I used to lay awake in bed most fall mornings and think I wish I could annoy squirrels as much as they annoy me. For 25 years squirrels were free to make a home in the attic crawlspace of my twin house.
Each year I visited the booths of the pest control companies at the local home show and asked “what do you have for squirrels?” The typical reply was “we trap ‘em” but I said “it’s just not working.”
Some products I tried worked for a short period of time, but squirrels always came back. I tried repairing the damage only to find squirrels chewing their way back in, not once, but twice through sturdy wood and good quality shingles. It is simple to repair the damage a squirrel can cause, yet it is an entirely different problem to keep it from happening again. It’s obvious the squirrels meant business.
A Professional Background
I’ve had my own handyman business for a number of years. My experience, practiced on a daily basis, ranges from gutter and roof repair, to minor electrical work, to plumbing, and just about any kind of repair or replacement that can be completed in one or two visits to a home. After personally completing over 2500 gutter cleanings and hundreds of roof leak repairs I have observed all kinds of damage done by squirrels. On one job in particular I was standing on a roof with a customer when he asked me to close a nearby hole. As I bent down to measure the opening I was startled as a squirrel ran out in a panic. It just narrowly escaped to a nearby gutter. We were both so surprised it was lucky one of us didn’t fall off the roof.
I first became professionally involved with squirrels by repairing the damage they cause to homes. Squirrels will chew at a small hole and make it larger. It is not long after that they will build a nest inside your home. The repair work is a job that roofing and siding contractors are typically called upon to do because they have the ladders. It is often difficult to find any one else. However, many roofing companies will not touch this kind of job because of the possibility of future damage, not to mention a lack of knowledge about squirrels. So I started to read up, I was tired of fighting a losing battle making repair after repair. I was surprised at how little information was available for what seemed like such a big problem.
I advertise to handle squirrel jobs from beginning to end. It fills a nice niche because pest control companies don’t do repairs, and roofing companies don’t deal with squirrels. I developed a few of my own techniques using some of the existing products on the market to deter the animal. Where squirrels have not occupied a house for very much time, exclusion can be a permanent solution. This technique involves making sure the squirrels are out of the house then sealing every possible means of entry. My success was growing so I called the local newspaper to see if it would make for an interesting story. The weekend the newspaper printed the story, I had over forty phone calls. These people were hungry for a solution to their squirrel problems. Many of my customers hired pest control companies in the past that did not provide a permanent solution, if any.
Trapping Doesn’t Work
I soon realized the article had opened a new can of worms, as I dealt with my first really serious problems. A customer of mine, now a friend, Mrs. Baldasanno had squirrels living in her attic for forty years. At the time of my first visit I counted at least ten squirrels. The job was a nightmare. She lived in a very large house with a terra cotta roof that had to be rebuilt many times. The house was located near the woods under acorn trees. It was the worst of all worlds, bad location and poor construction. The squirrels appeared to own her house. I tried everything to deter them. To my eye, there was nothing that stopped a squirrel from reentering a home when it really wanted to, especially if it was very cold outside. Like every other company before me I walked away from the job and told them there was nothing that could be done.
Trapping didn’t work at Mrs. Baldassano’s house. Pest control companies have become very good at trapping or killing squirrels but neither offer a permanent solution for serious problems. The general consensus is that for every squirrel trapped there is always one to take its place. I was also very surprised to learn that many pest control companies actually place the trap in the attic. To me it is common sense that placing a trap in an attic is an unnecessary behavior modification. When bait is placed in a trap, not only does a home offer the comfort of staying dry and keeping warm, it now offers the prospect of food. Why train them to come into an attic? Trapping is a mindset that is hard to break.
A Really Bright Idea
About a month later I asked Mrs. Baldassano permission to try a bright idea. Every book on the market and the entire pest control industry has announced that there is no way to evict squirrels. My idea uses a high intensity strobe light to annoy squirrels as much as they have annoyed me. The first time I tried it, the light drove the squirrels to the other end of a large attic. After I installed a second strobe light it drove them completely out. To date the holes remain open and there are no more squirrels living in the attic.
A customer of mine told me her house burned down on Christmas Eve 2002. Her husband died in the fire. According to the Fire Marshall squirrels had gotten into the attic and chewed through wiring igniting the fire. She mentioned it out of the blue. I couldn’t believe she was telling me this, because that very same day the second test unit for the Evictor Strobe Light was sitting in the front seat of my pick up truck.
The Evictor Strobe Light is designed for professionals and homeowners alike and works to permanently repel squirrels from homes. The strobe light flashes ninety times per minute, and is most effective in dark attics or crawlspaces where the light can remain on without obstruction. Best of all it is easy to use, simply hang it up and plug it in.
Proven by Professionals
Within the first year the largest pest control companies completed testing. They now buy the Evictor Strobe Light on a regular basis. In 2005 I received an email from a Field Technician at Critter Ridders Pest Management in Memphis, Tennessee. The technician carried our product with him in his truck for almost a month without the opportunity for a test. Naturally, this has been a hard sell, there are a lot of gimmicks out there. After discovering roof rats in his own house the technician promptly installed the light. He wrote; “my findings are simple. It worked within 24 hours of hanging it up.” He also told us “never before have I tried a product that went beyond what it claimed to do.”
My philosophy is that if it works and my customers are satisfied then I’m satisfied. Not to mention sleeping a little easier now that squirrels aren’t running across my attic.