Guide to Keeping Critters Out of the Garage
Your garage may not as be as clean or as well insulated as your house, but the garage is still a space for important storage. Most people use the garage to store seasonal items, camping gear, outdoor supplies, and yard tools. These items can still be damaged by invading animals and pests, costing you hundreds or even thousands of dollars.
Pests in your garage can also be a health hazard. Bats, raccoons, mice, and rats can all carry diseases that affect humans and pets. Also, some pests can also cause damage to vehicles parked in the garage.
Follow this garage door guide to help reduce the chances of your garage becoming a home to unwanted guests.
Replace Weather Stripping
A poorly sealed garage door is your garage’s weakest point. Generally, mice and other small mammals can get in through the garage door if it not properly sealed. A garage with good weatherstripping will keep mice out.
Every few months, check the weatherstripping on your garage door. The weatherstripping should still adhere properly, should not be cracked, and should not have any holes or sagging areas. Replace weatherstripping if it is not in good shape. Seasonal damage to weatherstripping is common, especially in hot or humid areas.
You can also look for signs of mouse damage to the stripping itself. Mice can chew through weatherstripping. Run your hands over the weatherstripping when your door is open. If you notice areas that seem ragged or snagged, mice may have been trying to get in or get out through your garage door.
Install a Threshold
You might consider installing a threshold or a rodent guard to prevent mice from getting under the garage door. These help to create an even firmer seal to keep mice at bay. Thresholds also help to stop flood water from entering your garage.
Patch Holes or Consider Replacements
If your garage door is old, it could have patches of rust or even areas where the door itself has begun to break down. Rust can cause minute holes that allow for insects and rodents to enter the garage with ease.
Some smaller patches can be repaired by a garage door specialist, but if your goal is to keep animals out, consider replacing a failing garage door with a new, solid one. If your door was metal, consider a wood or fiberglass door to prevent future metal fatigue.
Check Springs and Other Components
Some doors with older springs or electric lifts may not close firmly. Even a tiny gap at the base of the garage door is enough to allow mice and insects into the garage. Replacing old components will not only make your garage more secure against unwanted animals, but the replacements will also make your door safer to use.
Use Timers and Sensors
Make it a habit to always close your garage door when you are not home or when you’re not using it. A nicely-fitting door won’t do any good if it is always open.
You might consider a door timer or an automatic sensor if you have trouble remembering to close the door. These sensors will close your door automatically a few minutes after you open it. You’ll never sit at work and wonder if you remembered to shut the garage door after pulling out the driveway.
Consider Other Points of Entry
Check other openings to the garage for signs of weakness. Windows and entrance doors should also have good weatherstripping. If you notice cracks in the concrete or gaps in the siding, seals these with foam or repair the area before you have any unwelcome guests.
Manage the Moisture
Moisture can be a draw for pests, especially insects. Fix roof leaks and grading issues that cause leaks in the garage. Standing water by the garage door will cause weatherstripping to fail sooner. If you have a wooden garage door, managing moisture is a key part of maintenance. Moisture can eventually ruin protective finishes and leave you vulnerable to termites and ants.
Keep Things Clean
Sweep out leaves, grass clippings, and other debris from the garage periodically. Don’t leave debris in the path of the garage door where the debris can create gaps in the weather stripping from the weight of the door pushing down on small rocks or twigs.
Also, don’t forget to keep the rest of the garage neat and organized. Your goal in organizing your garage should be minimizing hiding, feeding, and nesting places for animals. You don’t want to encourage animals to find ways to break in to access available food and trash. Animals enjoy garages because they provide food and shelter from the sun, rain, and other predators.
Make your garage a critter-free zone by taking the right precautions. Don’t ignore garage door maintenance. For more information on garage doors, contact us at Plano Overhead Garage Door.