How to prevent house fires caused by rats

Rats or mice being in your home poses a deadly assortment of risks. From health to structural damage to buildings, homes, apartments, offices, through gnawing, nest-building, and defecation. The more hidden away and undisturbed an item or area is, the more likely a rat or mouse is to see it as a comfortable, secure home. Rodents have ever-growing incisors that demand constant chewing to keep them from over-growing.

Once rat’s incisors grow past a certain size, it becomes difficult for them to feed normally. This is the reason why they constantly gnaw on building materials. When rodents are looking for ways to get inside your home, they will chew their way through wooden beams and mortar in walls and attics.

Damages done, come in various ways.  

  • Rats often chew through anything they can find to collect materials to build a nest. Be it plastic, wood, paper, cloth, books, etc.

  • While looking for the perfect spot to snug a nest, rats tend to gnaw and tunnel into upholstered furniture or in the walls, attic, ceiling or the garden.

  • Mice will even build their nests in large electrical appliances, again chewing on or through insulation and wiring, which can cause the appliance to short circuit, malfunction, or lead to the risk of fire.

  • Mice also will chew on the insulation around wires. This has been known to cause a real threat of fire.


Both rats and mice prefer warmth over cold. This means that when the weather outside starts to turn cold, rats and mice begin to case out houses and other buildings. According to

Rats can wiggle their way into gaps and holes as small as 1/2 inch. And if the hole is not yet 1/2-inch big, the rat can gnaw at it until it is. Mice can squeeze in through holes as small as 1/4 inch. And, like rats, mice will chew and gnaw at smaller holes until they are big enough to wriggle through.

Rodents like to have a nice, soft, comfortable nest for birthing babies. So, rodents will use whatever they can find—old newspapers, clothes, fabric stored in cardboard boxes (easily chewed into), stacks of magazines, or even important files.

A customer reached out to us this past week expressing his shock and dismay over his rat problem. Apparently, the rats were gnawing and chewing through electric wires in the roof. See exhibit A below.



They found evidence of sparks; these could have become a serious blaze in a matter of minutes. We advised them to visit our website to find an easy DIY solution. Below, Brian Kabel talks about the 9 suggestions on how to keep mice, rats, and other rodents out of your house.

  1. Block all entry pointsThe single most important preventive measure you can take is to inspect the foundation and walls of your house and make sure any potential entry points are blocked. The fall season, when rodents are seeking to get in from the cold, is an especially good time to run your inspection tour. Mice can enter through the smallest cracks, so block foundation cracks with a masonry repair material, and inspect joints around windows and doorsills for cracks that might allow rodents to enter. Make sure weather seals along the bottom edges of garage doors are in good shape.

  2. Don’t feed the birds.The seeds and ground grains that go into most bird-food mixtures are a delightful treat for rodents, as evidenced by the presence of squirrels (larger cousins to rats) that frolic around any bird feeder. Feeding the birds is an admirable hobby, but you shouldn’t be surprised when mice and rats are drawn to the ground around your feeders. If you must feed birds, keep your feeders as far from the house as possible.

  3. Don’t store pet food in bags or cartons.Transfer dog and cat foods to sealed, airtight storage containers immediately after buying them. More than one homeowner pouring a bowl of dog food has dumped out a squeaking mouse at the same time. Dry pet foods are mana from heaven for rodents, so make sure to store them in tightly sealed containers well above the floor.

  4. Keep garbage bins sealed. Garbage bins kept alongside the house or garage will be a siren call to rats and mice (and maybe bigger pests, such as raccoons or stray dogs and cats) unless they are kept tightly sealed with airproof lids. If possible, keep these utility containers as far from your house as you can.

  5. Keep foundation plantings in controlDense shrubs and garden planting that butt up close to the house provide hiding spots for mice and rats as they seek entry holes through foundations or walls. Shrubs along foundations should be planted a few feet away from the foundation, and make sure to keep the soil level low enough that mice cannot squeeze their way up behind the siding.

  6. Keep dry food goods in sealed containers. Flour, sugar, and other food kept in bags or paper cartons are easily broached by rodents. Instead, keep these foods in tightly sealed plastic or metal containers on high shelves or in the refrigerator. Rodents will have no incentive to take up residence in your house if they don’t smell any source of food.

  7. Keep floors and countertops clean. Casual housekeeping that fails to promptly sweep up spilled crumbs or food scraps from floors or countertops is an invitation for mice and rats. Never leave uneaten bowls of pet food in dishes on the floor, since pet foods might as well also have the label “mouse food” printed on the bags. Homes with pet birds can be especially susceptible to harbouring mice that love to eat seeds scattered on the floors beneath bird cages.

  8. Keep doors closed. Garage doors left wide open can be an invitation to rats and mice, especially in the fall when these rodents are seeking to find a warm place as winter approaches. Get into the habit of closing your garage door immediately after entering or exiting with your car, and keep side entry doors to the garage closed. Keep sliding patio doors and basement windows closed, or at least protected with screens, to prevent rodents from entering. Never leave a garage door, or other entries open overnight, as the dark hours are when rodents are especially active.

  9. Get an aggressive cat or dogThere is some debate about this since some people argue that the presence of pets increases the likelihood that you will have mice or rats in the house. Because pet food is always present in a house with pets, rodents may find your home to be a good source of food. But a truly aggressive cat with claws intact or a dog species such as a terrier with a reputation for hunting small animals often catches rodents before they can take up housekeeping and form nests and reproduce.

If your rat problem has now gone out of hand or you`re looking for a safe, quick and easy way to rid your home or building of rats and rodents then Protek Kill All Waxblocks is all you need.



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