When you think of your home plumbing, you probably don't picture animals scurrying along your pipes – unless you're living in an animated film about adorable creatures taking up residence in strange places, à la The Great Mouse Detective or The Secret of Nimh. If you are having a problem with animals getting into your plumbing, check out these tips on how to prevent them from sneaking in:
Mice, rats and squirrels make up the majority of the animals that break into homes.A common field mouse only needs a hole with a diameter of around one-quarter inch to make it into your home and start wreaking havoc on your plumbing system. To prevent these tiny creatures sniffing a path straight to your food pantry, fill exterior gaps in your home with mortar, weatherstrip the bottom of your basement and garage doors, and stuff copper or bronze mesh into cracks in the foundation. In addition, if your drain pipes look a little worse for wear, it may be time to replace them – especially if mice are finding their way in.
Squirrels can also sometimes find their way into your home via the furnace. There are several reasons why squirrels may want to make a home in your furnace duct, one being that it serves as a safe place to hide away and raise their young. However, if they decide to venture further into your home or if they bring in dry nesting material, they present a very real fire hazard. In order to get rid of these furry creatures, you must first immediately turn off your furnace. After you do this – to avoid the nastiness of having a dead animal in your ductwork – you should set traps in order to find the current residents and place grates over any exposed holes after you've removed the offending parties.
You definitely don't want snakes in your drains – or any other sort of reptile, for that matter. The ultimate horror of a snake slithering out of your toilet is relatively rare, but it's still not something you should take a chance with. Reptiles can find their way into your home via stack pipes that run from the sewer through the roof to vent gases and connect to the drain system. To prevent intrusion, you should cover each stack pipe opening on your roof with hardware cloth or wire mesh.
Call a plumber when…
If you're dealing with snakes in the drains or any other sort of critter crawling through your plumbing, you don't want to leave anything to chance. By contacting your local plumber and taking the preventative steps here, you may be able to both save the lives of any animals that may become trapped in your plumbing and save yourself the headache of dealing with this situation down the line. Get in touch with your local experts at Roto-Rooter today for more information.