How’s this for a shocker – you go to drop your rubbish in your wheelie bin and from out of the dark recesses you spot lots of beady eyes staring back at you!
This dramatic event is more common than you think, and with scores of hungry winter rats marauding our neighbourhoods now is the time to put some bin protection in place.
Have you ever walked along the street on rubbish collection day and picked up a stinky waft from the refuse? Well, you’re definitely not the only ones! Rats have impressive olfactory abilities. In fact, scientific research has long proven that rats are highly sensitive to smells, and some species have even been trained to detect odours specific to land mines and certain illnesses.
The good news is that with a little bit of effort you can ensure your bin doesn’t smell that bad (or good to a rat). Whilst it may not come up like a new rose on a spring morning, it’ll at least prevent it working like the local rodent magnet!
To help you out we’ve put together some handy tips here to keep your bin smelling tip-top and looking sparkly clean..
Tips For Keeping Your Wheelie Bin Rodent Free
Don’t chuck food waste straight in the bin and/or try recycle it
At the end of the day food content is the main thing the rodents are looking for. Eliminate that and you’ll go a long way to eliminating your problem. Recently added to the mix are some disrupted collection times – but even if your bins are emptied once a week they can still get stinky by the time they’re collected.
You can recycle a certain amount of food waste by composting it in a rodent proof garden composter. Items you would otherwise throw away such as coffee grounds, tea leaves, raw fruit and vegetables etc. can all go into your composter instead of the bin.
If you don’t have access to a composter or for food that’s un-compostable, you’ll need a plan B. Some councils have separate food collection bins, so make use of it! If your council doesn’t offer this service you’ll need to double-bag any food waste you have before putting it into your regular bin. Bagging food waste is the easiest way to keep your wheelie bin clean and less aromatic. Pay a bit more for decent bags and you’ll see less ripped bags and leakage.
Keep that lid shut!
Regardless of whether your bin is emptied weekly or fortnightly you should always ensure the lid of your bin fits well on closure and remains shut. Don’t overload your bin. Rats can easily gain access to the bin if the lid isn’t properly shut, and the releasing vapour trail will draw them in too.
Position the bin away from your property
Simply put rats are often attracted to bin areas and may look for further opportunity in close proximity, including ways into your property! With that in mind try to site your bin away from the house and well clear of bordering vegetation.
Don’t park your bin near higher ground or man-made structures
The most common route into a bin for a rodent is through the lid. Rats can’t climb up shiny surfaces such as the polyethylene that bins are made from and to gain access to the top of a bin it usually has to be situated next to a higher level such as steps, a fence line, vegetation or other structure. Move the bin away from the access point and you’ll eliminate this issue…simples!
If it does smell get it cleaned quickly
Of course, no-one wants to do this job, but needs must! Lay your wheelie bin down on its side and give it a thorough clean out if it’s getting mucky. For an easy life use a long-handled broom or a mop to do this plus some fresh hot water and disinfectant. The longer you leave bin cleaning the worst it’ll be so grab the marigolds and get stuck in. If you draw the line at bin cleaning pick up the blower or get googling for local bin cleaning services. And don’t forget to thank your lucky stars you don’t have their job!
Don’t forget to give that lid some special attention
This is the primary point of attraction to rodents and other pests. Check it closes properly and isn’t damaged. Give it a thorough wipe over with antibacterial cleaner every week where possible which’ll keep it clean whilst also having the effect of deterring rodents.
… and give us a call!
If you tried your best but you’re still getting rodents ‘round the bins we’ll be happy to remove them safely and humanely.