If you’re wondering how much damage from rodents can cost you, the answer is a lot. The damage from rodents tallies up to over $19 billion in the US to homes and businesses. These intrusive rodents have to be dealt with quickly. Rodents breed fast, and the damage can happen quickly. A mouse or rodent infestation can definitely empty your wallet. Keep in mind that most insurance homeowner policies do not cover damage from rodents. If wires have been damaged, structures have been damaged or you get an illness due to rodent infestation, it can cost you a lot.
Damage to HVAC
Building systems like air conditioning units happen to be a very inviting place for rodents to set up their nests. Both mice and rats just love to reside inside air returns and ducts. They chew through insulation and cause a lot of damage. Plus, you may be breathing in diseased rodents’ germs. If they chew threw insulation, the insulation will be less effective. There could even be a fire hazard if rodents chew through insulation surrounding the water heater. Having a professional come in to repair or replace the insulation is costly.
Damage to Electrical Wires and Other Things
It’s easy for rodents to find electrical wires in a structure. Keep in mind that a mouse’s teeth continually grow, and they need to chew to wear their teeth down. When they chew, the plastic insulation on the outer part of electrical wires wears off. This is the perfect opportunity for a fire. These pesky critters can also chew through the home’s electrical panel. If this happens, the lights may go off. If the rats are in a garage, they can cause a lot of damage to your car by gnawing at it, including the car’s electrical components.
Damage to Structures
Rodents can chew through sheetrock, brick, wood and other hard materials. They usually do this to make entry to the structure. Garages, chimneys, attics, furniture, walls and cabinets are all at risk. If rat removal is not done, severe damage can happen to many components of the structure.
Damage to Health
Rodents carry a lot of germs and disease. Leptospirosis, hantavirus and salmonella are just a view of the diseases that rodents and mice carry. Saliva, droppings and urine from rodents contain germs and disease. These things can even make their way into the air. Breathing problems, such as asthma, can occur. It’s very important to keep the home free of rodents in order to ensure your health the health of your loved ones.
Costly Odor Removal
Even if a rat problem is under control, if one dies or gets trapped inside the walls of a structure, it could create a very bad odor and require removal. Along with rat extermination and removal costs, you could incur fumigation costs caused by rodents.
While you may never see a mouse or rat in your home or business, there are telltale signs of infestation. Here are a few red flags:
- Signs of chewing on food packaging
- Rodent dropping in cupboards, drawers and under sinks
- Nesting materials like shredded fabric or paper
- Stale odors coming from hidden areas
- Holes chewed through walls and floors
There are steps you can take to prevent rats and mice from deciding to become a resident of your home or business. Make sure holes outside and inside the property structure are properly and tightly sealed up. Holes can be patched up with something like steel wool. You want to take away the rodent’s entry point. Leaf piles and deep mulch should be removed to prevent nesting sites. Garbage containers need to have tight-fitting lids. Make sure to clean up all food and water sources near the structure. You can even use compost piles to cover up food scraps. And if you’re trying to control a rodent infestation, stop feeding the outdoor birds. There will be less good for the rodents to eat.
If you have a rat problem, you have two choices. Do-it-yourself or get a professional exterminator to do it. Keep in mind that often do-it-yourself methods don’t work. The pros of using a professional exterminator include ease, efficiency and safety. Using a pro takes the stress off of doing it yourself. With a professional, the guesswork is eliminated. An experienced exterminator will know exactly what to do to get rid of the rats. Pest control professionals can assess the property properly and locate the source very quickly. Then a plan of action is immediately put into place. In addition, these specialists know how to safely remove the rats and keep you, your family and pets safe. If you’ve seen droppings or damage, it’s time to let a pest control professional take care of the problem for you.