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Technical Winter,s around the corner here in Mn Keeping the mice out of the engine compartment ?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by blazedogs, Sep 12, 2020.

  1. blazedogs
    Joined: Sep 22, 2014
    Posts: 470


    Probably been discussed a million times..A issue with a lot of us up here in Mn. Our cars are stored for a period of time during the winter months ; have to deal with mice that love chewing on wiring and building nests under the hood. Have experienced this myself with cars and the lawn tractor. So what do you suggest ? decon and poisons invite the mice ,traps don,t keep them away, . Have any of you heard about using mothballs ? It,s suppose to keep the mice away because of the smell ? Gene
    chryslerfan55 likes this.
  2. Poison sucks because they end up croaking(and stinking) in hard to get to places. Mothballs seem to work but they make your car smell like grandma’s sweater. Look up bucket trap, works for me.
  3. trollst
    Joined: Jan 27, 2012
    Posts: 2,057


    Leave the hood open, they have no place to hide, it works.
    1971BB427 and stillrunners like this.
  4. chryslerfan55 and VANDENPLAS like this.

  5. topher5150
    Joined: Feb 10, 2017
    Posts: 2,459


  6. 67drake
    Joined: Aug 8, 2008
    Posts: 157

    from Avoca WI

    I leave the old fashioned snap traps against all 4 walls of the pole barn, and CHECK them regularly. Put new ones out as needed.
    I also have put peppermint oil on cotton balls in the trunk, interior, and under hood. No mice in my cars for quite a few years now.
    It seems to help if I keep weeds and junk away from sides of the shed outside too.
    Baron and Desoto291Hemi like this.
  7. fabricator john
    Joined: Mar 18, 2010
    Posts: 166

    fabricator john
    from venice fl.

    irish spring green under hood under seat in trunk just rip the ends open and lay it in there ive had good luck with it in the past
    fabricator john
    miss you dad
  8. B Bay Barn
    Joined: Dec 27, 2009
    Posts: 447

    B Bay Barn

    I've left my hood fully open for years. It works.
    Lil'Alb likes this.
  9. corncobcoupe
    Joined: May 26, 2001
    Posts: 5,570

    Staff Member

    Hood up - trunk up - windows down - glove box open - console lid open - tin foil balls plug the exhaust pipes - steel plate over the carb- take floor mats out - sun visors down.
    No car cover.

    Don’t give the little bastards any hiding places to nest or for heat.

    Decon poison traps around the shop.
  10. jimmy six
    Joined: Mar 21, 2006
    Posts: 9,452

    jimmy six

  11. Yep, our cat spends the night in our garage and every time it needs to go shit in its litter box.
    alanp561, craig b blue, Stogy and 2 others like this.
  12. tubman
    Joined: May 16, 2007
    Posts: 5,729


    The last time I used dryer sheets and Irish Spring, the little bastards made nests out of the dryer sheets and dinner out of the Irish spring. My current shop is in a storage park with at least thirty feet of parking lot around the building. We have some gophers outside, but no mice (yet). I think it is important to never keep ANYTHING edible on the premises; no bags of chips, no dog food, or anything like it. I think they come looking for food, and if there is nothing to eat, they will stay out where there is at least something to eat. If all else fails, I believe the best solution is a barn cat. Don't pamper it and over feed it; you want it lean, mean, and hungry.

    Those electronic "Rodent Repelling" devices do not work.:mad:
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2020
    Baron, BradinNC, burl and 3 others like this.
  13. BamaMav
    Joined: Jun 19, 2011
    Posts: 4,974

    from Berry, AL

    I opened the hood on my Wife's ot Firebird and there was a big ass gopher rat sitting on the intake looking as surprised as I was he was there! It hadn't been driven in about a month, so I checked it out and didn't see any damage or signs of nesting, guess he was just scouting out a new area! Threw some rat poison out close to the car, maybe he'll get a bellyfull and go die. Note: it is in a pack they have to chew into, so it's supposed to be safe around dogs and cats. It worked good inside the house, my indoor dog never touched it. Can't remember what brand it is, wife got it at the Farmer's Coop.
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2020
    chryslerfan55 likes this.
  14. Unique Rustorations
    Joined: Nov 15, 2018
    Posts: 623

    Unique Rustorations

    I did exactly what I read about on the H.A.M.B. last year and went to the shelter and after talking with them brought home the best stinkin cat for the job. She’s awesome and is a true shop cat. Never messes with the cars, kills everything with a mile of the place, doesn’t even use the litter box much. Doesn’t jump or get weird around noises and even when I start the goat up. She was raised with dogs so she kinda acts like one. Friendly to all that roll up (some of friends thought I had lost my mind but they all know her and wish they had one protecting their stuff). The shelter had declined three other families before my wife and I showed up. They even called my references! She pretty much ran the shelter (80 cats and 15 dogs). She acclimated herself quickly and is out about 10-12 hours a day and sleeps inside at night. I never liked cats at all until a few posts on the H.A.M.B. and the more I thought about it I figured I’d give it a shot. Best decision I have made in years. Family loves her too. Frankie on guard. Regards, Randy

    Oh and I’m allergic to cats. I’ll live w my allergy over mice any day...

