Fall is here! As the weather begins dropping to cooler temperatures, out come the warm sweaters, comfy boots, pumpkin spice treats, and apple delights! After a long day at work or outdoors, you look forward to coming home to a warm nest where fires are built and blankets are drawn up over the shoulders. You start to crave your time indoors, but you’re not the only one who feels this way. Unfortunately, mice hate the cold weather too and want desperately to find a shelter that feels just as warm as yours does. With how many goodies you’ll be making for Halloween, harvest parties, and Thanksgiving, you’re definitely going to want to know how to keep mice away this winter, especially before Christmas! When the cold weather only gets colder, and the temptation for mice only gets stronger. But really, how can they resist when you heat up the oven and start baking cookies?
These cold, hungry critters want more than anything to become a new member of the family and will seek out any means necessary to gain entry into your home. Here’s how to keep mice away this winter so you only have to worry about providing hospitality to the house guests who were actually invited.
1. Seal up all entry points
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You’ll want to check your property for any holes or crevices leading directly into your house. Even the smallest of openings shouldn’t be ignored since mice can squeeze through any hole the size of a dime! Be sure to examine your plumbing, gutters, and even the roof shingles to make sure everything is properly secured. Here are some simple rodent proofing steps you can follow.
- After you’ve inspected your house for any entry points, seal them all up using caulking, wire mesh, or both! Mice and rats alike cannot chew through the metal of the wire mesh, and they won’t be able to fit through the tiny holes. Keep in mind that using caulking is the fastest route, but a desperate mouse might still be able to chew through the substance.
- Check areas that were previously maintained or worked on in the past. This can include foundations, holes around dryer vents, and gaps around windows. Over time, sealants can become cracked or worn down due to the changes in weather.
- Investigate more obscure areas like your ventilation and chimney. Mice looking for an easy route into the attic will search everywhere for one! You can successfully seal off these points of access using hardware cloth if you so desire. This way it’ll block out the rodent, but not the essential airflow.
2. Take extra preventative measures
It’s never our intention to let a mouse into the home, but wouldn’t you be surprised to learn that lots of mice walk right in through the front door just as we do! Windows are also no exception. Often, homeowners are simply unaware of mouse behavior and don’t realize that to keep mice away, is to understand what attracts mice in the first place. The flattering trees and shrubbery that surround our property are one of the biggest culprits for invasive rodents. Here’s what you can do eliminate outdoor temptations that may lead mice into your home.
- Trim back any trees so they’re at least 6 feet away from the home and clip up bushes so they’re at least 2 feet away. Mice are notorious for hiding within the vegetation, waiting for you to open a window so they can slip inside undetected. This will also help to keep other rodents, like roof rats, away from your attic as well, since they usually climb trees, using the branches to gain access to the roof.
- Make sure the areas on or around door frames are gap-free and that there are no faults in the weather stripping. Doors are rather easy targets for mice and shouldn’t be left open for longer than necessary. Mice are quick and won’t hesitate to run in with you as you bring in the groceries. Garage doors should also be closed and checked for gaps as well.
- Window screens need to be properly maintained and patched if any holes are present.
- Remove piles of wood away from your home. You might like having all that toasty firewood close by for easy access, but mice are drawn to the shelter that these piles usually provide. The closer the wood is to your home, the easier it will be for mice to find their way into your house.
3. Be tidy
Rodents love living in messy environments. They make for great places of shelter against the outdoor elements and potential predators, and when there’s food involved, it’s practically mouse heaven! The little pests are not likely to seek out spaces with very little security, so having a clean home is one of the best and easiest ways to keep mice away from your house. Here’s a list of simple tasks that will help deter the little demons.
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- De-clutter the house. If you’re one who likes to keep a spare room, basement, or attic just for storage, you’ll want to make sure the space is as organized as possible and cleaned regularly. Rooms like these become huge targets for mice who never have to worry about being disturbed and can enjoy climbing on your furniture, gnawing boxes, marking their territory, and building their nests.
- Be sure to properly store food away. Leaving fruits, vegetables and even bread on the counters can be a major attraction to mice. Once they find food, they’re likely to return. Storing cookies, grains and seeds in airtight containers will greatly reduce this temptation. All other previously mentioned foods can be stored in the fridge.
- Wipe up any crumbs or other leftover food particles from the counters. Cleaning up directly after meals will eliminate lingering scents that mice can detect much faster and easier than humans.
- If you have pets, be sure to store up their food in airtight containers as well. Dogs and cat bowls can even be picked up until the next meal.
4. What if you already have mice in the house?
Dealing with mice alone can be time consuming, frustrating and ultimately dangerous if the situation is not handled correctly. This is considering many mice carry harmful diseases in their feces and urine. If you’ve already taken preventative measures, but are still having trouble with rodents, you might have an infestation on your hands. Mice can have up to eight pups in a litter and are ready for reproduction in as little as four weeks of age! If you’re currently looking into how to keep mice away in hopes of getting rid of these unwelcome visitors, we suggest calling your local pest control.
The friendly team at Green Rat Control has over 20 years of experience in handling infestations. They’ll take on the toughest of jobs such as trapping, removing dead animals and eliminating odors. If mice happen into your attic and ruin the insulation, the Green Rat Control will remove and replace all soiled insulations, and they won’t leave you without fully sanitizing any infected areas.
Whether you’ve got an infestation or simply want someone to rodent proof your property for you, we’re the right service to call.
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