How to Keep Vermins Out of the Garage Part 2


Do you see vermins or signs of vermins in your garage? Most are destructive to your property or dangerous to you or your family members or pets. We look at the most common household and garage vermins and how to get rid of them. 

Most common garage vermins include mice, rats, maggots, flies, moths, mosquitoes, cockroaches, crickets, snakes, birds, and spiders.

This part 2 includes: mosquitoes, cockroaches, crickets, snakes, birds, and spiders. 

Part 1 is here and includes: mice, rats, maggots, flies, and moths

Mosquitoes

Mosquitos are extremely annoying. They can be dangerous because they can spread diseases like the zika virus, dengue, yellow fever, and malaria. 

Mosquitoes can lay 100 eggs at a time.

Signs of Mosquitoes in Your Garage

Somehow the little buggers just are always there and keep coming back. If there are breeding places for mosquitoes near the garage and you keep the door open frequently. They are gonna visit the garage searching for a meal. Female mosquitoes can live up to three weeks after they have had their blood meal. 

Mosquitos make a high-pitched buzzing noise as they move rapidly move their wings.

Why Do I Have Mosquitoes in My Garage?

You breathe out carbon dioxide, which attracts mosquitoes. And there is probably a new generation of mosquitoes waiting to be born in some stagnant water in your garage. 

Male mosquitoes, in particular, are drawn to flower nectar and other sweet items such as fruit. Don’t leave fruits or eaten fruit garbage lying around. 

Mosquitoes need water to breed—the calmer the water, the better. Female mosquitoes lay eggs in water, and even the most little place with an inch or two of water will suffice. It only takes 14 days for a new generation to be born. 

Common places can be

  • Ponds and ditches
  • Buckets
  • Birdbaths
  • Rainwater barrels
  • Tires 
  • Flower pots 
  • Any standing water in the garage inside. Puddles from leaks. Drains, Etc. 

How to Keep Mosquitoes Out of the Garage 

The most efficient way to keep mosquitoes out of the garage is to remove any stagnant water nearby as mosquitoes lay eggs in standing water. Sealing all the tiny holes and cracks and installing screening in vents and the use of traps and repellents can keep the mosquitoes out. 

Remove water

  • Getting rid of stagnant water is the easiest way to get rid of mosquitoes. 
  • No water = no eggs = no new mosquitoes
  • Turn over buckets after use.
  • Make sure drains and gutters work, and puddles disappear faster than 24 hours.
  • Fix leaky roofs that make puddles
  • Change the water in birdbaths and pet bowls daily.
  • So you will get rid of fresh eggs that may be in the water. 

Install Door and Vent Screens

If you have a garage side door. Install a screen over it and make sure all the vents have tight enough screens so mosquitoes can’t get in. 

Seal Other Access

Patch all the holes in the garage. Use caulk and patching compounds. Go through all the walls, doors, windows, and screens, looking for holes and cracks. Ensure the garage door is properly sealed from the sides and the bottom weather seal is in good condition. 

Insecticide

Wear a mask, gloves, and other gear when spraying insecticides. Never inhale the stuff. Go over corners and floors and damp and dark areas. 

  • Applying chemical repellent designed for outdoors is a good way to eliminate mosquitoes and work up to 8 weeks. 
  • Leave the area after spraying and read from instructions when you can use the space again safely.  
  • Insecticides are pretty useless because when you have the garage doors open again. More insects will come. 

Diatomaceous earth is non-toxic to pets and humans, but it kills insects by destroying their exoskeletons.

Traps

Mosquito traps are effective and kill mosquitoes, and can reduce the mosquito population notably. Mosquito traps emit carbon dioxide, which attracts mosquitoes. When you have a trap working, mosquitoes usually leave you alone and go for the trap. 

