Expert Advice on How To Get Rid of Rats From Home and Garden

The best way to get rid of rats is to block all small openings in walls and floors. Living with rats in your home or garden can be a frightening experience. Not only do they carry diseases, but they can also cause damage to property, contaminate food and spread parasites. 

Thankfully, there are ways to get rid of rats from your home and garden safely and effectively. In this article, we provide expert advice on how to do this. We cover topics such as sealing any gaps and openings, using traps and bait, and preventative measures you can take to stop rats from coming back. With the right know-how and effort, you can get rid of rats and keep them away for good.

how to get rid of rats
how to get rid of rats

How to recognise the signs of a rat infestation?

Before attempting to get rid of rats, it is important to first determine if you have a rat infestation. Common signs of rats in the home include droppings, gnaw marks, strange odours, scratching noises and sightings. In the garden, you may notice burrows and nests. Rats will often create burrows in the ground, along walls and under buildings. If you suspect an infestation, take action immediately. The longer you wait, the more difficult it will be to remove the rats.


10 Common Signs of Rats 

  1. Droppings: Rats leave behind small, dark droppings that are about the size of a grain of rice.
  2. Gnaw marks: Rats will gnaw on wood, wires, and other materials to sharpen their teeth.
  3. Rub marks: Rats will leave behind dark smudges on walls and other surfaces they have rubbed against.
  4. Burrows: Rats will often create burrows in the ground, along walls and under buildings.
  5. Nests: Rats will make nests out of shredded material such as paper and fabric.
  6. Scratching noises: Rats tend to be active at night, making scratching and squeaking noises.
  7. Strange odours: Rats can produce a musty smell that is similar to a wet dog.
  8. Sightings: Rats are usually active at night, so you may see them scurrying around.
  9. Damage to property: Rats can cause damage to walls, wires, and other property.
  10. Unexplained food loss: Rats may eat food stored in the home or garden.
rat droppings
rat droppings

How do you get rid of rats at home, what’s the quickest approach ?

The quickest approach to getting rid of rats at home is to first identify and block off all points of entry that the rats are using to get inside. This could include sealing off any cracks or openings in the walls, floors and doors, as well as repairing any broken screens or vents.

Once all entry points have been blocked off, you can then set traps in areas where the rats are likely to travel, such as near food sources, along walls and in dark corners. Make sure to check the traps regularly, and safely dispose of any dead rats. Additionally, you can also use poison bait to kill the rats, but be sure to place it away from areas where children, pets or other animals can access it.


If the problem persists, you may need to call a professional pest control service for help. Professional exterminators can use a variety of methods to get rid of rats, such as using specialised traps, baits, and even chemicals. They will also be able to identify any additional entry points and will work to find a long-term solution to keep the rats away.


What gets rid of rats permanently?

The only way to permanently get rid of rats is to employ a combination of preventative measures and extermination methods. Prevention is key, as it is much easier to keep rats out of your space than it is to get rid of them once they have taken up residence. Taking steps such as sealing off potential entry points and eliminating any food sources will make your space not attractive to rats. 

Additionally, using traps or bait stations can help to capture and remove any rats that have already taken up residence. If the infestation is particularly severe, you may need to hire a professional exterminator to help you get the problem under control.

If you’re wondering how to get rid of rats in drains, you’re not alone. Fortunately, there are expert tips and solutions to help you solve this problem and keep your drains free from rats.

Most effective ways to keep rats away from your home


  1. Seal Up Any Entry Points: Rats often enter homes through small cracks and crevices, so make sure to check your home for any potential entry points and seal them up using wire mesh, cement, caulk, steel wool and other rat proof materials..
  1. Remove Food Sources: Consider storing all food, pet food, and bird seed in airtight containers and regularly clean up any crumbs or food debris.
  1. Keep the Area Clean: Make sure to clean up any garbage, compost, or other debris that may be attractive to rats.
  1. Store Firewood Away From Home: If you have firewood stored near your home, make sure to keep it at least 20 feet away from the house.
  1. Trim Shrubs and Trees: Trim back any shrubs or trees that may be providing a bridge for rats to access your home.
  1. Don’t Use Repellents: Repellents such as mothballs, ammonia, and peppermint oil can not help deter rats from entering your home.
  1. Use Trapping: Live trapping is an effective way to remove rats from your home, but make sure to check local laws and regulations before using this method.
  1. Seek Professional Help: If you have an infestation, consider contacting a professional pest control company to help get rid of the rats.

