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Cellulose is one of the most popular insulation types available today. Not only is it great for getting into the smallest nooks and crannies of attics and crawl spaces, but it can also be blown into tight cavities and false walls. But does cellulose insulation deter mice? We have looked into this inquiry, and in this post, we will discuss it.
Cellulose insulation is a deterrent for mice and other types of pests. Pests prefer solid materials where they can burrow and nest. The dry composition of the insulation makes it difficult for most pests and mice to survive. The wadding of the insulation is relatively different from fiberglass insulation as it is made from recycled paper typically.
The insulation is known to repel mice and other insects as it collapses (due to its looseness) when the pests begin building their nests, making the insulation inhabitable.
Cellulose insulation is sometimes sprayed with Borax, boric acid, or aluminum sulfate to make it resistant to pests, mold, and fire. This will increase its usefulness as a deterrent to rodents and other common household pests. Continue reading to learn how to keep rodents out of your insulation.
What is the best insulation to deter mice?
Cellulose is one of the best installations to use as a rodent deterrent. As mentioned previously, rodents find it more challenging to nest and build homes in the dry, loose material that it provides. This being stated, the insulation will not kill them. However, it is likely to force them to find other areas to inhabit.
Below we have outlined a full-stop approach that you can use to trap current rodents and prevent future ones from harboring inside your home's interior wall cavities, attic, and basement areas.
Things you'll need:
- Mousetraps and bait
- Garbage bags
- Mesh wire
- Natural or commercial rodent repellents
- Cheese or peanut butter
1. Remove feces and nests
Start by donning a pair of plastic gloves, and then use your broom to sweep up any nests and feces around your home. Place nests and feces inside of a garbage bag and seal it shut with a twist tie.
2. Seal gaps
Next, take the mesh wire and cut it to fit any open cavities or crevices. Use your aluminum snips to cut the wire and an electric drill to install it on the exterior areas of your home.
3. Set up mouse traps
Next, set up the mousetraps around the insulation, attic to the basement, and any entrances of the home. It's best to bait the traps with either cheese or peanut butter, as they work wonderfully for attracting rodents.
You may even want to wait a day or two after setting the bait to lay down the traps—this will help you avoid having to re-apply the bait in case the mice fall victim to natural predators such as snakes and owls.
4. Install cellulose insulation
Next, install the insulation around your home, including the attic, basement, and any other areas where it's needed. If injecting the insulation into cracks and crevices, be sure to insert the injection wand as deep as possible so that the insulation fills the cavity from the bottom up.
Does cellulose insulation attract insects?
No. Cellulose insulation has not been known to attract insects. In fact, the opposite is true. This insulation is usually sprayed with pest repelling chemicals such as Borax or boric acid. The chemicals in the insulation also serve to make the insulation flame retardant. Boric acid also works as an effective repellent for insects, including ants, beetles, flies, fleas, cockroaches, and termites.
Can mice eat through spray foam insulation?
Mice can quickly eat through spray foam insulation, as their front incisors are incredibly sharp, hard, and never stop growing. However, spray foam insulation isn't necessarily habitable for mice. It is very loose, and it doesn't make for the best nest-building location. Mice are more prone to building a nest in areas that are solid.
However, this doesn't mean that mice won't find their way to your insulation and burrow through it to find food. For this reason, it's essential to seal all cracks and voids of your home using thick wire mesh, wood layers, concrete, and other materials that are harder to penetrate.
If mice are determined, they can eat through the insulation, but they will have very little reason to if you apply repellent around the perimeter of the insulation in your home. This means spring clean a commercial or all-natural pesticide around the attic door, basement door, or window frames.
Do mice like fiberglass insulation?
Yes. They can burrow through the insulation with little effort. They can also tunnel through rigid foam insulation and electrical wires. The thick, plush insulation layers are very inviting to mice and other pests looking for a place to nest and gather food resources.
This is why it helps to first seal up any loose crack in your attic or basement before installing fiberglass rolls or batts. However, once the mice have infiltrated these batts, it can be hard to eliminate them, especially when they've already laid nests.
How do you keep rodents out of insulation?
Keeping rodents out of insulation starts with deterring them from your home and lawn altogether. Let's look at some of the most effective strategies to keep rodents at a distance.
Fill any cracks, holes, and gaps
Rodents can squeeze through very thin areas to get inside your home. They can even slip into a hole that's the size of a quarter. Inspect your home to check for any open areas that may be susceptible to infiltration by small rodents and field mice.
If you find any, be sure to seal them up with materials such as cement, caulk, plaster, or steel wool. You also want to ensure that you apply weatherstrip to any cracks around your windows or door areas—especially if they are thicker than half-inch or wider.
Remove any potential food sources
Rats are constantly on the hunt for new food resources. They will often find these resources around your property, so don't make it easy for them. Be sure to cover any garbage cans, remove any open compost, and pick up any vegetables or fruit that may be hanging around your garden bed. You may also want to consider placing various deterrents around your garden if it is not fenced.
Clear the landscape
Removing any debris from the areas around your home can also rob the rodents of their habitat. If you have large piles of wood, lumber, tree branches, or any other stacked items where are rodents may hide, consider getting rid of them are placing them inside a closed shed or a garage.
Set rodent traps outside
Setting rodent traps is also a good idea to keep them at bay. There are several types of rodent traps to consider. Some traps kill rodents immediately, but others can simply trap them to allow you to release them later.
You can also purchase poisons to spread around the perimeter of your home and near the entrance areas of doors and windows. When doing so, be sure to pay special attention to areas around the garbage cans and any basement entrances.
Use all-natural deterrents
It's also worth considering all-natural deterrents such as cayenne pepper, peppermint, tea tree oil, and vinegar. Like most humans, rodents find the smells from these items strong and off-putting, and they'll typically try to get as far away from them as possible.
Call professional rodent exterminators
If you have trouble mitigating a rodent issue, it's best to call professional rodent exterminators to help get rid of them. If the infestation is particularly invasive, you may need to use a multi-pronged approach to keep them nesting around your home and reproducing. Remember that rodents reproduce very quickly and can spread disease through their feces and urine around your home.
They can also eat away at electrical wires and wood frames and burrow through your yard. So that's to say, the quicker you get rid of them, the better.
Wrapping Things Up
If you are struggling with rodents in your home, spray foam cellulose insulation can be an excellent method to help mitigate the issue and repeal the rodents. For complete eradication, however, you may want to consider using a multifaceted approach that includes natural are commercial repellents, traps, bait, and sealing any open cavities or cracks on the exterior of your home.
Before you go, be sure to check out some of our other posts: