DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum

DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum (
-   General DIY Discussions (
-   -   Mice Advice (

Bill46 01-04-2007 03:54 PM

Mice Advice
Have a new house. Have had mice in the basement, none on the main floor. I know how to catch and kill mice but I'm more interested in keeping them out in the first place. I've spent many hours searching and sealing every opening I can possibly find, down to a 1/16", including doors, windows, tops of sill plates, under baseboards, pipe and wiring feed throughs. I'm out of ideas. They're still getting in. Does anyone have any tips or suggestions as to how to locate their entrance/exits? Thanks

redline 01-04-2007 07:27 PM

Are they gaining access from a higher point?

Bill46 01-04-2007 09:58 PM

I don't think so. If they were, I think we'd see them in the house. I've tried to seal off any wires coming from the main floor to the basement. There aren't many though. I've thought about that, but am at a loss as to where.

wease 01-05-2007 07:59 AM

Is the house new? How long have you been there? You could have a gang of mice in the basement that are stuck there now that it's been sealed up.

You may want to look at any vents that go out of the house too. They can get in through the roof and find passage to the basement...especially if the house is older.

Talos4 01-05-2007 08:24 AM

I had a problem with mice a couple of years ago.

To find where they are coming in, look for debris from where they are chewing through, such as sawdust, chewed up insulation, and in my case bird seed shells.

Mine were crawling between the gap at the bottom of my old brick veneer siding and then chewing through the original wood lap siding, insulation and then the inside wall.

I had the old veneer removed and new siding installed. A new nailer was installed at the botom however there was still a gap, as small as 1/4" to about 1/2".

I used copper mesh to stuff the gap around the entire house, around dryer vents, doorways, utility access, cable tv openings.

Mice don't like the copper so they leave it alone.

In 3 years since I completed the job, No Mice!

It is a pain to do, but IMHO well worth it.

I happened to mention my problem to one of our vendors who we work with on bird control for commercial roofs and hooked me up with the following.

Check the linky!! :thumbup:


Bill46 01-05-2007 10:45 AM

Thanks for the responses. The house is new. We moved in in May, but didn't notice the activity until the weather got cooler. (Northeast Ohio). Its a wood frame house with OSB sheathing, Tyvek and vinyl siding except the lower front which is stone. I've checked around the outside for signs of entry including after a fresh snow looking for footprints. Nothing. There is a raised deck across the back so there was no snow to check under it. I've already captured at least 12-14, not all at once, so Idon't think they're holdovers from the construction phase. I keep thinking I'm overlooking an obvious entry. I've sealed the electrical coming in, cable/phone, heat pump lines, dryer vent, exterior water and electrical outlets, door and window frames and baseboards. I'm out of ideas. I was hoping someone would suggest a way to somehow pressurize the basement so I could check around the exterior or something radical like that. Maybe a big bonfire in the basement and I could walk around looking for smoke coming out!!!:wink:
Thought I might just camp out down there some night with my shotgun like Elmer Fudd.
Anyway, I'd appreciate it if you would keep the ideas coming. I'll check out that website.

KUIPORNG 01-05-2007 12:38 PM

how about paints...
just an idea from nowhere, how about, lay down a bunch of small boards everywhere with colorful paint inside, then put some food there, when the mice steps though it for the food, you may be able to find out where they walking around the basement base on the small paint steps... obviously, the areas with most steps could be the areas of entry/exit....

if nothing work, consider have one or two cats...

Talos4 01-05-2007 04:23 PM

Actually The cat thing isn't that far out in left field.

That's partially how we figured out where they were. The cats would sit in the middle of the kitchen floor staring at one section of base cabinets.

I looked on the toe kick and found where the mice were crawing over the edge. They shed, and left a trail of hair over the wood edge.

So I figured they must be getting in somewhere on that side of the house. Sure enough, trail was on the wall directly behind the cabinet the cats were staring at. :thumbup:

Bill46 01-06-2007 10:19 PM

Thanks again for the responses. I spent some time today looking around in the attic for any entrances or signs of mice, but found nothing. Kuporing, I don't think the paint idea is practical since it will dry before the mice cross it. I thought about doing something like that with flour, but I'm not keen on the mess it will make. I may try it.
Keep the suggestions coming if you think of any.

concretemasonry 01-06-2007 10:39 PM

ice Advice
Flour will work is you are patient and can stand the mess (vacuums up easily when dry).

