boxelder bug on leaf

If you're dealing with boxelder bugs, you know exactly what kind of problem they can be. You've probably seen them congregate on your outside walls, pile up on window sills, and dot your entrance way. You've probably had them dive-bomb your face or crawl on your television screen. Boxelder bugs are an incredible nuisance. This is because they're overwintering pests. When the temperatures drop, these insects go from living on boxelder trees or maple trees to living inside heated structures. It is especially annoying when they show up at a Super Bowl party unannounced. But there are some unexpected problems that come with having a boxelder bug infestation. Let's take a look at them.

A common location boxelder bugs like to congregate is on A/C units. When they do, they can cause these units to work harder and this leads to higher energy costs for a homeowner. It may also cause a unit to overheat. If boxelder bugs like to congregate on your A/C units and you don't have ongoing pest service to prevent this, you can spray them with soapy water to deter this from happening.

When boxelder bugs get into a home in the fall--which they are prone to do--not every one of those bugs is going to leave in spring. Many of them will die inside wall voids and hidden spaces. And, since boxelder bugs are a food source for other pests, your walls are going to be filled with "pest" food. That's not good if your goal is to have a pest-free home.

While boxelder bugs don't eat curtains, clothing, and bedspreads, like some other pests, they can cause damage by staining these items with their excrement. This can be a serious problem when they congregate on a wall that has wallpaper.

In nature, boxelder bugs are drawn to trees. In your yard, they'll be drawn to sticks, stacked wood, and objects made of wood. Once inside--where there are no trees--boxelder bugs may be drawn to house plants. While they aren't likely to damage your houseplants, this can be frustrating and inconvenient.

While not prone to bite, there are cases of defensive biting. When handled, the piercing-sucking mouthparts of a boxelder bug can puncture the skin and produce a red spot similar to a mosquito bite.

Move over stink bugs, there's another bug in town. When boxelder bugs are crushed, they sometimes emit an unpleasant odor that can be quite strong. And, since they can gather on decks, patios, balcony floors, and other locations where they can be stepped on, this is a bug problem that can start to stink.

Boxelder Bug Prevention

The best way to seal boxelder bugs out of a home and prevent them from congregating on exterior walls and surfaces is to have routine treatments from a pest management professional. When you have a PMP take care of this problem, you'll also have essential control for other pests that can threaten your home, your belongings, your pets, and your health.

Along with routine treatments, it is important to make sure you do the following:

  • Check all of your door screens and window screens to make sure there are no small holes that boxelder bugs can squeeze through. If you don't have the finances to have the screens replaced, it is a simple process to patch holes up. Check YouTube for videos on this.

  • Inspect your exterior walls and seal any gaps, cracks, or holes you find. Pay close attention to the seal around your air conditioning unit. Not only will this help to keep boxelder bugs out, it will help you keep more of your cool air in.

  • Inspect soffits and holes in your roofline. These are  particularly vulnerable locations that these insects like to exploit.

  • Inspect all your door sweeps and make sure they make good contact all the way across. It doesn't take much of a gap for boxelder bugs to slip through.

  • Inspect all your weather stripping for damaged bristles or uneven spots.

Boxelder bugs in our Tennessee service area are mostly frustrating nuisance pests but, clearly, they can have a much greater impact. If you've had all you can stand of these irritating insects, consider investing in a home pest control program with Russell's Pest Control. Our QualityPro Certified team is one of the best and most trusted residential and commercial pest management companies in the state. But don't take our word for it. Check out our reviews on Google. Our customers have helped us earn 4.9 of 5 stars on 396 reviews (as of this writing). For more information, or to request a free inspection, start right here on our contact page. We'll help you figure out what's bugging you. 


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