What Can I Put Under Decking to Stop Rats?
Having rodents lurking under your decking is one of the main issues you may have to face. Not only can they be unsanitary, but having rats, mice, and other pests under your decking can damage it. If you plan to build Ultradecking or have one, what can you put under decking to stop rats? What are the other options that you can try?
Does Decking Attract Rats?
Technically, composite decking won’t attract any rats or other pests. How you build the decking and what you do on it is what makes rats attracted to it.
A portion of the decking underneath will be hollow when building an elevated area. This can be a potential nesting ground for rats, mice, squirrels, and even rabbits. More so if the lower portion of your decking is inaccessible or covered. They make up perfect hiding spots for these types of small rodents. However, what attracts them mostly depends on what you do on the decking, not how you build it.
For instance, if you do regular barbecue parties, food may likely fall on your decking floor. Some of it may fall through the gaps in your decking; if this happens, you won’t notice it. Food and other debris will accumulate under your decking, which will attract rodents, including rats. Aside from rats, you’ll likely also have a problem with mould growth and mildew.
Do Rats Live Under Garden Decking?
If so, what causes this, and what steps can you take to prevent them?
The space under your Ultra Decking Composite Boards can serve as a perfect place for rats to make their homes. Rats and other pests are unwelcome visitors; this can be very disturbing having them living beneath your composite decking. You need to get rid of them immediately.
How Can You Tell if Rats Live Under Your Decking?
Seeing a rat running around your garden indicates rat infestation. Rats are often more active at night than during the day. But what if you don’t see the rats and still suspect that you have a rat problem? There are a few ways you can tell.
One easy way is to look under your decking. Check for any signs of nesting. Rats tend to gather paper, tissue, cloth, and other materials to create nests. Another way is to look for any holes or dig, as many varieties of rats burrow underground. Check for any droppings or leftover food. If any of these are present, you may have a problem.
You will know if rats are under your decking through their droppings, rub marks, and holes.
What to Put Under Your Decking to Stop Rats?
There are many reasons why rats and other rodents may choose your decking as their new home. You’ll want to make your decking as inhabitable as possible to prevent rats. Remove all grass and plants on the ground level to do this.
To remove the plants, use weed killers. It’s also much easier if you’ve done it before installing your decking. Aside from de-weeding, you can also put landscaping fabric and gravel under your decking to prevent any plants from growing back. Non-organic mulch can also provide excellent drainage, which will keep the area below your decking dry.
Another option is to seal any opening underneath your decking. For this purpose, you can use different materials, from chicken wire and wood to mesh. However, you may be worried that it may not look so good on your decking. If that’s the case, you can use wood to seal the areas or conceal the wires and mesh. You can even decide to build a trellis to create a stylish but helpful barrier to keep the rats away.
If you can’t add anything to your decking or don’t want to do so, you can also put different rat repellents underneath your decking. You can use commercial products for repelling rodents, such as sprays and ultrasonic devices. You may need to check reviews to make sure they work. Alternatively, you can also use natural solutions, such as spraying strong or pungent scents, such as peppers and peppermint oil.
If you already have a rat infestation, or you suspect that you have one, the first thing you’ll want to do is to eliminate the problem. To get rid of the critters, you’ll have a few options that you can use.
One of the many things people try is using rat poison. You can find a variety of these products in most shops, and they’re quite effective in removing rat problems. Some rat poison needs to be put under the decking until rats get to it. However, when you use rat poison, you will want to make sure that it’s out of anyone’s reach. Because they can also be dangerous to humans and other animals, it may not be the best for families with small children and pets.
As an alternative, you can use traps instead. It is safer for kids and pets, but it’s also reusable. Not to mention, many agree that they are more humane than using deadly poison. Regardless, they can be as effective as rat poison. You can find a handful of these at most home supply stores. If you’re a little handy, you can also follow different DIY guides on how to create one.
Other Ways of Preventing Rat Problems
Aside from putting materials, such as barriers, rat poison, and traps, there are a few more ways to limit rat infestation problems. One of the main reasons rats can inhabit your decking is litter, especially food. When you or your family eat on your decking, food may sometimes be stuck in gaps or fall underneath.
If you want to prevent rodents from getting under your decking, you’ll want to have a regular cleaning schedule at the top of your decking and underneath if possible. Because of this, you will want to stick with easy-to-maintain options, such as composite decking. They’re also more resistant to moisture, moulds, and stains.
Because not everything mentioned will work for you, you may need to test which method to use and whether you’re preventing or eliminating the problem. If nothing works, you may want to contact pest control services to help you with rat problems.