I had a problem with my outside bird feeders (suburban townhouse). Something was flipping them, causing damage at night. I suspected deer or racoons. The flour proved it was a bear. - Damage for a night or two before it disappeared or hibranated and has not been back for over a year.

It outside, so inside it can locate the areas of frequent activity and possible any entry points. - Cheap too!!!

Dusty 01-10-2007 02:14 AM

I feel for you
I had mice earlier in the fall and still have the house and garage baited. I think what you've done so far sounds right. Have you checked weatherstripping? Mine seemed to have come in through my backdoor (cheeky little :censored:). There is a vinyl strip at the bottom of the screen door and I think they just walked right in when I had the main door open to allow air through the screen or whatever.

Also found out recently they can fit through holes the size of pens.

If you want to get CSI about it, go and buy a black light from a pet store. Urine trails would show up (black lights are used to find pet accidents) and maybe you could find out what routes they are taking. I was told they will go outside to find water (if they can't find it in the house) daily so being the dirty creeps they are you may find the urine trail.

Bill46 01-10-2007 10:43 AM

Dusty: Thanks. Hadn't thought of the black light. I have one. I have checked all the weather stripping, door and window seals. We had a light snow last night. I trapped one last night. This morning I went all around the house, including the deck and the roof ( as best I could from the ground) and found no tracks whatsoever. The mouse last night may have already been inside. I'm starting to think that as Wease suggested maybe they got in last summer and the ones I'm trapping now are offspring. I know I've trapped more than what could have possibly been there last summer. On the other hand I don't know what food or water they would have found down there and we've never seen any sign of them upstairs. Very frustrating.:furious:

diywoman 01-10-2007 11:51 AM

I vote for the Elmer Fudd method!! :thumbsup:
The mice I had were comitting suicide in my laundry tub. (Cheap mouse trap) They were climbing up the mop handle, which happened to be leaning against the tub, and when the wash water would empty they were trapped and EEEK!!... I had a dead mouse...then two...then three. I caught the remainder 5 with traps, when I discovered they found their way upstairs. I agree with the idea that these are offspring as well. Finding their central hub would be key. Maybe borrowing a cat would be a short term investment to the solution, since buying one would mean keeping it once the varmants were gone!
My neighbours now think I scared them over to their home, since they are now dealing with mice also. :whistling2: "I know nothing!"

Good Luck, We're here for moral support if nothing else!:thumbup:

KUIPORNG 01-10-2007 12:50 PM

if there is no source of food and water in the basement, and there still large activities going on... there is high chance there is an entry you still cannot locate... I know mice can eat anything... like grasses... but they should be organic...etc... it is really difficult for you to try to locate the entry/exit visually by going around the building considered it only take 1 inch by 1 inch or less for a mice to go in... you need to think about some more proactive approach... why don't you try the flour approach you thought about, may even use some more colorful chalks for renovation... you may be able to discover some area you never thought of... I am also those who fear mice the most... if it were me... I would do anything to get rid of them... including raising cats...

AweMan 01-11-2007 11:12 PM

There multiplying
Recently I had the same problem. I had thought the same as you are thinking {coming in from outside} I tried traps and yes I caught multiples of the little buggars! I bought the spray foam and foamed every in/outlet where they might be coming in I could find Still NO cigar in getting rid of them. Down to my very last bit of patience with this situation I went the extreme route, I bought several boxes of decon at the local grocery store and set them out. Yes I had dead carcuses the very next day and believe me they do not smell very good. They are not hard to find just follow your nose :laughing: . BUT ..... within four days there were no more sign of the little creeps. My home has been mouse free for a month now. As it turns out they were a breeding colony located in my air return duct to my furnace, not coming in from outside at all. One thing to keep in mind, if you set decon out make sure that any pets you may have can not get to it, it will make them seriously ill or may even kill them.
Happy Hunting :thumbup:
K. Steed
Ret. Aircraft Welder

Retirement isn`t an occupation, it`s bieng obsessed about when, where, what, and with whom you are occupied.:whistling2:

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 09:22 PM.

vBulletin Security provided by vBSecurity v2.2.2 (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2017 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
User Alert System provided by Advanced User Tagging (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2017 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.

Search Engine Friendly URLs by vBSEO 3.6.1