While squirrels and chipmunks may be cute, entertaining people with their crazy antics, it's easy to forget that they belong to the taxonomical order Rodentia—the same order as rats and mice! And like rats and mice, when they're looking for food, relief from predators, and a warm shelter for their dray—the nest for birthing and rearing their young—your house can seem mighty tempting. Unfortunately for you, it isn't very difficult for a scurry of chipmunks or squirrels to move in and set up residence. Here's what you need to know.
How Do You Know You Have Squirrels Or Chipmunks?
If critters are living in your home, you'll usually hear them. They get into the walls and busy themselves scratching away, storing nuts and stealing insulation to make their nests. You may also see evidence of them in the attic or even in unused rooms. Additionally, it's not uncommon to see squirrels or chipmunks on the side of your house, usually heading towards the roof. The roof is a good place of entry for them.
What Do You Do If You Have Squirrels Or Chipmunks?
You need to find where they are getting in. To do this, you will need a ladder and a flashlight. Start where you suspect they may be entering in relation to your home. For example, if you have noticed squirrels on the side of your house, seemingly coming and going, start there. Using the flashlight, inspect the soffits, the eaves, and the valleys and ridges of the roofline. Look for missing shingles and inspect the sheathing for any holes. You will also want to check around the chimney and its flashing. The roof vents are another potential area of entry. After you have assessed the roof, go into your attic to see what's going on in there. You may be dismayed to discover a huge mess of ripped-apart insulation, droppings, and cracked acorn shells. Look for any light coming through where it shouldn't be.
How Do You Fix The Squirrel And Chipmunk Problem?
First, you have to determine how to get them out. The last thing you want to do is seal them in your home. You can set live traps, but most people find it easier to hire a professional pest removal expert to take care of the problem for them. How you then fix the damage depends on the point of entry. You may need to install a chimney cap to prevent entry there. If they have chewed through the roof, you may need to replace the sheathing, underlayment, and shingles. Holes may need to be caulked. Vents may need to be screened.
Not everyone is capable, skilled, or willing to climb up on the roof, inspect it, and make the necessary repairs. Call a professional roofing expert such as Berwald Roofing Inc to come and take care of the problem for you.