Being mammals, rodents, rats, and mice thrive in warm environments. This is why during the rainy season, they’re often found dwelling indoors in order to keep warm and forage for food. As destructive as they are, homeowners need to understand how to keep rats away from the house in order to protect the occupants and the structure itself from their wrath.
All homeowners understand that nothing is as unsightly and unsanitary as spotting a vermin scurrying across the floor. However, the concern goes beyond just that. Rats are known to be carriers of certain diseases like salmonella, hemorrhagic fever, leptospirosis, rat-bite fever, and the like. These pests will typically chew through food sources such as scraps, boxes, bags, poultry, fresh produce, and many more. They will oftentimes leave a trail of droppings, contaminating every surface they pass on.
A combination of effective rat control strategies and home remedies is critical to ensuring a rodent-free home. The key is to focus on eliminating potential sources of rat infestations and tactically using available materials and resources to get rid of them. Read on.
Rats’ sense of smell is highly sensitive, meaning they are averse to strong scents and pungent odors. This is what makes scents like peppermint oils effective at driving them away from different parts of the home. Unlike rat traps or rodenticides, peppermint oils are natural and chemical-free. They don’t contain toxic ingredients harmful to the body. In fact, many health experts have suggested the use of peppermint oil for a number of digestive issues, aside from being effective anti-rat treatments.
To use peppermint oils as an anti-rodent remedy, you can simply pour a small amount of it in different locations, such as attics, roofing systems, entryways, openings, holes, windows, vents, or any space they can fit in. Keep in mind that the scent from a peppermint oil drop tends to dissipate quickly, so you’ll want to place drops again from time to time.
Another alternative is to put a few drops of peppermint oil on cotton balls. Similar to what you would do for mothballs, have these placed around every nook and cranny and repeat every few days for optimal results.
While rats and other vermin like to feed on food scraps, they’re not particularly fond of the pungent odor given off by onions. If you don’t want to spend too much money on other treatment products, onions are readily available natural produce that you can use instead.
Rats are discouraged to settle or burrow especially in the presence of these strong odors. Just half a slice of onion placed in openings and inhabited areas are already enough to deter them away from the house.
Not everyone, however, will want their home to smell like these vegetables, which is why they may prefer to dilute the smell by placing the onions in plastic containers with holes punched through them. Another concern is that when consumed, the onions may be toxic to some household pets. Make sure that you take the necessary safety measures to avoid accidents like this.
Like onions, chili peppers are also a natural home remedy against these house pests. Rats in particular are repelled against any seasoning that contains capsicum. This is due to the potent smell that’s both painful to them when consumed and irritating to their respiratory systems.
Place a few red chili peppers around the house, preferably in combination with other remedies, such as onion slices or peppermint oils. Similarly, heed caution when spreading these vegetables — indoor household pets may inadvertently eat them, leading to health issues. Note that if you’re conducting rat control that day, keep pets or toddlers away from these areas and direct them to a safe location.
As mentioned before, the main point of entry of rats to your home is found in the cracks and crevices. Whether they’ve been there by design or accidentally, you have to seal every single one you find in order to get rid of the rats in the first place.
Holes can be found in various areas, such as the kitchen, around pipes, sinks, washing machines, dryer vents, attics, basements, or crawl spaces. Fill the holes by applying a patch of steel wool or a wire mesh with fine openings. Keep them in place using a caulk gun. For much larger holes, you may also have them sealed with cement, cloth, or a sturdy metal sheet.
Wondering how to keep rats away from your house? You can use the four simple strategies above for a rat-free living space. Be mindful of the different odors that also act as rat repellents. Some examples include peppermint oils, onions, and chili peppers. Place these around entryways and other spaces where these creatures may fit to get the desired outcome. Better yet, have these holes blocked or sealed off so that these pests aren’t given a chance to enter in the first place.
Tried everything but still struggling with a rodent infestation? You may want to keep in touch with our local pest control experts from Topbest! Our rat control techniques focus on safe, preventative methods to get rid of rats in your homes forever. Click here to avail of a free consultation!