Prepping Your Home for Cicadas

Summertime means cicadas. Is your home ready?

What’s that sound? If you’re in the South or Eastern United States between May and July, it might just be the song of cicadas. In 2024 both 13-year Great Southern Brood XIX cicadas and 17-year Northern Illinois Brood XIII cicadas will emerge in a rare natural event. Though these periodical cicada broods won’t overlap significantly by region or timing, two broods this large mean billions of cicadas are expected this summer.* It’s important to note that cicadas aren’t harmful to humans and pets. Typically, pest control products aren’t the best method to deal with them—it’s just not an effective tactic against cicadas’ large numbers and staggered emergence cycles. However, there are a few steps you can take to prepare your home for the coming swarm this year or any other year.

1. Create a Barrier around Your Home

While cicadas are typically content in the natural world, curious or confused cicadas may find their way inside. Luckily, using a product with long-term protection to create a bug-proof barrier around your home can help keep cicadas away. Check with local sources to confirm when cicadas are emerging in your area, and apply a barrier around your home about one month prior to emergence. Ortho® Home Defense® Insect Killer for Indoor and Home Perimeter2 is a great choice to secure the perimeter of your home from bugs, including periodical cicadas.

2. Make it Air-Tight

Before cicada season, check your home for points of entry and seal 'em up! Especially when you have a large swarm, cicadas might accidentally fly in an open door or window. Make sure your window screens are in good condition, and look around for cicadas before opening and closing doors to the outside.

3. Tune Out the Noise

While some associate the song of cicadas with summer, others may find the hum of these insects less than pleasant. According to the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders, cicada mating calls can reach up to 90 dBa†, as loud as a lawn mower or tractor! If you’re sensitive to the noise or just don’t like it, consider investing in a good pair of noise-canceling headphones. Earplugs might also be helpful.

It’s worth repeating that while at times annoying, cicadas are pretty harmless and short-lived. But the best way to deal with these insects is by leaving them be and enjoying the cicada song while it lasts.

Note that these product recommendations are for preventative measures only.