Squirrels are one of the most troublesome pests on roofs. They leave behind nuts, and may even try to nest in your roof, both of which can cause damage. But, you may wonder how to keep squirrels off your roof. They are agile little fellows who don’t mind launching themselves from any nearby object to your roof. The secret is to remove whatever is attracting the squirrels in the first place.
What Attracts Squirrels to Roofs?
If squirrels are frequenting your rooftop, then something is attracting them to your home. Squirrels need three things that may bring them to your roof:
Squirrels may use your roof as their personal diner if you have a source of food nearby. So how do you stop squirrels from eating on your roof? Removing the food source will send the squirrels over to the next yard to enjoy their meal.
If you have a tall tree dropping nuts or other squirrel foods onto your rooftop, you should trim them back and frequently clean the debris from the roof.
If you keep bird feeders, ensure they are closer to a tall tree or a fence than your home. This way the squirrel will use the tree or fence to hide from predators while he eats instead of using your roof. Alternatively, you can install squirrel guards on your bird feeder to stop them from eating there at all.
2. Nesting Areas
Squirrels need to create a nest or den for their babies. The California ground squirrel does this by digging out a burrow, while other squirrel species make nests in trees. Either way, squirrels may see your roof as a perfect nesting spot, especially if you have gaps in your fascia, the wooden board behind your gutters. Once they are in residence, a squirrel may chew up your attic insulation to use as nesting material.
To stop squirrels from nesting in your roof, have a roofing professional fix any gaps in your fascia, replace any rotted boards, and install a chimney cap if the squirrels are using it. Also, be sure to fix any insulation the squirrels tore up.
3. Escape from Predators
Sometimes your roof is just a highway squirrels use to quickly get away from predators. Still, frequent squirrel traffic on your roof isn’t going to help is lifespan. So, you need to cut off the squirrel’s path onto your roof, which is usually from nearby trees.
The simple solution is to trim back the trees until it’s too far for the squirrels to jump, or about ten feet. Flying squirrels may get a little further, but they don’t actually fly, so if you have flying squirrels trim a few more feet and your roof should be safe.
Of course, squirrels may also use your property fence to climb onto your roof, and you can’t trim your fence back. However, you can install squirrel guards where the fence meets your home, which should block their path.
Whatever the reason squirrels are on your roof, it’s important to stop them quickly before they do any damage to your roof.