Repellents

If you like gardening and enjoy growing plants. Some plants work as a natural mosquito repellent. Including:

  • Tulsi
  • Lemongrass
  • Lemon Balm
  • Lavender
  • Pennyroyal
  • Geraniums
  • Sage
  • Rosemary
  • Onions
  • Garlic
  • Citronella Grass
  • Peppermint
  • Basil
  • Marigold

Many birds eat mosquitoes. You can consider setting up bird feeders. But make sure the feeders are far enough from the house or garage as they tend to attract all sorts of critters besides birds. 

If you have a yard bond. You could put some fish in there that eat mosquito larvae like goldfish and koi. 

BTI, a naturally occurring bacterium found in soil, produces toxins that target and kill mosquito larvae. You can spray it over ponds, flowerpots, and birdbaths, and it’s non-toxic to humans.

Cockroaches

These things survive almost anywhere and eat almost anything. They are resilient and fast breeding. They also carry nasty bacteria that, if deposited on food, can cause salmonella, staphylococcus, and streptococcus.

Common Cockroaches are:

  • American Cockroach
  • German Cockroach
  • Australian Cockroach
  • Oriental Cockroach

Signs of Cockroaches in Your Garage

You see them go hiding when turning the lights on. Cockroach Droppings all over the place. Oily odor.

  • Roaches are nocturnal creatures and usually spend their days hiding away in the dark. When you turn on the lights, they hide very fast. 
  • Cockroach droppings look like tiny black specks. If there are many roaches, the droppings can look like crushed pepper or scattered coffee grounds. 
  • A lot of roaches start to smell like sharp, oily odor. 
  • Some species make a buzzing noise while other cockroaches make a chirping noise.

Why Do I Have Cockroaches in My Garage?

Roaches are drawn to warm, humid places.

Cockroaches like garbage and moisture. And also any food leftovers and pet food. They eat almost anything and drink water.

They also like stale beer, so don’t leave almost empty beer cans lying around.

How to Keep Cockroaches Out of the Garage

The most effective way to keep cockroaches out of the garage is to clean and organize the garage. Remove or seal food sources and fix water leaks and seal all the access points. Consider also using repellents and traps. 

Seal Access Points

Patch the holes. Use caulk and patching compounds. Go through all the walls, doors, windows, and screens, looking for the tiniest holes and cracks. Put screening in all the vents. Ensure the garage door is properly sealed from the sides and the bottom weather seal is in good condition. 

Roaches like cardboard boxes and old newspapers. They breed in them. 

Get rid of moisture. Inspect pipes and plumping for leaks and get them fixed if something leaks even a little bit.

Getting Rid of Cockroaches

  • Insecticides containing deltamethrin or pyrethrin are very effective.
  • Poisoned bait containing hydramethylnon or fipronil and boric acid powder is effective on adult roaches.
  • Baits with egg killers are effective at reducing the cockroach population.
  • Place chemical baits near garbage cans and underneath sinks.
  • Mix equal amounts of boric acid, flour, and sugar to make a dough. Set balls of dough around the garage where cockroaches can feed on it.

Boric acid is extremely dangerous to pets!! Do not use it if you have dogs or cats that might eat the baits.

Diatomaceous earth is non-toxic to pets and humans, but it kills insects by destroying their exoskeletons.

Cockroach Trap

Roaches can be trapped in a deep smooth-walled jar with liquid inside. Placed so that cockroaches can reach the opening (twig, a ramp of cards, etc.) And an inch or two of beer at the bottom. The cockroach will drown when it can’t get up the smooth walls. 

Crickets

Crickets are about an inch long brown or yellow-colored insects. Crickets have wings that lie flat on their back and long antennae on their heads. They are easy to identify by their large bent back legs and dark brown markings on their heads. 

  • House crickets don’t carry dangerous diseases that people could get.
  • Female crickets lay 5-10 eggs a day, so it’s better to get rid of them soon as possible. 
  • During summer, crickets can be found outdoors, especially near dumpsters and garbage. Crickets are most active in warm temperatures and thrive at about 80 or 90 degrees Fahrenheit.

