Do you dread those pesky critters finding ways into your home as they seek refuge from the cooling temperatures? Right now is the best time to take proactive measures to ensure they can’t find a way to get inside.
Our staff help customers with this issue every Fall and have some great tips for pest-proofing your home:
Our Staff Tips:
Wayne’s Tip: "Trim back the shrubs and plants that are growing against the exterior walls of your home. Pests feel safe in this type of environment. The less 'cover' for critters the less time they’ll want to spend searching for an opening into your home."
Kate’s Tip: "Inspect your doors and windows to ensure they don’t offer an opening into your home. Look at your screen doors and windows. Do they have any holes in them? If so bring them into our store to be repaired. Are there any gaps or openings around your door frames or windows? Are there any cracks or holes in the weather seals along the base of your garage doors? If so you need to seal them."
Roger’s Tip: "Inspect the perimeter of your home for any cracks or holes. If you were a mouse or a bat on a mission could you find an opening large enough to squeeze through? Do you see any gaps or cracks in the foundation or any loose siding? What about gaps around utilities going into you home or a loose flap on your dryer vent? If you find any possible entrance then be sure to fill it with something that a pest can’t chew through.
GREAT TIP: Fill the hole with coarse steel wool followed by a low expansion foam or caulking.
DID YOU KNOW? A mouse only needs 1/4 inch crack or opening to get inside.
Jackie’s Tip: "Take your inspection inside the home. Carefully look in and around your kitchen cupboards, under the sinks, in the basement and attic. Check the flooring and the baseboards for any gaps. It’s better to be extremely thorough because the alternative is having to deal with a squirrel, mouse or rat inside your home where there are many hiding spots. Your other option: get a cat!"
Michelle’s Tip: "Chimneys are an access often overlooked. If you have a chimney then consider hiring a professional this time of year to do a safety inspection and also determine whether there is any opportunity for a critter to climb down inside. One way to keep critters out of the opening is a chimney cap."
John’s Tip: "Keep food away from the perimeter of your home. Although it may be more convenient to have your garbage and recycling right outside your door, or the bird feeder a few steps away, remember that these food sources attract the critters that you want to keep out of your home. Think twice and keep these areas far enough away that critters won’t be seeking food AND shelter."
Scott’s Tip: "Set some traps in your house even if you haven’t seen a mouse. Hopefully there won’t be any action but it is a very useful indicator. The reality is it’s a lot easier to deal with mice at the beginning of an infestation than a situation where there has been “proliferation”. We carry both live traps and spring style traps."
We have many products at the store that can help including:
• The Victor Catch & Hold trap humanely catches up to 4 mice. For those who don't want to kill mice, but do want to get them out of the house.
• The Victor Quick-Set is easier to set than the old fashioned wooden spring style trap and works just as effectively.
• If you don’t want to see the "end result" then consider the Victor Kill Vault. It’s safe around children and pets when used as directed.
• For cottagers who are closing up the cottage for the winter and don't want to come back in the Spring to mouse dirt all over their counters, the Victor Pest Chaser is a good option, an ultrasonic rodent repeller that you plug in to an outlet. It emits ultrasonic sound waves that you and your pets can’t hear but that drives mice crazy!
When trying to catch unwanted critters remember to consider those other "critters" already living in your home that you want to keep safe!
We hope these tips help you keep your homes free from unwanted visitors this season! If you have any other questions please feel free to ask the next time you’re at the store or by email.
Your local Home Hardware family