Every year mice cause billions of dollars in damage to homes and businesses. Mice can also transmit diseases like hantavirus, salmonella, and listeria, which are deadly to humans.

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Although mice are a common problem for many homeowners, they can be removed and prevented from infesting your home fairly easily. With the right approach, you can get rid of mice without killing them. This blog post will discuss why mice love attics, how to remove mice from your attic, and steps to keep them from coming back.

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Why Mice Love Attics

Why Mice Love Attics

Mice are exceptionally good climbers and can easily enter attics through small spaces. Once mice find a food source, they will return to it.

Attics typically house discarded items and cardboard boxes which are prime foraging spots for mice as well as any available nesting materials like insulation or dry wood that mice can use to make their nest.

Signs of Mice in the Attic

Signs of Mice in the Attic

One of the most common signs mice are in your attic is droppings. Mice poop on everything! They can often be found near their nest, food sources, and while they’re exploring. Droppings will range from small black pellets to long snake-like strings depending on how much they’ve eaten or if it’s a female mouse.

Other signs of mice in your attic include:

  • Holes, chewed wires or insulation
  • Tracks in dust on the floor or ceiling
  • Urine stains on insulation, walls or floors
  • Evidence of hair (mice shed hairs as they explore their environment)

How to Get Rid of Mice Without Killing Them

While mice are considered pests in the home, you may not have the stomach to hurt them.

The best way to get mice out of your attic is by trapping them. Mice are naturally curious and will enter a trap if they can see inside or try to follow another animal that has entered the trap before them. Fortunately, you don’t have to set a death trap to get them out of your home.

Mousetraps work well for this purpose, but you’ll need more than just one trap in order to catch all the mice roaming about in your home. Place traps every two feet over an area where mice may be nesting and near any food sources like discarded items or cardboard boxes. The best time to set mouse traps is at dusk when mice are most active because it’s easier for them to spot their prey from afar. Combine these with other methods such as placing rubber bands around vents on the floorboards so mice can’t get in or out and you’ll be mice-free for a long time.

Humane Mouse Traps

The best non-kill mousetraps are the Authenzo Humane Smart No Kill Mouse Trap and the Kat Sense Rat Bait Station Traps. Both of these traps are reusable and can be easily set up in attic. The mice will enter the trap through a small opening and when they do, their foot will hit the trigger plate that holds the door shut. The mice can then be safely released outside of your home without ever coming in contact with you or any other humans.

You can also set mouse traps in outdoor areas around your home like on a patio or deck to keep mice from coming inside. This is especially helpful if you have an open-style attic that doesn’t provide much protection against mice entering. You’ll need to bait these with food, preferably peanut butter, cheese, chocolate spread or hazelnuts because mice love all of those foods! The most common way for mice to enter homes found by exterminators was through holes in walls at ground level so be sure this area is covered as well when setting up outside mouse traps.

How to Prevent Mice From Entering Your Attic

How to Prevent Mice From Entering Your Attic

Once you’ve removed all of the mice from your attic safely, there are some steps that you should take to prevent them from coming back. Here are some of the best ways to keep mice out of your attic.

  • Clean up droppings and hair around your home frequently in order to remove their smell.
  • Remove nesting materials like excess insulation, dry wood, cardboard boxes and other items they might use for bedding. This will help mice stay away because they won’t find a place comfortable enough where there is no risk of being attacked by predators nearby or an easy food source. It’ll also make it less attractive for them to reenter your attic.
  • Seal gaps around pipes, vents and other holes mice can get into with wire mesh or metal flashing.
  • Clean up any food crumbs on the floor that mice may be attracted to. Use airtight containers for storing cereals, crackers, cookies and other food items.
  • Store any garbage in airtight containers or seal it up inside a trash can with a lid that mice cannot enter. Cleaning out the garbage often will help prevent mice from entering as well.
  • Cover exposed food sources like cereal, rice and other grains by placing them in an airtight container or zip lock bag, or store them in a place mice can’t get to.
  • Patch up any holes mice are entering through with steel wool, caulk or tar paper. Mice often enter from the top of an attic and make their way down by following wire runs for lights. Be sure to patch these entry points as well if you find that they’re where mice are coming into your home.
  • Install hardware cloth over vents at least six inches away from the vent itself to keep mice out of the ducts which will allow air flow but block mice from getting inside it.
  • Install wire mesh or metal flashing over any holes mice can get into that are too small for mice to chew through.
  • Purchase an electronic mouse repellent device, which emits high frequency sound waves that repel rodents from sensitive areas such as residences or industrial buildings. These devices are highly effective at keeping away mice because these sounds make their environment feel unsafe – even if they aren’t making mice feel unsafe – and mice will find somewhere else to live.
  • Remove any rotting vegetation or other compost from your yard. This will deter mice when they’re looking for an easy source of food. Mice are primarily attracted by readily available sources of water such as moisture in crawl spaces beneath homes with leaking pipes or where homeowners use humidifiers during cold weather months. Water sources like these should be eliminated if possible.

