Mice find their way into unseen areas of your home, such as within the walls, attic (insulation), basements, and garages. This time of year, they are looking for a place to spend the winter, and a home within your walls provides warmth and possible access to food sources. These little rodents can squeeze into a space the size of a coin and, once inside, can present a challenge to remove.
How do I know I have mice?
Mice and rodents are nocturnal and very adept at staying unseen. However, some telltale signs signal the presence or infestation of mice and rodents. Pestworld.org provides a comprehensive list of signs of an infestation:
There are a handful of ways to tell if house mice have made your home their own, including the following telltale signs of an infestation:
- Gnaw marks: Gnaw marks may be either rough or smooth.
- Droppings: House mouse droppings may be either soft and moist or dried and hard. The droppings measure about 1/8-1/4 inches long. They are rod-shaped and pointed on the ends.
- Tracks: House mice leave 4-toed prints with their front feet and 5-toed prints with their hind feet.
- Rub marks: House mice often leave oily rub marks on walls along which they travel.
- Burrows: House mice burrow using nesting materials such as insulation.
- Runways: House mice usually use the same pathways. Active runways are sometimes visible, with rub marks, droppings, and footprints along them.
- Odor: The odor of house mouse urine may become distinct if there are many house mice in a particular area. House mice use their strong-smelling urine to communicate with one another.
- Damaged goods: Mice prefer seeds or cereals but will readily eat insects trapped on glue boards.
- Actual rodent: If you see a mouse scurrying across the kitchen floor, a family of mice is likely hiding out of sight.
How to get rid of a mouse in the wall
Now that you have identified that you have mice, how do you get rid of mice in the walls? Here are the most common questions we are asked by homeowners with mice in the walls:
- What smells do mice hate? There are natural ways to get rid of mice. Mice dislike the scent of strong oils and spices such as peppermint oil, cayenne pepper, and cloves. Mice also confuse the smell of ammonia with other animals and predators. Placing any of these scents near or around signs of mice infestation or activity may help.
- Does bleach repel mice? Funny, but yes, bleach can repel mice. The mice are offended by the smell of bleach, affecting their feeding and breeding behaviors.
- Are professional pest control treatments for mice safe for my family and pets? Yes, and professional pest control companies consider your family and pet dynamic and where you are having the issues. Outdoor bait stations, glue boards, and human mice traps offer solutions to safe ways to get rid of mice.
- Do ultrasonic pest repellers work through walls? According to the Daily Wag by com, “Ultrasonic emitters are little machines that release ultrasonic soundwaves to deter mice (among other animals and insects). These devices emit a noise so loud and unbearable that mice leave. Thankfully, these emit sounds at a frequency higher than humans and pets can hear. The efficacy of ultrasonic emitters tends to taper down over time since some mice become used to the sound — particularly in instances of a heavy infestation.” Ultrasonic pest repellers are most effective when used with other pest control methods.
How do I keep mice out of my house?
The best defense is a good offense. Here is a short and simple list creating a shield for your home:
- Mice like to eat, so don’t make it easy. Seal your garbage cans tightly. Do not leave pet food on the deck or in the garage. Feed pets and then remove any extra food lying around.
- Place bird feeders in the back of your yard, away from the home, shed, or other structures.
- Inspect your home from the outside and look for broken window seals, doorways, attic windows, or soffit damage.
- Close your garage door at all times.
- Keep your house clean, especially in kitchens, game rooms, and bedrooms where kids snack.
- Check your foundation for cracks and remove shrubs that touch the home. These are great hiding places for mice and other damaging pests.
What is the best way to get rid of mice?
Contact a professional pest control service if you are unsure what to do when you hear mice in the walls. Rodents, including mice and rats, leave behind filth and disease. They travel easily from outdoors to inside your home, through cracks and between the walls. If you hear the familiar sound of a scampering noise in the attic, you need to call us. When moving through your home, rodents bring disease to floors, counters, and inside your walls. Trapping is effective, yet finding the entry points into your home is critical.