Do mothballs repel rats? Here are some facts concerning the use of mothballs for rat control.
Mothballs have a wide variety of uses mostly within the house. They can be effective when placed around areas of the house to tackle various conditions such as damages caused by clothes moth and other fabric pests, and also that of bugs in potted plants, etc.
Mothballs As Rat Repellent
There is usually a general belief that rats can be repelled by effectively using mothballs, but is this true?
We will find out shortly.
The presence of Naphthalene in mothballs is a reason why it is generally seen by most people to be effective for getting rid of rats around the house.
Do Mothballs Repel Rats?
It is however important to note that the chief ingredient in mothballs (naphthalene) causes blood cells to lose their ability to carry oxygen when ingested. It is as a result of this that the balls are thought to be effective in keeping rats away when used.
The reason why mothballs can hardly keep rats away is that it contains a small amount of naphthalene which makes it possible for it to keep other insects away, but when it comes to rats, it doesn’t work. It will require a higher amount of the presence of the above ingredient in mothballs for it to be able to deter rats.
A higher amount is tipped to be harmful to humans as well when used.
So, do mothballs keep rats away? The big answer is NO….
How to Know If Rats Have Taken Over your House
Most people find it difficult to know when rats infest their homes; this is because there are hardly any visible openings in and around the house. In a scenario like this, the best step to take is to contact the professionals for some help.
There are several signs to pay attention to know if your house has been infested by rats, they are as follows;
Observe if you can perceive a strong ammonia smell and also listen carefully to strange sounds like scrabbling noises within the house. Rats are noisy animals.
Check for Droppings; rats drop pellet-like shapes of their waste within the house. They can mostly be found around their entrances.
Check for Footprints; rats move from place to place so they are most likely to leave their footprints or tale marks on dusty or less used areas in the house. Using a strong flashlight to check the corners of the house will reveal such signs.
Check for Damages; rats are very destructive animals. They can chew through electrical cables, shred papers, and leave gnaw marks or damage storage containers. If you ever notice any of these signs, be sure that your home has been taken over by rats.
Alternatives To Using Mothballs As Rat Repellent
If you are yet to experience the problem of rats in your home, the sure way to avoid such occurrence is by prevention.
However, the information that will be provided below will be helpful also to those experiencing rat issues in their homes.
Locate Their Entry Point
Putting traps all over the place will hardly yield any desired results, so the first step to take is to figure out where their entry and exit point are located.
Once those areas are found, it would be easier to know the places suitable for traps to be placed.
Use Store-Bought Traps
These choices of traps are still proven to be one of the most effective tools for getting rid of rats as little bait on each spring-loaded trap is enough to get the task done.
Rat glue boards are also good alternatives to spring traps; you can get it for $5-10 in local stores.
Fix Damaged Areas
A sure way to keep rats away from the house is by fixing damaged areas around the home.
Rats are very clever creatures, so you must put in extra measures to see that both the interior and exterior loopholes are checked and fixed.
Rats can fit into unimaginably small openings and even cause more damage by chewing through holes that seem uncomfortable for them to fit in. But for sure, they can’t chew through steel wool and cement.
Use steel wool or cement to cover any suspected openings.
A neat environment has a natural way of keeping rats away. They have a strong sense of smell which easily attracts them to open items they can consume.
The following measures could be taken to ensure that rats are kept at bay from your home.
- Try to move objects away from the wall to be sure of what may be hiding behind them.
- Reduce clutter because less clutter means less space to hide.
- Ensure that all wastes are closed in waste bins.
- Clean drainages regularly.
Check Closed Areas
The garage is one area capable of housing rats as it is usually packed with items.
Once they get into such a place, they may find the car hood warm and comfortable for them to habit thereby causing dangerous damages over time. The garage should be kept very clean.
Some trees are likely to grow large and even taller than buildings thereby spreading their branches on the roof of the house.
If not carefully checked, such could serve as a highway for such animals to get easy access into the house through small openings on the roof or wall.
Prune such branches and keep piles of wood and other things 20 to 30 feet away from the house as rats love to stay in piles.
You are less likely to attract rats if you put your cereals and other pastry items in airtight containers.
If you have pets, you must find a decent way to store their food and also clear the mess they make after each meal to prevent rats from tracing the smell. Such containers could be found in local stores around you.
Possible Alternative To Using Mothballs For Rat Control
For a more likely remedy, rats avoid the smell of peppermint, so rubbing peppermint oil on cotton balls and carefully placing them in corners of your house is more likely to do the trick of keeping rats away from your home.