In the last few years, the number of grey squirrels has increased and the damages they cause as well. Grey squirrels cause structural damage to homes, commercial buildings and in some cases can threaten your health. Grey squirrels are the most destructive to the forests and wildlife. If there’s access to your loft or attic, grey squirrels will most certainly enter it to search for food or shelter.
Some of the most common damages they cause when they get inside your attic or loft are:
- Nibble electrical wires;
- Leave droppings and urine which contaminate the loft or attic area;
- Destroy woodwork, ceilings, and insulation;
- Make noises because they trot around which can irritate your sleep at night.
It’s not easy to get rid of squirrels. They’ve lived for generation after generation, surviving harsh conditions, predation, and very high youth mortality rates that humans don’t have to face. If a squirrel lives to infest your property, it’s because smart enough to recognize luxury and take advantage of it. They’ve spent their lives learning how to outwit predators just like you, so getting rid of squirrels on your property or in your home won’t be easy.
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Signs of squirrels in your attic
If you assume there are squirrels scurrying in your loft or attic, here are a few signs you can check for:
- Scratching and other strange noises from your loft or attic
- Damage to the insulation foam
- The smell of urine in the loft or attic
- Droppings which you can barely distinguish from the other rodents’ droppings
- Nuts and seeds have been stolen from the bird feeding stations
- The trees' bark in your garden is peeled
- Spotting squirrels around the house very often. Usually on fences or on a tree branch that is close to the attic or loft of the house
How to Get Rid of Squirrels in the Attic？
1. Soak a rag in ammonia and place it near the squirrels' nesting spot
The strong smell of ammonia will irritate the squirrels and make them view the attic as a bad place to nest. This may get them to leave on their own.
It’s best to use this repellent alongside others to maximize its effectiveness.
If you don’t have ammonia, you can use another strong household cleaner instead. Pepper-based and mint-scented repellents may also be effective.
2. Disturb the squirrels with a loud radio placed in your attic
Turn the radio to a talk station so the sound of human voices fills the attic. The squirrels will likely decide your home is unsuitable, causing them to go elsewhere.
If you find the nest, put the radio as close as you can to the nest.
You don’t need to turn up the radio loud enough for the entire house to hear. As long as the sound fills the attic, the radio is loud enough.
3. Turn on bright lights in your attic
You can use the overhead light or install temporary lighting if there’s no light in the attic. The squirrels will feel uncomfortable and exposed under the lights, so they’ll likely leave your attic in favor of a new home.
Just like with ammonia, it’s best to use this repellent alongside other techniques to increase your chances of success.
If you know exactly where the squirrel nest is, you can direct the light toward the nest. In this case, you only need a flashlight to get the job done.
4. Use a commercial squirrel repellent for an easy option
You can choose between natural or chemical repellent. Natural repellents often use the scent of predator urine to scare away the squirrels. Read the label on your repellent and apply it directly to the area where the squirrels seem to frequent, such as near entry holes, around urine and feces, and where you see tracks.
You can find a squirrel repellent at a hardware store or online, make sure you’re using the product as directed.
1. Cut tree branches overhanging your home so squirrels can’t get to your roof
Check the area around your roof for branches that allow easy access to your roof. Then, use a chainsaw to remove the branches, effectively cutting off access to your attic.
Squirrels will use tree branches as a bridge to your attic. They may even live in the tree most of the time but venture into your attic for nesting supplies or comfort during bad weather.
2. Repair any holes in the exterior of your home.
It's a lot easier to keep squirrels out of your attic than it is to remove them once they get there.Check both the exterior and interior of your home for visible holes. Then, use animal-resistant patches to cover the holes, which will prevent the squirrels from coming through them.
If you’re not sure how to repair the holes, hire a general contractor to do it for you. They’ll also be able to double-check that every hole is covered.
Ask around for a referral to a good general contractor, or conduct an online search to find one in your area.
3. Cover air intake and exhaust vents with a mesh screen
Secure the mesh screen by screwing it down. This prevents the squirrels from entering your attic through the vents.
4. Apply seals around electrical wiring and plumbing fixtures so squirrels can’t enter
Use a combination of mesh screens, plaster, and caulk to over any gaps around your wiring or plumbing fixtures. This helps reduce the risk of the squirrels squeezing through the holes or gnawing around the gaps to make them bigger.
Since squirrels are rodents, they can squeeze through very small holes. Additionally, they can gnaw around an existing hole to make it larger.