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Old 05-03-2020, 06:40 PM
 
174 posts, read 284,541 times
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We bought a house and had problems with deer mice in the attic. I'm guessing they were up there for about two months. Once the chewing noises started we got a service to come out to get rid of them. They found 3 mice in February. Put more mouse traps up and found none. I started hearing them again in March and we called them out again. This time they set traps and caught none but we haven't heard anything since and the 10 or so traps they set are all empty(I checked my self). It's now May and all of the sudden we see a small stain on our ceiling. I investigated the area on the roof and attic and didn't find a leak but what I did find was a huge stained area underneath my insulation in the attic. The stain spanned a seam between two different pieces of sheet-rock. That's what we are seeing in the living room.

My question is, is this a fresh stain and do we have a lot of mice right this moment that seem to avoid every trap? Or could that stain be from the ones we had in February? Does it take that long for older mice pee to get through a ceiling or do stains usually mean a new source of pee?

Any help would be appreciated.
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Old 05-04-2020, 06:46 AM
 
Location: Florida
6,238 posts, read 5,672,189 times
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First, be certain it's not a roof leak.

There could be other critters besides mice. Snakes, for instance, would be drawn to the mice. We actually had an issue with bats in the house I lived in as a kid.

Perhaps try a different pest company for a second opinion.
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Old 05-04-2020, 11:34 AM
 
11,249 posts, read 6,919,523 times
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Well, exterminators are going to set out D-Con and traps. You can do the exact same thing for 1/100 the cost.


The stain on your ceiling is probably a roof leak. It doesn't even have to be an active leak; if it was stained from a previous roof leak it can print through the quick and dirty paint job the seller probably did. If you can confirm there is truly no active roof leak, then you'll want to cover the stain with Kilz (maybe even a couple coats for good measure) before repainting.
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Old 05-04-2020, 02:48 PM
 
Location: on the wind
16,994 posts, read 10,597,454 times
Reputation: 55517
Quote:
Originally Posted by dazeja View Post
We bought a house and had problems with deer mice in the attic. I'm guessing they were up there for about two months. Once the chewing noises started we got a service to come out to get rid of them. They found 3 mice in February. Put more mouse traps up and found none. I started hearing them again in March and we called them out again. This time they set traps and caught none but we haven't heard anything since and the 10 or so traps they set are all empty(I checked my self). It's now May and all of the sudden we see a small stain on our ceiling. I investigated the area on the roof and attic and didn't find a leak but what I did find was a huge stained area underneath my insulation in the attic. The stain spanned a seam between two different pieces of sheet-rock. That's what we are seeing in the living room.

My question is, is this a fresh stain and do we have a lot of mice right this moment that seem to avoid every trap? Or could that stain be from the ones we had in February? Does it take that long for older mice pee to get through a ceiling or do stains usually mean a new source of pee?

Any help would be appreciated.
The number of mice found (quite low BTW) wouldn't create such a stain. There would have to be hundreds and you'd be a lot more aware of them because of the stink!

As for getting rid of mice, the bigger part of the job is preventing them from getting back in again. Doesn't sound as if anyone has bothered with THAT!
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Old 05-04-2020, 08:06 PM
 
174 posts, read 284,541 times
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i'm almost certain there isn't an active leak. I got pretty good at tracking them from our old house. The insulation wasn't wet at all but then again it looked pretty un-disturbed as well. Now what you said about an old leak could be true. The ceiling was repainted before we bought the house.

I have no experience with mice. We lived in the city before and didn't have a single problem. Since we had them here so soon, I was assuming it was a mouse. I believe they are getting in through the the garage and somehow getting up in the attic. I've seen chew marked on my garage door rubber threshold.
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Old 05-04-2020, 08:11 PM
 
174 posts, read 284,541 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Parnassia View Post
The number of mice found (quite low BTW) wouldn't create such a stain. There would have to be hundreds and you'd be a lot more aware of them because of the stink!

As for getting rid of mice, the bigger part of the job is preventing them from getting back in again. Doesn't sound as if anyone has bothered with THAT!

Thanks that's reassuring. Like I said they have caught only 3 since February. And we no longer hear the little walking or chewing sounds. now we did have a problem way before we called anyone. So our number could've been higher. I'm in the process of fixing the problem in the garage. There's a place there they were getting in and going directly up to get in the attic like clockwork.
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Old 05-05-2020, 08:44 AM
 
Location: Stuck on the East Coast, hoping to head West
4,631 posts, read 11,028,637 times
Reputation: 9802
I'd spend a few dollars and get a moisture detector/ moisture meter (they go by different names)....you can get them on Amazon and verify there isn't water coming from somewhere.

If the homeowner painted recently and didn't properly prime, old leaks can show up again. You could prime and repaint. I may be a little concerned about mold and you could consider replacing that section of drywall.
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Old 05-05-2020, 12:11 PM
 
Location: on the wind
16,994 posts, read 10,597,454 times
Reputation: 55517
Quote:
Originally Posted by dazeja View Post
i'm almost certain there isn't an active leak. I got pretty good at tracking them from our old house. The insulation wasn't wet at all but then again it looked pretty un-disturbed as well. Now what you said about an old leak could be true. The ceiling was repainted before we bought the house.

I have no experience with mice. We lived in the city before and didn't have a single problem. Since we had them here so soon, I was assuming it was a mouse. I believe they are getting in through the the garage and somehow getting up in the attic. I've seen chew marked on my garage door rubber threshold.
A common way for mice to get entry is squeezing through any place plumbing (including hot water/radiator piping) and electrical penetrates the building. Steel wool packed around the pipes/wires can help prevent it. There is a chew-resistant type. They can fit through amazingly tiny openings so think SMALL.

Also, for native deermice (Peromyscus maniculatus) there is usually a seasonal pattern in when they invade. They search out dry warm places to spend the winter and protect their food stores, so you'll often get a wave of them in fall. Another in mid summer when the babies born that spring have been booted by the parents. You'll notice that a lot of the mice you catch in traps then are juveniles. However, if what you have are invasive European import house mice (Mus musculus) all bets are off...once in the house they don't leave.

BTW the chew marks on your garage door gasket could be squirrels, not mice.

Last edited by Parnassia; 05-05-2020 at 12:41 PM..
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