Do you have a sneaking suspicion that mice, rats, or other rodents have taken up residence in your home? If you hear scratching in your walls and begin to smell a strong odor, then you could have an infestation on your hands. Even if you don’t see them, rodents may be living in your attic, walls, or basement. Since they are nocturnal, they only come out at night and are masters at staying out of sight during the day.
If you are concerned you might have rodents in your house, here are some ways to know for sure.
The signs of a rodent infestation
Rodents are tiny and not always easy to spot, but some signs will give them away. They will be looking for food, and therefore an excellent place to look for clues is in your food cupboards. The first thing you might notice is droppings. Rodents are notorious for leaving a huge trail of droppings everywhere they go, excreting up to 80 droppings every single night. If you see any, you should call in the attic cleaning orange county professionals to clean out your attic and identify if any rodents may be hiding up there.
- Urine pillars
You might also find urine pillars, which are an indication that you have a large group of rodents living in your home. Urine pillars are about 2 inches high and are a mix of dirt, body grease, and urine, which form small pillars.
- Smell of ammonia
Rodents urinate almost as much as they poop, and the smell is incredibly strong. The ammonia-like scent of rodent urine is a dead giveaway that they are living in your house. The smell of ammonia could also indicate that a mouse or other rodent has died in your house, so if you can trace the smell then you’ll likely find it.
Rodents will build nests in your home to sleep during the day. You’ll often find these nests in your attic, under the floorboards, behind or under your appliances, and any other dark cavities. A rodent nest is made from shredded materials and will be easy to identify when you see it.
- Scratching sounds
Rodents are active in the evening, so if you keep hearing scratching in your walls at night, then it’s likely that you have an infestation.
How can you prevent a rodent infestation?
Rodents are always looking for a safe and secure place to build their nests, find food, and breed. Your home fits all those criteria, so it’s no surprise that they will try everything to get inside. Rodents get into your home through cracks in the foundation, underneath doors, or through holes in your walls, so the best thing you can do is to ensure regular maintenance on your home. Sealing holes, cracks, and putting vents on any required openings (like your chimney) is the best way to prevent them from getting in.
There are some other steps that you can take to reduce your risk of a rodent infestation.
- Keep your attic and basement clean and dry
Rodents prefer to hang out where no humans are wandering around, and if your attic or basement is full of junk, it will be a rodent’s paradise. By keeping your attic and basement clean, they will have no optimal place to nest, and therefore it will deter them from staying.
- Keep shrubbery trimmed back from the home
Rodents often hang out in shrubbery as it provides shelter and a place to hide. It’s also a natural ladder to allow rodents to climb up and enter your home from a higher point.