Tuesday, 20 March 2018

Pesky insects inside the RV

Insects can be quite a bother when you’re living in a motorhome or any type of RV. We’re living in confined spaces and we need open windows to take in the best of the local environment, as most of us don’t have the luxury of air-conditioning while we are parked. 

We have wonderful windows in Blu with built in insect screens. I say wonderful as I think the concept is quite fantastic, but it has its faults which you can often see discussed on RV online forums. The screens are on rollers from one side and the blinds are on a roller from the opposite side and the 2 meet in the middle, it takes up minimal space and the idea is really quite clever. 

Blac has pleated screens and blinds on the roof hatches which are pretty cool too. But I’m going to talk about how we’ve dealt with insects in Blu, as Australia is the country to really test the insect proofing of any system.

So, the screens in Blu do keep most insects out. But still, due to the attraction of light or us insects will still come to the screens. Tiny insects will come through the screen and the occasional larger insect will crawl around the side of the screen where it’s not fixed (it can’t be fixed since it’s a roller system). 

Our solution for the attraction of the lights is to cover some of the LED lights with yellow cellophane. Then, in the evenings where insects are problematic we’ll only turn on these lights. This system has worked really well for us. But, if you intend to do this then do be careful as cellophane on a hot light would potentially be a fire hazard. In our case it’s been fine. 

Then there’s the attraction of human blood. It seems that I’m particularly attractive to midgies (sand flies). They hardly bother H but given the chance they’ll feast on me while I sleep and I won’t know it’s happening until I wake up in the morning. 

Our solution to this has been to spray the insect screens with Permethrin. It’s the same stuff as is sprayed on mosquito nets, hikers clothing, and dogs (for fleas). It works but insects that land on it are indiscriminately killed (which seems a terrible thing to do) and then the land on the bottom roller (for our rolling blind) and get squished in its action. Also, the screens, with Permethrin, do seem to get dirty really quickly. 

So, that’s our 2 solutions for keeping insects out. You might also be able to install yellow lights directly. If it is your lighting that’s attracting the insects then having yellow lights instead can really improve things for you. 

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