    I will add that I would not want any feral cats on my property. They urinate on and scratch up tires and hoods, etc. Frankie was neutered and sees a vet on a regular basis.


    Sent from my iPhone using H.A.M.B.
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2020
  15. blue 49
    Joined: Dec 24, 2006
    Posts: 1,405

    blue 49
    from Iowa

    I've had good luck with moth balls. I spread some out on an old cookie sheet and put it under the engine bay and leave a butter dish with some in the interior. It airs out pretty quickly in the spring.

  16. But why why why do they like our engines carburetors ?????? Last one I found expired had been under the intake only a month or so.....think of a Y block - Studebaker's are the same....with a pan below......couldn't believe it only took a month or so for one to set up house.
  17. bangngears
    Joined: Aug 30, 2007
    Posts: 955

    from ofallon mo

    i dont believe the irish spring, mothballs or any soap products. you hardly ever see a mouse anyway, so how can anyone say those solutions actually work. i put out that d con and the little bastards stored them in my glove compartment . d con was better when it kinda looked like sawdust.
  18. Joe Blow
    Joined: Oct 29, 2016
    Posts: 639

    Joe Blow

    A better mousetrap.
    I live in the mountains and mice are a constant battle. I leave four of these baited with peanut butter in every corner of my shop year round. If a mouse does get in, just give it overnight and in the morning you have it. 16 bucks for six on Amazon. Heavy plastic so you can wash them. You don't touch the catch arm when getting the dead mouse out of the trap or setting the trigger. The Amazon ad shows using a chunk of cheese or kernel of corn in the bait cup......a solid object doesn't work as well as the PB. I just use a matchstick to dip a glob of PB into the bait cup. These have worked extremely well for me.
    tractorguy and chryslerfan55 like this.
  19. 67drake
    Joined: Aug 8, 2008
    Posts: 157

    from Avoca WI

    Only thing about d-con is they always seem to drop dead exactly where you don’t want them to.
    I agree with the PB. That’s what I always bait my traps with.
  20. blowby
    Joined: Dec 27, 2012
    Posts: 7,745

    from Nicasio Ca

    chryslerfan55 and jnaki like this.
  21. Beanscoot
    Joined: May 14, 2008
    Posts: 2,042


    I wire the little blocks of rodent poison to the engine so the little buggers don't just drag them away and store them.
  22. jnaki
    Joined: Jan 1, 2015
    Posts: 5,978



    Over the years of trying pellets, traps, encouraging the neighborhood cats, we had mice all over the place. The yard, and the garage. For some reason, they did not come inside of the houses we have lived. Our neighbor had several cats. Their house and yard was mouse free. But, their house smell like cat sh$#@. So, that was not going to work. Plus, that stuff is bad for young mothers or mothers to be, so that was definitely out.

    The physical traps were fine and a variety of cheese and peanut butter drops were used. But after several bulging eyes looking at you as the cleanup process gets going, then, there is so much one person can take. Each time a “SNAP” was heard, we had to stop and go clean it out in the garage, otherwise, we had to fight the multitude of ants attacking the left overs. And, our supply of zip lock bags was always low due to the disposal in the trash can and the cans only coming to be emptied once a week.

    So, after several house moves and working with the mice problems, we moved to our last home. But with a Spanish tile roof and having a huge wild brush area beyond our backyard fence, there was no way to battle these guys on a daily basis. The tile roof areas have too many openings and cement plugging of each hole was not doing it, either. It takes a thumb size space for those critters to get in and have a party in the inside roof rafter areas. Not the house, but the inside roof rafters or attic space.


    The sound of the pitter/patter of little feet was not pleasurable in the middle of the night. So, we had our electrician install certified electrical plugs in the accessible attic areas of the cross beams. Several in the bedroom attic space, the office and in the attic portion of the garage. The electric plugs took several different electronic devices to shoo away the mice from the areas. It was like an electronic wall being placed at the openings and that kept the mice from crawling into the house, even during the cold winter and rainy days/nights.

