Of course, you already know that – but how do you do it? Below, I’ve listed 3 simple, inexpensive steps, including an all-natural repellent.
1. Keep Your Grill Clean
The scent of food attracts mice, not to mention other un-wanted pests. Eliminate those savory grilled food bits from your bbq grate, and you may have just resolved your problem.
Of course, cleaning your grill is easier said than done. I mean, who wants to clean their grill, right? I just want to cook my food and eat it. But I recently found the best tip for grill cleaning.
Tip: Get the grill plates very hot, even before cooking. This helps to char all of the bits of food that typically stick to the grill. Then, you can scrape them off much faster and more easily.
For electric grills, Chef Velie suggests heating up the grill for 15 minutes prior to cooking. He also recommends using a wire brush along the grates immediately after cooking to loosen and remove food.
Removing debris while the BBQ is still hot requires less time and effort. Plus, when the food has been charred into ash, the rodents will not be attracted to the scent of food.
2. Close Off Access to Keep Mice Out
Rodents not only like food, they want to find a place to nest. So, how do you stop mice from nesting in your grill? Make it difficult to crawl in.
If you have an enclosed built-in barbecue, you can prevent pests from entering the gas grill by securing the access points. Environmental Pest Control recommends using steel wool to secure all holes and vents that mice may be able to crawl through. That said, they point out that you must remove the steel wool before grilling again because it is highly flammable.
Alternatively, some people opt for non-flammable copper mesh (copper wires woven together into a screen). You can easily cut the material with scissors and it will not rust.
Rodents can’t chew through the “mice mesh”, so you can use it as a long term, permanent solution.
You can buy 100-foot rolls that measure about 5″ inches across. Therefore, you can use it in multiple places (in addition to your outdoor grill) and cover large gaps as well as smaller holes.
3. Keep Mice Away from the Grill with Natural Repellent
If you have a free-standing barbecue grill like mine that has too many openings to plug, the best solution may be a repellent.
Stay Away makes an all-natural scent pouch that repels mice. The non-toxic, no-mess ingredients keep rodents away and work best in enclosed spaces.
Note: In bulk, you can get pouches for about $5 apiece. Each pouch lasts about 3 months, so for about $10-$20/year, you can eliminate the worry of opening your bbq lid to a mouse nest.
Even if you use a BBQ cover, mice can usually crawl through the base and then make a comfortable home for nesting. Earthkind recommends these natural repellents for grills as well as on decks, in gazebos and around hot tubs.
Now you know how to keep mice out of grill spaces without harming them. In fact, this may be the next best thing to a rodent-proof grill cover. Plus, you can sleep well at night knowing that your grill is safe and pests are partying somewhere else!