DIY – 3 ways to prevent & eradicate Silverfish

Seen more as a nuisance than a pest here in the UK, although in exceptional circumstances can reach unacceptable levels.

Silverfish statistics

  • Length – around 2cm
  • Feed at night or when an area is dark
  • Hide behind bath panels, loose tiles, under flooring, around pipework etc
  • Eat protein rich gums, pastes, fine textiles, leather and can feed on dried food that is stored in damp conditions, other protein food sources

Fairly harmless, the Silverfish can cause damage to books, papers, manuscripts. Especially when stored for long periods of time. The binding products are what the silverfish eats (and lays their eggs around).

3 ways to prevent and eradicate Silverfish

  1. Clean all effected areas – especially around cracks and crevices, around bath panels, under kitchen units, book stores etc – household cleaning products are adequate as is steam cleaning is available.
  2. Seal all areas of harbourage – cracks around tiles, loose flooring, around toilet/sink bases (silverfish struggle to climb smooth surfaces, so bases are likely problem areas)
  3. Treat with aerosol/wet spray residual treatment – this will prove highly effective (please ensure you read the manufactures instructions and use all correct PPE)


Although Silverfish enjoy damp areas, control moisture levels alone will only provide some success. A combination of the three points above will improve chances of control substantially.

Hope this helps,


michael coates

Protects clients against pests | Advocates veteran employment | Educates children in conflict | Speaker | Rugby Fan

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