Three Ways to Stop Silverfish from Destroying Your Cardboard Boxes

Posted on: 23 November 2016

Purchasing cardboard boxes in bulk is an excellent way to ensure you always have the packaging you need to ship products to customers. However, one challenge of storing cardboard on the premises is that cardboard can attract hungry bugs, namely silverfish. These pests love to eat the glue that binds the cardboard together, and this feasting can result in higher costs for you and leave you with a lot of useless stock. Here are three things you can do to prevent silverfish from accessing or damaging your cardboard boxes.

Regulate the Temperature Humidity

Silverfish love cool, dark, and humid areas. They like to reproduce in places where the humidity level hovers between 75 and 95 percent. Not only is this high level of humidity bad for your cardboard boxes, but silverfish tend to reproduce fairly rapidly when they find the ideal location.

Therefore, it's essential you control the humidity levels in the areas where you're storing your boxes. The ideal humidity level for cardboard is between 65 and 70 percent. If the levels in your storage space are higher than that, then there are a couple of things you can do to bring it down.

However, the first thing you should do is determine why the humidity is so high. Look for leaks or sources of moisture in the space that may be raising the water content of the air. Simply patching up holes in pipes that may be letting water in may resolve the problem, for instance.

If there doesn't appear to be a cause for the high humidity, or if you've fixed the issues, but the humidity levels are still elevated, one option is to run a dehumidifier in the storage area. A second solution is to run the air conditioner. Air conditioners naturally remove excess water from the air to lower the temperature, and this can help reduce humidity to an acceptable level.

Put Down Dust

Another thing you can do is put down a layer of boric acid or diatomaceous earth on the floor in your cardboard storage room. Of the two, diatomaceous earth is probably the best option because it is not toxic to humans or animals like dogs and cats. However, it's very dangerous to silverfish because the crystals have lots of sharp edges that scratch the bugs' exoskeletons. The powder also coats their bodies and causes them to become dehydrated and die.

However, boric acid is equally effective because it's highly corrosive and will essentially damage the silverfish's delicate exoskeleton beyond repair. This chemical can be harmful to humans if you use a formula that's highly concentrated. It's important to buy a solution designed specifically to treat a silverfish infestation to ensure the amount of boric acid in the product is at a safe level.

Sprinkle or spray the area with either of these substances on a regular basis to keep the bugs from getting to your cardboard.

Call a Pest-Control Company

If you find the amount of silverfish plaguing your building is out of control, it's best to call a professional pest-control company to get rid of them. These professionals typically have a variety of chemicals and traps that will quickly eliminate both the adult silverfish and any eggs they may have laid in your storage area.

Most of these companies have maintenance plans under which they come and spray chemical deterrents that can keep silverfish away. It may be worth the investment to sign up for this type of service.

For more tips on protecting your cardboard boxes or to order a supply to replace packing supplies that have been damaged, contact a corrugated box supplier.