As the weather gets colder in the Midwest and winter approaches, we all start getting our winter things ready. Winter clothing? Check. Winter tires and wipers on the car? Check. Ice scraper and snow shovel? Check. You should be pretty ready for what winter has to throw at you this season once you have all these things in place. But is your house ready for the invaders that are coming? And no, we’re not talking about the in-laws coming for Christmas; we’re talking about pests, more specifically MICE, the opportunistic little rodents that need a place to spend the holidays too. Keeping mice out is a tough job, because these rodents have the ability to slip through holes smaller than a dime and can hide pretty much anywhere in your home once inside. All they need is the hospitality that any home provides: water, food and shelter. If they have all these things present, they’ll make a nice and comfy nest inside your home and will never leave. To avoid this, they should never be allowed to enter in the first place. And that’s where our mice prevention tips come in handy. Here are Plunkett’s tips on what you can do to make sure that your home doesn’t make a holiday haven for invading mice this year:
- Find any gaps in your home’s siding, cracks in the foundation and holes in the roof. Gaps as small as ¼ inch can be large enough to let mice in, so these areas should be closed up with whatever material is most appropriate. Vents should be covered in fine wire mesh, chimney caps should be installed over chimneys and foam insulation can be piped into any structural openings.
- Keep piles of wood, garbage and other items that may be inviting to rodents stored away from your home’s structure. Rodents like mice will nest in piles of wood and forage for food in the garbage, so having these things very close to your home is like a neon saying “Vacancy”.
- Don’t let pet food stay uncovered outside. This is another invitation to mice that your home would make a nice place for them. If they have immediate access to food outside your home, once they’ve eaten the food they find, they’ll look for more inside your house.
- Keep doors and windows closed whenever possible. Although this may seem logical, sometimes it’s not. Let’s say you burned the Thanksgiving turkey. You open the windows to let the smell of incinerated poultry out and finally quiet the smoke detectors. Windows stay open for an hour or two, and the next thing you know you’ve got little brown mice running around your kitchen. If you do have a tendency to open windows, make sure that flawless mesh screens are installed over your windows so that you can avoid letting these little rodents inside.