Keeping Your Wine Cellar Pest Free by Jennifer O’Neill
A wine cellar is every wine lover’s dream, providing the goods for the best parties, but once you have it, there are risks to not maintaining it. A primary risk is pests, which can cause problems ranging from structural issues to damaging the precious wine itself; one study, published on ResearchGate, notes the prevalence of moth larvae in cellars that can degrade the cork. This leads to corked wine and, possibly, health risks, aside from the spoiling of the drink. It’s crucially important, then, to keep your wine cellar as pest-free as possible, to keep your property and your contents safe.
Addressing the root cause
The easiest way to stay pest-free is to keep your property free of them in the first place. This involves taking a good look in what you have lying around, as pests will find food in the strangest places. Your wine will generally be safe, as the glass containers mean they won’t look like food to any animal. However, consider the building materials and any items you have lying around in the cellar. Paper, glue and wallpaper paste are all alternative sources of food for cockroaches who can’t find normal food, and other pests will use them as sugary snacks, too. What this shows is that it’s important to have a secure and well maintained room. Seal up exits, and consider using brick and stone facades to remove degradable material. As pointed out by the Washington Post, this will help to keep out more dangerous pests, too.
You may have an older property or have inherited an active pest problem. With larger pests, like rodents, this can cause greater structural problems or, worse, electrical issues – the Humane Society notes that this is a key conflict with larger pests. Taking remedial action is important in these situations, whether it’s a bug infestation or something more significant. Call in professionals and get them to make an assessment – fumigation may be necessary, or trapping in order to remove the offending creatures from your wine cellar. It can be helpful to have an investigation even if you’re not sure if there’s an active infestation – this will prevent you from being burdened by issues like the cork-eating moths.
Keeping on top of it
Pests removed, your cellar secure, and you’re making full use of it without adding any new materials. Is your work done? Not quite. To keep pests away, it’s important to have a rigorous cleaning routine for your cellar. As most cellars are, by definition, lacking in sunlight, bacteria and dust can easily build up that attract pests. The lack of movement and any indication of human activity can lead to this. Dust your wine racks often and mop and spray the floor and skirting to ensure that you’re keeping the area clean.
Taking these steps will keep your wine cellar free from pests and preserve the quality of your favorite wines. It would be a mistake to put money into getting good vintage bottles and a place to keep them without keeping on top of your maintenance. Making sure unwanted pests keep out of your cellar is a priority for this.
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