The effective ways on how to get rid of rats include careful inspection and thorough checking. Rats’ infestation may not be easy, but if you can do it right, you can deal with the issue quite well. Of course, you can always consult the professional expert, but it requires you to spend extra. Before knowing how to deal with them, you should also know their basic facts and habits, so the elimination process can go easier.
Rats Facts And Information
Rats are coming in various sizes and types, but in America alone, the most common ones are Roof Rats as well as Norway Rats. In general names, Roof Rats are also called Ship Rat or Black Rat. Norway Rats are known as Brown Rats, Sewer Rat, Grey Rat, or House Rat. When you compare both types, they are fairly different. Roof Rats are smaller with longer tail. They have pointed nose and they are basically great climbers.
They prefer high places, like upper stories, attics, and even exterior vegetation. Norway Rats are bigger but with shorter tail. They like lower areas of the building, focusing on the ground. Whereas Roof Rats prefer coastal places with temperate climates, Norway Rats are able to survive in cooler temperature. If you have Roof Rats’ infestation, then you want to know how to get rid of rats in walls and ceiling.
You don’t want rats in the house. Not only they are able to create extensive (and serious) damages, but they also carry diseases. Rats live in gutters and dirty spots – making them ideal carriers for germs and bacteria. And when they are inside the house, they may spread the germs everywhere, exposing you to bigger risks and health threats. You can read also about: How to Get Rid of Mice In Your House
Rats Infestation Signs In Your House
It’s not likely that you will find rats during day light. Rats love dark and warm places. They also like it dry, especially those that are close to their food source and water. They are basically nocturnal creatures – that’s why they can be difficult to find. However, there are obvious signs of rats’ infestation at home, but you need to be extremely observant to the surrounding and environment of the house. The most obvious signs are:
Strong sound and smell
If you want to listen carefully, you probably have heard squeaking sounds every now and then. They may be faint, but you obviously hear it. In some cases, they can be quite noisy. When it is night time, when people are mostly sleeping, the rats feel that they are pretty safe. They may move around your house freely, thinking that no one hears them.
If you stay up late, you may hear audible scrabbling sounds. If you hear it, you have rats inside the house. Moreover, they have quite strong ammonia smell.
Even when they are no longer present within a spot, the smell may linger. Rats like to move carefully along the walls, and they tend to rub their bodies against the surface of the walls. That’s why the smell may linger. If you smell ammonia and combine it with the noisy sound at night, then it is likely that you have rats’ infestation.
Their eyesight is quite poor, and they like to move quietly to avoid human. Not only you will notice their smell, but you may also see their smears and grease marks along the wall or other surfaces.
If you see dark and pellet-shaped droppings on a daily basis, then be aware of the rats. Rats would leave their droppings close to entry points or any areas that they often visit.
Be aware of you find gnaw marks, bite marks, or shredded paper here and there. Check the electrical cables. If they are often, then rats would be your main enemy. They really like chewing cables – and it poses a great danger on you.
How to Get Rid of Rats Naturally
There are several ways on how to get rid of rats naturally – to prevent them from setting up nests in your house. Here are some simple ways:
Manage your clutter
If you have unused boxes, it’s better to discard them. But if you still have some uses for them, consider storing them in a metal container. Rats won’t be able to chew the metal. And with the containers, you can manage the clutter well.
Remove their hiding places
Rats like to hide in hidden and dark spots, such as old and unused boxes. That’s why you should remove those items away.
Check drains and pipes
Although rats like to live in a dry area, they still need water source. Leaky pipes or poor drainage leading to water pooling is ideal for them. That’s why you need to check the pipes and drains. Clean the drains regularly – that includes water gutter too. Even when there is water pooling outdoor, rats may try to come into your house if the water pool is close to your house. If there are leaky pipes or damage, you need to fix it right away.
Seal the gaps
Rats can get into the smallest hole, as big as the pencil. If there are exterior holes or gaps, they will definitely try to enter. You can seal the gaps with cement, metal kick plates, silicone caulk, or wire wool. Check for damaged drain too, as they may see the drain as a potential entry point. Consider installing screens on the door and windows – it would be a good idea to have a double layer. And screen the vents too – you want to have a good airflow without compromising the integrity of the house.
Eliminate the food source
When rats find out that it is difficult to get foods from your house, they will feel uncomfortable. They don’t like it to live in a place where the food is scarce. That’s why you need to make sure that they won’t be able to access your food. Foods should be stored in containers with good and reliable seal.
Never leave the food on the counters. Any cooked dishes should be kept in containers and then put inside the cupboard. Do you have any leftovers? Store it in the refrigerator. Don’t forget to clean up after each cooking or if there is any spill. If you want to manage the waste, make sure to use a garbage bin with lid or cover so rats won’t be able to get access to it. Make sure that your trash bins indoor and outdoor have bins.
Clean your garbage bins (indoor and outdoor) regularly. Don’t forget to have their lids on. For the outdoor bins, they should be away from the direct sunlight – it would reduce the decomposition rate and decrease the smell too.
Keep the garden tidy
It’s one way on how to get rid of rats outside. One way to prevent the rats from entering the house is to make them stay away from your garden. Make sure to clean up woodpiles and debris so rats won’t have any hiding spots. If you can manage the outside clutter, it would be better to do it.
Rodent bait is basically baits for rodents so they can die after consuming the bait. There are two types of rodent baits: the quick one and the slow one. The quick one will kill the rats instantly. It has a nice smell that will attract the rats. Once they eat it, the process would be quick. Before the rats even know it, they will die before having the chance to be far away from the bait.
The slow one takes time to finally kill the rats. This one is often avoided by homeowners. Not only it causes more environmental issues, but it can also cause other problems. When the poison finally works and kills the rats, they may be in unreachable spots – such as the ceilings or wall crevices.
Most homeowners won’t be able to reach the dead bodies, and the rotten bodies are definitely producing foul smell. And let’s not forget that those rotten bodies may attract other pests, such as insects and such things like. And you will need to learn not only about how to get rid of rats, but also other pesky pests that may invade your house.
Baits can help you remove the pesky rodents without killing them. There are different types of baits out there – from the traditional ones to the more sophisticated ones. The traditional baits use the regular snap mechanism, while the modern ones may use electric current. You still need to use foods as effective baits, like bacon, nuts, or dried fruits. The modern ones would zap the rats once they activate the trap mechanism. Removing and discarding the rats would be easy. And you can rest assured that you can use the trap again. As long as you charge it, it will work just fine.
How to Get Rid of Rats Using Essential Oils
There are some essential oils with their natural scent that actually smells nice but rats dislike so much. The essential oils are pretty safe and harmless, and you can get rid of the rodents effectively. You can at least keep them away within limited perimeter.
You can dilute the peppermint oil with little water and then soak some cotton balls. Place those cotton balls on places where you often see the signs of the rats. Make sure to replace the cotton balls once every several days to make the oil remain effective. Why don’t you have peppermint plants around the house? It would make your house look as if surrounded and guarded by the plants. Rats won’t be interested in coming closer; let alone to find out potential entry points to the house.
Rats don’t like the spicy smell and sensation of the pepper. You can mix the cayenne pepper with little water and then pour the mix into the spray bottle. Spray it on places with obvious signs of the rats. You can also soak the cotton balls in the mixture and place them at places – just like what you do with the peppermint oil.
Cloves and Pepper
You can also mix pepper, cloves, and little water – don’t forget to pour the solution in the spray bottle. If you can spray some entry points and holes with the solution, rats won’t be interested in coming to your house.
So, what kind of methods you like? The best one is the preventive methods, but there are also other alternatives on how to get rid of rats once they are already in the house.