Summary

A couple mice in your attic isn’t a huge problem for concern. You can use non-kill traps to safely and easily remove them from your home. Then, you can use a variety of DIY methods to prevent them from returning.

For large infestations, we recommend considering a local humane pest control professional. These experts can provide mice control services that will help get a home’s mouse problem under control.

Countless homeowners find themselves asking, “How do I get squirrels out of my attic?” The attic is one of the most common places for the creatures to settle into. If left unattended, one will turn into a whole population.

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The thought of any unwanted animal living in your home can be disturbing. However, pests disrupt a lot more than your peace of mind.

If you need to know how to get rid of squirrels in your attic, read this detailed guide.

Signs of Squirrels in the Attic

Signs of Squirrels in the Attic?

Before we jump into answering the question, “How to get rid of squirrels in the attic?” you need some concrete evidence these rodents are truly there. You may not feel comfortable investigating too deeply if you suspect you have a large population, but there are still some general issues you can watch out for.

Here are some specific signs to keep an eye out for:

Strange Sounds

This is often the first sign that homeowners notice, and it may even be the only sign with a small population. Sounds you may hear include scratching, chewing, and scampering coming from the structures in your house.

Noises will be most prominent in the morning and evening but might be heard at any time of the day.

Damage

With small rodents running around your home, damage is soon to follow. Common issues include chewed-up wires and structures, holes in the walls or roof, water damage, air vent damage, and more.

Foul Odors

An animal dying in your house will leave a terrible smell throughout your home. Feces and urine from a pest infestation will also leave strong odors.

More Encounters

If you notice more squirrels on your property than usual—especially your roof—it may mean they’re already living in your attic. Additionally, large amounts of squirrels in one area may push some to take shelter in houses.

Ignoring the Signs of Squirrels in Your Attic

Most homeowners are not okay with sharing their house with pests of any kind. Even so, many people don’t know how to rid squirrels from the attic. The idea of confronting squirrels living in your attic can be especially daunting sometimes.

It’s in your best interest to confront a pest problem as soon as you can. An uncontrolled infestation could pose serious risks to your house and health. Additionally, there will be more squirrels to remove the longer you wait.

Here are some risks you may face when ignoring the signs:

  • Fires. Rodents need to wear down their teeth, so squirrels in the attic damage anything they can get their mouth on. This includes electrical wires. Make sure to check for new fire hazards as you address your pest problem.
  • Widespread Damage. Electrical wires aren’t the only things rodents get into. They may chew through PVC pipes and wood, make nests in your insulation, and tear up your furniture if the problem gets that far.
  • Feces Contamination. Animals living in an attic may leave droppings and urine everywhere. Not only is the smell extremely unpleasant, but droppings may spread mold and salmonella.
  • More Pests. The scent of animal droppings, urine, and fur grease can easily attract other predators. The longer that animals are left in your attic, the more likely it is you’ll find larger animals checking out your property.

How to Get Squirrels Out of Your Attic

How to Get Squirrels Out of Your Attic

After you establish exactly what kind of animal is in your house, the next step is getting rid of squirrels in the attic.

If you notice a single squirrel in your attic, it’s highly advised to not take action until you hear more squirrels running around. The single squirrel you hear is most likely a mother with a litter. If you remove the mother, you may have a dead litter in your home shortly after.

Note that this guide doesn’t cover how to kill squirrels in your attic. It’s important you know how to get rid of squirrels in the attic without killing them. A decaying animal’s body poses further health risks.

You may have also heard old wives’ tales about other methods, like how to get rid of squirrels in the attic with mothballs. Some of these methods—like placing excessive mothballs—could also make you sick.

