Many homes are targets for rodents. The vermin cause structural damage, spread disease and can spoil food. Homeowners constantly bait and trap rodents, only to have them return shortly after — the cycle never ends. The reason? Homeowners usually focus on getting rid of rats instead of stopping them from entering the home in the first place. Rodent-proofing can removal intations.
Rats and mice look for the same things humans look for: food, water and shelter. While fall and winter are busy seasons for rats trying to get into warm and cozy homes, it’s never too soon to start rodent-proofing. Remember, there’s never just one in the house— when one finds its way in, others will as well. Remember, they multiply.
Trails of poop pellets are a major sign you have rodents, but you have to look for it. The best evidence isn’t always on the countertops. If you see boxes in the pantry chewed through, you have a problem.
Pest control services often provide a step-by-step guide to rodent-proofing a dwelling. Following these steps should help you get rid of your rodent problem.
Inspect your home
Thoroughly inspect the home’s foundation. Repair any crack or hole larger than a quarter-inch. For holes smaller than 2 inches, steel mesh or foam can be used. For larger holes, use sheet metal or hardware cloth.
Check all doors, windows and frames. Replace weather stripping which lacks a tight seal and repair window panes and screens.
Examine trees and hedges near the structure. Any which touch or hang over the house should be trimmed. Grass should be kept short and the bottom of hedges trimmed removal to show the soil below.
Check shingles, roof ventilators and vent screens to be sure they are not damaged. Replace as needed.
Check all utility entry points. Places where utilities enter the come make it easy entry points for vermin. Be sure any gap around wiring, cable or pipes is sealed. Pipes running vertically can be used by rats as speedways into your home.
Brick and stone houses make it easy for rats to climb. A 12-inch band, 3 feet from the ground, painted with a high gloss paint deters climbing.
Clean up rodent droppings and urine while wearing protective gloves and a respirator. A bleach solution for cleaning rodent nesting areas helps deter nesting areas as well as entry points. A 1:1 bleach to water ratio will eliminate any pheromones left behind which could attract rodents in the future.
Skip the home remedies
Everyone has seen DIY ideas for getting rid of rodents such as peppermint spray, dryer sheeting stuffing and cayenne-soaked cotton balls. There isn’t any evidence that says these methods work. Either way, rodents have become so used to living with humans that associated smells are not repellent.
Electric rat zappers
If you’re still unable to keep them out, electric rat zappers work great at getting rid of these four-legged nightmares. Clean, a rat zapper humanely kills rats and is easy to use. Just put in the batteries, place the bait and turn it on. With a hands-free, no-touch disposal, the yuck factor is history while staying safe and sanitary.