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field mice and vehicles

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  • field mice and vehicles

    Quick rant/ wife went to drive new truck, ran great got fuel started comming home and poof, electrical problems everwhere. got home popped the hood and damn mice droppings, nest and a bunch of chewed wires WTH?!?!

    what is the best / safest way for the other animals araound to help control these things?

    didnt really have any problem unill it was cold enough to use the block heater

    thanks,

  • #2
    i'll be curious to hear folks replies too.

    last year mice got into our truck (no block heater) and chewed up wires - they also chewed the fuel line - this was not discovered until he felt the gas on his feet on his way into town. fortunately he was able to pull off the road and cut the engine before anything caught on fire. what was a minor inconvenience could have easily been a tragedy....
    * trying hard to be the person that my horses think i am

    Comment


    • #3
      not mice, but a member of the weasel family is a common culprit in Europe. I don't think there is a lot you can try. MY mom gave somebody a big handful of dog hair to stuff into strategic places.

      I wonder if this would work:
      http://www.mardersicher.de/english/e_news.htm

      Comment


      • #4
        I would think that the best way to deal with nesting mice in a vehicle is to keep the vehicle or the area around the vehicle baited with poison.

        I'm thinking that if you have your truck parked inside in the same spot, you can leave a tub of bait dead center on the ground under the engine. When you drive in and out of the parking spot, you shouldn't disturb the container. That way, as mice come and go from your truck, they will probably frequent the bait station and die off before doing too much damage to the vehicle.

        If the truck is parked for a longer period or outside, I would put a bait box in easy reach right inside the engine. Leave yourself a note on the steering wheel to remove it before your drive to town. But again, the key is to kill them off before they settle in for winter.

        We have an RV and we bait throughout the whole vehicle before covering it for the winter. You can bet there are a couple dead ones and plenty of bait eaten up when spring arrives.
        ...don't sh** where you eat...

        Comment


        • #5
          Mothballs

          Mice had a go at the wiring of my almost new car when I left it standing for a few weeks. The dealer recommended I put a few mothballs in the engine compartment if I left it again.
          ------------------------------------------------------------
          But all the finest horsemen out—the men to Beat the Band—
          You’ll find amongst the crowd that ride their races in the Stand

          Comment

          • Original Poster

            #6
            also, since i am new to the home owning thing in the last 2 years, im guessing that homeowners insurance nor the car insurance would cover things like this is that correct?

            Comment


            • #7
              About 10 years ago, mice chewed through the fuel line in mr. chai's car causing over $500 in damage.
              The repair was covered by insurance and the repair guy told us he sees it frequently including one time when chipmunks jumped out of the car when he opened the hood. They had ridden through two states in their nest on the engine block.

              He told us that mothballs will repel mice, but you have to be careful using them.

              Comment

              • Original Poster

                #8
                well good news, i was just able to get ahold of my auto insurance company and they had to call their underwriters and they said yes its coverd under comprehensive. with a 0 deductable :-) amazing it will be headed to get fixed soon thak good, bad news is im still stuck in afghanistan for the next week or so and the wife, kids and horses are stuck in 12 inches of fresh northern new york snow with no truck. thanks for all the advice driveway is getting completly baited, hope th dogs stay away, and moth balls are going everywhere

                Comment


                • #9
                  So... on a related tangent... anyone know how to get the dead mouse smell out of a car when the unfortunate victim inserts himself into the air intake so everytime you turn on your heater you get the lovely smell of decomposing roasted vermine? It's been almost three months now. I doubt he suffered as much as I have.
                  Life is what happens while you are busy making other plans

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    mothballs. i buy the crystals and sprinkle under the hood of the farm truck and tractor. nothing like having the smell of grandma's closet when i'm out dragging the riding ring or pushing up the manure pile...............
                    R.I.P. my sweet boy Tristan
                    36 years old, but I was hoping you'd live forever
                    5/5/75-7/5/11

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      SmartAlex - suggest you contact your mechanic to see what they would suggest re getting that bad smell out - years back a friend of mine had a cat sleeping in the engine of her car on a cold San Francisco morning - unfortunately the cat died when she started the car, friend then drove to hot Oakland, CA and cat carcass sort of baked onto the engine (friend only discovered problem after several days in Oakland). Entire engine had to be steam cleaned to get rid of the odor.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Palominomustangny View Post
                        well good news, i was just able to get ahold of my auto insurance company and they had to call their underwriters and they said yes its coverd under comprehensive. with a 0 deductable :-) amazing it will be headed to get fixed soon thak good, bad news is im still stuck in afghanistan for the next week or so and the wife, kids and horses are stuck in 12 inches of fresh northern new york snow with no truck. thanks for all the advice driveway is getting completly baited, hope th dogs stay away, and moth balls are going everywhere
                        Dogs WILL eat the bait. Don't put it anywhere they can get to it. Maybe put it on the motor?
                        Glad your insurance will cover you. Friend had a brand new vehicle totaled once due to mice eating all the wires. Insurance said it would cost as much to replace everything as it would to buy another.