Instead of ineffective methods, there are humane ways to remove squirrels from your attic. Listed below are multiple tips on how to get rid of squirrels in the attic and walls.

1. Trapping Squirrels in the Attic

Traps are a popular method. It’s recommended to use repeating-type traps that allow you to catch multiple animals at once. You should also use smaller traps when possible, as they may injure themselves in a panic with more space to move around.

Traps can be placed at entry or exit points and around your property where you notice squirrel activity. Try to remove the caught animal as soon as possible to avoid them hurting themselves or dying.

2. Seal Entry Points

This may be the best way to get rid of squirrels in the attic because it will also prevent more from coming in.

The best way to apply this method is by using one-way door mechanisms on their entry points. These devices look similar to traps, but they allow squirrels to naturally exit your attic, The design of the device also stops them from coming back in.

Fixing up all but one entry point will force the squirrels towards the one-way door, and will protect your home once the last squirrel exits.

3. Create an Unsuitable Shelter

Rodents will naturally attempt to leave your attic faster if you make it an unsuitable shelter. Getting rid of food sources and nests will disrupt their activity. Making the attic bright and loud with whatever means you have may also scare them off.

4. Call a Pest Control Company

Getting squirrels out of your attic by yourself is possible, but can sometimes be difficult or risky. If you think there’s a large population of squirrels in your home, or you’re not comfortable encountering a squirrel, it’s time to call a pest control company. Make sure to research the company before scheduling a service.

Cleaning Up After You Remove Squirrels from the Attic

Cleaning Up After You Remove Squirrels from the Attic

Droppings, urine, and carcasses can spread disease. After you figure out how to get squirrels out of the attic, it’s important to do thorough decontamination. Feces can be moved into a sealed bag—while wearing gloves—and then disposed of.

How to Keep Squirrels Out of the Attic

How to Keep Squirrels Out of the Attic

Many homeowners ask themselves, “How did I get squirrels in my attic?” If you don’t know how to keep squirrels out of your attic in the future, you may soon find yourself with another infestation.

Sealing entry points will not only help you remove squirrels, but will also prevent them from entering your attic in the future and provide a number of other benefits. Avoid leaving out anything that attracts rodents, including bird seeds or fruit that’s fallen off of trees.

Get Rid of Squirrels in the Attic as Soon as Possible

Dealing with any kind of small critter in your house may seem overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be. As with anything, exercising caution and following expert advice will lead to great results, and your attic will be your own again before you know it. Watch for squirrels near your house, and take the recommended steps to protect your home from future infestations.

Home improvement isn’t always affordable, which is why many homeowners delay some project until necessary. But, one project you should consider is air sealing your attic. Below, we’ll discuss everything you need to know about this process, including the savings, to help you determine if it’s worth the investment.

Air Sealing an Attic: What the Project Involves

Air sealing an attic is a labor-intensive process that involves closing holes in your attic’s walls, ceilings, and floors. You’ll need various tools and safety equipment to get started, including unfaced fiberglass insulation, garbage bags, a roll of aluminum flashing, a caulk gun, and a can of expanding spray foam insulation.

Completing this project yourself is possible, but it requires a lot of patience, a willingness to learn, and some trial and error.

Instead, we recommend recruiting a professional to do the job. A professional can work safely in small spaces with poor ventilation. And, they can finish air sealing your attic efficiently so that your household can resume daily routines.

Does My Home Require Attic Air Sealing?

Does My Home Require Attic Air Sealing

Not every attic requires air sealing. Here are some telltale signs that indicate yours does:

  • Cold and hot rooms (uneven temperature between rooms)
  • Drafty rooms
  • Abnormally high cooling or heating bills
  • Icy dams or dry indoor air during the winter
  • Dust (especially in rooms located directly underneath your attic)

If you notice one or more of the following signs, you might have a few air leaks on your hands that require sealing.

How Much Does It Cost to Air Seal an Attic?

How Much Does It Cost to Air Seal an Attic

If you’re interested in air sealing your attic, you’re likely wondering how much it costs. The answer to this inquiry can help you determine whether the project is worth the investment.

The cost of attic air sealing will vary based on multiple factors, such as:

  • The specific contractor you hire
  • The size of your attic
  • How complicated it is to seal various spaces within your structure

While we can’t provide you with an exact quote without knowing more details, we can give you a rough idea. The average cost for attic air sealing ranges from $1,000 to $4,500. Most projects fall into the middle of this price range (around $2,750) but be ready for price adjustments based on your area and attic size.