What scent will keep rats away? The Truth about Rat Repellents, Rodent Control Deterrents, Natural Oils and Peppermint Scent

Using a scent to keep rats away is not a reliable method of rodent control. 

Peppermint scent is often touted as a deterrent for rats, but scientific studies have not found it to be effective. In fact, many natural oils and essential oils, such as peppermint oil, are not effective at repelling rats. Even when applied in high concentrations, rats were not deterred from an area. In addition, ultrasonic sound devices have been found to be also useless in deterring rats. The most effective rat repellents are prevention and sealing all rat entry points.

For those seeking a more natural approach to rat control, there are some methods that have been found to be effective. Traps, such as snap traps and live traps, can be effective in capturing rats and removing them from an area. 

Finally, there are some chemical repellents that contain ingredients such as naphthalene and ammonia that have been found not to be effective as well.

In conclusion, using a scent to keep rats away is not a reliable method of rodent control.

What is the most efficient DIY approach to rat removal? 

rat snap trap
rat snap trap

The most efficient DIY approach to rat control is to seal all potential entry points. Rats can fit through very small gaps and cracks, so it is important to inspect the perimeter of the property and seal any gaps with steel wool, wired mesh, cement, caulk, or other rodent proof materials. It is also important to remove possible food sources, such as garbage, pet food, bird seed, and compost piles.

Another effective DIY approach to rat removal is to use traps. Traps are the most effective way to capture and remove rats from an area. Snap traps and live traps can be used to capture rats and remove them from an area. When using traps, it is important to use bait that is attractive to rats like peanut butter or rat attractant and to use multiple traps. Traps should be placed in areas where rats are seen, such as along walls and in dark corners.

In addition to traps and sealing entry points, it is also important to encourage natural predators to the area. Predators such as owls and hawks can help reduce the rat population. Finally, it is important to keep the area clean and free of clutter, as rats are attracted to areas that are cluttered and have food sources available.

In conclusion, the most effective DIY approach to rat removal is to seal entry points and use traps.

Do rats pose a serious problem in the garden?

rat holes in garden

Yes, rats can be a serious problem in the garden. They can cause damage to plants and structures, eat fruits and vegetables, contaminate food sources, and spread disease. Rats can also burrow and create tunnels, which can lead to structural damage and weaken the foundation of a building. Additionally, rats can carry parasites and diseases, such as salmonella, that can be dangerous to humans and other animals.

There are several steps that can be taken to prevent and control rat infestations in the garden. First, it is important to inspect your garden and surrounding area for signs of rat activity, such as gnaw marks, burrows, droppings, and nest material. If rat activity is detected, it is important to remove any potential food sources, such as garbage, pet food, and bird seed, and to make sure all food is stored in tightly sealed containers. 

Additionally, sealing off any possible entry points in the garden, such as holes in walls or fences, and eliminating any structural damage can help to keep rats out.

How do you know it’s time to call an exterminator? 

When it comes to pest infestations, the sooner you act, the better. Calling an exterminator should be done as soon as you realise you have a pest problem. Signs that it’s time to call an exterminator include noticing droppings or nests, hearing strange noises coming from inside walls, unpleasant odours or seeing signs of damage caused by the pests.

Additionally, if you see the pests themselves, such as rats, ants, roaches, mice, or other insects, this is a sure sign that you need to call an exterminator. If you suspect you have a pest problem, it’s best to call an exterminator right away. By catching the infestation early, you can help prevent further damage to your home and reduce the amount of time and money it takes to get rid of the pests.

In the event of an emergency, call a rat catcher.

In the event of an emergency involving a rat, the best course of action is to contact a local rat catcher or wildlife control company. Professional rat catchers are experienced and trained in humanely and safely trapping and removing rodents. They can also provide advice on how to discourage future rodent infestations and identify potential entry points and harborage areas. 

Additionally, they will be able to advise on preventative measures, such as sealing off access points, removing debris and food sources, and ensuring that garbage is securely stored. Rat catchers may also be able to provide advice on disposing of dead rats, as well as providing advice on how to protect against the spread of any potential diseases. It is important to remember that rat catchers should always be contacted in the event of an emergency involving a rat, as attempting to remove the rat yourself can be dangerous and possibly even illegal, depending on the location. Pest advice from BPCA on how to control rats.

Karin HarndenKarin Harnden
17:14 05 May 24
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19:11 03 Apr 24
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21:53 02 Apr 24
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20:26 20 Feb 24
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