Rodents & their odor from crawlspace


My wife & I have just bought a house in the Seattle area. House is 2 story, about 3000 sq', on a 1 acre very wooded lot. The previous owner had a problem which I understand is fairly common around here; rodents (mice &/or rats) in the crawl space. He had a local Terminex address the infestation, as of last week Terminex claims "no new activity", however the rodents nested in the insulation between the floor joists, ripping it up & pulling it down in spots, as well as urinating/defecating/probably a few dead ones in & around the fiberglass. This is stinking up the space, which can be smelled in the kitchen area. My plan is to have my own independent inspector go over the space, make sure all entry points are closed & that there really are no rodents present, then have the insulation and other debris removed & new plastic put down. Since we're heading into the warm months, I thought I'd wait until late summer/early fall to have new insulation put in, to give the subfloor/joists/etc. a good time to air out. I'm wondering if anyone else has dealt with this, and if so what they think of my plan. Any helpful suggestions appreciated.
TIA
Dan
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Dan wrote:

Not a (helpful) answer to your query, but I was working at a house w/crawl which had been infested. The owner assured me that the exterminators had been thorough in eradicating the rodents.
I had been working in the crawl, sprawled out on the earthen floor, for maybe 10 minutes when the ground began to shift and collapse! I got out the scuttle hole as fast as I could.
Nothing more happened and we later figured out that the rats had made numerous tunnels in the earthen floor, which then had collapsed under my weight.
<shudder>
Jim
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I don't have an answer myself. If this is and earthen floor I would at a minimum, make a mixture of sudsy ammonia (heavy) and water to spray into the space. Hopefully I could reduce the smell; since the space is about to heat up. It would reduce the smell in the cook space above (Imo).
The repair guy might appreciate it later; if nothing else!
-- Oren
"If things get any worse, I'll have to ask you to stop helping me."
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Are you sure that an ammonia mixture is right for this situation. The urine produces an ammonia smell, it sounds that it would only add to the problem. I think you need some pet odour neutralizer or possibly pinesol or dettol mixture sprayed around to help kill the smell.
wrote:

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Mon, 16 Apr 2007 16:24:31 -0400, "EXT"

Anything sprayed into the space too clear the kitchen smell. A mixture of SUSDY ammonia from the dollar store will reduce the stench; added to water. Inside or Outside. A cleaning solution, not smelling of ammonia, given fragrances now.
Leaving ammonia out, I would water hose the space. The spaces stink, according to the OP. Perhaps, a water down would reduce the present smell!
Cat poo reeks of ammonia; find me a rodent that hangs around long?
Long, enough to tear up a crawl space......

-- Oren
"If things get any worse, I'll have to ask you to stop helping me."
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Many homes have crawl spaces with inadequate ventilation. Have your inspector check that there is sufficient. It needs to be rodent proof, of course!
The more you have, the sooner the smells will be gone. And more will help prevent other moisture problems in the future.
--
|~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~|
| Malcolm Hoar "The more I practice, the luckier I get". |
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
lime

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Burning the place down is about the only way.
However, I 've found that painting will get rid of most of the odor. Wear a mask.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I think the insulation is probably where the majority of the stench is coming from. if you remove it it should rapidly go away. of course dead rats smell bad too. squirrels peeing in insulation make a horrible stench. I imagine your getting the same smell. Anyways. when its time to get insulated try getting a quote from Gale services . I always see them all over the place ( im about a hour from Seattle) All the contractors are using them now
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Related Threads

    HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.