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Steps For Keeping Mice Out Of The Attic

As the seasons change to colder temps, animals migrate and look for warm places to hunker down. Unfortunately, this means that, given the opportunity, animals might make your home their cozy hideaway. Mice, in particular, are crafty at finding their way into places you’d least expect. Infrequently visited spaces such as attics can attract mice and lead to infestations if left unchecked. The Kness team has assembled some tips for keeping mice out of your attic.

Step 1: Spot-Check The Attic

Depending on how you’ve utilized the attic space, it can be a pretty difficult place to navigate and could take some prep work to even make your way up to that space. Whatever condition your attic space is in: unfished, used for storage, or fully finished, make sure you have a flashlight handy while wearing proper clothing and shoes.

Unfinished Attics

Based on the way your home was built, access to unfinished attics can be a bit of a process. Some homeowners may need a ladder to reach access panels and hatches, while others might have direct access with staircases. In the event, you need a ladder, recruit a family member or friend to help hold the ladder. Safety first! Once you get to the area in question, you’ll be ready to begin your search.

The basic unfinished attics leave a lot of open space to inspect, especially if you use the room for storage. This creates a quiet area for mice to wander and nest. If you do use the space for storage, take extra time to look around and in between boxes. Keep your eyes peeled for signs of a mouse infestation such as fecal pellets, stained pathways, tracks, hair, evidence of chewing, and nesting material.

Finished Attics

A finished attic can be just as prone to mice infestations because it is still likely to see only infrequent use, a perfect place for mice to set up shop. Signs include much of the same as mentioned above: droppings, stains, and signs of gnawing. The one difference is that the mice will need an access point in a finished room. Search for any openings that could allow them into the room. Mice are great climbers, they may be entering the attic from outside the home through a wall vent, window, or roof space.

Step 2: Eliminating The Problem

If you can confirm that you have a rodent problem, the next step is to remove these uninvited guests. With attics, you have the benefit of being able to better isolate the area from pets and children–allowing you to be more aggressive with your trapping efforts. Trapping options include using snap traps, multiple catch mousetraps, and live mousetraps. We have an in-depth article on trapping strategies.

Whatever your approach may be, utilize more than one trap spaced out around the perimeter of the attic. Bait them with peanut butter and check the traps every day. Remove any dead mice by

wearing gloves and placing them in double-bagged plastic. Keep resetting the traps every day until you are no longer catching mice.

To deter mice from returning, find any access points and seal them up. A mouse only needs a dime-sized hole to make its way through an opening.

To eliminate these issues, you can use silicone caulk to seal damaged weather stripping around doors and windows. If holes are found, a temporary fix can be made by stuffing metal mesh or steel wool into those gaps.

Make sure you are using durable, sealable plastic containers for storing items in your attic instead of cardboard boxes. This prevents mice from gnawing and damaging possessions.

Armed with this knowledge, you’ll be able to decrease the likelihood of mice problems in the attic. But these persistent creatures can still creep in, despite doing everything by the book. That doesn’t mean you can’t fight back. Kness Pest Defense products are designed to stop the problem in its tracks. With tried-and-true traps like the Kness Ketch-All® Multiple Catch Mousetrap, Pro-Ketch® Mousetrap, or Stick-All® Glue Trap, you’ll be able to make sure that pests never get a chance to warm up where they’re not wanted.

For more pest prevention tips, browse through our Pest Control Center — or take action with one of our pest control products.