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Old 10-13-2008, 02:57 PM   #1
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Default How to keep rodents/critters out of car?

My girlfriend's car (Scion tC) recently had some electrical issues that were found out to be caused by rodents getting at the wiring. Other problems with the fan, check engine light, etc surfaced and she eventually took it to the dealer. Over the weekend, they found loads of acorns, rodent crap, fur, etc all over the air filter, piping, etc.

She lives in a somewhat colder area of northern NJ and it seems to be a somewhat common problem (as per the dealer). What type of precautions can we take to prevent this? They suggested moth ***** and cheesecloth. I don't even know what cheesecloth is.

I did post this issue previously before we found out the cause of the misfiring and someone suggested mountain lion urine, but I couldn't find that stuff anywhere (searched in hunting and sports stores in the area). I put some peanut butter and a mousetrap in the engine bay on two separate occasions and caught two mice. I can't catch every thing, and don't want to be spending $200-300 each time there's a rodent infestation in the car.

Any ideas would greatly be appreciated!

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Old 10-13-2008, 03:08 PM   #2
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Default Re: How to keep rodents/critters out of car? (shamoo)

Block the entrance to intake with some wire mesh... and **** in the engine bay.
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Old 10-13-2008, 03:09 PM   #3
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had this problem with my evo.. happen once tho
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Old 10-13-2008, 03:13 PM   #4
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Default Re: How to keep rodents/critters out of car? (shamoo)

I no scare I vacuum it. I no scare I vacuum it.
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Old 10-13-2008, 03:15 PM   #5
 
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Old 10-13-2008, 04:10 PM   #6
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bounce sheets..
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Old 10-13-2008, 04:16 PM   #7
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I saw this a few years ago while reading TSBs for a Corolla I think. I always thought somebody put it there jokingly and didn't think it actually happened.
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Old 10-13-2008, 04:20 PM   #8
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Default Re: How to keep rodents/critters out of car? (shamoo)

I swear to god that this must be a "Jersey" thing.


The lady I bought my car from was from jersey and when I went to the put the heat on in the car the fan was not turning.

I took a look under the dash and I found about 4 dead baby mice and the mom.
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Old 10-13-2008, 04:20 PM   #9
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Garage is not an option? I dont think there is anythign you can do besides getting a dog or soemthing, but it sounds like it would be too cold for the dog even.
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Old 10-13-2008, 05:42 PM   #10
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Default Re: How to keep rodents/critters out of car? (shamoo)

the thing is, mice and rats love to eat insulation. They eat the protective insulation on wires, which is major!! My truck has a sound dampening material under the hood, which has a nice chunk chewed out of it by mice. Luckily they didnt get to any wires.

The only thing you can do is pest control. I suggest you hire a professional contractor to find all the possible entry ways for rats and mice into the garage. CLOSE THOSE HOLES UP! then you can set mouse traps with peanut butter. It works like magic.

If this isnt a localized pest control problem (like if you dont even have a garage and your area just has hungry *** rats in general) then i suggest you find a nicer place to live
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Old 10-13-2008, 05:46 PM   #11
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Default Re: How to keep rodents/critters out of car? (CivicSD)

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then i suggest you find a nicer place to live
Like Claremont, SD
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Old 10-13-2008, 05:52 PM   #12
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Default Re: How to keep rodents/critters out of car? (Quik Chris)

Thanks for the suggestions guys. I will clarify....

The area is quite nice, it's just up north in the mountains in Jersey. When it's raining down south, it's snowing up there. It's very cold there most of the time, and that's why rodents like finding a warm place to stay.

The garage is most likely not an option. Her brother keeps his non-running late 80's MR2 in there. It's been in the process of an engine swap for like 4 years now. Unfortunately, she's not going to argue with him to move his car even though her car is 20 years newer.
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Old 10-13-2008, 06:06 PM   #13
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Like Claremont, SD
by the way SD stand for san diego, not south dakota
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Old 10-13-2008, 06:08 PM   #14
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Default Re: How to keep rodents/critters out of car? (CivicSD)

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by the way SD stand for san diego, not south dakota
LOL!!!111

Check this out: http://maps.google.com/maps?f=...=addr

Claremont, SD... the the middle of BF'in NOWHERE!

