Rodents living in your chassis and air cleaner box?

BJC

New member
My first post:
While doing routine maintenance on my 2007 3500 I discovered rodent trails (urine) and turds in the air box. The filter element itself was not chewed, but showed signs as well. This set me off on an investigation to find out how MB could design a system that offers no protection for such an event.

Here is my solution; 1/2" hardware cloth from Home Depot; cut and formed to fit tightly in the intake behind grille.
Not tested yet, and won't keep the babies out. But it's better than nothing. Does anyone know if MB makes a screen for this? Maybe mine just went missing.
1592533159471.png

Check the top of the fuel tank, too. This is the nest I pulled out recently. Filthy job. We live in Pike National Forest, so there's no shortage of critters.
We learned that if we keep the hood up the rodents don't nest in the engine compartment. They're wary of hawks and owls.
1592533099874.png
 

Attachments

Aqua Puttana

Poly - Thread Finder
Looks good in concept.

I'm no wildlife expert, but I'm thinkin' that the size mesh screen installed will keep rats and squirrels out, but not mice.

It might be better to use 1/4" mesh. Whatever size is used, the screen should be inspected on a regular schedule for any blockage.

If the screen shape was domed out it will provide more surface area for debris to collect and before affecting engine performance.

:2cents: vic
 
Last edited:

BJC

New member
Thanks.
The size of the turds make me think Norway Rats, aka, Roof Rat, Pack Rat.
One found its way through the bathroom vent stack and into the toilet in my shop.
Drowned Rat. Found it next morning when I opened the lid.
Beautiful animal, by the way.
I may redo the screen domed out as you suggest. I'm concerned about proper air flow, and 1/4" would be better, perhaps.
 

lindenengineering

Well-known member
We have been plagued with rodent damage recently and the explanations are that with all the restaurants closed there is less food waste around from human fast food activity.
Our solution which seems to work are the sticky pad . glue traps
Placed under the hood and various places we trapped over a dozen mice living in a T1N.
If you are a bit squeamish or worried about cruelty to animals this might not be for you but it does work.
Dennis
 

DougE

Member
Tractor supply carries something called "Cab Fresh" that deters rodents from taking up residence. Right now, though, I'm trying moth balls as a low cost solution. (A little odor is the downside).
 

Bob W

New member
Great ideas! We have also had mice chew at the insulation on the firewall and the surround for the cabin filter. We now use dryer sheets (think Bounce), which has kept the mice at bay in those areas.

Bob
 

4wheeldog

2018 144" Tall Revel
We have been plagued with rodent damage recently and the explanations are that with all the restaurants closed there is less food waste around from human fast food activity.
Our solution which seems to work are the sticky pad . glue traps
Placed under the hood and various places we trapped over a dozen mice living in a T1N.
If you are a bit squeamish or worried about cruelty to animals this might not be for you but it does work.
Dennis
I find I have to change up on the type of traps used. Old wooden snap traps, fancy new plastic traps, and sticky traps when those do not work.
The down side of the sticky traps for me are two......One, sometimes the little b@st@ards only stick one leg, and drag the trap off. Hunting down moving traps is sometimes problematic. So I try to anchor the sticky traps, usually a circle of duct tape on the backside.
Two...….The only rational way to deal with a living rodent on a sticky trap is drowning. I ain't a Buddhist, but I dearly hate drowning a helpless animal.
When they figure out the snap traps, I keep baiting them, with sticky traps laid around the snap trap.
I love living in the country, but I am ambivalent about how much knowledge of how to kill rodents I have acquired.
 
Honda sells an electrical tape to protect wiring that contains capsaicin, [hot pepper based]. I suppose it could be stuck in other places than around wiring.

When using it, be sure to wash your hands afterward, and don't rub your eyes or touch any other sensitive body parts.

It has imprinted mice on the visible side which obviously is the pepper side of the tape.
 

autostaretx

Erratic Member
We learned that if we keep the hood up the rodents don't nest in the engine compartment. They're wary of hawks and owls.
I was at a national forest campground in Idaho that had that advice posted on the message board.
(not the "hawks" part, but the open-hood advisory)

---dick
 
Last edited:
IMG_2152.JPGKeeping yard free of rodent attractions is a good start. Cats, another.

I hate rats, mice but loath glue traps because they produce a slow torturous, agonizing death of starvation and dehydration.

Have some empathy for living creatures. Use snap traps. I am an expert gopher trapper, BTW.
 
Last edited:

4wheeldog

2018 144" Tall Revel
View attachment 144474Keeping yard free of rodent attractions is a good start. Cats, another.

