You might not think of squirrels as a nuisance, but if they’re nesting in your garage, they can be a real problem. Here are some tips on how to get rid of them.
What You'll Learn Today
- Why Is There a Squirrel in My Garage?
- What is the Best Way to Repel Squirrels?
- How Do I Get a Squirrel Out of My Garage?
- How Do You Get Animals Out of Your Garage?
Why Is There a Squirrel in My Garage?
Although you may find that you have an errant visitor here or there – squirrels get lost and confused just like the rest of us! – you’ll typically find that these pests come inside for the same reasons any others do – they’re looking for food, water, or shelter.
You are more likely to encounter squirrels in the garage once the temperature drops first thing in the fall. Squirrels come indoors looking for warmth and for a few last bites of food that they can “squirrel” away.
Before you do anything to get rid of the squirrels, confirm that it is, in fact, actually squirrels that you are dealing with. That way, you can be sure that you are using the right strategies and bait to get rid of them.
If you’ve seen squirrels scurrying around in the space, that’s a pretty obvious sign that you know what you’re dealing with. Squirrels are usually around eight to 20 inches long and weigh no more than a couple of pounds. They have bushy tails and are great at climbing.
Unlike other types of pests that are active at night,s squirrels are most active during the day. In addition to seeing squirrels, you may notice signs of an infestation such as:
- Damage to belongings
- Water damage on the ceilings or walls
- Droppings on the floor or shelves
- Chew marks
- Damaged wiring
- Strange noises (like barking or scurrying)
- A foul smell
Squirrels can cause a lot of damage, so if you suspect a problem, it’s important that you act immediately. Not only can squirrels spread a wide variety of diseases, but they can also damage your home with their chewing. From siding to insulation and wiring, squirrels are major pests. Their chewing habits often cause fires and other serious problems as a result.
What is the Best Way to Repel Squirrels?
To repel squirrels and keep them from coming into your garage there are a few steps you should take.
Sanitize the Area
Make sure your garage is kept as clean as possible. If your garage is dirty or untidy in any way it’s far more likely that squirrels are going to nest and burrow there. Remove any debris and clutter and get rid of food or water sources.
Keep squirrels out! These active climbers can invade your garage through open voids that are remarkably small. Seal up any cracks and crevices with caulk and copper mesh. This can prevent squirrels and other pest animals from coming inside – and since it’s a hard material, it’s not likely that the squirrels will chew on it.
Use Squirrel-Repellent Scents
There are a few smells that squirrels aren’t particularly fond of. By putting out a bit of the following items, you may find that you can repel squirrels without having to use harmful chemicals.
- Peppermint oil
- White vinegar
- Coffee grounds
- Dryer sheets
- Irish Spring Soap
If you decide to use these repellents, put them in the areas that you notice have been the most highly trafficked by the squirrels.
Grow a Garden
If you have the space to do it, consider growing a few plants around your home that will naturally repel the squirrels.
Squirrels aren’t fond of plants like alliums, geraniums, hyacinths, and daffodils. If you can plant some of these around the perimeter of your garage, you may find that it gets rid of the squirrel problem for good.
Get a Cat
Cats are famous for their ability to hunt and kill mice – but it’s not just mice they’ll go after! Felines are more than happy to kill rats, squirrels, and many other rodent invaders as well.
Consider getting a cat to help cut back on the number of squirrels that feel tempted to go into your garage – but remember that getting a cat is a commitment just like any other kind of pet. You’ll have to care for that cat even long after these squirrels have vacated the premises.
If you’re not ready for that kind of commitment, know that you can simply buy predator urine to put out in your garage. This will repel squirrels and prevent them from coming indoors.
How Do I Get a Squirrel Out of My Garage?
Ready to evict the squirrels that have been living – rent-free – in your garage? Follow these simple tips to kick them to the curb.
Remove Food Sources
The easiest way to get rid of squirrels is to prevent attracting them in the first place. Remove any sources of food. Trash should be kept in sealed bags and ideally stored outside in bins with a locking lid. Keep pet food out of the garage too.
Help Them Find the Way Out
Before you take more drastic measures, know that you may be able to get rid of the squirrels in your garage by helping them figure things out for themselves.
Leave some lights on, play loud music, and visit your garage frequently. These actions should startle the squirrels and make them more interested in leaving – and less interested in making your garage their permanent home.
Block the Entrance
Look for any holes or potential entry points around your garage. Block them off with wire mesh or some other material that squirrels will have a hard time chewing through.
To make sure your efforts to seal off the garage were effective, spread some flour near the entrypoint. If you see footprints in the flour, that’s a good sign that the newspaper wasn’t effective – you’ll have to take more drastic measures to get rid of these squirrels.
Catch the Squirrels
You can use traps to catch the squirrels in your garage but you need to be careful to make sure you aren’t bitten. Squirrels can be aggressive when cornered, and they have been known to carry all kinds of dangerous diseases.
Put a few cage-style traps around the garage and bait them to entice these squirrels to visit. Once these squirrels are in the cage, transport them far from your home and release them into the wild.
How Do You Get Animals Out of Your Garage?
If you still can’t get the squirrels or other types of animals out of your garage, it might be time to consider an alternative approach. When they don’t leave on their own and you find yourself resorting to setting traps, you may want to consider calling in a professional exterminator.
Squirrels can carry rabies, along with a host of other diseases that can be dangerous to humans. Because of this, trapping them can be dangerous. You don’t want to get hurt – so contact a wildlife management service.
Still curious about alternative ways you can get rid of squirrels in the garage? Here’s a video with some helpful tips that can give you even more ideas:
You can find squirrels in your garage for many reasons – but one of the most common causes is that they are attracted to some source of food, like garbage or birdseed.
If you want to get rid of squirrels in your garage, your first step should be to eliminate these food sources. Then, you can take other steps to eliminate your squirrel population for good.