                        We haven't had a mouse problem (knocking wood madly) but had a squirrel build a nest in the air filter on my truck. Little rots!
                        You know why cowboys don't like Appaloosas?" - Answer: Because to train a horse, you have to be smarter than it is.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Mothballs are poisonous to your pets and people too so be carefull... read the package and don't overdo

                          (from someone still trying to get the mothball smell out of my grandmother's cedar chest - everything from vinegar and sanding to standing in sun for months to charcoal)

                          We have had the wiring/mouse issue too and were told there is something about wire coating that is appealing to mice and they aren't protected against such in car design. We tried the plastic case with mothball in engine cavity which helped keep out the mice, but did a number on the paint in the engine area and made it rather unpleasant to drive said car from the smell

                          We were told Fabric Softener sheets help keep them away. Don't think its helping much, but it smells better.

                          Best advice so far is check often - they like the air filter for nesting too - and run the engine weekly to make it less hospitible.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by rooroo8 View Post
                            SmartAlex - suggest you contact your mechanic to see what they would suggest re getting that bad smell out - years back a friend of mine had a cat sleeping in the engine of her car on a cold San Francisco morning - unfortunately the cat died when she started the car, friend then drove to hot Oakland, CA and cat carcass sort of baked onto the engine (friend only discovered problem after several days in Oakland). Entire engine had to be steam cleaned to get rid of the odor.
                            Ewwww! Cat in the belt. The smell is abating (and never really was that bad for a country girl), but I'm due for an inspection and oil change so I'm going to have them check the air filter.
                            Life is what happens while you are busy making other plans

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Mint

                              Mint is a natural mouse repellent. I had success "demousing" hubby's car with mint "sachets" made as follows:

                              Get a bottle of real mint EXTRACT (peppermint or spearmint, I used peppermint). Not "essential oil" or anything like that - the real thing - extract. I got mine from the grocery store in the spice section.

                              Cut up a pair of pantyhose into lengths long enough to stretch and tie both ends (the foot pieces will only need to be tied off on one end). Tie one end of the cut lengths and stuff some cotton in (or fill the foot piece). 2-3 cotton balls will do it. Tie off the opposite end and then saturate the cotton with the extract.

                              I put the sachets all over inside the car - under the seats, alongside of the seats in the floor channel next to the doors, in the trunk, etc. For the engine compartment, I tied them to the side just under the hood so they wouldn't get hot enough to ignite.

                              They will need to be "refreshed" fairly often for best results.

                              Worked well, and gave the car a nice fresh minty scent.
                              Equus Keepus Brokus

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                My horse trailer had its wiring munched on to the tune of $600.00. My mechanic told me to stuff "BOUNCE" fabric softener sheets throughout the trailer which I faithfully did with great results. Until last winter. Broken arm, broken wrist blah, blah, ...... didn't get it done ... they're back and hungry. New wiring again last spring. I'm a believer!

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Mice have nested in our engine block (truck parked outside) and the biggest issue was that the JRT decided to "go to ground" and get those suckers out. I ended up stranded with the rig twice because the terrier had torn out important wires, such as brake lines. Seems they are reminiscent of tree roots that need to be bitten through when tunneling for quarry. So after the second time we had to install invisible dog fence to keep the terrier OFF the turning circle where the truck is parked. That was several years ago and I've not had an issue since. The mouse themselves have not caused a problem, and regular use of the truck is a deterrent to their nesting..
                                  Hindsight bad, foresight good.

                                  Comment

                                  • Original Poster

                                    #18
                                    hopefully the truck wont be totaled, took it to the repair place tonight and started it to show them where it was showing elec issues, then the inside of the cab started to smoke and fill w/ burnt smell, under the hood the same, its going to be expensive for them but pretty much every wiring harness will end up replaced

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Originally posted by Palominomustangny View Post
                                      Quick rant/ wife went to drive new truck, ran great got fuel started comming home and poof, electrical problems everwhere. got home popped the hood and damn mice droppings, nest and a bunch of chewed wires WTH?!?!

                                      what is the best / safest way for the other animals araound to help control these things?

                                      didnt really have any problem unill it was cold enough to use the block heater

                                      thanks,
                                      been there! little embarrassing going to the shop because what I thought was a warranty problem in the electrical system was actually a mouse nest

                                      Easy fix if your vehicle is in a garage... leave the hood up. for the past two winters, haven't had any critters nesting

                                      we also place random mouse traps too...

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by jollytrak View Post
                                        Easy fix if your vehicle is in a garage... leave the hood up. for the past two winters, haven't had any critters nesting
                                        Simple! Brilliant! I will give this a try.
                                        I've found mouse nest in the air filter compartment in recent years... thankfully [that I know of!] no other rodent damage. Yet. Ergo, at a minimum I will have to remember to pop the hood.

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