What Are Those Bugs in Your Basement?

Bugs in your basement

Bugs LOVE a basement. They’re dark, quiet, warm, and usually pretty humid to boot. If you have a bug infestation in your home, chances are they’re hanging out downstairs. Basements are a little spooky even under better circumstances, so we’re guessing you’re not terribly pleased to hear this.

There’s more bad news. Some bugs like basements more than others. The ones that really like basements are some of the freakiest-looking bugs around. Before you burn your house down, however, consider: these bugs are mostly terrifying because you don’t understand them. They aren’t the most dangerous pests in Michigan, or the scariest, or even the most stubborn. They’re just the freakiest ones that are here. This is everything you need to know about the monsters in your basement. The more you know, the less afraid you’ll be (we hope).


earwigWe’ll grant you: earwigs look like they crawled directly out of a nightmare. They’re about two inches long, with dark brown, reddish bodies, creepy light orange extremities… and GIANT PINCERS ON THEIR BACKSIDES. Earwigs are actually harmless to humans (and definitely don’t crawl into people’s ears) but… yeah, we get why you’d want to give them a wide berth. These insects love basements because they’re attracted to darkness and humidity. They feed on decaying plant material and sometimes hunt other insects.

Earwigs can’t fly or climb very well, so if they entered your home, they did it from the ground level. They usually find cracks near window wells and frames, or cracks in the foundation of the home. Earwigs often end up behind wallpaper or crammed into basement insulation after they sneak through low gaps. If you have earwigs in your home, it’s probably because your basement has a humidity problem. Consider investing in a dehumidifier and look for leaks.  


silverfishSilverfish are those tiny, silver-grey insects that really look more like shrimp than fish or bugs. Their long, thin bodies wiggle back and forth when they crawl, making it look like they’re swimming. “Silver” because of the color. “Fish” because of what they look like. Like earwigs, silverfish love moisture. They’re also attracted to warm and dark places where they can move around without being bothered. Silverfish are nocturnal, so chances are you’ll only see them at night.

Silverfish eat the starch naturally found in materials like paper, cotton, glue, carpeting, and other common household materials. They may also destroy clothing. Silverfish make use of their tiny size and thinness to get into homes. Usually, they sneak through narrow gaps in baseboards or flooring. They may even live inside walls if they can find a wide enough pathway. Humidity control is important for controlling silverfish, as is temperature control. Silverfish need temperatures of over 60℉ to breed.


pillbugPillbugs are very small, black bugs that are about as wide as they are long. Their backs are made up of seven overlapping, segmented plates that look hard and shiny, like a beetle’s shell. Pillbugs roll into a ball to protect themselves when threatened. These “bugs” (they’re actually related to crabs!) are a common sight in gardens. They consume decaying vegetable matter beneath the top layer of soil. Most pillbugs live bury themselves several inches under soil, because they’re very temperature sensitive.

Pillbugs can’t climb sheer surfaces, so they only enter basements via the ground level of the home. Usually, they’ll find gaps under the soil, around baseboards, foundations, or siding. Once inside, pillbugs generally cover themselves by hiding under furniture, boxes, or other clutter. Pillbugs can only survive in a basement if they have a source of moisture. Check for plumbing leaks, condensation, or puddling, especially around corners and the bottom of the wall.

House Centipedes

house centipedeIf basement pests are monsters, then you probably think of this guy as the “big bad”. House centipedes are inch long, tan-yellow bugs with very long longs. Those legs enable the bug to move very quickly, often in a rapid, darting motion. House centipedes are nocturnal predators that use their speed and venom-injecting claws to hunt other insects. These centipedes are capable of using these claws to “sting” humans too. The venom injected isn’t serious, but it hurts like a bee sting would.

House centipedes commonly follow their prey into homes through gaps near windows or cracks in the flooring or siding. Once they’re inside, they spend their days hiding and their nights hunting. Like most of the pests on this list, house centipedes love moist environments. Check for leaks and puddles in your basement, and consider a dehumidifier. Patching gaps may help with the humidity problem and deprive bugs of their access points at the same time.


