eye and expert knowledge in pest behaviour to really get to the root of the problem, say Rentokil, the experts in Pest Control.


The first line of defence against pests such as rodents, cockroaches and flies is adequate proofing of one’s home. Prevent pests from gaining easy access by sealing cracks and holes around utility pipes that enter the premises; rats have been known to fit through holes of less than 1cm diameter, so it is important to seal even the smallest holes. Seal entry points around windows and doors using sealant or caulking to plug the holes and fit bristle strip around doors.

Pests come indoors in search of food and harbourage, so it is important not to attract them with easily accessible food sources, such as food waste in kitchens or with nesting materials such old newspapers and boxes. Make sure to recycle all the Christmas wrapping paper and gift boxes as soon as possible, rather than leaving it lying around as cosy nesting material.

Keep kitchens clean, and always cover all food, especially in the run up to a big Christmas meal when multiple dishes are being prepared and served. Clear away any food and liquid spillages immediately and also take care to clean food debris from under kitchen appliances.

Also avoid standing water in gardens (for example in watering cans and water features) as this attracts mosquitoes and flies. Ensure that drains are kept clear and running and that gutters and drainage pipes are not blocked.

Keep rubbish in sealed bins, making sure that lids fit tightly and are kept closed. Dispose of rubbish regularly and in warm weather wash out rubbish bins after collection to prevent flies from breeding at the bottom. Keep them as far away from doors as possible.


Whilst prevention is always better than cure, there may be occasions when one has to resort to pesticides and there are many D-I-Y pest control products available to get rid of pests in low-risk areas. It is, however, essential to follow the instructions carefully for safe and effective use. Always take special precautions with animals, children and food around.

Whilst DIY pest control products can deal with smaller pest problems, a professional pest control service will be required for larger or multiple infestations. Rentokil pest control technicians are trained in a wide variety of pest control methods and their expert knowledge means more efficiently targeted pest control. “We use an integrated approach, based on the biology of the specific pest. The use of pesticides is restricted and only used when absolutely necessary. The pesticides used by Rentokil are all approved by the local Department of Agriculture and their International Technical Director in the UK; hence bio-degradable and target specific, which means they are more effective and have minimal to no secondary effects,” says Mario Pluke, Technical Manager for Rentokil.

For a safe and pest-free Christmas, residential customers are able to book and pay for residential pest control services directly through Rentokil’s Customer Care centre, where a dedicated agent will book, confirm and accept payment for services immediately.

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