Here Are the Four Simple Steps You Need to Take to Get Rid of Mice

You might have mistook that movement for a mouse. The truth is, you're not alone This is what the U. S According to the most recent American Housing Survey from the Census Bureau, nearly 15 million homes have had rodent problems in the past year. Dan DiClerico, director of home improvement and the outdoors at the Good Housekeeping Institute, puts it this way: "Living with mice isn't just unsettling; it can make your home less healthy." The CDC states that ticks, mites, and fleas that have fed on mice can transmit diseases directly to humans through the rodents' feces, urine, and saliva.

You didn't need us to tell you that mice are a problem, and we're not going to. However, the numerous ways in which rodents in your home detract from your quality of life must be recognized and addressed. The good news is that with the right approach to prevention and containment, a mouse infestation can be contained or even avoided entirely.

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It's not uncommon for there to be several mice in an area where one has been spotted. It has been estimated that a single female mouse can have eight litters per year, giving birth to anywhere from 50 to 100 offspring. These numbers come from the Building Performance Institute, which establishes guidelines for the construction of healthy, pest-free homes. DiClerico explains that because mice are nocturnal, their feces are often the first indication of an infestation. The feces resemble dark rice grains about a quarter of an inch in length. Rat feces are typically an inch or so in length and two inches in width.

Mice are not only noticeable for their droppings. Because of their constant hunger, the kitchen is usually the most active area of the house. Check for signs of gnawing on food boxes and other pantry damage. Check for openings around pipes, wires, and drains; in window sills and baseboards; and in walls. DiClerico claims that mice can squeeze through openings as small as a quarter of an inch in diameter.

Effective Methods for Eliminating Mice

It's preferable to prevent mice from ever entering your home in the first place, just as it is with silverfish and other pests like cockroaches. But even if one takes every possible measure, mice can still find a way in (pardon the pun). ) If you discover evidence of mice in your home, you can get rid of them quickly and easily by following the steps outlined in this article.

The first step is to locate their point of entry.

Mice need a way inside your house before they can set up shop and have babies. Potential entryways include the following: basements, attics, crawlspaces, and gaps around windows and doors. Cindy Mannes, a spokesperson for the National Pest Management Association, says, "Figure out where they're coming from, because putting traps randomly all over your basement floor isn't going to do any good." Find out where the mice are settling down and making their nests, and place your traps accordingly.

Two, place mousetraps.

When mice have made your house their home, one of the most effective ways to get rid of them is with mouse traps. Put mouse traps in places where mice are most likely to enter your home, such as along walls and behind trash cans. In terms of price, features, and aesthetics, there is a wide selection of mouse traps available.

We do not endorse sticky or glue mouse traps due to their inhumane method of killing mice. Similarly, we do not advise the use of rondenticides, which pose a serious risk of accidental poisoning, especially to children, and should therefore never be kept in the home.

Pick the most appropriate mouse trap from the following options:

  • This common mouse-catching device uses a quick trigger to capture the rodents in their tracks. Snap traps, when used properly, can efficiently exterminate a mouse population. These include the bar snap trap, the clam snap trap, and the hidden kill snap trap.
  • These mouse traps use electric shocks to kill mice that are lured into the trap. They're made in such a way that they can't shock people or animals.
  • Similar to the traps used for larger mammals, live catch traps capture mice without killing them. They are a special kind of cage with a door that won't open again unless the captured rodent is released, and they typically have a trigger to do so.

Peanut butter is by far the most popular bait for mouse traps, but other options include chocolate, cheese, bird seed, and nuts.

Thirdly, clean out the storage shed

Mice have an equal interest in automobiles as they do in dwellings. Mannes warns that if the pests find their way into the garage, they may make a home under the hood of a vehicle because the engine provides a comfortable and warm environment. When they begin chewing on wires, it can be disastrous for your vehicle. The use of rodent tape, which is treated with components also found in chili peppers, can help deter mice from frequenting problem areas.

