It’s that time again. A new year always brings great opportunities with it, but it also brings rodent season. This is because when it gets cold out, rats and mice start to seek shelter, moving from the streets into commercial businesses and – increasingly – people’s homes. The good news is that it is not hard to deter rodents from coming into your property, as long as you take proper precautions. Keep reading to learn how to get rid of rodents this winter and keep them away for good, and remember that for all your rodent control and pest control needs, you can count on our experts at Frame’s Pest Control.
7 Steps to Help You Avoid Rodent Infestations Long-Term:
- Keep an Eye Out: Remaining vigilant is a key part of rodent control, as the earlier you catch an infestation, the easier it is to stop it. Watch out for rodents and rats in the dark corners of your home, and keep an eye out for droppings, gnaw marks, and trails that may indicate rats or mice have entered the premises.
- Seal Up Cracks & Holes: Some mice can squeeze through holes the size of a dime while rats have been known to slip under gaps roughly a quarter of an inch. For this reason, it is important to seal cracks and close openings as much as possible throughout your property. This means weather-stripping windows and doors, inserting door sweeps, patching screens, caulking up holes, and replacing broken pipes and building materials.
- Store Food in Airtight Containers: Rats and mice will flock to anywhere they can find an available food source. As such, it is important to put leftovers away quickly, storing them in sealed, airtight containers where rats and mice can’t get to them. The more crumbs and food debris you have lying out, the greater chance there is that you will experience a rodent of infestation. And speaking of crumbs and debris…
- Make Sure to Clean Your Home & Take Out the Garbage Frequently: Rats and mice love any kind of garbage. That’s why in addition to properly storing food, it is essential to also keep your kitchen and the rest of the house clean. Don’t leave food out and throw away rotting fruits or vegetables promptly. Wipe down surfaces, sweep for crumbs and debris, and vacuum regularly. And of course, don’t let the garbage pile up, as this is basically an invitation to rodents to enter your home.
- Keep Attics, Basements, Crawlspaces & Garages Well-Ventilated: As mentioned above, rodents usually enter your home through cracks and crevices, and hide out in dark corners where you are less likely to find them. Therefore, it is important to monitor attics, basements, crawlspaces, and garages closely. You should also try to air out these areas, as rodents love dank, dark spaces, and are less attracted to fresh, dry settings. In your attic, temperature control is particularly important, as rats and mice are known for nesting in insulation and creating a big mess.
- Declutter Your Storage Areas: This point relates to the above one, and how rodents love to camp out in the least visited places of your home. But in addition to airing these spaces out and making sure they are well-ventilated, you will also want to remove clutter from them wherever possible. Old boxes full of paper and fabrics are prime locations for rats and mice to create their nests, and the less clutter there is overall, the less room there is for these nasty critters to hide.
- Reduce Vegetation as Much as Possible: While your garden and lawn may not be as green in winter anyway, it is still a good idea to trim plants and bushes as much as possible. Active vegetation is another thing that draws rats and mice to homes, providing them with food and shelter. The more comfortable rodents get outside your home, the more likely they are to want to get inside, too, so get rid of any tree branches that may be hanging over your house or plants that are growing dangerously close to your exterior property.