How to Get Rid of Mice in Your Garage

Mice can make for the most unpleasant of infestations—but knowing the signs, why they appear, and how to deal with them is the best way to deal with them.
Written by Claire Beaney
Reviewed by Melanie Reiff
Mice in your garage can turn from a nuisance to a major stressor in what feels like overnight. Luckily, if you know the different ways to deal with them, you should be able to rid yourself of a mice infestation.
These small, seemingly benign critters are frequent visitors to our homes—we unknowingly provide them with the hidden spots and food supplies mice require to thrive.
Garages are especially vulnerable to infestations since mice are frequently missed here, and food supplies like seeds, bird food, and pet supplies are found here.
Knowing the signs of mice, what causes them to appear in your garage, and how to deal with them is the best way to prevent an all-out infestation.
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Signs of mice in a garage

You may need to pay special attention to detect signs of a rodent infestation in the garage, given the fact that these areas are frequently messy and you probably don't spend too much time there.
Here are a few key indicators you might have mice in your garage:
  • Squeaking or rustling noises (especially at night)
  • Nibble marks or damage on wires, walls, or bags
  • Unusual odors (like urine)
  • Rodent nests
  • Droppings along the edge of the room
Make sure to move things and check under items and structures to complete a thorough search of your garage!

Mice vs. Rats

Rats, another type of rodent, can be an even more dangerous garage pest, particularly in specific places and regions where they're more common.
You should understand the distinctions between the two species to ensure that you are dealing with your infestation correctly:
  • Mice are 3-4 inches long, brown with a white belly occasionally, with smaller-sized droppings.
  • Rats are 5 inches and larger, black, light gray, or brown, with larger droppings.

What causes mice in a garage?

Garages are basically a dream vacation spot for mice!
They can readily move in and out of these areas due to the abundance of cracks and crevices, as well as the availability of dark places to hide and nest. There’s also usually a decent source of water and food in garages for mice to snack on.
If you maintain a clean, well-lit space, you’re less likely to see a mice infestation.

Ways to get rid of mice in your garage

While they are some of the smallest and most unassuming pests you’ll face, wild mice are still vermin that can cause a lot of damage in and around your house. 
Here are five basic and practical strategies for getting rid of mice in your garage.

Spring traps

Traditional spring traps work by releasing a spring-metal bar that snaps down on the rodent when it steps on the trap to eat the bait.
The most commonly used bait for a spring trap is the classic chunk of cheese, but peanut butter and just about any food substance will work.
Check the traps often. A dead mouse will start to decay and smell rather quickly, which isn’t the most pleasant to deal with.

Live traps

If the idea of killing a mouse upsets you, you can use live traps to catch them. Most designs include luring the rodent in, then tripping a gate or door to trap it.
The main issue you may find when it comes to live traps is where to release them. It’s best to try and release any mice as far away from urban centers as possible, so you don’t end up causing an infestation elsewhere.

Rodent bait

Poisons of several types can be used to kill mice. Many of these employ anticoagulant chemicals such as warfarin, which work by causing the mouse to bleed internally for many days.
When it comes to homes with pets and children, rodent poisons are not a wise choice. Poison bait ideally shouldn’t be your go-to when it comes to eliminating mice from your garage, as they can come with a lot of complications.

Sticky traps

Sticky traps catch mice that wander onto their pads in search of food. These are sometimes regarded to be more merciful than spring traps, although a mouse trapped in this method can spend hours trying to escape, and even end up chewing on its own paws.
Sticky traps appeal only to those who are hesitant to set spring traps, yet they are no more successful and are less humane in many ways.

Keep a dog or cat

The correct type of house cat, as well as some dog breeds, can be quite good at catching mice. Young, aggressive kittens can be quite adept mousers, and many terrier dog breeds are bred specially to catch small animals. 
If you're fortunate enough to have this type of pet and trust it to catch the mice infesting your space, give it a few hours of hunting time in your garage each week (ideally at night!).
Key Takeaway There are several solutions to deal with mice in your garage, so be sure to do your research and determine which one you feel confident—and comfortable—doing!

How to prevent mice in your garage

Stopping a mice infestation in your garage is largely about making sure the space is as undesirable to these little critters as possible. 
You can take the following steps to get rid of mice in your garage:
  • Keep food tightly sealed or entirely out of the garage.
  • Keep the landscape around your foundation free of brush and thick mulch.
  • Fill in any holes or cracks.
  • Spray rodent repellant on the outside of your garage (which can be commercially bought or DIY’d using hot sauce, water, and liquid soap).
  • Another eco-friendly solution is to purchase ultrasonic mouse repellers (which produce a painful sound only audible to mice).
Mice can somehow always find their way inside a garage, and "preventing" them usually entails regular maintenance and monitoring.

Does home insurance cover rodent damage?

Unfortunately, damage from mice or the cost of removing them is generally not covered by home insurance. 
This is because a mice infestation is considered preventable or solvable with prompt action and isn’t regarded as an “unexpected incident”. It is seen as a maintenance concern because most pests can be detected early and eliminated at a low cost.
There may be exceptions based on your specific policy, the type of damage, and the findings of your insurer's claim investigation.

Finding affordable home insurance

Even if your insurance provider doesn’t cover you in this instance, now is a good time to go over your homeowner’s insurance and double-check it’s the right plan for you!
If you're unhappy with the coverage of your current policy or how much it's costing you, then you should check out
After providing you with a comprehensive cross-analysis of the best policies across providers, Jerry will handle the phone calls, paperwork, and renewals for your top pick so that you don’t have to. They even help cancel your old policy! 
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Mice enter houses through cracks and holes in walls, floors, and foundations—basically, anything a mouse can fit their head through can become an entry point for infestation.
They’re also surprisingly agile—mice can scale 6.5 ft. high walls and jump as high as 9.5 inches!
Though it would be nice, unfortunately, mice usually don’t leave on their own. Your garage and home provide a safe, warm place with lots of things to eat and drink—a mouse is unlikely to leave such a sweet deal behind!
Rates will change depending on where you live, but rodent extermination can cost anywhere from $170 to $520. This usually includes inspection, treatment, and prevention against future infestations.
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