Spider season is almost upon us, and with it comes an influx of arachnids keen to make your bedroom their bedroom too.

Every autumn, spiders head indoors to mate, and avoid the coming cold weather. And although they pose no danger to you or your family (whatever you’ve read, even the much-maligned false widow spider presents little threat, and will only bite if provoked) no one really likes them creeping around.

House spider taken outside an apartment in Copenhagen, Denmark.

As the old adage goes, they’re more scared of you than you are of them – but that might still leave you pretty scared. Here’s how to keep eight-legged insects out of your home this spider season…

How to stop spiders coming in the house

1. Keep things clean

Spiders thrive on the damp and the dark – the little nooks and crannies they find in dirty corners and cluttered floors. If you vacuum and dust regularly, store items in boxes that have lids, and generally keep floors and surfaces clear, spiders will be much less inclined to risk venturing inside.

2. Seal your windows and doors

Spiders are small and sneaky, but they still can’t get in through solid walls. Use a DIY sealant to close up the little crevices that surround so many doors and windows. A watertight home keeps out creepy-crawlies, and has the added bonus of squishing your heating bill.

3. Eat more oranges

Hands shelling an orange

Sounds weird, we know, but hear us out. Spiders ‘taste’ with their legs, and if their legs taste something they don’t like – in this case, citrus – they’ll be out the door as fast as their eight legs can carry them. One strategy is to rub citrus on your door and window frames, although we’re not totally sure what the neighbours would think if they spotted you absent-mindedly massaging your door frame with an orange peel.

4. Get a humane spider catcher

A lot of people take a confrontational approach when dealing with spiders (i.e. splat), but it might be better for the ecosystem and your conscience to redistribute them somewhere other than your home. Spider vacuums will suck up spiders into a long tube to be released at your leisure, without you having to get within striking distance.

5. Let natural light in

Spiders are attracted to the dark and the dank, while spiders’ prey (flies, moths etc) are attracted to light bulbs and lamps. Sidestep both by keeping your blinds open, and flooding your home with natural light.

6. Use a vinegar-based deterrent

Spiders hate vinegar just as much as they hate citrus, so vinegar-based cleaning products often send them scurrying back the way they came. The only drawback: you might think it smells awful too.

7. Place sprigs of mint around the house

Not only will mint fragrance your home, it can put off spiders, who are not fans of peppermint. Alternatively, make up a peppermint spray (water mixed with mint essential oils), so you can spritz any areas that spiders seem particularly fond of.

8. Collect conkers and distribute them around the house

Piles of conkers scaring spider repellent deterrent with smell

Traditionally, it was thought that spiders could be warded off by conkers – people suggest leaving them by doors and windows. It’s worth giving a go!

9. Chestnuts will work too

If you’re all out of conkers, or they’re not in season, apparently edible chestnuts can work just as well.

10. Order some cedar products

Just as cedar puts off moths, spiders aren’t fans either. Swap plastic coat hangers for cedar ones, or place cedar chippings in spider hotspots.

11. Clean up your exterior

scaring spider repellent deterrent with smell
A perfect spider hiding place (iStock/PA)

Tidy anything outside your home that spiders might hide in, and use as a bridge to your interior. Think leaves, woodpiles, climbing plants, compost heaps, and even bins.

12. Get a cat

We might think they’re cute and cuddly, but in the urban ecosystem, cats are apex predators that kill on sight. Just as good at munching spiders as they are mice, cats are all-purpose pest control, though some are more energetic than others. Rather drastic as a standalone measure, it’s probably wise to only get a cat if you also happen to want one.

13. Coexist peacefully

We know, this isn’t what you came here for, but spiders are an excellent vanguard against most other varieties of bug. Once established in a home, they rarely venture into the open, and from the safety of their webs, dispatch any number of other insects, including mosquitoes. If you’re really not a fan of creepy-crawlies, spiders could be an unlikely ally at home.

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