Everyone enjoys watching squirrels scamper and scurry around the yard. After all, what's not to like? Squirrels are cute and entertaining to observe going about their business. While it may be fun to have them around, squirrels can also cause major damage to the various parts of your roof. Since a squirrel's teeth and claws are constantly growing, they need to chew on wood and other materials to keep them from getting too long. Your house and roof are perfect for completing this task, and any damage done may necessitate the need for a professional roofing contractor to make repairs. In addition to damage caused by biting and scratching, squirrels may leave urine and feces in your attic or other parts of the house if they are able to make a hole big enough to get through and gain access...yuck!
Preventing damage to roofs and squirrels
So...what can we do to stop our furry little friends from damaging our roofs in a humane and responsible way? First and foremost, we recommend that you have your trees trimmed on a regular basis. Squirrels are excellent jumpers and can cover incredible distances between tree branches and structures. Branches should be trimmed back so that they are at least ten feet away from your roof. We also recommend that you keep any bird feeders as far as possible from your roof. Bird feeders are an easy source of food for squirrels and will attract several if you aren't careful about proper placement.
If you've noticed that squirrels have already taken a liking to your roof, you can apply a repellent such as capsaicin to the areas that the squirrels are frequenting. Capsaicin is the active ingredient in pepper spray and is sold in the form of an animal repellent in most hardware stores. The pungent and unpleasant odor from this spray may be enough to drive away any unwanted guests. Another option is to use a sonic repellent device that emits a high-pitched sound to keep squirrels away. Fortunately for us, these noise that these devices make are too high in pitch for humans to hear so you will not be annoyed as well.
It is a good idea to check your roof and walls periodically for holes that squirrels could potentially use to get into your home. It is also a good idea to go into your attic from time to time and look for any bite or claw marks, missing insulation, or other damage that may have been caused by squirrels. Always remember to take a flashlight and a dust mask with you when doing so.
After the Fact: Roof Inspection
Too late for prevention? Squirrels have chewed and scratched up your roof and made your attic their new home. What should you do? First and foremost, call an exterminator or other animal specialist and have them removed from inside your house. Any repair work will be accomplished for nothing if there are squirrels living inside your actual home. Once this is done, give us a call at (813) 485-4440 to set up an free roof inspection. We will be happy to come out and let you know how we can help repair the damage, and what can be done to prevent additional damage in the future. Don't let your furry friends become your worst enemies!