How to Keep Mice Out of the House: Rodent-Proofing Myths & Facts

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How To Get Rid of Mice & Rats: Myths and Facts

If you’re trying to prevent rats or mice from entering your home or trying to get rid of a current rodent infestation, there are lots of suggestions for DIY and home remedies. However, many of these DIY rodent control treatments aren’t based on factual evidence. Here at Corbett Exterminating, our professional rodent exterminators have analyzed and debunked some of the most common myths to keep rodents away from your home. Take a look at some of the most common questions and answers below!

What Scent Do Mice Hate?

There are a variety of scents that mice hate, and can be useful for keeping mice out of your home. Some smells that mice hate include:

  • Ammonia
  • Pepper
  • Cinnamon
  • Citrus
  • Tea Bags 
  • Dryer Sheets
  • Vinegar

While the list above contains some of the most effective scents that mice hate, there are many other scents that may also work. If you're looking for an at-home way to deter mice, try using one of these scents.

Do dryer sheets repel mice and keep them away?

Dryer sheets can repel mice and rodents and keep them away, but it’s not a long-term or promising rodent removal solution. The powerful scent of dryer sheets is tolerable (and usually pleasant!) for people, but it can be overpowering and distressing for rodents. If you only have one or two mice in your home, dryer sheets are a cheap way to make them less interested in your home. 

Wondering what scent will keep mice away? Placing simple Bounce dryer sheets around your home can be a humane alternative to keep mice away from your home. However, for a larger infestation, this method doesn’t carry much weight.

What color do mice hate?

Mice aren’t deterred by colors because they’re colorblind! Painting your rooms or baseboards won’t do much to combat a rodent infestation. 

Does peppermint oil repel mice?

Peppermint oil or peppermint spray is not an effective mouse repellent. Although concentrated essential oil may smell strong to you, the odor will diffuse quickly, meaning it won’t linger long enough to do more than make your house smell fresh. Rodents are intelligent and can avoid scents that bother them while still infesting your home. 

Do mothballs keep mice away? 

Mothballs repelling mice and rats is a common misconception. Mothballs contain a small amount of naphthalene and can be a deterrent in large quantities, however, they aren’t powerful enough to get rid of mice and rodents. Using mothballs to deter rodents is more likely to make your home smell bad rather than get rid of mice or prevent mice from entering the home.  

Does bleach repel mice? 

Technically, if consumed, bleach will kill a mouse or rat. However, the risks of this rodent-proofing DIY method overshadow the benefits. Not only does it have a foul smell, but bleach also releases fumes that are dangerous to humans and pets. If used in excess in your home (as it would need to be to effectively remove rodents), it would pose a risk to your health. With so many family-friendly professional rodent control treatments available, using bleach to get rid of rodents isn’t smart or efficient.

Are mice afraid of cats?

This one is true! Rats and mice are frightened by the presence of cats and their scent, so having a cat in your home is a good first step to repelling rodents. However, not all families are the right fit for a cat, and a cat alone is not enough to fully rodent-proof your home.

Does Irish Spring soap keep mice away?

Although a common belief, soap does not keep mice away. Not even Irish Springs soap keeps mice away. This myth comes from the idea that mice eat animal fat (a core ingredient in many soaps), so by eating soap the mice will die from chemical exposure. However, this simply isn’t true. The amount of soap one mouse would need to eat to be impacted is large, and it’s less likely a whole infestation of mice would chow down on enough soap to be harmed.


How to Prevent Mice From Entering Your Home

Now that we’ve debunked the common misconceptions about DIY rodent proofing, let’s look at some proven effective rodent control and prevention methods you can take to protect your home from rats and mice.

Exclusion Work

Mice and rats can fit through a dime-sized hole, making it incredibly easy to find entry points to your home, walls, and attic. These tiny entrances can be easy to miss with an untrained eye, however, the ones you do notice can be easily sealed with wire mesh and a caulking gun. Our professional rodent removal technicians can identify harder-to-find entry points and seal them properly to prevent mice from entering the home. 

Trim Shrubs and Bushes

Mice use thick foliage as a protective pathway to your home and as cover from predators like cats, owls, snakes, and more. To prevent mice from easily entering your home, keep shrubs and trees near your home’s foundation properly trimmed.

Keep Things Clean and Sealed

In addition to seeking shelter and nesting areas, mice commonly enter homes looking for food. Making an effort to keep food (including pet food) sealed away in airtight containers and cleaning up crumbs and spills will help avoid inviting mice to come inside.

Call a Professional Rodent Exterminator

Few DIY rodent-proofing solutions are as effective as calling an expert who is seasoned in rodent prevention. Professional rodent exterminators have spent years strengthening their rodent-proofing skills and knowledge, and have access to the best resources and tools to ensure homes are protected. Here at Corbett Exterminating, we have decades of experience preventing and eliminating rodents from homes just like yours. We will take care of the difficult work of sealing rodent entry points and trapping existing rodents to get rid of these frustrating pests for you once and for all. 

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