I was all... damn, that guy lives in the Boonies! No wonder he knows so much about vermin!
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Old 10-13-2008, 06:09 PM   #15
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Garage is not an option? I dont think there is anythign you can do besides getting a dog or soemthing, but it sounds like it would be too cold for the dog even.
Mice get inside of houses, you think they won't get in a garage?

Get some rat poison and put it in the car. You could also use moth ***** but they smell terrible.
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Old 10-13-2008, 06:10 PM   #16
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Default Re: How to keep rodents/critters out of car? (Quik Chris)

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Originally Posted by quick chris
by the way SD stand for san diego, not south dakota

LOL!!!111

Check this out: http://maps.google.com/maps?f=...=addr

Claremont, SD... the the middle of BF'in NOWHERE!

I was all... damn, that guy lives in the Boonies! No wonder he knows so much about vermin!
lol theres like 5 houses in that hood..... LOL!!!!

nah i live here

http://maps.google.com/maps?f=...&z=17


and i know so much about vermin cause i had some in my garage a while back.... but i deal with them every day at work (appliance repair) insurance will not cover damage caused by pests, so i am trained to look for traces of pests

that means if a stove is broken, and i find a city of rat poop inside, the home insurance will not pay for any repairs....
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Old 10-13-2008, 06:11 PM   #17
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Mice get inside of houses, you think they won't get in a garage?

Get some rat poison and put it in the car. You could also use moth ***** but they smell terrible.
They never get into the actual passenger compartment I don't think. Never saw one or detected any rodent droppings/residue on the inside. They're always in the engine bay in the nooks and crannies. Can I put moth ***** in there? But won't they just move around everywhere when you drive?
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Old 10-13-2008, 06:26 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by shamoo

They never get into the actual passenger compartment I don't think. Never saw one or detected any rodent droppings/residue on the inside. They're always in the engine bay in the nooks and crannies. Can I put moth ***** in there? But won't they just move around everywhere when you drive?
The rat poison I've always used was about 1" by 2" solid pieces of it and was rectangle shaped. If you have a garage you could also just throw some on the floor under where you park and around the garage in general as long as you don't have any animals that would get into it. Not sure how it'd stand up to heat under the hood... I've only used it when storing cars for the winter.

Moth ***** under the hood could work too.

If they're under the hood, they eventually will work into the passenger compartment. From what I've seen, a favorite place to build a nest is in the blower fan.
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Old 10-13-2008, 06:37 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by njn63
The rat poison I've always used was about 1" by 2" solid pieces of it and was rectangle shaped. If you have a garage you could also just throw some on the floor under where you park and around the garage in general as long as you don't have any animals that would get into it. Not sure how it'd stand up to heat under the hood... I've only used it when storing cars for the winter.

Moth ***** under the hood could work too.

If they're under the hood, they eventually will work into the passenger compartment. From what I've seen, a favorite place to build a nest is in the blower fan.
Yes! That was exactly it. It screwed up the blower fan so anything above 3 levels of fan power, and it would make a terrible noise. They found lots of rodent stuff in that area.

We did get some of the poison. I believe it's the same stuff you're talking about. Little green rectangular things, right? We did put them in the shed and around the house, as well as in the garage. After about a week or so, you could see bits and pieces of it being eaten. Even if we did keep buying those poison things, it would be impossible to kill all the critters. They will eventually find their way back to the car again.

Do you think the offending animals could be chipmunks? There are tons of them everywhere. Or are they usually mice? We've seen them only in the car's engine bay when I caught them.
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Old 10-13-2008, 06:39 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by shamoo

They never get into the actual passenger compartment I don't think. Never saw one or detected any rodent droppings/residue on the inside. They're always in the engine bay in the nooks and crannies. Can I put moth ***** in there? But won't they just move around everywhere when you drive?
They'll get as far as they possibly can, make a nest with anything they can, and with as much as they can possibly fit.