    The magic of the internet makes it so easy to purchase the different varieties of electronic devices that send ultrasonic sounds our over a wide area. It is not harmful to little dogs, or people. Do they work? Yes… definitely. We have been living in our last house since 2000 and after the first year of battles, we have been getting peaceful naps and night time deep sleeping hours. No pitter patter of little feet…(our son and granddaughter are also older and there are no more little feet around, except for our little dog)

    At first, we got the same one in all of the specifically placed electric plugs. Then I read that sometimes those frequencies get used so much that the little critters get used to them. So, a new version or at least different brands with different frequencies were necessary. The final test was our house/garage has been mouse free for 19 years. Our neighbor does not like electronic devices and won’t try these ultrasonic devices. So, he is still battling mice with traps of all kinds. He is busy, we are not.

    We still see mice in the huge field behind our house, but we also see the hawks flying overhead, too. That nature battle goes on everywhere. Our garage and house have been giving us a restful day and night for years. We are sold on those devices. One warning, though… these devices work on some big lizards, like the alligator lizards, but not on the medium jittery lizards. But, for some reason, the combination of the household/garage devices works to keep them out of the house.

    No poisons, no traps, no mice or rats. I am sure they are visiting our neighbor's garage, living under the tarp that covers an old convertible.

    Frogs, that is another matter. For our neighbor and neighborhood.
    vtx1800 and chryslerfan55 like this.
  23. Deuces
    Joined: Nov 3, 2009
    Posts: 20,512

    from Michigan

    I buy my cat lots of ammo..... pissypussy.gif
    7.62 X 39. mm nato rounds....
  24. Lol,,,,,a cat is a Killing machine !
    They can smell if anything has been roaming around and can see a twitch from a long way off .
    It’s amazing to watch them at work,,,,,,Ruthless,,,,,cruel even sometimes,,,the law of the jungle I guess ?
    We have one that is a killer,,,,,a murderer really,,,,,she has to kill something every day,,,,and she eats it too,,,,usually just a little piece is all that’s left .
    If house cats were the size of Tigers,,,,,,mankind would be in jeopardy !

  25. Deuces
    Joined: Nov 3, 2009
    Posts: 20,512

    from Michigan

    It's their killer instinct... They're born with it!...;)
    lothiandon1940 and Desoto291Hemi like this.
  26. Sorry cat lovers but I’d rather have the mice. Left to wander they kill everything. Even the beneficial ones like song birds and insect eaters. Litter boxes and their garden restrooms stink worse than the dead mice.(which is why I don’t use poison, had to tear a wall out to clean out a few dead ones that died in between the sheet rock.) Traps work if checked routinely .
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2020
    chryslerfan55 likes this.
  27. sloppy jalopies
    Joined: Jun 29, 2015
    Posts: 4,778

    sloppy jalopies

    have not tried this yet [I have neighbors] but I bought a truck load of a tin from a guy, as we walked toward his shop I could hear the rolling stones cranked up high... we go in , he lowers the volume, tells me a older restorer he knows did it in his barn storage... he says the mice have large ears and the music annoys them...
    who knows ? but he said he can drop a chunk of a cracker on the floor and its still there next day...
    not that way around here...
    if you really hate mice play the latest generations music !
    chryslerfan55 likes this.
  28. Elcohaulic
    Joined: Dec 27, 2017
    Posts: 2,185


    That Irish Spring also repels deer.....
  29. greybeard360
    Joined: Feb 28, 2008
    Posts: 1,743


    The phone company spent a lot of money researching why mice chewed on their phone lines so much. It turns out that low voltage gets them sexually aroused. The more they chew the wires, the more aroused they get. Not much the phone company could do since there is voltage in the lines at all times, but disconnecting the battery may keep them away from the wiring.
    chryslerfan55 likes this.
  30. 210superair
    Joined: Jun 23, 2020
    Posts: 782

    from Michigan

    I was actually getting ready to start a post on this subject. Similar weather in MN and MI, so storage weather is coming up. I have a barn I just bought from my dad, metal building, concrete floors, but it's not by my house, it's a few miles away (which is actually a blessing when I want to work). I know there's mouse activity in it because I've found droppings. I've been storing boats and my snowmobile in it for years without issue, but I've never kept a car there. I also just this spring found a 50# bag of birdseed my parents had in there and they didn't realize the mice were using it as a food source. I nixed the bag but I've been finding shells all summer, so they have some stored up. I'm thinking my plan is to leave the hot rod in my house garage for this winter (which is heated, etc) and let the nice food dwindle out, then hit it hard next spring with a fog and a few bucket traps and cross my fingers.

    Am I being paranoid? Will the car be OK if I just take the normal precautions? I prefer to have my house garage open in the winter for projects and such, but I do not want mice chewing on my shoebox....
    chryslerfan55 likes this.

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