Keeping mice out of outdoor appliances


Keeping mice out of outdoor appliances is hard.  There probably is no greater frustration in the spring time than getting a bill from a contractor for $1000 or more because mice got into a pool heater, generator or A/C condenser.  Yet, every year this happens to thousands of people.  Did you know this could be avoided for a material cost of about $20?

Keeping mice out of outdoor appliances is hard. It’s in their nature to find small voids, they just can’t help themselves.  The way to stop this from happening is with hardware wire, copper mesh and a bit of time.

First, the appliance must be thoroughly inspected and every void must be identified.  Next, you’ll need the following supplies and tools:

  • ¼” hardware wire
  • Tin snips or shears
  • Copper mesh
  • Self-tapping screws and washers
  • Drill or appropriate screw driver
  • Tape measure


After you have all your equipment and ALL holes have been identified begin measuring the entrances that rodents are or could get in.  You’ll be looking for holes about the diameter of a pencil.  It may take some handy work as not all openings will be perfectly square, but with a bit of patience and tin snips you’ll be able to maneuver a piece of wire to cover the hole.  The screws should be the smallest length possible, so it doesn’t penetrate the unit and puncture a electric, gas, oil or propane line.

Next, keeping mice out of outdoor appliances like pool heaters is another challenge. I have had my own struggles with this and plugging inlet and outlet ports works.  The easiest way to do this is with copper mesh. Alternatively, most all plumbing supply stores carry temporary rubber plugs.  All you’ll need to do is measure the diameter of the opening and insert the plug.

Finally, we come to the most frequently damaged appliance, AC condensers.  Manufacturers do not recommend covering the entire unit with a tarp.  However, the top is wide open for ventilation and the largest point where mice can get in.  The straight forward method of closing this area is to cover it a piece of plywood and remove it in the spring.

If done properly and if all the holes are found having a yearly repair bill for outside appliances could be a thing of the past.

Envirocare is a full service pest management company.  We have access to all natural liquid rodent repellents.  The repellendts are the same products we apply as part of our winter program to keep mice out of the houses.  When applied on a planned basis they may also prevent damage from rodents to exterior appliances.  Call 1-888-879-6481 for more information.

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