Signs of Crickets in Your Garage

House crickets hide and sleep during the day in dark, warm, and humid places until they can come out to feed in the nighttime. During their rest, they like to be on vertical surfaces like the walls in your garage. You also hear them chirping at night. 

Male crickets make a very distinct chirping sound by rubbing their wings together. This sound will most likely be heard in the night because crickets are nocturnal.

Cricket eggs are like rice grain and similar in size too. They are white or yellow in color. 

Why Do I Have Crickets in My Garage?

Crickets are attracted to heat and moisture, and they also like dark, humid places. They also eat cotton, wool, silk, and synthetic fabrics, and other insects. They especially like dirty laundry. 

Crickets eat everything from plants to dead or live insects and even each other—crickets like garbage and moisture. Crickets may also forage in pantries for pet food, fruit, and vegetables.

How to Keep Crickets Out of the Garage

Clean and organize the garage. Put fabrics in airtight containers. Patch the holes. Use caulk and patching compounds.  Go through all the walls, doors, windows, and screens, looking for the tiniest holes and cracks. Put screening in all the vents. Use repellents and traps. 

  • Ensure the garage door is properly sealed from the sides and the bottom weather seal is in good condition. 
  • Go over the pipes and sinks and fix any leaks. 
  • Take out the trash regularly.
  • Keep mulch and compost piles away from your house.
  • Cut back any overgrown weeds or tall grasses and remove piles of bricks or firewood.

Getting Rid of Crickets

Vacuum the crickets and their eggs and kill them or release them somewhere far away from your house.

Molasses

The most effective way to get rid of crickets is to use molasses. Build a trap with a shallow bowl or something similar where crickets can jump. Make a mix of molasses and water and fill the container with a few inches of it. The crickets will jump into the bowl and get stuck. Rinse and repeat. 

Chemical Baits

Work similar to molasses but will kill the crickets instantly. Be careful if you have children or pets. 

Insecticides 

Spray these around windows and openings all around. Select an insecticide containing either chlorpyrifos or diazinon. 

Traps

You can use traditional sticky traps or electric ones. Crickets are attracted to sweet smells. 

Diatomaceous earth is non-toxic to pets and humans, but it kills insects by destroying their exoskeletons. 

Snakes

Most snakes aren’t venomous or threatening, but some can be deadly depending on where you live. But snakes sure don’t belong to your garage or house. Snakes eat small animals like lizards, frogs, mice, birds, snails, insects, and small mammals. 

Some deadliest snakes in North America include rattlesnakes, cottonmouth, and copperheads. Untreated bites can be fatal. It has been estimated that 7,000–8,000 people per year receive venomous bites in the United States. About 5 of those people die. The number of deaths would be much higher if people did not seek medical care. 

Snakes are more commonly encountered when temperatures average between 80 and 90 degrees Fahrenheit, usually during the spring and throughout the summer.

Snakes will attack your pets. More pets are bitten and killed every year by snakes than humans.

So getting rid of snakes in the garage or house is wise. 

Signs of Snakes in Your Garage

Telltale signs of snakes in the garage include smell, feces, snakeskin, and trail marks. Also, your pets might be on high alert near where the snakes are. 

Snake Skin

Snakes shed their skin once a month when they are young—a couple of times a year when they are old. Dry, scaly skin may either be in a whole sheet or in a crumpled heap somewhere close to an entrance into the walls of your home.

Trail

You should see a slither trail if there is dust or dirt on the floor.

Odor

Snakes have a very distinctive smell. 

Feces 

Snake feces can look like small cords or tubes and are dark. They often look like bird feces but sometimes include hair and bones. 

Snakes sometimes burrow in walls and crawl spaces in a home or garage to nest and lay eggs in the winter months.

Why Do I Have Snakes in My Garage?

Snakes typically live in wild areas or gardens. So what are they doing in my garage?

