Rats are agile creatures, capable of squeezing through spaces they appear too big for and gnawing at gaps to expand them. They will seize an opportunity to enter your home, so it’s important you deter rats at the earliest opportunity.
Black rats are excellent climbers, allowing them to inhabit lofts easily, whilst brown rats tend to burrow. Withholding access to food, water and shelter are the best ways to deter rats. Various methods can be used to prevent a rat infestation; however, if you already think you have a problem, it may be too late.
Food Storage: Ensure food is stored in metal or glass containers, with a tight fitting lid, and kept above ground level. Rats will eat almost anything, so it’s important all food, including fruit and vegetables, is stored appropriately to avoid contamination.
Food Waste: Always clear your food waste from the sink or counters and make sure you clean up any food, including crumbs and pet food, dropped on the floor.
Rubbish Bins: Put rubbish bags into outside bins, preferably metal, with securely fitted lids. Make sure any garden bins are free of food debris and, if you have a compost heap, don’t add organic food waste to it as this will attract rats.
Keep Your Property Tidy: Less clutter equates to less hiding places, so keep your house and garden clean. Rodents are attracted to cardboard, which they often chew to make nests, so avoid hoarding lots of cardboard boxes.
If you think you may already have a problem, check for signs of rats or give JG Pest Control a call on 0330 053 9001 now.
Proofing Your Home
Gaps: Don’t be deceived by a small gap, as rats can often get through holes they appear too large for. Young rats can squeeze through gaps under doorways, so fit strips to the bottom of your doors. Cat flaps also provide easy access for rats. Holes around, for example, utility cables or pipe work, should be fitted with stainless steel wire wool and expanding foam, caulking or concrete to stop rats gnawing through. As they can jump too, check for holes up to around four feet.
Roofs: Rats can access lofts by climbing along electrical cables or branches and entering via gaps in roof tiles or under eaves. Check for roof damage and seal gaps with wire mesh to prevent them getting in.
Drains and pipes: As excellent swimmers, rats can swim up damaged sewage pipes and around toilet u-bends, so ensure you keep the seat lid shut. They’ll use drain pipes too, so cover drains with tight, metal grates or screens and check regularly for broken pipe work to ensure it is fixed swiftly.