8 Best Methods for Rat Cleanup
Successfully removing a rat from your home is a huge relief! But don’t get too comfortable, because the job’s not over yet. Cleanup after rat removal is necessary to secure your family’s safety.
Rats and mice are carriers of dangerous parasites and diseases that can be severely damaging to humans. These health risks are commonly presented through food contamination and rodent feces.
Hantavirus, a very serious pulmonary disease, is one to be especially wary of if you have rats in the attic. In the kitchen, be wary of salmonella that is spread through food contaminated with rodent feces or urine.
If you are suffering from allergies, it might not be from pollen! The urine and feces Mice and rats leave behind can play a major role in triggering dangerous allergies.
Here are the 8 best methods to use when you need to clean up after a rat. Follow step-by-step to eliminate any trace that the vermin was ever there!
Get Some Fresh Air
Proper ventilation of the space where the rat was found is your first step in the cleanup process. Air out the room by opening a window and allowing a cross breeze to come through for a minimum of 30 minutes. Ventilate any areas in your home that the rat inhabited, or places where rat droppings are found.
Photo courtsey of lowen windows, lowen.com
Getting fresh air into the space is important because it can get rid bacteria from rat feces and urine that have possibly become airborne. Be aware that rat feces crumble and turn to dust quickly when they dry. Don’t use a box fan to try to increase ventilation; it will actually work against you, kicking up harmful dust particles and making them airborne.
Gather Your Gear
While your space is airing out, it’s a good time to start gathering the protective gear you’ll need for rat cleanup.
You probably have a pair of rubber gloves lying around, and that’s a good start, but you’ll need more than that to tackle this job. Because of the health risks involved, professionals nearly cover themselves from head to foot!
Here’s a list of what you’ll need: a pair of latex, vinyl or rubber gloves, protective work goggles, and a mask. It’s also a good idea to wear long sleeves and long pants while you clean. The bacteria can be irritating to the skin.
Caution: never attempt to try to clean areas where mice or rats have been present with your bare hands! Even in spaces that appear clean, there can be bacteria invisible to the eye.
Get Rid of the Evidence
The rat might be gone, but chances are good that it left plenty of evidence behind.
You’re next step is to remove rat droppings, nesting material, urine, and food scraps. Essentially, anything tangible that the rat came into contact with has got to go! Wearing all of your protective gear, thoroughly search your ventilated spaces and remove anything and everything that you can.
It may be tedious, but you’ve got to do this part by hand. Using a broom or vacuum cleaner will kick-up contaminated, harmful dust and it will become airborne.
In the attic take a close look at your insulation. Rats love to make nests by shredding and burrowing in the soft dry attic insulation. If you see signs that the rat has tampered with the insulation- shredding, droppings, urine stains- then it’s got to go. And that is a job for the professionals!
Double bag all of the evidence and put it out for garbage removal ASAP!
Now you’re ready to start deep cleaning. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) suggests you soak any zones where rats have traveled with a strong disinfectant fluid that will kill germs on contact.
You can choose to buy a strong disinfectant from the store, or opt to make your own disinfectant solution. It’s actually quite simple, and you might even have everything you need right at home. Creating a mixture of one-and-a-half cups of bleach to a gallon of water (a 1 to 9 ratio), is and easy recipe to follow and will do the trick when it comes to killing germs.
When you’ve got your disinfecting solution at the ready, next step is to soak every surface that the rat could have come into contact with. If you feel like you’re going overboard, that’s OK. In this case, more is better!
Cleaning Other Materials
Some materials are will be trickier to disinfect than others, like carpet for example. Who knows how many tiny, disgusting mouse droppings might have been ground into the carpet??
To disinfect carpets, upholstery and area rugs, shampoo or steam clean them. The heat and disinfectant solution together will kill any lingering bacteria.
You can rent a carpet shampooer or steam cleaner from your local home improvement store.
Out With the Old
Inevitably, cleanup after rats involves parting with things. Maybe there were storage boxes in the basement that rats got into, or food in the pantry. Don’t be tempted to hold onto anything that the rat came into contact with.
Too much to move? A professional team, like your local Green Rat Control, will offer the complimentary service of hauling it all out for you!
Replacing and Restoring Attic Insulation
Photo Courtesy of Blue Ox Heating & Air
Attic insulation that has been tampered with or damaged by rats poses a serious health risk to your family. It’s got to go!
Without the right type of professionally installed attic insulation, heat will escape right through your attic and ceiling. Basically, you’d be throwing away money!
Only trained professionals with proper protective gear and tools should handle the removal of hazardous attic insulation that could be possibly be carrying infectious diseases.
If you were to begin stripping away or tearing down old insulation without first getting a professional consult, you could accidentally send contamination airborne. Serious respiratory problems can be caused and spread this way. This is truly an accident waiting to happen. If you have small children in the home, it could be very dangerous.
Don’t take the risk, it isn’t worth it. For your own safety, and for your loved ones, make the responsible choice and consult with pros on your next attic insulation project.
Of course it all depends on the size of your space and your needs, but a team of pros can get the job done quickly- usually in about 2 hours! Luckily, Green Rat Control not only specializes in rodent removal, but decontamination and attic insulation services as well! Get this project knocked out in a single afternoon.
Don’t Ignore the Smell
It may seem like the least of your worries, but you can’t just ignore the stench left behind by the rat. Cleanup with disinfectant will get rid of the bacteria but not necessarily the foul smell.
Your final step to a proper cleanup after rats is a professional deodorization service. This will remove the foul smell that is deep-rooted in the fabrics and materials of your space. Once it’s gone you can breathe easy and your home will truly feel clean again!
Are you anxious to get your cleanup under way, but feel daunted by the details? Team up with the friendly team at Green Rat Control. They’ll provide a free consultation and will help you every step of the way.
The team at Green Rat Control have been providing high quality disinfecting and rodent removal services for years. Go for full service- professional grade cleaning, and deodorizing to get rid of any lingering foul odors. You can feel safe and secure in your own home again after a job well done.
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