Snakes look for prey and shelter from predators. They also like damp, cool and dark areas.

Looking for Food

Snakes eat animals you often find in garages like lizards, mice, rats, birds, snails, insects, and small mammals. Snakes chase these through the same holes they find a way into the garage. Some snakes detect heat and chase their prey through an open garage door if they detect hidden mice or other prey hiding. 

Shelter 

  • Snakes like hiding under some kind of roof where they are safe from hawks and owls and other birds of prey. 
  • Snakes are cold-blooded and cannot control their body temperature. During temperature extremes, they might die from being too hot or cold. Garage offers shade and warmth to the snakes. 
  • Snakes prefer damp, cool, and dark areas. 

How to Keep Snakes Out of the Garage

The most effective way to keep snakes out of the garage is to clean and organize the garage. Remove animals that snakes prey and fix water leaks, and seal all the access points. Consider also using repellents and traps. 

Remove The Food Source

Get rid of mice, lizards, rats, and insects in your garage to keep the snakes out too. Don’t store any food in the garage for these animals. And these things eat almost anything. If you must store something edible. Seal it in airproof plastic containers. 

Seal the Access From Prey Animals and Snakes

Seal any hole larger than ¼ inch in diameter is enough to let the mice in because they can compress their bodies and squeeze through almost anything. Cover the vents and drains with steel screening. Patch the holes. Use caulk and patching compounds. You can also put steel wool into the holes with caulk and patching compound. Mice cannot chew thru steel wool. Ensure the garage door is properly sealed from the sides and the bottom weather seal is in good condition. 

Getting Rid of Snakes

Getting rid of snakes yourself can be dangerous. If you think there is a snake in your garage and you want to find it yourself, you have to wear extra clothes all over and cover any part of your skin, including your head. 

  • Remove any tall vegetation that is close to your home. 
  • Clear out trash and food leftovers as soon as possible. It’s attracting rodents and other critters.
  • Put the lumber in organized piles and remove debris from your property. As these can attract smaller pests.
  • Snakes like heat and dark areas, so check places like water heater and other equipment and boxer. When snake feels threatened they usually hide and wait until the threat passes. 
  • If you locate the snake, don’t try to move or touch it directly. It’s better to open the garage door and use some long object to try to force the snake out. 
  • There are snake traps that capture snake living. You could try them out and then release the snake back to nature. 

There are snake repellents, but the results may vary. And can be dangerous to children or pets. 

Repellents

Naphthalene – It is one of the most common snake repellents. The smell of naphthalene irritates snakes without harming them.

Sulfur – Powdered sulfur repel snakes. Place powdered sulfur around your home and property.

Clove & Cinnamon Oil – Mix together in a spray bottle and spray around.

Lime – Lime and hot pepper mixture repel snakes. Pour it around.

Ammonia – Spray ammonia around.

Fox urine is an excellent natural repellent for snakes when spread around your property.

Guinea hens, turkeys, pigs, and cats will help keep snakes away.

It’s highly recommended to call an expert to locate and remove the snake if you have seen or think there is one in your garage. Call local animal control, pest control, or snake removal professionals, and don’t put yourself in danger

Birds

Birds are harmless and eat a lot of insects. Birds look for safe places to create nests and viable food sources, and shelter from weather and predators. But they are better living in stables with horses than in garages with cars. 

Signs of Birds in Your Garage

Birds flying in and out of your garage and their excrements all over your floor and cars. 

Bird nests in high places.

Why Do I Have Birds in My Garage?

Birds like garages because they offer shelter, food, warmth, shade and keep the predators away. There are plenty of nest-building materials too available.

They also like to fly through big open gaps like your garage door. Or they might end up in your garage by accident, and the door closes behind them. So they might hide somewhere high. 

Birds can also get in by small holes in the roofline or attic. 

