Can You Use Mouse Trap and Mothballs at the Same Time?

Nobody likes mice running around their house stealing food, damaging appliances, and spreading diseases. Mouse traps and repellents are the best options if you’re only getting rid of a mouse or two. But if you’re dealing with more mice than expected, then utilizing two different rodent control methods helps get the job done much more quickly.

So is it okay to use mouse traps and mothballs at the same time to get rid of mice? Mothballs are utilized by many homeowners to repel mice, but they’re not as effective as they think. Using mothballs and mouse traps at the same time won’t have negative impacts on each other, but homeowners only end up spending for unnecessary costs. 

Read More: Will a Mouse Trap Still Work if I Touch It with Bare Hands?

Do Mouse Traps and Mothballs Work Better Together for Eliminating House Mice?

Mice are common house pests that invade about 21 million homes during the fall and winter months. These filthy creatures thrive in places that provide them with everything they need to survive – food supply, water source, and warm environment.

Although they’re a lot less aggressive than rats, mice still cause different damages and diseases to a home and its residents. Eliminating these critters should be a priority, which is why many homeowners combine different pest control techniques to get rid of the pests more quickly.

Some of them use mouse traps and mothballs at the same time. However, this might not be as effective as they think. To understand why mothballs and mouse traps together aren’t necessarily better, we’ve compared using each of the techniques alone versus using both of them at the same time. 

Using Mothballs Alone as Mice Repellent

Mothballs are classified as pesticides because they prevent pests from clinging to the fabric. They’re made with active chemicals like naphthalene and paradichlorobenzene that kill fabric insects. Mothballs turn from solid into vapor, which is eventually inhaled by pests in the fabric.

Using mothballs for repelling is harmful to the environment, which is why it’s regulated by the Environment Protection Agency (EPA). When using mothballs, make sure to follow the instructions of the packaging to avoid accidents like poisoning. 

How Mothballs Repel Mice

Mothballs are used by some homeowners as mouse repellents because they contain naphthalene. It’s a strong-smelling substance that deters a mouse’s strong sense of smell and drives the rodents away. But aside from its odor, naphthalene also causes the blood cells of mice to lose their ability to carry oxygen throughout the body when inhaled. 

Why You Shouldn’t Use Mothballs

There isn’t enough scientific evidence to prove that mothballs are effective as a rodent repellent. These substances only contain small traces of naphthalene – enough to kill moths on fabric, but not enough to deter mice from going near an area.

Homeowners need a lot of mothballs to reach the concentration level of naphthalene that repels mice. However, high levels of naphthalene are also dangerous for humans and other animals like cats and dogs. The amount of naphthalene needed to repel mice is enough to cause skin and eye irritation in humans. 

Using Mouse Traps to Catch Mice

When a property is infested with mice, people rely on mouse traps to get rid of them. These traps are widely available, which makes it easy for residents to try pest control methods at home first before calling pest management professionals like Yale Pest Control. 

How Mouse Traps Work

Different types of traps work differently in catching or killing mice. Making a mouse trap at home is an option, but not everyone has the time and patience to build one. If you’re looking for mouse traps in the market, here are the most common types of mouse traps and how they work:

  • Snap Traps – Snap traps need bait like peanut butter or wet pet food to lure mice in. Taking the bait triggers the snap trap, causing the metal bar to snap forcefully and kill the mouse.
  • Glue Boards – Sticky traps (or glue traps) use a strong adhesive that traps mice. The trapped rodent eventually dies a slow, painful death as they dehydrate or suffocate in the glue board. 
  • Electric Traps – This type of mouse trap uses a high-voltage shock that kills the mouse once it enters the trap. Some electric traps continuously electrocute the trapped mouse for longer to ensure that they won’t be revived after the initial shock.
  • Live Traps – This type of humane trap doesn’t kill mice. Live traps come with trapping mechanisms that prevent mice from getting out once they’re trapped. Homeowners then need to free the mouse at least 100 yards from the house to prevent them from returning. 

Are Mouse Traps Effective in Eliminating Mice?

Mouse traps are highly effective in catching and killing mice. They’re even used by pest management professionals as part of the treatment plan to get rid of the mouse infestation in a property. However, using a few traps won’t get rid of moderate to severe mouse problems in a property. In such cases, it’s better to rely on pest control companies to get the job done quickly and safely. 

