You have a number of options if you want to stop mice from getting under your doors. But unfortunately, many homeowners don’t know what they are!
This guide will teach you how to use door sweeps for mice as well as discourage them from squeezing under your doors with other methods.
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Can A Mouse Fit Under A Door?
No homeowner wants to see a mouse in their living space. Mice will not only get into pantry items, but they are also carriers of a variety of dangerous diseases. At one point or another, many homeowners will either see mice or will find evidence of them in the house.
Even if you are super careful about maintaining your home, mice can still get in quite easily. A common way for them to enter your home is under a door.
It may seem like the crack under your door would be too small for a mouse to crawl through, but this is a common misconception. That is one reason why many homeowners often don’t think of their door as an entry point.
In fact, mice can crawl through a hole the size of a dime and slither into a crack that’s the width of a pencil. That means a mouse can fit under a door with ease. They will try to fit into the tiniest of spaces to get at the food, water and shelter that is waiting for them on the other side of your door.
How To Stop Mice From Getting Under Your Door
Figuring out how to stop mice from getting under your door requires a bit of observation and some do-it-yourself savvy. However, with a little time and effort you’ll be able to create a fairly mouse-proof barrier.
We suggest inspecting all the doors in your home that lead to the outside. This includes garage doors and cellar trapdoors. If you see any holes or cracks that are a quarter of an inch or larger, then you are going to want to block these entry points.
Let’s take a look at some of the ways that you can try to keep mice from entering under the doors of your home. Do-it-yourself methods usually work fairly well, but there are also door blockers for mice that are made by pest control companies as well.
1. Use A Door Sweep For Mice
A common and effective way to stop mice from getting under the doors of your home is to install a door sweep. Also called a draft stopper or door blocker, a door sweep is a strip that you place along the bottom of your door. Many people use door sweeps to keep out drafts and cold air during the winter months, but using one may also keep out mice and insects.
There are a few different kinds of door sweeps, and they range from rubber or vinyl to reinforced rubber and a brush-style sweep. The type you choose kind of depends on your situation, but we feel that some may work better than others.
Probably the two most common types of door sweeps for mice are the rubber or vinyl ones, and they have the advantage of being fairly inexpensive and easy to install. The drawback to using a rubber or vinyl door sweep is that mice can chew through it in no time. For some people, installing one of these door sweeps will do the trick, but in most cases, it only works until the mice figure out how to chew through it.
Some rubber door sweeps are reinforced with either steel wool or a kind of polyfill. The theory is that even if the mice are able to chew through the rubber, they will stop chewing once they get to the steel wool (here’s a guide about why). These reinforced door sweeps seem to work pretty well for mild to moderate mouse issues.
Some door sweeps have a barrier made of a heavy-duty type of brush. If your mouse issue isn’t too serious, then this method may work. Many mice won’t bother with trying to chew through all of the thick bristles of a brush door sweep.
Expert Tip: For a severe mouse problem you’ll need to take more serious measures. This is where you may want to opt for a metal door sweep. They are a little more expensive and harder to install, but mice will not be able to chew through the metal plate.
2. Try A Towel
If installing a door sweep to stop mice from squeezing under doors doesn’t sound like the type of project that you’d want to get into, then you could try using towels to create a DIY door blocker. However, be aware that using this method is not going to be very effective in the long run because mice can chew through the towel fabric.
To use this method, you’ll need to grab a couple of old towels. Take the first towel and really push it into the crack under the door as tightly as you can. After you make sure that the towel is very firmly in place, roll up the second towel and place it in front of the door, thereby creating a sort of double barrier.
Expert Tip: Like we said earlier, this method is fine to try, and it may even work in some cases. However, a mouse that really wants to get under the door will just chew its way through the towels over time.
3. Clean Up The Area
In addition to blocking up entry points under the door, there are other things that you can do to stop mice from getting under doors. One very important step to take is to clean up, and this means cleaning up both the inside and outside of your home.
Tasks to be done outside your home include keeping your lawn mowed, moving any wood piles away from your home, elevating all woodpiles and basically keeping your yard free of debris and clutter. Also, it’s super important to keep the area around garbage cans and recycling bins very clean.
Inside your home, you’ll need to take out the trash on a regular basis, wipe down all kitchen countertops, vacuum up crumbs from the floor and furniture and keep the inside of your garage clean.
The idea is to clean up anything that is either attracting mice into your yard or into your home. That way you’ll be less reliant on using door sweeps for mice.
4. Seal Up Surrounding Gaps And Holes
Cracks under the door are not the only places that mice will use to get in your home. Mice could be getting in through tiny holes or gaps in the doorframe. Remember that mice can fit into a hole that’s the size of a dime, so you will have to examine your doorframe and the area around it very carefully.
If you do find gaps, holes or cracks, they will need to be sealed up immediately. You can use copper mesh to fill up the spaces, and then some kind of caulking material should be used on top of that. This is yet another way to stop mice from getting under your doors, because there will be less additional access points for them to use.
Why Only Focusing On Doors Is A Mistake
So far, we have been discussing the importance of closing up all possible entry points in and around doorways, and using door sweeps to prevent mice from squeezing under. However, there are other areas around the home where mice may be able to get in. Focusing only on doorways is a common mistake that many homeowners make, so it’s a good idea to look at other potential entry points.
We recommend taking a few minutes of your time each month to give the outside of your home a quick inspection. There are so many places where a mouse can get into your home, and many of them are areas that you may not even really notice.
Some places to check are old cable holes, holes near air conditioning units, holes in your roof or siding and ventilation holes. Don’t forget to look for spots in the foundation that may be broken or crumbling.
Even if you are working with a pest control specialist, you will still need to make sure that all potential entry points are sealed properly and that no new ones have developed.
Now that you know how to stop mice from getting under your doors with sweeps and blockers, it’s time to start fortifying your home.
While these little critters can seem impossible to slow down, all it takes is a consistent effort to keep them away. Good luck!