House mice are one of the most common wild animals that people find in their homes, but that doesn't make them any less bothersome. These animals can make noise by scampering around the attic or squeaking to communicate. They can also transmit disease and cause damage to various fixtures in your attic, such as the wood or insulation. Luckily, with some professional assistance or the right knowledge and DIY skills, you can get house mice out of your attic for good. To do so, you will want to go through the following steps:
- 1. Find Their Entrance
- 2. Seal All Holes
- 3. Trap And Remove Them
- 4. Clean And Disinfect
Each of these steps is important if you want to make sure that the house mice don't return and none come back to take their place. You will also want to take some preventative measures to discourage new ones.
Find Potential Entry Points
Before you can work to get house mice out of your attic, you will need to figure out how they are getting inside. The mice have found some hole or gap in your home's exterior and you will need to discover where it is. Carefully examine your house inside or out or have a professional do so for you. Mice tend to enter through vents or pipes as well as gaps or cracks in the siding or where your pipes and wires enter your home. Also pay close attention to the roof lines, which will involve climbing a ladder.
Seal Every Hole
As you go through your home to search for potential house mouse entry points, seal up every single hole you find that is bigger than ¼ inch. This is the minimum size that mice need to get inside since they are small and their body structure allows them to fit into very small spaces. Remember that these rodents can chew through wood and sometimes even caulking. As such, you will need to use metal flashing or steel mesh along with a solid sealant to close up the holes you find. Make sure you seal every hole leading into your home; otherwise, new mice can still get in.
Trap And Remove The Mice
Now it is time to trap and remove the mice from your attic. There are two main options: kill traps and live traps. If you plan on using a kill trap, always choose snap traps. These are the most humane option as they will kill the mice instantly, unlike other options such as glue traps. As a bonus, snap traps are also very affordable and easy to use. Remember to set up more traps than you think you need. After trapping the mice in snap traps, you will have to dispose of them. When doing so, be sure not to touch the animals as they may transmit disease.
If you plan on using live traps, you will spend a bit more money on the traps, but many people consider this to be worth it since the mouse gets the chance to live. When live trapping, you will need to relocate the mice you catch to somewhere at least a mile away from your home, preferably farther away.
Don't simply place the traps wherever you want and hope for the best. You may catch mice that way, but success won't be guaranteed. For the best results, look for signs of house mouse trails and place the traps along their common paths. At the very least, place the traps somewhere where you know they will go. A professional can help with this as he will know how to recognize the signs of mice and have experience placing traps correctly.
Clean Your Attic
When the mice are all out of your attic, it is time to clean up the area. You want to do a thorough job to avoid pathogens and foul smells. Remember that mice leave behind scent trails and odors that will attract new animals so unless the area is thoroughly cleaned, you leave yourself open to a new infestation. Cleaning up the mouse urine and droppings will also prevent the growth of mold and development of bad smells. If you don't want to do the cleaning and decontamination yourself, there are professionals that specialize in this service.
Remember Preventative Measures
Because you sealed up all potential entry points, you should not theoretically have a problem with more mice entering your attic. It still helps, however, to take basic precautions to prevent them from coming back. Make a conscious effort to keep your home clean and free from food scraps. Mice will eat nearly any food item you leave out so store everything in airtight containers they can't access and clean food crumbs from the counters and floors.
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