You hear a new noise or smell something different and strange coming from your vehicle. You notice things misplaced and moved around and maybe even see some scratches or what appears to be piles of trash. Maybe your car, truck, or SUV suddenly won’t start with no previous indications that a problem was looming. What is happening? Most people don’t realize it, but you could have mice living in your vehicle. Could these little rodents be the cause of your problems? Can mice damage your vehicle?
How Often do Mice Take up Residence in Vehicles?
Having mice live in your vehicle is not as uncommon as you may think. Our vehicles are appealing places for rodents to live. They provide a warm shelter and protection from larger predators, while sometimes also offering desirable food sources. Even if you leave your car’s doors closed and windows rolled up, there are plenty of ways for a mouse to get inside.
Mice, and other rodents, are always looking for food, water, and shelter, and if your vehicle presents a desirable dwelling for them, they will find their way in. The dark and warm, confined spaces beneath your car’s hood offer good protection for these small critters and lots of places for them to build nests. In the process of them making themselves at home, mice can damage your vehicle and present a health risk for you and other passengers.
How Can Mice Damage Your Vehicle?
While mice may be tiny, they can create significant problems for you and your vehicle. Keep your eyes peeled for the below signs that mice may have made their way into your car, truck, or SUV, to ensure you don’t end up with the unwanted problems these rodents bring.
- Vehicle Issues: If your car suddenly won’t start or isn’t working properly, mice may have chewed through the wires in the engine compartment or frayed them. Pests are often attracted to the insulation, and there is some evidence that mice find newer soy-based wire insulation materials to be mouthwatering. If you see chew marks or have other unexplained wire issues in your vehicle, they could be caused by mice.
- Damaged Upholstery: If mice are living in your vehicle, they will make themselves at home and look for materials to build a nest. Finding scratches and/or holes in your seats, missing chunks of insulation or chewed-up foam, are signs that you have mice, or other rodents, living in your vehicle.
- Mouse Droppings: Mouse droppings look similar to a grain of rice, ranging in size from 3/16 to 1/4 inch long. The pieces typically have pointed ends and a color varying from blackish brown to gray. If you see these droppings on the floor mats, seats, dashboard, or other placing throughout your vehicle, you may have mice inside.
- Strong Odor: If you detect a bad smell coming from or in your vehicle, it could be due to rodents. Mice will use the vent system as a tunnel to get from the engine bay to your car’s interior. Vehicle vents provide easy access to insulation and filter materials that mice can use to build nests.
- Spot a Nest: As we mentioned, mice will use your vehicle’s components to make themselves a nest to live in. If you suspect you may have a mouse in your car, look for the nest. Depending on where it is, it could present a fire hazard and should be removed as soon as possible. Check under seats, in the vehicle’s cabin air filter housing, under the hood, and anywhere else that is shaded and protected.
Having mice in your vehicle, is less than ideal for any Phoenix resident. Mice in your vehicle, can cause damage and issues. Mice can chew on wiring, insulation, and air filters, causing them to need replacing and impacting the integrity of your vehicle. They also can create a strong foul odor in your car due to the smell of their urine coming in through the car’s vents. Once inside, mice may chew and nest on upholstery, ruining your interior. Let’s not forget the health risk they can create for you and other passengers.
Transmission and Automotive Repair in Phoenix, AZ
When you have problems with your vehicle, Advanced Transmissions & Emissions can help. Whether mice damaged your vehicle or something else caused transmission, clutch, radiator, steering, or other problems, we are your Phoenix automotive repair shop.
Motorists need a repair shop they can trust to figure out the problem quickly and solve the issue efficiently and cheaply. That’s what we do. Contact us today.