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How To Keep Mice Out of Your Pole Barn
Julie graduated from Purdue University with a Bachelor of Arts in Visual Communications Design. From a young age Julie has always had an interest in art that later turned into career in brand development for various companies throughout the Northwest Indiana area. Julie joined the FBi marketing team in 2021 as a Marketing Content Creator. You might get a phone call from her to schedule a visit to your FBi building so she can take pictures for our website or you might get a brochure she design from one our FBi sales reps. One way or another Julie loves to help the marketing team in any way she can. In her free time, Julie enjoys walking her dog and spending time with friends and family.
As cold weather approaches, mice and other rodents will likely look for places to stay warm and survive the winter. Sometimes that’s inside the engine bay of your truck, sometimes your attic, but a lot of the time, it’s your cold storage building or hobby shop.
A mice infestation is a nightmare that never ends. Not only do mice carry diseases and leave droppings everywhere, but they are also a very dangerous threat to your belongings.
They put anything with electrical wiring or cables at risk and have been known to ruin vehicles and even start fires. Not to mention they eat away at the wood of your pole building, which could affect the structural integrity.
In this article, we will review three best practices to prevent mice from invading your pole barn:
- Three ways to keep mice out of your pole barn
- Build with Confidence that your Pole Barn can be mouse free
- You have mice; now what?
Check out the video to the right to see the six pole barn building features that help prevent mice.
1. 3 Ways to Keep Mice Out of Your Pole Barn
The best way to deal with a mouse problem is to take preventative measures to avoid having a problem in the first place. These might seem like common sense, but these details can easily be overlooked, and it’s essential we review them:
Eliminate Potential Entry Points
Did you know that a mouse can fit through a hole that is smaller than the size of a dime? So making sure that your post-frame building is locked down tight is key to keeping these critters out!
Here are a few methods to address gaps in your pole building:
- Using caulk or expanding foam to seal spaces around doors and windows
- Applying sealant to cracks in your flooring and walls
- Caulking around drains, pipes, and air vents
PRO TIP: Steel wool is an excellent option to fill a hole that is large or challenging to fill. The material is challenging for mice to chew through, and it’s an irritant for their teeth.
The more clutter and debris you have around your pole barn's interior and exterior, the higher the chance you have of a mouse problem.
No matter what, mice will look for shelter during the winter. So keeping potential shelters (such as piles of wood, bricks, or stones) far from the foundation of your pole barn can discourage mice from setting up camp right outside.
When you have clutter in the corners of your building, you’re providing great options for mice to hide and nest without you ever noticing.
PRO TIP: Limit any excess cardboard boxes. Not only are these easy hiding spots, but they also make for excellent nesting material that will encourage habitation.
Control the Scent
Mice have poor eyesight, so they rely heavily on their scent to make their way around. Therefore, scent can play a significant role in attracting or repelling mice from your pole barn.
Smells that attract mice, FOOD! Whether it’s human food, dog food, or cattle feed, it doesn’t matter; a mouse will smell it and eat it! So do your best to clean up and sweep any crumbs that may have fallen to the ground.
Keeping animal food off the ground in a tightly sealed container is an excellent way to control the smell as well. We recommend using metal containers as mice can chew through plastic.
Now, let’s review smells that repel mice. The most tested and reliable scents for keeping mice out of your pole barn are:
- Peppermint oil
- Chili peppers
PRO TIP: Bees also hate the scent of cloves! If you want to grill some steaks and eat outside on your porch, but the bees are ruining your plans? Here’s a great trick that works! Cut a lemon in half and then stick a bunch of cloves into the center of it. Place the lemons in the center of your table, and the bees will keep a distance!
2. Build with Confidence that your Pole Barn can be Mouse Free
Because of our experience in post-frame construction, we know a thing or two when it comes to concurring mice problems.
Below are six reliable techniques that can help keep the mice away. Let’s go over them:
- Drip Cap
All FBi Buildings come with a drip cap installed at the bottom of the steel panels. This base trim goes all around the perimeter of the building, and this prevents mice and other rodents from crawling in.
How much does drip cap cost? No extra cost if you build with FBi Buildings! This comes as a standard building feature on all of our buildings.
- Inside Gasket Closure
An upgrade option that your post-frame builder should offer is a foam closure on the base of all our steel siding. This adds an extra layer of protection.
How much does inside gasket closure cost? This is considered an add-on and will cost about $1 per foot.
- Double Baseboards
As seen in our Ag Features Guidebook and you see this listed in an estimate called “extra row of center match.” This is an additional tongue & groove treated board that is installed below the standard row to prevent rodents from burrowing underneath the building. This is especially helpful if there isn’t a concrete floor in place.
How much do double baseboards cost? This is considered an add-on and will cost about $3-$4 per foot.
- Aluminum Flashing Tape
Adding aluminum flash tape around doors and windows is a great way to waterproof your building as well as keep the mice away. The layer of tape makes it extra difficult for the mice to chew through the wood.
- Concrete Floor
Gravel makes it super easy for mice or other rodents to get in. A concrete slab inside the building creates a tight seam around the base of the walls, eliminating many entry points.
- Overhead Doors
Overhead doors offer far more protection than sliding doors with a tight, reliable seal at the base of the building.
If you are set on having sliding doors, consider installing latches that help to keep the door tight against the building. Having a concrete floor will also help sliding doors be more effective of keeping the mice out.
PRO TIP: You can order overhead doors that have the bottom rubber seal filled with steel wool! Ask your door company about this option or buy a kit on Amazon! Worth the investment!
3. You have mice; now what?
In the occurrence of mice outsmarting you and finding their way into your building, don’t panic. Follow these steps to help you get rid of mice:
Set traps inside and outside your post-frame building. Mice have a tendency to walk along walls, so we recommend putting extra traps there. Check daily and reset if necessary.
CLEAN AND BLEACH EVERYTHING. As we mentioned earlier, mice rely on their scent! And when one mouse travels a path, another mouse will smell it and follow. So one mouse in your barn can lead to many mice quickly!
If you clean and bleach the floors, walls, and other surfaces, then you should be able to remove the scent from your building.
- De-clutter your pole barn and double-check all possible entry points. Put steel wool anywhere it's needed. You may need to inspect your post-frame building for possible pole barn repairs and renovations.
Are You Ready to Keep Mice Out of Your Pole Barn?
It doesn’t matter if you live in the country or the city. We all have to deal with unwanted rodent visitors. Your preferred builder should know the tricks to ensure your post-frame building is as secure as possible to keep the mice away.
Talk to a Project Sales Consultant about your dreams, goals, and desires. They would love to provide you with feedback and a free quote to help you get started.