The cooler temperatures have arrived, signaling that it’s time to prepare our homes for winter. Most likely you have a list of items that you do each and every year to winterize. May we suggest that you add pest proofing to the check list? Just as we are signaled to prepare ourselves for the long winter ahead, rodents instinctually begin to seek a warm and safe place to spend their winter months. Here is a quick list of some of the areas you want to inspect when you winterize your home to make sure that you stay pest free:
1. Take a walk around the entire foundation of your home, shed, and garage and check for cracks, gaps or holes. Even holes as small as ¼” can be a potential entryway for mice or other rodents. If you find any, fill that crack, gap or hole with Xcluder fill fabric. And don’t ignore the weep holes. A weep hole can have a crack or gap inside of it that may not be visible to you from the outside. We suggest filling all of your weep holes with Xcluder. The Xcluder fill fabric will keep the rodents out but still allow the weep hole to vent air and release moisture.
2. Check around all of your doors, door frames, and garage doors to ensure that there is a tight seal. Damaged, gnawed, worn, or missing door sweeps are one of the most common entry points for mice and other pests. An easy way to check door frames is at night. Turn on the brightest light in the room/garage, then go outside and see if you can see any light escaping around the door frame. If light can come out, then pests can get in! If you see light coming out at the base of the door then we highly recommend Xcluder door sweeps. They are easy to install and fit most common door sizes and types. The reinforced neoprene rubber not only provides an impenetrable seal for rodents but it also provides a weatherseal that can give you energy savings. Win-Win!
3. Check all of your windows, your screens and window panes and repair any damages. And don’t forget the windows down in the window wells. Even if your wells are covered, if there is the slightest gap the critters will get in the wells and can make an access route to your basement. Check the window shutters as well, even if they are just decorative. Often times a loose shutter can be a warm environment for a rodent to crawl behind, and in a short time they can chew their way through to your home. Simply tuck Xcluder in the gaps and the rodents won’t be able to get up there. And added features are that Xcluder is rust-proof, shrink proof, and chew proof so it won’t dislodge, nor leave any unsightly stains.
4. Check the openings where plumbing, gas and electric or cable wiring enters your home. Check dryer vents or exhaust vents too. If there is any gapping at all you can fill the area around the pipes or wires with strips of Xcluder, ensuring a tight and secure closure. And don’t think you only need to check the entry points near the ground. Most rodents will have no difficulty scaling siding, wires, or branches to get to openings high above the ground. And while you’re up there…
5. Be sure to inspect the roof line for any gaps. Ensure that the shingles, ventilators, chimney and vent screens are all in place and undamaged. Reattach areas that may be pulling away, or fill difficult to fix gaps with Xcluder. Make sure that your chimney cap is secure and in place as well. It is not uncommon for animals to try and climb down the chimney seeking warmth and shelter. . Trim back any trees or bushes so that they don’t provide easy access for rodents to get up or into your home. Complete this exclusion routine as you winterize your home and you will be able to live pest free.