A mouse with the words, "rodents in ductwork"

Seeing an uninvited critter in your house is never fun, but it’s especially unnerving when that critter is a rodent. However, even worse than seeing a rodent in your house is knowing one is there, but never being able to see them. After all, if you can’t see them, you can’t catch them or figure out where to block out their entrances and exits to head off any other uninvited guests. Here are the 3 main steps you should take if you think a rodent has infiltrated your air ducts. 

1. Make Sure It Is Rodents In Your Air Ducts

First thing’s first: you need to make sure the problem is actually what you think it is. Otherwise, you won’t be able to find the solution that best suits your actual problem. To figure out whether or not there are rodents in your air ducts, it is helpful to know some basic things about rodent behavior. 

In general, rodents like to hide in warm, dark areas that are close to food and will provide safety for their young. One of the best places for them to hide and raise their young is in your home’s air ducts. This may be a safe, warm home for them, but this can actually make your home the opposite for you and your family as rodents can spread disease that can lead to serious health issues. 

Knowing whether or not your air ducts actually have rats is the first step to remedying the issue with your air ducts. There are several things that can tip you off that you are in fact dealing with rodents. 

First, check your outdoor vent. The vent should have a grate or louvers to act as a barrier to keep rodents, insects, and other animals from entering your ductwork. If there are signs of damage or there is no covering, then you may be dealing with rodents. 

Next, make sure you also check the vent itself. In particular, you should look for signs of blowflies. These insects only hang around dead animals, so if they are around your vent, that is a pretty telltale sign.

When you are checking your vents and the rest of your home, take note of any pungent odor. A foul odor inside of your home, especially if it gets stronger near your air vents, is a sign of dead animals, urination, or even animal feces in your ductwork. This is a strong indication that rodents may have taken residence inside. 

Finally, look for visible signs of rodents. You may not ever see a live rodent moving in your ductwork since rodents are smart and typically only become super active at night or when the house falls quiet. However, you will probably notice visible signs of them being alive instead. If you see small brown pellets in your ductwork or home’s insulation, they are likely the feces of rodents that have infiltrated your home. Strewn bedding material is also a good visual indicator that there are rodents. Specifically, rodents like to use insulation as their bedding material so be on the lookout for shreds of insulation. 

2. Get Rid of the Rodents

A Technician gets deep into the air ducts to clean years of dust and debris

Once you’ve made sure that there are rodents in your air ducts, the next step is to get rid of them. Getting rid of the rodents is of the utmost importance. Rodents spread diseases by physical contact, through their bodily waste, and through bites, so the sooner they are gone, the better for you and your loved ones. 

The first step to getting rid of rodents is turning off your HVAC system so you don’t spread anymore polluted air around your house

Make sure to remove all of the vent covers. If the infestation is small, you may be able to use mouse traps around each vent opening to solve your problem. Once you’ve set your traps, check daily for rodent carcasses and replace the traps every day.

If the infestation is large or you feel that you will not be able to handle a small infestation yourself, it is best to call in a pest control specialist. They can help you ensure that you are able to rid your house of rodents quickly and efficiently.

3. Get Your Air Ducts Cleaned

It is tempting to feel like the issue is resolved once you have removed the rodents from your air ducts, but it is important to remember that the problem is not gone once the rodents are. Once the rodents are gone, you still need to deal with the contamination from the infestation, such as fur, urine, feces, and any carcasses. An air duct cleaning is your best bet to rid your air ducts of any contaminants

When arranging this final step, only allow a professional HVAC technician to handle cleaning your air ducts. During the cleaning, the HVAC technicians will be able to inspect your air ducts for signs of damage.  If any damages are found, the HVAC professional can repair them, setting your HVAC system back to perfect working condition and improving the quality of your air overall. 

Contact Reliable Air Duct Cleaning Services in North Texas

It can be difficult to feel comfortable in your home after you realize that rodents may have contaminated the air you breathe day in and day out. A cleaning by an experienced and reliable HVAC professional can set your mind at ease that the air in your home is once again fresh and clean. At Cote’s Mechanical, our skilled team of HVAC professionals is here to help with all of your HVAC needs, so call us today to schedule an appointment or consultation!

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