What damage can squirrels do in the attic?
This article will be discussing all the havoc caused by squirrels in homes, especially in the attic area. We’ll also go ahead to proffer simple solutions to overcome the problem.
One of many pest issues dreaded by homeowners is the presence of squirrels in attics. These cute-looking rodents mostly prefer to hang out in attics and can cause a wide range of problems.
Such problems are mostly in the form of damage.
Squirrels In Attic Damage
Every homeowner will do whatever it takes to protect their property from damage. First off, identifying the type of damage caused enables you to take appropriate action.
It also helps you identify what the problem is even when squirrels have not been sighted.
The preference for attics by squirrels is quite common. This raises a critical question; why the attic? Gaining an understanding of this question goes a long way in knowing how to go about treatment.
Squirrels are mostly attracted to attics due to the shelter it provides.
Squirrels find the attic area an easier access point as they only need to patiently chew through construction gaps to gain entrance. Basically, the weak points along the attic are exploited.
Asides from construction gaps, squirrels will also chew through corners of trim, as well as areas above gutters.
Once in, the attic provides a haven or nest. The consequence of their presence in your attic is seen in the many destructive actions carried out. You’ll need to read on as all such details are supplied below.
Squirrel Damage To House
It’s common knowledge that squirrels are very destructive.
However, the nature of the problems caused is what many do not know about. There are two categories of problems caused by squirrels; health issues as well as physical damage to attics.
Under each of these categories are several other problems. When not urgently attended to, you could end up carrying out a significant amount of repairs on your property. Such repairs typically require lots of financial expenses.
Let’s take a look at each of the categories mentioned.
i. Health Risks
The mere presence of squirrels in your attic exposes your household to potential health problems. Squirrels can carry different kinds of diseases and parasitic pests which can be transmitted to humans.
The good thing is, that such transmissions are quite rare.
Examples of parasitic pests and diseases that could be transmitted to humans include mites, ticks, fleas, rabies, salmonellosis, tularemia, and leptospirosis.
Such health risks can be transferred to humans from the feeding habits of squirrels.
These rodents go in search of nuts, peanuts, acorns, walnuts, and even eggs and seeds. Whenever you touch or ingest contaminated food or touch a contaminated area, you’re likely to have flea issues.
ii. Physical Damage to Attic
Damage to the attic tends to be more visible because these rodents explore the weak points of your roof. Old roofs are more vulnerable in terms of gaining entry than new or fairly new ones.
Such chewing or burrowing activity itself is damaging.
Other destructive activities in the attic include chewing on electrical wiring, destruction of stored belonging kept in the attic area, and destruction of PVC piping.
Squirrels also destroy the exterior sections of the attic including loose fascia and soffits.
Damage to Roof
How do squirrels gain access to your roof? It’s easy! These rodents are excellent climbers that will use trees with overhanging branches to reach your roof. They can also climb up your walls if the conditions are perfect.
At the rooftop, these rodents will look for areas of less resistance to gain entry.
The attic provides a perfect access point as squirrels can stay undisturbed for most of the time. By its nature, an attic basically consists of a space or room inside the roof.
These rodents will patiently chew through weak points of your room such as gaps or joints.
Having gained entry, the attic becomes their nesting area. With that comes further damage as several more holes are created or burrowed to establish new nests.
Chewing on Electrical Wiring
Within the attic are wire insulations that run through, connecting different parts of your home. These are prime targets for squirrels as they chew on the insulation while also sharpening their teeth on the exposed wires.
The longer they stay within your attic, the more havoc is caused as more points are chewed on wire insulations. The exposure of these wires is very risky and likely to bridge with continued damage. This could result in fires.
It’s important when fixing such damage to ensure a careful inspection is performed to check for all exposed wiring. This must be performed by an expert as you risk stepping on live wires that could result in electrocution.
Destruction of Stored Belongings
A lot of homeowners use their attic to store certain belongings ranging from books, clothing, and so on. These are prime targets for squirrels as they find such materials suitable for nest building.
As such, they’ll readily destroy your valuables by chewing on them.
Destruction of PVC Piping
Your PVC piping isn’t spared. Plumbing installations found around or close to the attic area are destroyed.
Squirrels will readily chew on water lines, thus causing further problems such as leaks. This is worsened when there is exposed electrical wiring which has been chewed on and comes in contact with water.
Damage to Exterior Sections of Attic
Usually, the exterior sections of your attic bear the brunt of the damage. You’re likely to find multiple holes around the fascia and soffits among other points.
If there are gaps around vents, then such could serve as easy access points into your attic.
Controlling Squirrels To Prevent Damage
You’ll have to call a reputable squirrel removal company or wildlife management service to have these rodents expelled. Most times, these rodents could be trapped and relocated to a more agreeable habitat.
Before solutions are offered, squirrel presence needs to be ascertained.
An inspection of your attic area is performed to find possible entry points and signs of squirrel presence. You may need a roof replacement when there’s extensive damage.
It’s clearly evident how squirrels can cause a lot of havoc to your attic.
If you’ve seen these rodents climbing your roof or suspect their presence, it’s best to give a call to your nearest pest management service.