Keep Mice, Rats and Other Rodents Out of Your Car Engine

Electrical systems are becoming more and more important in automobiles. An electrical circuit can be found in every modern car from heated seats to power windows to computer controlled engine components. The wiring harness is just like the central nervous and circulatory system of a human body which pass information and power throughout the body. The wiring can be of different types like cold-resistant wires, heat-resistant wires, more flexible wires, depending on the areas where they will travel inside the system of a vehicle. But it is an unfortunate fact that rodents can live and create mayhem in engine compartments.

In fact, the damage done to vehicles by mice, rats, and their many cousins can be considerable.

Gnawing wires, ripping out insulation for nesting materials, or squirreling away caches of nuts and trash in car and truck engines can destroy some of man’s most sophisticated transportation technology and cause significant financial loss.

Some plastic insulating material now being used in cars seems especially tasty to the tiny invaders. When mice chew the insulation off wires that connect batteries, alternators, or anything electric to anything else, they cause short circuits that result in costly restoration.

Mice, rats and squirrels are all nesting rodents. With nesting rodents, a safe place to live is a high priority. These small creatures find the area under the hood of an automobile to be a great location. For them this area is easily accessible from under the vehicle, dark, warm and hidden.

Under the hood they find an abundance of material with which to build a nest. They often shred hood insulation and combine it with paper, leaves and other items they find. Vehicles that are not used every day are most inviting, but daily drivers are not immune. The problem is naturally worse in colder weather as food is less abundant and predators are searching harder for a meal.

The real reason rodents seek a home under a hood is that it provides a dark, warm, secure place to hide at least until the ignition key is turned. The start-up of the car’s machinery can be deadly for the critters, and sometimes can cause serious consequences for the drivers as well.

Contrary to the common belief they do not eat wiring for food. Instead, all rodents gnaw constantly to sharpen and keep the length of their teeth in check.

Unlike most mammals, a rodent’s teeth grow very rapidly throughout the life of the animal. A rat’s teeth can grow up to 2.8mm in one week! In one year, the teeth grow almost five inches. Rodents gnaw things to wear the teeth down. If they do not wear away, soon they will outgrow the animal’s mouth.

The tooth of a rodent is a unique arrangement designed to stay razor-sharp. Very thick and hard enamel covers the front of the tooth.

Let us look at some of the news articles:

Class-Action Lawsuits: Car Wires Attract Rodents, Cause Thousands in Damage

5 April 2017, NBC 4 Washington

A class-action lawsuit was filed this week on behalf of thousands of Toyota owners who say rodents are eating car wires coated with soy-based materials, causing thousands of dollars in damage.

“Toyota incorporates soy- or bio-based ingredients in the wiring … that bait rodents – including rats, squirrels and other animals,” the lawsuit says. Honda is facing a similar suit.

In an effort to reduce waste, some car manufacturers wrap wires in a soy-based material. Rupert Welch of Falls Church, Virginia, was surprised to learn what caused his car trouble three times over the course of a few weeks. Rodents had a feast at his expense, causing $10,000 in damage.

“I took the car back, but the next day all the lights went on, and the car wouldn’t start, and I had to call a tow truck,” Welch said.

 Rats are chewing up drivers’ eco-friendly wires in cars and leaving massive bills

April 5, 2017, Global news

Paul Sharma says his vehicles are under attack. Each of his two family cars have been hit, each time in his own driveway. The culprits were rats. “They say it’s the cold weather, they’re trying to look for a warm space, somewhere to hide in the night,” he said. “When they get hungry, they start chewing on the wires.” Rodents hiding out in vehicle engines are nothing new, but most new cars have a built-in buffet thanks to eco-friendly car wires.

John Sinkie with Budget Brake & Muffler said one in five vehicles he sees now has some sign of a rodent under the intake manifold.

“It can cause a lot of damage for a small little guy to get under your hood,” he said.

Small wire fixes can cost in the neighbourhood of $400 to $500. One rat’s nest led to a $7,000 bill, according to one mechanic.

Rodents eating away at car wiring, costing consumers

28 Feb 2017, WBAL TV 11

June Wotring has owned many Toyotas. She found them reliable, so it surprised her when the Highlander she has had for little more than a year started acting up.

“The track light and the engine light came on, and it was real sluggish,” Wotring said.

Wotring took her SUV to the dealership, where the service department told her what the culprit was.

“They said a rodent had chewed the wires, and they showed me in the engine where they chewed it, and you could see the rodent feces,” Wotring said. The dealership fixed it and charged about $400. But the problem returned.

“Two days later, I took it back again,” Wotring said. It was the same problem. This time, the dealership fixed it without charge, but it didn’t end there.

“About a week later, we took it back again, and that’s when they found out that the rodent was eating around the gas tank. So they had to replace the whole gas tank, all the wires,” Wotring said.

The repairs cost Wotring $2,900. Wotring’s insurance company paid the bill, and she paid a $100 deductible. She wondered why rodents became so intent on chewing up her wiring.

Thus it’s high time now to take some serious action against these rodent attacks. We just can’t let them eat our cars anymore!

C Tech Corporation can offer a solution to this problem. Our products Rodrepel™ is a non-toxic, non-hazardous rodent aversive. This product acts through a series of highly developed intricate mechanism ensuring that rodents are kept away from the target application.

Rodrepel™ is effective in low dosages, has low vapor pressure, thus posing no problems of fumes in the air, and also has a long life action of up to 50 years depending upon the application. Rodrepel™ is available in the form of polymeric masterbatches compatible with all the kinds of thermosetting and thermoplastic polymers.

It is available in the form of ready to use lacquer that can be applied as a coating inside or on the surface of the automobiles. Also, Rodrepel™ in liquid form can be incorporated in paints and used in the automobile industry.