Q I have several boxes of papers from somebody's estate that I have to sort. They are infested with silverfish. How do I avoid getting a silverfish infestation in my home? The boxes are currently in my garage.

A Silverfish are susceptible to dry conditions. If the boxes are in a heated garage, blow a fan on them to lower the humidity. Because it's fall, the humidity is already low and it shouldn't take much to kill them.

Or, if you have a large enough freezer, you could place the boxes in it for a day or two. The cold should kill them.

Even in an unheated garage, temperatures may not get low enough to kill silverfish. However, the cold will make them sluggish. That means you could take the papers out of the boxes, looking for silverfish as you do so and easily separating them from the papers. You can then move the papers into the house to do your sorting with little risk of bringing silverfish inside with you.

Jeff Hahn, entomologist, University of Minnesota Extension

How long is flu's incubation?

Q Once exposed to H1N1 flu, how long before you come down with it?

A You're asking about the flu's incubation period, the time between when you are infected with the virus and when you start to show symptoms.

If you are exposed to the H1N1 flu virus and become infected, the Centers for Disease Control estimates that it'll take one to four days to show symptoms. Those symptoms are: fever, sore throat, cough, headache, muscle aches, runny or stuffy nose, fatigue and sometimes vomiting and diarrhea. Note that some people with the flu do not have a fever.

Send your questions to Fixit in care of the Star Tribune, 425 Portland Av., Minneapolis, MN 55488, or call 612-673-7032, or e-mail fixit@startribune.com. Past columns are available at www.startrib une.com/fixit. Sorry, Fixit cannot supply individual replies. Fixit appears daily in Variety except on Friday.