Having mice in your home is worrisome as they damage pretty much anything, bring diseases, and multiply quickly. One way to control these rodents is to install mice-proof insulation, but that can be tricky when you don’t know which materials can withstand their sharp teeth. So, what’s the best insulation to use when mice control is a priority?
Cellulose is the best insulation to keep mice away from your house. This installation doesn’t give room for mice nesting and is sometimes infused with boric acid to keep pests away. Other insulation types such as loose-fill fiberglass, hemp, and foil, can also help keep mice out.
In this guide, I will explain in detail the different types of insulation you can use to keep mice away from your home. After that, I will explain other techniques you should employ to keep mice far from your home. Let’s dive right in.
Types of Home Insulation You Can Use Against Mice
The different types of home insulation come with varying capabilities when it comes to rodent resistance. Some are virtually rodent-proof; others not so much.
To help you pick the best in this regard, here’s a review of the best types of home insulation for keeping mice away:
Cellulose insulation has many benefits, but its environmental friendliness and rodent resistance capabilities are probably its biggest selling points.
Cellulose (C6H10O5)n is a mix of three elements. However, its primary source for insulation is newspaper prints. Recycled newspaper prints and other papers account for 80% of cellulose insulation, while borates make the 20% for fire and pest resistance.
The mixture of cellulose and borate has negligible pollution. The recycled paper gets pulverized to form fiber before the mix with boric acid.
Mice are warm-blooded like humans, so they produce their heat to keep themselves warm. But due to their body size, the heat is never enough, hence the need for them to build nests for warmth. Cellulose insulation deters mice by making it virtually impossible for them to build these nests.
The raw material of cellulose insulation is paper, which has little strength to carry any other item, including mice nests. Of course, they will try, but the cellulose will fall when they build their nests.
Some manufacturers go the extra mile to make variants of cellulose insulation known as pest control insulation, which have even better pest repelling properties. You may want this insulation type for mice control if you’re up against a major infestation.
But even without the extra “beefing up,” standard cellulose insulation sits a cut above the rest when it comes to pest and rodent resistance.
Have a Question? Ask HVAC Technician
Click here to use the chatbox to speak with one of our technicians.
No in-home service calls. No appointments.
Read: Ductwork Insulation: Everything You Need To Know
Loose Fiberglass Insulation
Fiberglass insulation is the most popular type used in homes in the United States. You can use this insulation in different forms, including a blanket, or roll, amongst others.
Fiberglass insulation is famous for three main reasons;
- It can work as different insulation types, including blankets and rolls, rigid fibrous, and the loosefill option.
- It is easy to install.
- It is relatively cheaper than most insulation types.
Most fiberglass forms are thick and stable enough to provide warmth and hold multiple mice nests. That’s why fiberglass is generally not the best insulation choice for homeowners looking to keep mice away. However, loose-fill fiberglass is the exception.
Loose-fill fiberglass insulation has several similarities with cellulose. The material is lighter than regular fiberglass, so rodents can’t pitch their nests on the material. It also has a similar installation method to cellulose insulation; no wonder there is a raging debate about the best loose-fill insulation material: fiberglass or cellulose.
While fiberglass might win that comparison on some merits, cellulose is a better mouse deterrent. Fiberglass is a mix of glass and fiber, so it’s still heavier than cellulose made mainly from paper. As such, a mouse may manage to install their nest on it.
Also, exposure to fiberglass can cause you problems such as;
- Itchy and red eyes
- Irritations on your skin
- Pain in your throat and nose
- Stomach upset
So while loose-fill fiberglass insulation can be cheap and easy to install, it is neither the safest option nor the most effective against mice penetration. However, that’s in comparison to cellulose. Fiberglass still does a decent-enough job of keeping away mice to warrant inclusion in this list.
Read: What Is The Major Cause Of Thermostat And Zoning Failure?
Hemp insulation may not be the most common type, but it’s one of the best. This insulation type is mainly hemp wool from hemp plant fibers. The manufacturing process of hemp insulation is safe, but producers may add polyester or cornmeal to the mix for increased strength.
Hemp has an environmental impact that’s even more important than most insulation materials; it helps reduce the carbon footprint.
The US Government values hemp’s role in reducing carbon so much that it invested $90k into Hempitecture, a company that makes only hemp insulation. According to the report, the government wanted to use more clean energy for buildings and research the impact of hemp in reducing the carbon footprint.
In addition to being environmentally friendly, hemp insulation does a great job of keeping mice away. Hemp is a fiber material like cellulose, so it is usually too light for mice and other rodents to pitch their tents.
However, this is not the only reason hemp insulation repels mice.
Multiple reports have it that hemp’s chemical properties repulse insects and pests. This is why it’s such a great option for ductwork insulation because mice often pitch tent in the ductwork.
There’s only one caveat to using hemp insulation: Even though it might repel most types of mice and other rodents, it might attract a species of mice known as field mice or deer mice.
These mice love the smell of hemp, so they’ll likely take you up on your offer and invade your home if you install this kind of insulation. The good news is that these mice species are prevalent around farms since they love hemp seeds, meaning they might not be an issue in urban areas.
Read: Can Zone Damper System Save You Money And Is It Really Worth It?
Aluminum foil, a mixture of aluminum chloride and potassium amalgam, is another insulation type that keeps mice away. This insulation type is also common because it is effective at bringing warmth to the home.
Also known as reflective insulation, foil insulation has many advantages:
- It lasts long.
- It is lightweight.
- It can keep homes cool.
Aluminum foil provides enough backing for mice nests, but the material isn’t an easy task to chew for a mouse. So while it might be sturdy enough to hold a nest, mice don’t get a chance to get past it in the first place.
Don’t get me wrong: Mice’s teeth are sharp enough to cut through most materials with similar strength to aluminum. The thing is, chewing on aluminum foil makes the rodents sore, turning them off.
Fun fact: NASA uses this insulation in space travel to protect astronauts from every radiation possible. Aluminum sheets are arguably the best at reflecting radiations away.
Read: Why Ecobee Shuts Off Before Reaching Temperature? – Troubleshooting Guide
Tips To Keep Mice Away From Your Home
Your home’s insulation is not the only way mice can get into your home. They can go through the doors, windows, and other parts of your home, and it’s up to you to block these entry points in your home. Otherwise, investing in rodent-proof insulation is pointless because the mice will find other ways to get in.
Here are some tips that will help you keep mice away from your home:
- Examine the home exterior. If you have wall cracks or small openings outside your home from the roof to the walls, you invite rats into the house.
- Avoid using plywood siding. Installing wood siding in your home is relatively cheap and easy. However, plywood is soft enough for mice to chew easily and get into your home.
- Seal your door. Doors usually have a small opening at the top or bottom. That opening might not seem like much, but it’s big enough for mice to get in. That’s why you need to install a seal at these openings.
Getting rid of mice is much more work than preventing them from finding their way into your home. If you are considering prevention, ensure you use the cellulose insulation or any other type discussed in this guide.
It is usually better to hire a professional to install the insulation unless you’re a skilled DIYer. A poorly installed insulation leaves room for mice to capitalize and get into your home. And given how persistent these small creatures can be, you don’t want to give them any chance.