We hope this blog helps you feel less afraid of venturing into the dark abyss that is your basement at night. Even if it doesn’t, however, at least now you can take action? Remember: your basement is your turf, not those bug’s. Even if house centipedes are just about the scariest things ever.

If you ever decide you need a little help with your basement monster slaying, feel free to call Griffin Pest Control anytime. We’re always happy to lend you our sword.

Which Bugs Come Out at Night?

Mosquito at Night

Several common household pests become active at night. Bed bugs, house centipedes, and crickets are all nocturnal pests. They come out at night to hunt for food, look for mates, and seek sources of moisture. Mosquitoes tend to become more active at night, too, because it’s much cooler.

We probably don’t need to tell you, but these “children of the night” tend to be particularly unnerving infesters. Especially if they’re trying to feed on you… while you’re sleeping. Creepy as these nocturnal crawlies may seem, however, in the end, they’re just more pests. And just like all pests, they can be prevented, controlled, and removed. Here are the most common household pests you may encounter at night, and what to do about them:

Bed bugs feed on their prey at night - Which pests become more active at night?

Bed Bugs

No surprise here, right? Yes, bed bugs are nocturnal. Bed bugs can neither extract the blood they need quickly nor latch onto people forcefully. Instead, they wait until their prey is immobile–like when they’re sleeping–so they can gorge themselves at their leisure. Bed bugs become more active at night both because it’s when their prey is vulnerable, and because the darkness gives them cover.  

We’ve covered preventing bed bugs a couple times before. The best thing you can do is to make sure you inspect everything you bring home after traveling. Make sure you don’t bring any unwanted hitch hikers home. Wash and clean your bedding and the bed itself frequently, and inspect it for fecal matter or eggs. Heat kills bed bugs, so if you suspect you have them, throw contaminated items in the dryer.

Centipedes hunt at night- Which pests become more active at night?


At first, you may not think house centipedes are a big deal. Then you see one move. Centipedes can sting with their front legs, but the real reason we’re including these tiny terrors in our list is because they’re freaky. House centipedes have eight pairs of long legs. They run fast and often erratically. If cornered they may lash out, hoping to intimidate. It works pretty well.

Centipedes hide during the day and come out at night to hunt their prey. You might see them in damp areas or kitchens. They’re attracted to damp, dark, warm places where they can keep moisturized and absorb heat. Keep them out by reducing moisture and humidity in your home, closing your windows at night, and eliminating entrance points like holes between utility lines and the wall.

Crickets become active at night - Which pests become more active at night?


Aah, crickets. The universal song of summer. Why would anyone hate that? Well, crickets may sound pleasant when they’re outside, but when they’re in your walls they sound less than pleasant. Crickets are loud,  and they love to start chirping right around the time you’d want to go to sleep.

House crickets are attracted to light, heat, humidity, and moisture. Turn off your house lights at night and draw the blinds. Look for and patch up plumbing leaks and other sources of moisture, such as puddling or condensation. Like most other pests, crickets sneak in through gaps in foundations, siding, and window and door frames. Look for places where your noisy foes might squeeze in and seal them up.

Mosquitoes tend to become more active at night - Which pests become more active at night?


We don’t need to introduce mosquitoes. Every summer, here they come again. But did you know that mosquitoes actually become considerably more active starting around dusk? Despite being summer bugs, they can’t survive heat for very long. By the time the sun starts to set, however, it’s cool enough for them to go wild.

Mosquitoes mate, nest, and lay eggs in standing water. They don’t need much moisture, but they’ll seek it out. Look for places in your yard and home where moisture collects, like soggy areas, buildup in gutters, or puddling. Try to refrain from going out at night without bug spray and long sleeves. If you continue to have problems, shut your home’s doors and windows until you locate the mosquitoes’ breeding ground.


Follow these tips, and even the worst of the worst night stalkers won’t trouble your sleep. And remember, if you do end up with a nocturnal nemesis in your midst, give us a call.