Cleaning out the gutters, sifting through debris at the bottom of your sump pump pit, or even doing work on your main sewer line can uncover a problem.
Animals can set up a home in the debris and eventually, your sump pump can be used as an entrance and exit for animals looking for a new home.
In my experience, I have seen more frequently that mice come in through the sump pump than other animals such as the possum, raccoon, or armadillo.
Snakes may also use your sump pump as an entrance to your home, but they are more likely to enter through cracks in the foundation.
This blog post will cover why mice and other animals enter your home through your basement and how often to clean your sump pump.
What’s the deal with the mouse in my basement?
Pets, family, and landscaping all attract common pests.
Mice are a common problem that often causes homeowners stress as they look for ways to remove them from their homes.
My experience is with mice entering through the sump pump, but there are other entrances used by these pests including cracks, poorly sealed doors, and vents that should be sealed.
Mice typically enter homes through crevices and holes found in the foundation and exterior of the home; they can also find their way into basements and lower levels of the home through drains, pipes, and other openings.
This makes it harder to control their population by limiting food sources.
Since they prefer warmth and dampness like many common pests, they seek out homes with temperatures and moisture levels that suit them.
These nocturnal creatures are often encountered in the middle of the night after homeowners have gone to bed.
They are active, but mostly avoid humans when possible.
Studies show that mice can be carriers of Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome (HPS), which is a severe respiratory illness in humans.
They also pose threats to pets and homeowners by bringing in feces, salmonella, and other bacteria infections by contaminating food supplies, dishes, surfaces, and other areas.
Mice pose a threat to the overall wellness of your property.
Mice can breed year-round and have 5 to 10 litters per year with 5-10 pups in each litter.
So if you see one mouse, there are probably more somewhere nearby.
Can mice and other animals come in through your sump pump?
Just like the crawl space and foundation, your basement comes with a number of dangers that can cause you to need to call a pest control company.
One of those potential hazards is damage to your sump pump – which could let water flow in through it and cause flooding if not repaired quickly.
And because many homeowners don’t realize this danger exists, they fail to prepare.
Of course, it’s a good idea for any homeowner to be aware of the potential dangers in their home.
However, that doesn’t mean you should move out and live in a hotel because you need an exterminator!
In fact, there are some easy things you can do to reduce the chances your sump pump will become damaged by animals.
You might not be able to do all of these things, however, it would be wise to prioritize them.
So what are some examples of the dangers you should prepare for?
It’s important to understand that animals such as mice and rats can fit through holes as small as a quarter of an inch wide, which means they could easily be able to come into your home or attic through the passageways that lead to your sump pump.
And because those animals tend to chew on just about anything, it’s also possible for them to damage the equipment.
Some homeowners might not realize that it’s possible for animals such as snakes, mice, rats, salamanders, and armadillo to come into their homes through the sump pump, but it’s important you’re aware of this possibility.
In some cases, these animals will even go after the electrical wiring of your sump pump, which could lead to a fire hazard.
When you consider all possible ways your home can be damaged by animals, it makes sense to take the time to learn more about what you can do in order to avoid these dangers.
Clean your sump pump regularly
Efficient drainage is a key part of any properly designed and built home.
A sump pump is a critical piece of equipment for ensuring proper drainage.
The secondary purpose of a sump pump is to remove groundwater from the soil, which helps protect against flooding in parts of your yard or basement.
Maintaining your sump pump can be as simple as rinsing out the sump pit and changing the pump filter.
A sump pump can be a lifesaver if you live in an area that experiences heavy rainfall or poor drainage, but it needs to be kept clean and inspected every year to avoid costly repairs or replacement.
Most sump pumps need to be replaced after 10 years, whether they are used every day or only every other year.
If it has been more than 10 years and your sump pump is not functioning properly, it’s time to call in a professional.