If you hear fluttering in your ceiling at dusk and see small birds flying from your home, you likely have bats in the attic. You might also hear this noise at dawn also. Bats gravitate to tight warm spaces, so an attic is perfect for them. They can enter into any tiny hole, but it's important for the health of your family to evict them as soon as possible. This guide explains how to exclude bats and how to prevent them from entering your home again.
Step 1: Remove the Bats
Even though bats can fly in and out of very tiny spaces, a one-way bat exclusion device helps them leave your home but they cannot get back in because they cannot climb or crawl.
Make a bat exclusion device with a small piece of plywood and a PVC pipe about a half a foot long. Use a jigsaw to cut a hole in the center of the wood the same diameter as the pipe. Insert the pipe into the hole until the end of the pipe lines up with the hole. Then use a drill to attach the pipe to the wood with tiny screws, working from the inside of the pipe. Nail the contraption over the entry point and leave it there for a few days.
Go out to inspect the area in the evening to see if the bats are flying out of the space. If so, follow the next steps to prevent more from entering and to prevent the spread of disease. If not, call a pest control expert for help.
Caution: Have a professional from a company like IPM - Intelligent Pest Management remove bats from June through November. Bats give birth during this time. Baby bats will die in your attic instead of flying out, causing a bad smell.
Step 2: Prevent Bats From Entering The Attic
After removing all the bats from your attic, close up the entry points. Remove the one-way exclusion device. Apply mortar or caulk in the holes with a putty knife. Use mortar for larger holes and caulk for smaller ones. Smooth it out with the putty knife, give it a couple hours to dry and then paint.
Step 3: Clean Up the Mess
Put on a pair of gloves, a face mask and goggles. Go into the attic armed with a bucket of bleach and water mixture, and clean up any urine or feces the bats have left behind. This is an important step because bat urine and feces can spread disease. Normal activities such as placing items in the attic and removing them can result in these bodily materials getting on your hands or clothing, and then spreading to the rest of your family.
Take the time to ensure that you have located all the entry points before closing up the holes. It's important to remove the bats from the attic before preventing more from coming in, so expect the process to take a few days. They will simply die in the attic if you close up the holes first, raising your family's risk of disease. Call a professional if you have any problems with these steps.