Think you’ve got rats? Then you need to act fast. Learn how to get rid of rodents and get on it right away. The longer you wait, the more time they have to stage a take over of your home.
Remove Rodents in 3 Easy Steps
There’s a lot of information out there for removing these pests. How would one know which advice to follow and which ones to ignore? The only way to know is to actually test out the information. In other words, try it and see if it does something. The problem with that is it might just not work at all; which would’ve given those rats more time to take over.
I have tested the three easy steps below on multiple occasions of a rodent infestation. They have worked to my expectations each and every time, so you can use them knowing that they work.
Step 1: Stopping More From Coming In
The first step is to close off all the doors and throw the keys away. No, not the doors to your house (although, rodents will also enter through the house doors as well). The doors I am talking about are entry points; small openings in your house that allow them to come from the outside.
Possible entry points include:
- Holes and gaps in the foundation and the house (no matter how big or small).
- Cracks in the foundation and other parts of the house that is big enough for rodents to squeeze through.
- Doors and windows. Despite what you might assume, there are huge gaps behind those pretty trims.
- Both on the side of the house and on the roof. If they can get access to the roof, they can enter through vents up there.
- Areas where pipes and electrical wires enter and exit the house. Sometimes, the gaps there might be significant enough for them to squeeze through.
For an entry point that can be sealed off, seal it off using whatever is most appropriate. Caulk and silicone are great for smaller gaps and holes. Caulk works exceptionally well for door and window trims. Holes and cracks in the foundation can be fixed with mortar repair products from your local home improvement store.
Larger gaps and holes can be filled with expanding foam. Expanding foam comes in a can and can be found at your local home improvement store as well. Foam can be easily chewed through, but it’s better than nothing. Most of the time, rats won’t make an effort to go through the hassle of chewing through the foam.
For vents and other entry points that can’t be sealed off, consider installing some sort of mesh screen, filter, or cover. It needs to be secured over the opening so they can’t merely wiggle their way through.
Once you’ve closed off all the “doors”, then you can move on to the next step; which is actually getting ready to get rid of those that have already moved into your house.
Step 2: Starve Them
A lot of people like to skip this second stage; which is to make food as scarce as possible for the pests. After trying a few times with and without this second stage, I’ve found that it makes quite a difference. You need to make it as hard as possible for them to find food.
If you’re able to complete this step correctly, they’re going to be a lot hungrier than usual, and the third phase will work much better. Just think of it this way. Would you be more willing to eat something you don’t like when you’re not starving, or when you’re hungry? Let’s say that you are eating salads. If you weren’t starving and you had a choice between steak or a salad, you’d opt for the steak. Now, if you were starving because you did have anything to eat for the last 24 hours and there was nothing else but salad, you’d gladly eat that salad. It’s the same for rodents.
The first thing you can do to limit their food supply is to clean the house. Do an extensive job cleaning up clutter and anything they can eat (which includes paper products, soap, etc.). Once the house is as clean as possible, you need to keep it that way. That means clean every single day before you go off to bed. Make sure there are no dirty dishes in the sink.
The next step is to cover up and put away any food they can easily get access to. Put flours, sugar, etc. in plastic or glass containers that can be closed tightly with a cover or lid. Any other items need to be placed in the cabinets. Make sure there are no items on the counter that will allow a rat to climb it’s way up there. Double check your cabinets to make sure there are no holes in the wall or in the back of the cabinets that can allow them to get in.
If your trash can doesn’t have a tight closing lid, you need to get one that can close tightly. I like the stainless steel trash bins because they close pretty tight. Move the trash away from other objects and counters that will allow a rat to climb into the trash bin for food.
Don’t leave any food bits in the kitchen sink as well. During your nightly cleaning, make sure to remove all food bits in there. Clean it, so there’s no food residue in the sink. Dry it with some paper towel, so there’s no water for them to drink in there as well.
This step is crucial because it sets them up for those traps and poison you’re going to be using in the third stage. I know it’s a lot of work, but if you really want to get rid of those rodents, you’re going to have put in the work. After you’ve limited their food for a week, you can move on to phase three below. Keep in mind that even after you move on to stage three, you shouldn’t stop making food scarce for the rats. This is an ongoing process, so you need to keep the house clean and make it has hard as possible for them to find food.
Step 3: Hit Them Hard with the Best Rodent Control Products
Once you have starved those pests for a week, they’re going to be much more willing to take whatever you offer them. This is when you’ll use the poisons and the traps (filled with tasty baits).
For poisons, just follow the instructions on the box. Leave them in areas where you notice they run through a lot. Also, place them in areas where you’ve seen a lot of rat droppings; these are areas they frequently visit. Be careful when using poison if you have pets or children in the house. Rat poison can be fatal if ingested, so you’ll have to keep them out of reach of pets and children.
A word of warning for poisons though. Rats that die inside the house from poison is going to stink. That’s the biggest problem with using poison. But if you’re infestation is severe, it might be the most effective option for you. It’s going to be hard to get rid of the dead rat once it dies and starts to stink up the house. That’s because they tend to die in tight and hidden parts of the house where finding them and getting access to them is quite tricky. The smell will go away after a while, but that could take a couple of months sometimes.
The very first night you move into step 3, you’ll want to lay out as many traps as possible. There is no such thing as too many traps when it’s your first night of attack. Despite what some might think, rats are highly intelligent. They’ll quickly learn that those traps mean death and they’ll learn to avoid it. This is why the first time is essential; because they won’t know what hit them. The first time will yield you more dead rats than any other time, so that’s why you want to go all out.
Bait the rat traps with their favorite food items. If you’ve previously noticed they favored a food item in your home more than anything else then use those. Otherwise, try some of the known favorites including:
- Chocolate and other sweets
- Cooked bacon and other fatty foods
- Dog treats (especially those jerky dog treats)
Step three is also an ongoing process. You will want to keep using poisons and traps until the entire rodent infestation has been annihilated.
Getting Rid of Rodents Without Poison
What if you don’t want to use rat poison, or can’t use them because the risks are too high for young children or pets in your home? Well, it’s going to be a little harder to get rid of those rodents, but you can still remove them without using poison. The steps are pretty much the same; minus the poison. It’s also going to take a little longer to eliminate them, and it will require a little more work on your part.
You’ll just have to hit them harder with traps. Stick to one type of bait. Once that bait stops producing results, switch to a different lure. If the new bait doesn’t work then try another different bait. Once that stops working, then you’ll have to change to a different trap. If you were using the snap traps, you’d want to switch to glue traps and then rotate to another kind of trap once that stops working. By the time you get back to the snap traps, it would’ve been long enough that some of them would be less wary of the trap.
You might also want to consider using natural repellents to keep them away from foods and certain areas of the house. You can also use them near entrances to reduce the chances of them entering your home.
Use Baking Soda
You can use baking soda to help get rid of rodents. Baking soda acts as a “poison” to help kill them faster. Baking soda seems to work for some and doesn’t do much for others. But if you’ve got a rat problem, it’s worth trying to see if it’ll work for you. Don’t use it in place of traps though. You’ll want to keep using the traps.
- 1 cup cornmeal
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup baking soda
Stir them thoroughly together. Take a handful and place it on a small disposable plate. Place the plate in the same areas as you would set rodent poison. While it isn’t precisely toxic to humans, you’ll still want to keep it away from kids.
Using the knowledge, you’ve gained on how to get rid of rodents; you can get rid of those pests. It won’t happen if you don’t implement the steps provided here. It won’t work if you don’t stay consistent with your efforts, so keep at it until the problem has been eliminated.