Important Tips to Make Mouse Traps More Effective

Mouse traps are easy to use. But those unfamiliar with how it works tend to make mistakes that prevent them from catching more mice. To help you trap these tiny pests using traditional mouse traps, here are a few tips to follow:

  • Use gloves when loading the trap to avoid leaving human scent and ruining the bait. Gloves also prevent slipping and accidentally triggering the trap.
  • Pick the right kind of bait to put in the trap. Peanut butter is one of the best food baits because it lures mice out of hiding. The sticky consistency makes it hard for the rodents to take the bait without triggering the trap.
  • Use enough bait to attract mice. Loading too little won’t catch their attention while putting too much allows them to steal the bait without getting caught.
  • Leave unset traps around the house so mice think that these devices aren’t dangerous for them. Once they start taking the bait from the traps, it’s time to set the mouse traps.
  • Make sure that the traps are placed close to the walls. Mice rarely crawl to open spaces no matter how enticing the bait is.
  • Place multiple traps about 2 to 3 feet apart. This increases the chances of a mouse getting caught.

Read More: How to Kill a Mouse If You’re Out of Traps and Poison

Using Mothballs and Mouse Traps at the Same Time

Since mothballs don’t really repel mice, it won’t be of much help in reducing the mice population on the property. These substances are also illegal as animal repellent because they might be harmful to humans and other animals.

Most of the time, mouse traps are already enough to catch several mice – as long as you know how to use them correctly and efficiently. Adding mothballs to the rodent control method at home costs more money, but it wouldn’t make much of a difference in solving the mouse problem.

If none of the techniques at home seem to put a dent in the mouse population, then a professional intervention might be needed. Always check the house for areas with different mice activity (mouse dropping, foul smell, gnaw marks, and dead mice) to see if it’s getting worse.

Make sure to call a trusted and experienced pest control company once there are signs of rodent infestations at home so they can be eliminated before they start causing bigger problems. 

What Should You Pair with Mouse Traps Instead?

peppermint oil repellent

Since mothballs aren’t proven to be effective in keeping mice away, you should try pairing mouse traps with other rodent control techniques instead like: 

  1. Natural Repellents

Homemade remedies and natural repellents are more accessible if you’re looking for safe and affordable alternatives to mothballs. These methods are also eco-friendly and won’t harm humans or pets in the area. Make your own natural mice deterrent at home with these ingredients:

  • Peppermint Oil – Place a few drops of peppermint oil on a few cotton balls and leave them around places with mice activity. Mice dislike the strong smell of peppermint oil because it irritates their nasal passage.
  • Apple Cider Vinegar – Mix the apple cider vinegar with water and spray the solution around the house to prevent mice from entering. Make sure to apply the mixture to entry points created by mice too.
  • Instant Potato Flakes – Mice eat anything available to them, which is why they’ll ingest the instant potato flakes lying around. Once they eat the flakes, they won’t be able to stop the expanding flakes in their stomach – causing them to suffocate and die.
  • Used Cat Litter – Mice have a good sense of smell that allows them to detect the predators nearby. Leaving used cat urine or litter along their path forces these rodents to find another way to get to their nest or food source.

When using these natural mice repellents, make sure to place them in limited areas around the house. The goal is to keep them away from some locations, forcing them to find other paths and eventually take the risk to travel across areas where mouse traps are already waiting for them. 

  1. Bait Stations

Rodent bait stations are another way to kill multiple mice at once. But instead of killing mice instantly like traditional taps, bait stations take a while before killing off the rodents.

Bait stations contain a block of rodenticide that attracts mice. A mouse walks into the bait station and eats a lethal dose of the mouse poison before returning to the mouse nest. It takes a while for the poison to take effect so dead rodents only turn up after a day or two.

Having both mouse traps and bait stations around the house significantly put a dent in the mouse population. Just make sure to store loose baits in cool, dry places and out of the reach of pets and children to avoid accidental poisoning. 

  1. Preventive Measures

Preventing rodents from entering is easier than treating the pest infestation once it happens. But if the mice have already infiltrated the house, rodent prevention measures should still be followed along with mice control treatments. This prevents them from causing more damage. Here are some of the best preventive measures to apply:

  • Remove anything that attracts them to the house. Make sure to declutter regularly and avoid leaving leftover food out in the open.
  • Inspect the house for gaps and other possible entry points that mice might use to enter the house. Seal these holes with caulk and steel wool to make it difficult for them to chew through the material.
  • Trim all overgrown vegetation around the house. Ensure that tree branches, shrubs, and vines are at least three feet away from the walls of the house to prevent them from climbing and entering through the roof.
  • Fix all leaky pipes. Never let water accumulate under the trays of houseplants or refrigerators.
  • Always inspect boxes and other packages before carrying them inside. 

Learn More: Roof Rats and Mice: Why Your Rodent Roof Traps Aren’t Working

Excellent Rodent Extermination Work by Yale Pest Control

professional pest control worker doing his job of rodent control

Mouse traps and repellents only do so much when it comes to eliminating mice problems at home. For more serious cases of mice infestation, it’s better to leave them at the hands of professionals like Yale Pest Management. We always make sure to use IPM-based methods to get rid of the pests on the property and keep these mice at bay for a long time.

Call us today at (800) 750 – 9253 to schedule an inspection.