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Are there mice in your house? Mice are common all over the world, especially when it is cold outside. They come crawling into homes in search of food and shelter. Given how small they are, it may seem like they appear out of thin air.
While they may seem harmless, mice are capable of spreading serious diseases. Their droppings are also dirty and full of bacteria. It’s important that you get rid of mice as quickly as possible so that you don’t get sick.
Experts in the pest control Durham region and beyond recommend that you take three steps: remove food sources, pest-proof the house, and exterminate with the right traps. Here’s how you can do it all yourself.
Pest-Proof the Pantry
Mice love the smell of a well-stocked pantry. If they can reach it, they’ll chew holes in the packaging and get right into your food. So, switch to airtight containers for all your pantry goods. Use glass jars and thick plastic containers that the critters can’t chew through. Keep the pantry shelving clean.
Caulk the Interior
Inspect your home for cracks in the walls and openings that could fit mice. Check the baseboards and in cabinets. Mice often nest in the walls and floors of the home. Fix and seal every opening you find with caulking or other appropriate material.
Weatherstrip the Doors
Mice often get into homes via the front door. So, weatherstrip your doors to the outside and fix any gaps you find in the door frames. Windows should also be well sealed, with well-fitting screens and frames that are intact.
Cover Wall Vents
Wall vents are usually made of plastic, which is soft enough for rodents to chew. If you want to keep mice out for good, purchase a 16-gauge mesh from the hardware store and screw it directly over your vents. You can also plug your weep vents with stainless covers. Remember that it only takes about a quarter-inch space to let in mice.
Seal Up the Soffits
Did you know that mice are excellent climbers? They can climb straight up a brick wall. In some cases, mice climb up the walls, then squeeze their way through gaps in the soffits. From there, they get into the attic and spread through the home. Check for gaps between your soffits and the outer walls of your home. Seal any you find with caulking or narrow mesh.
Clean Up the House
Once you have excluded your home, it’s time to tidy up. Deep clean the house to get rid of every possible crumb on the ground. This will encourage the mice in your home to go after the bait you put in traps.
Set Lots of Traps
It takes more than a trap or two to get rid of mice. The most effective way to get rid of them is to set multiple traps at different angles around the house. Choose between snap traps, electronic traps, and live traps, then set them against the walls and in the cabinets of infested rooms. Check on them every day and re-use them, if you can.
Use the Right Bait
Mice are very skittish. Using the wrong bait won’t bring them into traps and putting too much bait might let the mice getaway before the trap goes off. Use only a pea-sized amount of bait and wear a pair of gloves when applying it so that you don’t mark the trap with your scent. The best baits are peanut butter, jerky, soft candy, and cotton balls.