Let’s get one thing out and clear – bats are not someone you want hanging about the place (pardon the pun). They will expose you to a wide and very serious range of diseases from rabies to histoplasmosis, and maybe even to Covid-19. Not only that, their droppings tend to be highly corrosive, and will cause serious structural damage, as well as permanently ruin furniture, floors, and other stored objects (since they’re most likely to be encountered in attics).
So it’s important to figure out how they’re getting in, so you can get them out again, and fix the problem.
How did bats get into your house?
As with any other wild animal, the number one concern ought to be prevention – figuring out potential entry points, and what might be attracting the bats, so that you can ward them off again.
1. The chimney
A very common entry point for bats is through the open chimney. Since this poses pretty much an open gate straight into the home, it’s quite common to have wild animals coming through. Aside from the obvious risks, this can also mean that the bat is nesting inside your chimney.
During the cold months, when you light the fireplace, this can pose a serious fire hazard, and endanger the lives of you and your family.
Getting them out: You can either call a professional, or wait for the bat to naturally leave its home, before installing a chimney cap to prevent it coming back in.
Tip: Bats are protected by law in many parts of the United States, thanks to their ability to eat pest species. This is why it might be best to call a professional removal service like MR Wildlife Removal to ensure you abide by local regulations.
2. The windows
It might sound overly simple, but open windows are among the chief reasons why bats are now living inside your home. Never leave a window open for long periods of time and unsupervised, particularly if it leads to a storage space, like the attic or basement.
Keeping them out: Obviously, no one is saying never open the window ever again, but if you’re worried about bats (or other animals) getting inside, it might be a good idea to install a protective net on your windows.
3. Cracks in the roof
Unfortunately, the roof is one of the most common areas of the house that gets damaged due to natural wear and tear, and most people don’t even know it. This is why we recommend checking the roof at least once a season.
Keeping them out: To get rid of bats in the attic, inspect the roof and fix holes, and replace missing shingles as soon as possible.
Like chimneys, vents present bats with a really nice entry point into the house, one that is significantly larger and more accessible than cracks in the wall. Alas, it can be tricky to identify the vent as the main problem, since they lead to so many different rooms of your house.
Tip: To keep bats out of the house, you might consider installing a bat house to divert them; visit bathouse.org to learn about bat houses.
Keeping them out: As with the chimney, the best idea here is to install a cap over the vent, so as to prevent bats, and other unwanted wildlife from crawling inside.
5. Gaps in the walls
Or more specifically, gaps between the bricks that make up your walls. Unfortunately, these can present bats with a really easy access point into the home, and are also difficult for you to spot and fix.
Keeping them out: as with the damaged roofing, your best bet is to regularly inspect the outside of your home and fix gaps (or have a professional do it).
6. Damaged fascia boards
The fascia board is one long continuous board placed on the external side of your house, that connects and supports the roofing to the last row of bricks in the home. Unfortunately, fascia is very vulnerable to the elements, and to natural wear and tear, and can easily become damaged.
Keeping them out: Check the fascia boards for rot and deterioration, and replace them as swiftly as possible to keep bats out.