Repairing Buildings and Homes to Keep Out Wild Animals: Home repair is an essential part of wildlife prevention. Repairing either homes or industrial, commercial and public buildings in order to keep out wildlife usually comes into play once animals have already invaded a space. And depending on the specific type of animal you're dealing with, different repair approaches will need to be taken. What I mean by that is most wildlife removal jobs will require you to perform repairs while the animals are still inside, or in any case, before the animals have been removed. For instance, if you have a raccoon or a squirrel problem in your attic, you need to seal all access points but the main one used by the animals to get in and out. Once the necessary repairs are in place, a live exclusion cage trap will be set at the main point of entry. For rats and mice, on the other hand, all points of access will need to be sealed off before proceeding to trapping and disposing of the vermin.
Depending on the type job that is required, you will need the following or some of the following in order to be properly equipped for home and building repair:
• Sturdy, big ladder;
• Power screwdriver or hammer drill;
• Metal screws;
• Repair material such as metal flashings or steel screens;
• Metal vent covers or steel mash;
• Steel chimney cap;
• Replacement bricks if there's damage to the walls or basement;
• Protective headgear;
• Protective gloves;
• Suitable footwear;
• Safety googles;
• Sealant for any possible small gaps around windows or doors.
Prior to repairing comes inspection. This means that even if you do have a background in this sort of work, or are currently in a position where you frequently perform similar tasks, you still need to first perform home inspection to discover where animal entry holes or other type of damage is located – I recommend you also read my entry on how to inspect a house to find wild animal access holes, if you haven't done so already.
Absolutely all damage needs to be fixed, even if that means looking in every nook and cranny, stretching your neck and your limbs, and looking all silly like a supersized fly on the wall, or like a tossed pancake, flat on your stomach on the roof. A poor repair job will lead to the wildlife problem repeating itself. Animals invaded your home because they felt they could have shelter and easy access to food by taking up residence there. If you do not take the necessary precaution measures – home repair being at the top of the list – so that the animals won't see your home as being such an auspicious environment, you will have to go through the entire removal process again sometime in the near future. A wildlife control professional won't make it possible for this to happen, because they will know exactly what needs to be done, and they will have the necessary adequate toolkit – both in the sense of skillset and of the actual toolkit – to handle the job properly and efficiently by offering a permanent solution.
Animal damage control is one heck of a specialty service, and home repair should always be left in the experienced hands of a professional, no question about it. If you don't have any experience with this type of home repair, you definitely shouldn't try and give it a go now, of all times, when you could further compromise your home by doing a bad job, or worse, compromise your health by taking a nasty fall. I'm able to understand why you would want to take care of things yourself, I also like to take matters into my own hands when something needs solving. Still, I wouldn't go in and operate on a friend that has appendicitis, now, would I? No – I never trained to be surgeon. Same principle applies, because this is in fact a wildlife control matter, not just your everyday household patching here and there. I'm so vehement when it comes to this subject because I've seen it too many times: someone had a vermin problem, they tried tackling the issue themselves, got rid of whatever was bothering them, went through the effort of doing home repair, and after a month or a year, animals were back minding their own business. And why? Because not all entry holes were identified, or because poor quality materials were used for the repairs. Or both, and proper decontamination wasn't performed, to boot. I've made my case, and I hope you take me seriously with these friendly warnings. If, however, you will end up not hiring a pro, I do wish you best of luck, and I urge to respect all methods and proceedings to a T, no exceptions.
And what about damage inside the attic or building, such as chewed wires, torn ducts, soiled insulation, etc. These things also need repair. Read about Fixing Damage Caused by Wild Animals.
In the case of soiled insulation and biohazard, you can also learn about Attic Cleanup, Restoration, Insulation Replacement