I hate rats, mice but loath glue traps because they produce a slow torturous, agonizing death of starvation and dehydration.

Have some empathy for living creatures. Use snap traps. I am an expert gopher trapper, BTW.
I only use glue traps after they learn about snap traps, and I can check the glue traps daily. But I still hate drowning the little b@st@rds.
 

BrennWagon

He’s just this guy, you know?
On the topic of glue traps, check them at least daily, more often if possible. The most humane way to dispatch them once stuck to the glue board is to stomp on them. Placing them in a plastic grocery bag before stomping keeps a mess off your boots. Like others, I don’t like using the glue traps, but they’re definitely the most effective method of rodent control.
 

BJC

New member
Tractor supply carries something called "Cab Fresh" that deters rodents from taking up residence. Right now, though, I'm trying moth balls as a low cost solution. (A little odor is the downside).
Cab Fresh only worked for me once. Afterwards, the rodents quite literally filled the engine bay with fresh, naturally sourced pine boughs.
The Cab Fresh has a nice pine scent, but the rodents overwhelmed it with the real thing! Keep the area clean. They follow their urine trail back home after foraging at night. I even plug the exhaust pipe when not in use. I've had nests in mufflers, not fun.
 

Aqua Puttana

Poly - Thread Finder
Cab Fresh only worked for me once. Afterwards, the rodents quite literally filled the engine bay with fresh, naturally sourced pine boughs.
The Cab Fresh has a nice pine scent, but the rodents overwhelmed it with the real thing!
...
:lol:

We'll see your pine scent and raise it with the real thing!

I even plug the exhaust pipe when not in use. I've had nests in mufflers, not fun.
Good to know. I believe that's the first time I've ever heard of them nesting in an exhaust system.

:cheers: vic
 

technoCrank

Member
We're snap-trapping multiple rodents around here nightly. We have actually simul-trapped two, so no, no glue pads!
Keeping hood open, deploy Bounce /w Febreze sheets, also Irish Spring soap chunks.
YMMV
Cheers,
Whit
 

GJACK

Active member
Looks good in concept.

I'm no wildlife expert, but I'm thinkin' that the size mesh screen installed will keep rats and squirrels out, but not mice.

It might be better to use 1/4" mesh. Whatever size is used, the screen should be inspected on a regular schedule for any blockage.

If the screen shape was domed out it will provide more surface area for debris to collect and before affecting engine performance.

:2cents: vic
I was with a pest control guy at my home inspecting a screen which was about 1/2 inch. I had put the screen in at a crawl space on the foundation of the home because I had problems with mice in the walls. He took out a pencil and easily pushed it through the screen commenting that anything larger invites a mouse to enter. While we were looking at the pencil in the screen, a mouse jumped out of the bark mulch through the screen next to the pencil. Made me a believer! I went around the house the next day with a pencil looking for holes.
 

Tiny Travels

2017 170"ext, 4x4, 2500
I've actually had birds nesting in my intake. The fly right through the big gaps in the grill. The gaps are so big, they had space to fly through with some pretty impressive nesting materials. There were good size twigs in my intake.

I put a 1/4" grid metal mesh on the backside of the grill to keep them from flying in. At the feed store where I bought it, it's called "hardware cloth" and it's sold in big rolls, but it's just regular welded mesh wire. It is galVANized after welding, to prevent corrosion.
When I had my van in the dealership recently, the tech commented on the mesh and said they see bird nests in the intakes all the time.

For what it's worth, I was an exterminator for a while and we used copper mesh (similar to brillo pads, but copper) to plug rodent holes. The copper is soft and flexible, so mice struggle to chew through it. You do have to mechanically fasten the copper in place somehow, or they'll just pull it out of their way.
We bought big rolls, similar to this stuff.
 

Rock Doc

Active member
About 18 months ago I had a terrible problem of my engine compartment getting filled with Douglas fir cones that a rat was caching and then dissecting. About 6 months prior to that, the rat had caused about $700 of damage to my wiring harness where it went through the firewall. This all stopped when I found the mummified carcass on the engine block of my Durango.

Well, I was servicing my Sprinter's transmission earlier this week, and discovered 9 Douglas fir cones on the passenger side behind the wheel well liner! Just one more cache from that rat. (Fortunately, I didn't find the same on the driver side.) However, this is just one more spot to look for rats nests. (And I've found fir cone debris way down in the engine valley beneath the fuel filter--it gets EVERYWHERE!!)

Rock Doc
 

Top Bottom