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Critter access


jacwjames
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I have been in the process of installing a FASS fuel pump.  As part of the installation I am installing a fuel pressure gauge on the secondary filter with the gauge mounted on the dash.  I needed to pull wires to the front and had checked and did not have any open conduits.  So Monday I pushed a 3/4" conduit from the generator compartment through one of the chassis frame holes on the passenger side.  I got it as far as the center compartment and then stuck.  I dropped the ceiling and surprise surprise, I found a huge mouse nest along with a snake skin.  I vacuumed up the mess and started looking at access.

I had previously tried to seal any openings on both ends of the chassis rail access where all the hoses, wires, and piping goes all of this still seemed to be in tact.  The only other access that I could see was the hole above the fuel tank where the  fuel hoses were routed and the propane pipe hole.  Monaco did seal the opening above these holes that accessed the rest the area between the chassis rails but when I looked where I had dropped the ceiling panel I found that there were several large holes (fist size) which was where the mouse nest was.  I bought a can of foam yesterday and spent an hour sealing these holes and resealing any opening in the front and rear.

Over the years I've had bout of mice intrusions.  While building our new house with the rig parked next to a large wooded area I had traps set and would catch mice regularly. Never could really figure out how they got in, I guess I'll see if this solves the problem.   

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I hung an electronic rodent repeller in the engine compartment with a power cord from the rear bathroom through the engine access panel. I also have a repeller inside by the front door and one in the rear bathroom. I did this to keep squirrels out of the engine compartment and chewing the wires. I haven't noticed a problem in 10 years as I knock on wood.

Gary 05 AMB DST

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Snake skin,  that's scary.    On the other hand, a snake or two in the coach will probably scare the mice away.     The DW probably won't go for it though, she might not even get in again.     Hmmm I wonder if rubber snakes would work or can you buy snake urine.  😁

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While I was building my garage I had the motorhome in front of the house, it was not plugged in, no sewer or water connected.  Sewer & hose openings had the covers closed.  But I caught a mouse in one of the traps that I leave set out.   I did have the jacks down so they could crawl up the springs which would provide good access to the chassis rail system.  The front jack is right in front of one of the rubber pieces Monaco installed but left holes.  I had plugged these holes with foam but mice don't need much of an opening to gain access.  Once they gain access to the basement area the war is lost.  Too many access points. 

So although the plunger trick will help, it is only on of many access points. 

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Best I can see, when it comes to mice and rats, a RV is like a Swiss Cheese with dozens of access points. This past fall I spent a long day crawling around under, in the bays and inside our 2007 Cayman PDQ spraying foam into areas that the beasts could get into. Anywhere a pipe or wire passed up through the floor was an open door. It was obvious that the manufacture had made little or no effort to plug up those areas. One of the main areas I found was where a large number of the wires and pipe went from the basement up into the coach underneath the bathroom sink cabinet. I shown a flashlight down from above and looking up from below there were at least a dozen openings a mouse or rat could easily crawl through. There was an about 8" diameter hole in the floor where all of these wires and pipes passed through.  I stuffed steel wool into the areas and then foamed around the steel wool. Where the water line went up to the toilet was another quarter sized hole. I went though 9-10 cans of the spray foam.  Since I did this we have not caught any mice in traps set in the coach. This is despite the fact that last winter the storage facility had a major rodent population explosion. I caught dozens of mice outside the coach with a rolling log mouse trap.  Plus I put rat poison generously all around my stall in the storage unit. 

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6 minutes ago, dandick66 said:

I’ve always heard that if you see a black snake you won’t see mice.  I guess it’s a matter of personal preference.  Snakes can be scary when you see them, but they won’t chew wires, either.

We do live in an area with black snakes and go out of our way to not injure them.  I was moving a pallet of Ash slabs that I had stored outside covered with heavy black plastic and a tarp, I was moving it to store in my new garage/shop.  Moved it close and uncovered, when I pulled the plastic off there was a ~5' long black snake that quickly slithered it way up underneath my tractor.  My wife and I finally found it hiding under the seat.  Wife was able to pick it up an move it to the woods. 

I'd rather have snakes then mice in the motorhome.  I had found a large snake skin last year that was sitting in the small bottom draw in the center of the dash, I had been wondering why I hadn't caught any mice for a while. 

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I can't swear to this but, we have not had a single mouse in spite of living in the woods where we catch mice all the time around the house.  A grey squirrel had gotten in somehow, still haven't figured that one out, but the squirrel was kind enough to pee all over the place until I trapped him.  We are guessing that since squirrels eat mice, the scent from the squirrel has kept the mice out.  We have not had any creatures at all since.  I know you can buy coyote scent, that might work.  I'd be fine with a snake, the DW not so much.  But what would the snake eat once it got all the mice? 

Woody Miller

09 Dynasty Regal IV

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