I've seen this so many times it's ridiculous. From experience I'd have to say once they're gone, they're gone. I've never heard of it happening twice to anyone and usually it happens when the car's been sitting for just a little while.

I've seen it go as far as the heater ducts, my step father had turned on the heater in his Chevy Tracker and all the junk came flying through, dirt, grass, lint, and cigarette butts. Then there's the stuff I saw when I work at different shops. One time we asked the customer if she wanted any toast with her bill, we had found two pieces of toast and some other stuff in the air box while checking the filter. At a dealership the service adviser showed the customer a bucket full of acorns and asked her if she collected those, the air box was full, her car was acting up because there wasn't enough air getting through. Last but not least there was a little mouse that went to far, a customer turned on her car one morning and the blower motor started making all kinds of noise. Mr. Mouse had been impaled by the blower fan, and needed to be physically removed.
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Old 10-13-2008, 06:43 PM   #21
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Yes! That was exactly it. It screwed up the blower fan so anything above 3 levels of fan power, and it would make a terrible noise. They found lots of rodent stuff in that area.

We did get some of the poison. I believe it's the same stuff you're talking about. Little green rectangular things, right? We did put them in the shed and around the house, as well as in the garage. After about a week or so, you could see bits and pieces of it being eaten. Even if we did keep buying those poison things, it would be impossible to kill all the critters. They will eventually find their way back to the car again.
Yep, same stuff. Every bit helps, but I generally just keep it around where I park my car to keep the ones finding their way over there dead. I believe the smell of moth ***** actually repels them where the poison is just a blood thinner that kills them so maybe moth ***** would be a better idea. I hate putting them inside my car though because the smell never leaves.

Quote:
Originally Posted by shamoo
Do you think the offending animals could be chipmunks? There are tons of them everywhere. Or are they usually mice? We've seen them only in the car's engine bay when I caught them.
Doubtful. Mice are some destructive pieces of ****. The amount of damage they do is surprising. I'm not sure why but I've also rarely seen them inside of cars except for the blower fan. A couple of the cars that we stored for years got them inside eating stuff (I remember them in the headliner of a Barracuda, ugh) but never for stuff we stored short term.
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Old 01-15-2009, 04:59 PM   #22
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I never popped the hood on Scion, but have been able to keep mice out of my 96 Civic and just finished trying something similar on my 09. So far they haven't chewed on the wiring.

I pulled the wiper arms and the plastic strip at the base of the windshield. In the 96, which has no AC, the heater fan is on the passenger side, sitting in a housing by the windshield. I cut a piece of 1/4" hardware cloth and wrapped it over the fan housing AFTER cleaning a wad of fiberglass insulation out of the fan. Lucky there were no baby mice, etc. Hardware cloth is like window screen with 1/4" openings, so it lets in a lot of air. I also wrapped a piece of vinyl window screen over the air intake and held it on with tie-wrap because mice went up the intake and shredded the air filter. [Had mice do this before and paid a garage to clean it out, but that didn't FIX anything]

On the 09, they gnawed a hole through the material around the AC, which is in the same space as the fan in the old car. That let them into the glove box and inside the car. Found a nest started in the glove box. Could see light in the glove box when the hhood was up. I put in a few pellets of D-Con mouse poison. Then I went through the same drill, only a lot harder, because stuff is much deeper back under the windshield in the new car. There was an opening that I covered with 1/4" hardware cloth, only this time I screwed it to the edges with self-tapping screws. The mice had pulled some sound insulation off and started a nest in this shelf under the windshield edge. More D-Con before closing it all up again.
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Old 01-15-2009, 05:04 PM   #23
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Burn the car
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Old 01-15-2009, 05:09 PM   #24
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Buy (or steal the nieghbors) cat, they tend to be good at keeping mice and rodents away.

Source: Tom and Jerry
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Old 01-16-2009, 01:03 AM   #25
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