For the last few months mice have been outside enjoying the weather, partying, and just having a great time. They haven’t been experiencing much stress as they’re easily able to get food and find shelter, which makes them happy.
But as the colder months start to move in and more stress is put on their environment – they’re going to be looking for a little assistance. Can you help? They just need some bread crumbs, maybe a nice cozy place to build a nest, or a nice wall void to live inside. That’s all.
And in return for your generosity they will be more than happy to chew some of the wires in your home, leave some of their droppings on your countertops, and maybe even help you open up a few gifts this Christmas. Sounds like a good deal right?
I didn’t think so. Although mice may be cute outside or at a pet store, they can cause a lot of havoc inside your home or apartment. Aside from being extremely unsanitary pests and being known to cause many health problems such as Hantavirus, they are also known to cause house fires by chewing on wires in attic spaces. I have actually been to houses in the past where I have seen mice chewing on the wires in the attic. Luckily no fires but they did cause a lot of damage for the homeowner.
So what are some steps that you can take to make sure that a family of mice don’t move in to your home this winter?
Here are three of my best mice prevention tips:
1) Focus On The Sill
Most of the time mice will find access inside of your home somewhere along the basement sill. They will come in along the sill and then run up through a pipe hole leading into a kitchen or bathroom. This is where you want to set traps. Take about 10-20 old fashioned mouse snap traps, bait them and then set them. Use a combination of cotton and peanut butter when baiting the traps. Mice will use cotton as nesting material and it won’t go moldy in a damp basement like peanut butter.
Once the traps are baited and set – place them along the sill about every 3-4 feet. Check them every couple weeks or so to see if you’ve caught a mouse or if they need to be re-set/re-baited.
Pro Tip: Make sure that the snap traps are placed flush against the wall and not a few inches or feet away. Mice travel along the walls and you will have a better chance of catching them if there is no space between the wall and trap.
2) Steel Wool And Foam Combination
When I go to homes to treat for mice I will often times see holes that are filled with foam (the type of foam that you can get at a hardware store). The problem is that mice will easily chew through this type of foam. But, what they can’t chew through is steel wool. So I recommend stuffing all pipe holes underneath sinks, all holes in the basement, gaps in the foundation, and any other access points with steel wool first and then covering the hole with foam. This provides a much better barrier against mice trying to get inside.
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3) Door Sweep
Mice only need about a ¼ inch gap and they’re in. They will run along the side of your house and once they sense that tiny bit of heat escaping out a crack, they will try to fit inside (and most of the time if they’re determined enough – they will get in).
To prevent this from happening make sure that all doors close properly, including garage doors. Inspect for sunlight peeking its way inside a crack or underneath a door. If you can see sunlight then it’s a good sign that the door might not create a tight enough seal. Add a door sweep or have the necessary repair done to ensure that all doors have “mouse proof” seal.
Now any mice in the area will not be able to gain access inside of your home and will be forced to move into your neighbors house.
If you don’t like your neighbor, then you don’t have to do anything. But if you do like your neighbor, refer them to this article or have them call…
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