Squirrels are one of Ontario, Canada's most common urban wildlife species. They can be found playing in your yard or stealing your bird food. They are agile and intelligent creatures that have adapted well to human environments. However, they can become a nuisance when they take up residence in attics or other parts of a house. In this article, we will explore some of the top ways squirrels get into attics and provide tips on preventing them from doing so.
Roof vents are an essential part of maintaining proper ventilation in your attic. They allow fresh air to circulate and prevent the buildup of moisture and excessive heat. However, squirrels have a different perspective on roof vents. To them, these vents serve as convenient entry points into the cozy spaces of your attic. Squirrels are natural climbers, and they can easily scale the sides of houses to reach the roof.
Once there, they search for weak spots around the vent or under the top cover. In their determined efforts to gain access, squirrels may even chew right through the vent cover or any surrounding material that obstructs their path. It's worth noting that both plastic and aluminum roof vents are susceptible to squirrel damage, as their sharp teeth can make short work of these materials.
Soffit to Roof Locations:
The soffit-to-roof intersection is another area where squirrels often find their way into attics. The soffit refers to the underside of the roof's eaves, while the roofline is where the roof meets the exterior wall of the house. Squirrels are quite skilled at climbing and can easily navigate their way up the sides of your house. Once they reach the roofline, they begin their quest to locate vulnerable spots in the soffit or roofline. With their strength and determination, they can push in the soffit or bend the metal, creating an opening just big enough for them to squeeze through. Sometimes, there's even a small gap between the soffit and roof in the corners that squirrels can exploit. These flexible creatures can fit through remarkably small gaps or holes, sometimes as tiny as 1.5 inches (4 centimeters) in diameter.
Gable End Vents and Wall Vents:
Wall vents and gable end vents are designed to facilitate proper air circulation in your attic, but unfortunately, squirrels see them as potential entryways. These vents are typically located on the exterior walls of your house, making them an easy target for squirrels.
The vents are often made of plastic, aluminum, or other thin, soft metals that are no match for determined squirrels. These critters will climb up your house, spot the vent, and use their sharp claws to scratch open any bug netting or chew through materials that obstruct their path.
Once they successfully breach the vent, they can effortlessly ascend into the attic, where they will happily establish their cozy nests.
Squirrels are thorough investigators when it comes to finding vulnerabilities in your roof. Roof pipes, particularly the boots surrounding them, are highly susceptible to squirrel damage. The pipes themselves can be large enough for squirrels to slide right inside, and in some bizarre cases, squirrels have even managed to find their way into toilet bowls through these pipes! The boot that surrounds the roof pipe is usually made of thin rubber, which can become brittle over time, making it easier for squirrels to chew through. With their sharp teeth, squirrels will gnaw through the rubber, tear it apart, and sometimes even chew the surrounding wood to widen the opening for their entry. As you can imagine, the damage caused by squirrels using roof pipes/boots as an entry point can be quite extensive and often requires the replacement of the boot, shingles, and underlying plywood.
Construction gaps represent yet another common pathway for squirrels to infiltrate attics. These gaps can occur at various locations in the construction of your house, such as under the shingles at the roof's edge or where different materials meet. Squirrels have an uncanny ability to locate weak spots and can effortlessly climb, squeeze, or chew their way through these gaps to gain access to attics.
They often sit in the eaves troughs and chew a hole. Once inside the attic, they can wreak havoc and cause significant damage to not only the attic but also other areas of your house.
Bonus Location - Chimneys:
While chimneys typically don't provide direct access to the attic, they are often attractive locations for squirrels to raise their offspring. Squirrels can enter chimneys by crawling down the chimney opening or by displacing the flimsy screen at the top.
Once inside the chimney, they create cozy dens and safely raise their young in the warmth of the chimney.
Preventing Squirrels from Getting into Attics: Preventing squirrels from accessing your attic is crucial to avoid potential damage and health hazards. Here are some friendly tips to help you keep those critters from invading your attic:
Seal off potential entry points: Use sturdy, chew-proof materials like metal to seal off any possible entry points, including roof vents, wall vents, construction gaps, soffit-to-roof locations, and chimney screens.
It's important to choose materials that can withstand squirrel gnawing, rust, and various weather conditions.
If you have squirrels in your attic or are unsure of how to prevent them from entering your attic, it's best to call a professional wildlife removal company like Integrity Wildlife Control. We can safely and effectively remove squirrels from your property and help prevent future infestations.
Our work comes with a Lifetime Warranty and a Guaranteed Removal. When we seal a building, our goal is to make our work cosmetically pleasing and look as though we have not been there. Some companies use cheap material that does not last and hurts the appearance and value of the home. If you need help with raccoon removal in Hamilton or the Ontario area, give us a call at (289) 272-9453 or fill out This Form and we will call you back today.