- Any open insulation can be used for nesting materials
- Cover it up, or use other nesting materials as bait for your traps
- The soffit is a common access point
- Regurlarly inspect soffit for openings or cracks to be fixed
3 Attic Vent
- Keep any attic or roof ventilation screened off to stop rodents as well as birds from entering
- Cap chimney to keep out squirrels, rats and mice, as well as birds and raccoons
5 Electrical Wires
- Any seasonal storage that contains food items should be properly sealed
- Ultrasonic repellents should be placed strategically to keep rodents from chewing through boxes and finding nesting material
Garage / Shed
1 Garage Doors
- Inspect and replace the rubber seal at the bottom of the door regularly
- Inspect the door frame for cracks or holes to be sealed with caulk
2 Seed & Pet Food Storage
- Reduce the amount of edible items stored in your garage or shed (bird seed, plant seeds, pet food, etc)
- Store any food items in metal or plastic storage containers
- Use an ultrasonic repellent to keep rodents away from these areas
3 Garbage Cans
- Keep your cans clean and covered
- Inspect regularly for gnaw marks or holes near the bottom of the can. Replace trash cans when necessary
- Place snap traps along the wall near your trash cans
4 Door & Window Frames
- Check any additional door and window frames for holes and cracks to be sealed
- If you need a quick solution, try plugging the hole with coarse steel wool
1 Under Cabinets
- The "toe kick" underneath cabinets acts as a natural corridor for mice and rats
- This is an optimal area to set any traps
2 Sink & Dishwasher
- Any piping coming to these appliances will require holes to be drilled, which usually have some slop
- Check these areas for openings as big as or bigger than a dime, and seal them off
- Dishwasher insulation provides nesting material for rodents, so keep snap traps set to catch this problem before it occurs
3 Refrigerator & Stove/Oven
1 Foundational Gaps
- Inspect the basement walls and foundation for any cracks or gaps, gaps as small as a dime can allow mice to squeeze in and out
- Make sure you properly patch them as soon as they start to form to keep rodents out
- If you're unable to find the source of the openings, ultrasonic repellents will work to keep rodents out
2 Piping, Plumbing and Utility Lines
- Check around the plumbing, wiring, cable, and other infrastructure that leads out of a house
- Purpose-placed holes in the foundation can open up, or be too large in the first place
- Stuff these spaces with copper mesh or coarse steel wool and seal with caulk
3 Standing Water
- Any places in your basement that attract moisture, may also attract rats
- Look for areas of moisture in your basement and either prevent it from coming back, or clean it up regularly
- Drop ceilings can become home to mice without the occupants even knowing
- Set a few snap traps on top of the tiles at all times to keep an infestation from occuring
1 Bird Feeders
- Dropped seeds from spills or anxious birds can attract rodents looking for food
- Temporarily remove feeders if there is a rodent problem
- Inspect landscaping, as ivy, vines and ground cover can give rodents quick access to your home
- Maintain your gardens and gardening equipment so that rodents don't have a reason to come around
- Remove any debris - rock piles, old equipment etc. that may be harboring rodents
3 Wood Piles
- Firewood storage should be kept away from the house
- Elevate lumber and firewood at least 18"
4 Dryer & Crawl Space Vent
- Dryer vents must be well sealed and functioning properly as lint attracts rodents and may not allow the vent to close
- Crawl space vent covers must be tight
Click on an area of concern to see what conditions commonly lead to a rodent problem, and what you can do to prevent them.
Rodent populations will continue to increase in conditions that allow easy access to food and shelter. Sanitation efforts in conjunction with rodent-proofing provide the best solution to reduce or completely eliminate these conditions.
Below are some simple steps you can take to stop rodents from making your home theirs.
Sanitation efforts involve maintaining clean areas where food is stored and keeping containers tightly sealed. Inside your home, this is an excellent start to your rodent control efforts.
Rodents must have adequate food and shelter in order to live and thrive. Removal of these 2 factors is the best way to prevent and control rodent problems. It is important to include both the outside and inside of your home in your sanitation efforts.
Lifetime's hit show "The Balancing Act" is presenting a segment featuring Victor's new safer and cleaner ways of controlling your pest problems as well as many tips to help keep rodents clear from your home.
- Clean areas under stoves, refrigerators and dishwashers.
- Keep counter tops clear of food.
- Do not leave glasses of water out overnight.
- Store dry food, pet food and birdseed in sealed containers.
- Clean pet bowls at night.
- Keep storage areas free of clutter.
- Rodent-proof hard-to-access areas that tend to be neglected.
- Store supplies or materials off the floor.
Don't forget about maintaining the outdoors as well. Properly maintain your garden and store firewood away from your home for effective rodent control.
- Properly maintain landscaping - trim any overgrown vegetation and shrubbery until ground underneath is visible.
- Remove any debris - rock piles, old equipment etc.
- Elevate lumber and firewood at least 18".
- Store firewood away from the house.
Rodent-Proofing your home whenever possible is a critical step in controlling rodents. Ideally, you can control rodents by making it impossible for them to gain entry to your home. However, it may be difficult to exclude mice completely since they can pass through ¼ inch openings, approximately the size of a dime. Rats can squeeze through ½ inch openings or the size of a nickel. Any of these possible rodent access points must be inspected.
Rodent Access Points
- Repair all holes and cracks in foundation, walls, basements and such.
- Equip doors and windows with fine-mesh, well-maintained screens.
- Chimneys should be capped.
- Seals around all exterior lines leading through walls must be tight.
- Cover vents with metal grill-work and rust-resistant screening.
- Copper or Aluminum Mesh
- Coarse Steel Wool
- Hardware Cloth - 19 gauge
- Sheet Metal – 26 gauge thickness