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Does Bleach Keep Rats Away? (Read This First!)

A pet rat is pretty adorable, but wild rats can be a nightmare in your home. Humans have been dealing with them for millions of years. Luckily, there are dozens of practical ways to counter those small mammals. 

So the question is, can bleach be an effective way to deter rats? Keep reading to find out.

Does bleach keep rats away?

Bleach does keep away rats, mice, and other rodents. It has a pungent odor that rats find unbearable. Their nose and eyes start to burn, and they run away. It is also harmful if they breathe it for longer or ingest it. If you use it correctly, bleach can be an excellent solution for rats.

If you have ever worked with bleach, you should know how irritating and robust odor comes from the bleach. You can bear the smell once you get used to it and protect your nose from smelling the bleach. But think of rats and small rodents.

They have many times stronger smelling power than humans. They depend on their smell to find food, escape predators, and survive. They have advanced smelling organs and more smell-sensing receptors. 

Their smelling power is so mighty that they are used for finding mines in the military (let’s be grateful for that). So, when an unpleasant smell comes into their noses, that creates severe irritation to their nose. 

This is the primary reason for the effectiveness of bleach against rats. They just can’t bear the smell of bleach and other strong chemical smells.

Bleach is a cleaning and disinfectant agent with many industrial and household uses. As bleach has a disinfecting ability, it repels the rats and removes the disease-causing microorganism that comes with rats. 

So bleach can keep rats and mice away when they come near it. Rats will run off when they smell the presence of bleach. Even they will not come close to the bleach applied area.

Well, applying bleach is not a permanent solution. You may have to use bleach every week to keep the rats away. However, there are ways to keep the rats away effectively by following some simple steps. We will discuss that in the following parts of the article.

Do rats like or dislike bleach smell?

Rats do not like the bleach smell at all. When they smell the bleach from far away, they will not come closer to the place. If they come near the bleach applied area, the bleach particles get into their eyes and nose and create irritation.

However, they can ignore the mild bleach smell if they find strong-smelling food nearby. Bleach is moderately toxic to the rats and can cause the end of their life if ingested. 

Do rats avoid bleach?

Rats do avoid a place or things with a bleach smell. The pungent smell of bleach is unbearable to them. There are other reasons too. Even a robust pleasant smell can be dangerous for them as they rely on their smelling power to avoid predators.

When they enter a zone with a strong smell of something, they may miss important details about other smells that come from far away. Moreover, if they breathe too much bleach, that will harm their lungs tissue, block the gas exchange, and create breathing problems.

Is bleach poisonous to rats?

Yes, bleach is moderately poisonous to rats when ingested. However, it’s nearly impossible to get them to eat bleach for rats without food because of the pungent smell.

But somehow, if they eat bleach, the bleach will deal fetal damage to their digestive system. The bleach will damage the digestive cells, essential for digesting food. It may also cause internal bleeding in the rats.

But for that, they will have to eat enough bleach. As we mentioned earlier, smelly food can seduce the smell of bleach and make the rats interested in eating the food. Mix the bleach with peanut butter or regular butter and leave it in the parts where rats move the most.

However, there are chances that rats will sense something wrong with the food and leave without eating the fatal dose. So it’s necessary to combine the right amount of butter and bleach to make them eat. 

How long does bleach keep rats away?

With time, the effects of bleach fade away. When you apply bleach on a surface, the liquid evaporates, but the active ingredient remains. But after some days, bleach loses its effectiveness.

The time length depends on how diluted the solution you use. If you mix more water, the effect will last shorter. However, mixing little water with bleach is also not recommended as it is hard to work with and smells too strong. A 1:1 bleach solution should work for 5-7 days.

So, once you apply bleach to keep the rats away, you should remember the next application date. The best thing you can do is, use bleach to repel the rats and then seal the entrance point of your home. 

Some parts of our house are hard to seal, like space under the door, window, ventilator, etc. Applying bleach in those places can be helpful to stop the rats and mice.

How to use bleach to keep rats and mice away?

Bleach can be a great way to repel the rats and mice away and disinfect their nest and waste. Here are the tips you can follow to keep away the rats and mice.

Spray the bleach:

First, add some water and bleach to a bottle. Use a bit more water than bleach. There is no exact ratio as a different brand of bleach comes with different concentrations. Add a spray cap, and your bleach solution is ready to spray.

Wait, you need to get prepared too. Wear a respirator, gloves, and eye protector to protect yourself. Breathing bleach for a long time can be harmful to you.

Now spray the solution in rat infestation areas of your house. Apply it in the darker parts of your home. Basement and narrow places of your house where rats love to nest, apply the solution in those places.

You should not use bleach in the entry and exit points at first. If you do so, the rats can get stuck in your house.

Apply bleach in the rat’s nest:

Use bleach in the rat’s nest to disinfect the area. Rats can bring many infectious diseases like rotavirus. This is more important when you have children in your house.

Make bait to feed the rats bleach:

If you want to eliminate the rats,  you can mix bleach with smelly food and keep it in rat-infested places. Peanut butter is an easy-to-find and practical item to make rat bait with bleach.

Get two spoons of peanut butter and add one spoon of bleach with it. Mix the bleach well. The peanut butter will musk the bleach smell and attract mice.

Cotton balls with bleach:

The bleach spray is effective. But if you want something that will work longer, make some cotton balls and soak them in bleach. Keep the balls in the different corners of your house where rats move the most.

Does bleach keep rodents away?

Yes, bleach helps to keep almost all types of rodents away. Generally, all the rodents like mice, rats, and squirrels have strong smelling power, and bleach irritates them. 

You can use bleach to keep something protected from rodents outdoors, such as your garden. However, the effect of bleach is shorter outdoors.

How to keep rats away from your home?

Bleach is effective but certainly not enough if you do not take other steps to keep the rats away. Check out what else you can do to keep the rats and mice away from your home.

Seal all the holes and cracks:

Any hole or crack bigger than half an inch can be an entrance point for the mice and rats. Once you can repel all the rats from your home, it’s essential to seal the holes.

Apply bleach/essential oil on the doors and other entrance:

Essential oils can be another good way to repel the rats from your home. Once rats are out of your home and holes are sealed. Apply bleach or essential oil spray on your doors and windows that rats can enter.

Remove hiding spots and food sources:

Make your house less favorable to the rats. Seal all the holes and little places where rats can nest. Never leave any drop of food dropped and left. Clean your dishes immediately after use and make your home rat protective.

Final thoughts

Bleach does outstanding work for some days to repel the rats and mice, although you will have to reapply the solution every week for a consistent result. After repelling, stopping the rats from entering is the key to a rat-free home. Wear protective equipment before using bleach.