How to Keep Birds Out of the Garage

Remove Access

Sealing off all the extra holes in your garage from all over is a wise thing to do. There are many critters coming in besides birds—seal especially off all the holes in the roof and the siding. Keep windows and doors closed as much as you can or install screens.

Remove Food Sources 

Get rid of insects, and any food birds might eat. You can hang a bird feeder in your yard and keep the birdseed in airtight containers in the garage, so it doesn’t attract critters. 

Bird Nests

Bird nests are usually somewhere high, like a garage attic if the inner roof is unfinished or shelves or even on the garage door opener. 

If birds nest on your garage door opener. Get rid of the nest asap or move the nest outside. Nests are built with grass, hair, leaves and sticks, and other flammable materials. They pose a fire hazard when it’s on your garage door opener with electronics and hot lightbulbs. 

Get the Birds Out

Lure the birds out by placing a trail of food or shiny objects from your garage to the outside. 

Remove the Nest

If there are eggs inside, it might be better to wait for them to hatch or call an expert to move the nest. If it’s empty, you can move it outside somewhere nearby high enough. 

Build a birdhouse or two and bird feeder far away in your house and garage. As bird feeders attract all sorts of critters. 

Spiders

There are harmless little spiders that eat bugs and insects, and then there are bigger poisonous spiders which are not a pleasant sight in your garage. North America has lots of venomous spiders all over the country. 

These spiders are common in houses and garages.

  • American House Spider(harmless)
  • Brown Recluse(venomous)
  • Long-Bodied Cellar Spider(harmless)
  • Jumping Spiders (not venomous)
  • Sac Spiders(not venomous)
  • Wolf Spiders(not venomous)
  • Hobo Spiders(not venomous)

Signs of Spiders in Your Garage

When you see spider webs regularly and dead and flying insects all over the place.

There are eqq sacs also wrapped up in silk balls. These need to be removed fast, or you’ll have hundreds of spiders soon.

Why Do I Have Spiders in My Garage?

Spiders like dark, humid places like garages. Where there are many places to build webs and have a lot of insects and other prey. 

How to Keep Spiders Out of the Garage 

The most effective way to keep spiders out of the garage is to clean and organize the garage. Remove spider food sources (insects) and seal all the access points. Consider also using repellents and traps.  

There are lots of spider repellents and killers. You need to destroy the spider nests and eggs. Sprayable stuff is the easiest to apply. 

There are also foggers. But they can be dangerous to pets. Foggers can be a severe health and safety hazard if you use too many or don’t follow the directions. Some places on the house need to be covered before usage of bug bombs. If you use a fogger in the attached garage. Make sure you seal all the wents and airways to your house. 

Clean and organize the garage and clean out the cobwebs and spider nests. So in the future, it is easier to keep the place tidy and spider and bug-free. Be sure to clean the place from floor to roof. 

Spiders eat mainly insects and bugs. So getting rid of those first will also get you rid of spiders.   

Seal Access

Patch all the holes in the garage. Use caulk and patching compounds. Go through all the walls, doors, windows, and screens, looking for the tiniest holes and cracks. Put screening in all the vents. Ensure the garage door is properly sealed from the sides and the bottom weather seal is in good condition. 

Repellents

  • Boric acid is a common insecticide that kills bugs when they eat it. It can be harmful or deadly to humans or pets when eaten. 
  • Ordinary vinegar and peppermint oil are natural solutions you can try. Vinegar contains acetic acid, which isn’t harmful to humans but burns spiders. Spray the fixtures all around the corners and edge of the walls. 
  • Cinnamon candles
  • Citrus. Spiders hate it.
  • Mint or peppermint oil.
  • Garlic
  • Pepper
  • Liquid dish soap added to every mixture prevents spiders from escaping.

You can also try fumigation. It’s proven to kill adult spiders, but it’s not known it will kill spider eggs. 

Ultrasonic repellents don’t work on spiders, ants, or mice. 

Diatomaceous earth is non-toxic to pets and humans, but it kills insects by destroying their exoskeletons.

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