Other considerations that you may need to consider are whether or not any other issues in the attic need to be addressed such as the insulation and ventilation systems.

The best way to to figure out how much attic air sealing will cost is to schedule an attic inspection. An attic inspector will be able to take thermal images of your attic and see everything that’s happening inside. They’ll then use this information to come up with a proper solution and accurate quote.

How Much Can Air Sealing an Attic Save Me?

How Much Can Air Sealing an Attic Save Me

Some homeowners may flinch at the initial cost of air sealing services. However, these services are well worth the money in the long run.

According to the EPA, homeowners lose between 25 and 30% of their cooling and heating energy via attic air leaks.

Depending on the size of your home, you can save up to $200 per year on your heating and cooling costs when you address air leaks. If you spend $1,000 on attic air sealing services, you’ll earn a 20% ROI per year.

It’s easy to think of attic air sealing services as a costly expense. However, we encourage you to think of them as a long-term investment. Over the years, the investment will pay for itself via how much you save on your cooling and heating bills.

Other Benefits of Air Sealing an Attic

Benefits of Air Sealing an Attic

Besides the direct savings on your heating and cooling costs, attic air sealing provides various other financial, health, and safety benefits. Check them out below:

Improved Home Comfort

After a long day at work, nothing feels better than returning to a house with a pleasant temperature. But, if you have air leaks in your attic, you’ll likely be sitting in uncomfortable conditions.

A porous attic will allow more heat to enter your living space during the warmer months. Once winter rolls around, these holes can result in substantial heat loss.

Depending on the time of year, you may find yourself needing to crank up the A.C. or heater to remain comfortable. Getting into habits like these can add up. For example, some homeowners in certain U.S. regions allocate 70% of their electric bill to air conditioning alone during the summer months.

When you invest in air sealing services, you can close up any glaring holes and relax without having to adjust your A.C. or heater every day.

Plus, air sealing your attic will also help all the rooms in your home remain at a consistent temperature. As you’re walking from the living room to your bedroom, you won’t feel like you’re walking from the Sahara and into the Arctic Tundra.

Less Cleaning & Better Air Quality

Is there nothing you hate more than dust bunnies? If you have gaps in your attic, you may be all too familiar with them.

These holes can invite unwanted pollen, dirt, and other allergens and contaminants into your home. This air quality problem is especially severe in the summer, as dust rises with the warm air that enters your upstairs space.

You can improve the air quality of your home by sealing gaps in your attics. Taking this initiative will prevent you from having to pull out the feather duster every day. It also acts as a great way to improve your family members’ allergy symptoms, especially for those with asthma or other respiratory health problems.

Pest Prevention

Uninvited pests are relentless — they’ll take advantage of any available opportunity to invade your home. Give them one less entry point by sealing up leaks in your attic.

When you close up larger holes, you can keep out large rodents like rats, mice, squirrels, and raccoons.

While most homeowners address larger holes first, you shouldn’t neglect the smaller ones. Patching up small gaps can keep smaller (but still dangerous) pests like cockroaches and termites at bay.

All types of pest prevention are essential, as these intruders can chew through wires and pick away at your home’s support beams.

And trust us, your wallet will thank you. For example, did you know that homeowners with termite problems pay around $3,000 on average to repair the resulting damage? When you invest in attic air sealing services, you can keep peace in your home (and your wallet shut).

Reduced Moisture & Mold

After several heavy downpours, a small hole in your roof can lead to significant water damage in your attic. This added moisture will likely lead to unsightly mold growth, which can:

  • Leave foul odors behind
  • Damage your home’s structural integrity
  • Ruin your furniture or other precious belongings
  • Cause health issues

And mold remediation isn’t cheap. It can set you back as much as $6,000, depending on the size and severity of the affected area.

Combining Attic Air Sealing & Insulation

When discussing attic air sealing, we can’t neglect insulation. Some homeowners may view these two services as one and the same, but they are very different. Both can contribute to the longevity of your home but in varying ways.

Attic air sealing involves blocking air from flowing through gaps and holes in your attic. Insulation involves preventing heat from moving through the attic ceiling, floor, and walls.

Many homeowners choose to get attic air sealing and insulation services simultaneously. If you have a recently built home, you might not require insulation services. An experienced HVAC technician can help you decide what services make sense for your home