Putting out mouse traps in the garage to make sure none of those pesky rodents made it in is a good first step, but the best solution is to keep them out in the first place. "Make sure the garage is completely closed off. For example, DiClerico recommends installing weather stripping around the bottom of your garage door. Most importantly, keep away from pests any food that they might be attracted to. According to DiClerico, a garage is a terrible place to keep things like garbage, pet food, and paper towels.

When all else fails, call the pest control experts

What one person can endure before reaching out for assistance is different from person to person. You can ask around for recommendations for a professional exterminator or pest control service from your friends and neighbors if the time comes when you realize you need their help. Prices range from $150 to $250, depending on the square footage of your home and the severity of the infestation.

Bombs and foggers are not recommended due to the danger they pose to bystanders and the limited effectiveness they typically exhibit.

In addition, before hiring an exterminator, you should always verify their credentials. As Mannes advises, "ask the pro if they are licensed by the state and if they are members of a state or national association." "Typically, those people are investing in themselves by getting the right credentials and training in the most cutting-edge treatment modalities." "

Solutions to Future Mice Problems

If you've already gotten rid of the mice in your home, follow these steps to make sure they (and other rodents) don't come back.

First, ensure no outsiders can enter.

Fill in tiny cracks with caulk made entirely of silicone Steel wool or copper mesh will stop mice from chewing through and into your home, and you can seal any holes larger than 1/2 inch with joint compound or a foam insulation pest blocker. Mannes advises, "Check the basement foundations and pay special attention to the places where pipes enter the house." Put a door sweep in the bottom of any exterior doors to prevent mice from slipping under.

2. Remove overhanging limbs from the roof

Planting shrubs and trees near your house is like extending an open invitation to rodents and insects. Trim back the bushes around your home to block off their path to your doorstep. While spring is ideal for pruning, it can be done at any time of year if only dead or broken branches are being removed. DiClerico warns that "it is also important to keep stacks of firewood at least 20 feet from the house, since mice — not to mention termites and carpenter ants — like to nest in the piles."

Three, get rid of all food sources

Mice are looking for a warm place to stay and a reliable food source as winter approaches. Keep your kitchen clean, with sealed food stored in airtight containers and sealed food on the shelves, cabinets, and countertops. A similar rule applies to pet food: avoiding leaving a bowl of food out for your cat or dog all day will help deter rodents.

Mice will eat just about anything, so when you're doing your weekly kitchen cleanup, be sure to toss or recycle any extra food packaging.

Make your trash inaccessible 4

Mice, like flies and cockroaches, are drawn to the warmth and food sources provided by garbage cans. Choose a trash can with a tight lid or secure it with rubber cords to keep mice out; metal containers are preferable. Maintaining clean trash cans on a regular basis will keep mice and rats at bay.

Five, break out the aromatic oils

Although Mannes claims that natural deterrents aren't effective against mice, there's no harm in giving them a shot. Claims have been made that mice can be deterred by peppermint and clove oil. Cotton balls soaked in the essential oils can be placed in drawers, cabinets, and other mouse-prone areas.

I recommend you consider a cat as your sixth option.

Mice only run from cats in cartoons. "mice are hard-wired to feel fear if they smell pheromones from cat urine," the authors of a study from the Scripps Research Institute write. Another scholarly study found that having both a cat and a dog in the house was highly effective at discouraging rodents. Although this is a great benefit, it shouldn't be the only factor in deciding to bring a pet into your home.

So, in conclusion

Mice are a serious problem that can rapidly worsen if not eliminated. It is possible that structural defects in the house, such as gaps around the windows and doors that allow moisture and drafts to enter, are to blame for the pest invasion. The good news is that the solutions are typically easy to implement and, in conjunction with removing potential food sources, should get rid of the mice for good. A mouse-free home is possible, though it may take a few weeks of effort.

  • Here Are the Top 5 Mousetraps That Will Work in 2023
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That witty young lady, Amanda Garrity

Amanda Garrity has worked as a lifestyle writer and editor for over seven years, with the last five spent on staff at Good Housekeeping. There, she covered topics such as the newest developments in interior design, inventive do-it-yourself projects, and comprehensive gift guides for any and all occasions. She also enjoys writing about comforting television shows like When Calls the Heart on the Hallmark Channel, Sweet Magnolias, and Virgin River.  

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