Why Rodents Are Such a Destructive Pest in North Carolina Homes
They scurry along our foundation walls and gnaw on the weather stripping around our basement doors. They explore our landscaping and chew on the corners of our window panes. They run down tree branches and jump onto the roofs of our homes to nibble at vent gaskets and chew through building materials to gain access into our eavestroughs. There are many locations of vulnerability in the exterior of our North Carolina homes and rodents can exploit these vulnerable spots to gain access into our homes. And when they get in, these rodents create holes that allow the heat to escape, resulting in higher heat bills. But that is only the beginning of how destructive mice and rats can be!
Once inside a home, mice and rats will work to establish nests. In their search for building materials, they'll tear apart insulation, rip wallpaper off walls, chew fabric off of furniture, chew holes in clothing items, shred books, and more.
Rodents like to be close to their food source. This will have them chewing holes through sheetrock, insulation, baseboards, and walls to create pathways from their hidden nests in your walls to your kitchen, pantry, and other food storage areas. As they make these holes, they sometimes chew through wires. If they sever a live wire, it could cause a fire to break out in your home, leading to extreme property damage and even the loss of life.
Inside food storage areas, mice and rats can damage food packages and contaminate the foods inside. Since rats are larger than mice, they can do more damage. These larger rodents can easily chew through thick packaging to gain access to the food inside. But, while they can chew into a sealed plastic container that has food inside, they typically don't because they can't smell the food and, therefore, have no motivation to get in.
In attic spaces, mice and rats can damage boxes and the items stored inside. And they don't need the aroma of food to be motivated to chew their way inside. Cardboard boxes provide these rodents with potential harborage spaces which is reason enough for them to want to invade. And even after they’ve found their way into your home, they'll continue looking for safe places to hide and raise their young.
When rodents seek harborage inside storage boxes, the items inside can be damaged as they chew their way in. Those stored items can be damaged further as those rodents chew and tear at them for materials to use for their nests. Not only will mice and rats chew and tear your stored items, but they'll also soak them with urine and speckle them with feces.
Another common location rodents will find harborage inside is furniture. They love the hollow voids inside couches and recliners. If you have furniture in storage, those items could be ruined by invading rodents looking to create their nests inside. And though it is less common, some rodents are even bold enough to infest the furniture right in your living room!
Kitchens are a favorite hangout spot for rodents. They chew their way through the wall voids of your home and get in behind your cabinets. From this location, they are able to access your kitchen drawers from behind. That is why rodent droppings are commonly found in the backs of drawers. And if they get into your drawers, they can contaminate the items inside with their urine and droppings.
Mice sometimes find their way into our appliances, especially appliances that have insulation inside such an electric range. If they choose to nest in your stove, you may start to notice the smell of urine in your kitchen as the smell of rodent urine can be quite strong. In addition, once the infestation has been corrected, you'll be left with an appliance that needs to be extensively cleaned. But for some people, there is no amount of cleaning and bleaching that will make them use that appliance again and they’ll have to replace it completely. So, while it doesn't apply to everyone, it’s still important to consider this as a way mice and rats can be destructive.
It is never a good thing when rodents find their way into a home. While the amount of damage done may vary, the kinds of damages caused by rodents are difficult to correct. These damages can be done in tight attic spaces, eavestroughs, wall voids, ceiling voids, appliances, furniture, stored boxes, and more and can go on for a long time without you even knowing! So, before mice have a chance to invade your home, we strongly recommend investing in an ongoing, year-round pest control service that includes rodent monitoring and control services. Pests can destroy your belongings, damage your home, and contaminate your food, not to mention lead to diseases, allergies, and bacterial sickness! Don’t let your home fall victim to a rodent infestation; partner with us at A-1 Pest Control instead! No home should be without a pest control plan. If you need assistance developing one and you live in our North Carolina service area, we're here to help. Protecting homes and businesses from pest threats is what we do!