Four Most Effective Ways to Repel Squirrels Naturally

Squirrels are adorable creatures. However, they can quickly turn from lovely to pesky the minute that they steal the contents of bird feeders, wreak havoc on the garden or invade your home. Before they do more harm, it’s a good idea to keep them off your property.

One of the best ways to repel squirrels is by overwhelming their senses using either an ultrasonic repellent or strobe light. Squirrels may also be repelled using certain essential oils, herbs, vinegar, coffee and mothballs. Blasts of water work as an effective squirrel repellent, too.

There are many ways to keep squirrels at bay.

Some of the best are those that can give them the idea that they should not come back without hurting or killing them in the process.

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Fret not as squirrels are hardy creatures. Squirrels have been around for almost 40 million years — they will survive living away from your property.

But First: Why Keep Squirrels Off-Limits

Many people find squirrels to be adorable and cuddly because of their beady eyes and antics.

As a matter of fact, if you will search for cute squirrel videos online, you will get more than seven million results. Yes, there are many reasons to love squirrels. However, in some instances, squirrels can also give you several reasons to dislike them.

Here are just some of the things that can make squirrels abominable rather than lovable:

  • Holes in the lawn from their constant burying and digging up of nuts.
  • Damage to garden plants.
  • Gnaw marks on the wooden lawn or patio furniture pieces.
  • Always empty bird feeders — squirrels are notorious for stealing seeds for birds.
  • Damage to the exterior structures of your home.
  • Damage to insulation materials, PVC pipes, and electrical wirings.

According to health experts, squirrels may also spread certain infections and diseases, although only a few of them are harmful to humans.

There is no need for them to bite you to end up sick.

In some cases, all that is needed is for them to nest in your home and introduce into it parasites or bacteria they have with them.

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Having a couple of squirrels on your property may not be a cause for alarm.

However, it is a different matter if there are many of them around. The same is true if they are leaving you with a headache.

If such is the case, getting rid of squirrels is the step to take. Killing them or contacting a pest control company (and shelling out lots of cash, too) is not necessary.

Most of the time, it’s enough that you use certain devices or products to let them know they are no longer welcome, and that they are better off looking for a home elsewhere.

Ways to Repel Squirrels Effectively

Online, you will come across an assortment of tips and tricks on how to keep squirrels at bay. Many of them can also come from the mouths of your family and friends.

Unfortunately, not every piece of advice on how to scare squirrels away from your house and the rest of your property will work.

To avoid unnecessary stress and frustration, you must carry out steps proven to provide results.

The good news is that there are plenty of them to choose from. Each one of them is capable of meeting expectations.

Without further ado, let’s take a look at some of the best ways to fend off squirrels…

Use Flashing or Bright Lights

If there are squirrels in your attic or elsewhere in your home, there is a simple way to drive them out without using sprays with questionable chemicals that can harm not only squirrels but also you, your loved ones and your pets.

It’s none other than using flashing lights, which squirrels and other rodents hate.

Just like other animals that can become common household pests, squirrels will try to steer clear of danger at all costs.

Their fight or flight response can be activated by flashing lights, which could be mistaken for as a threat.

Humans, particularly those who are into partying, love moving to the beat of music as well as strobe lights. Squirrels, on the other hand, hate strobe lights.

It’s for this reason why the installation of strobe lights in areas of your home with squirrels or at high risk of being invaded by squirrels can work to your utmost advantage.

Because they are commonly used for events where a DJ or loud music is present, many strobe lights are sound-activated. This is a great thing when it comes to using strobe lights as squirrel repellents.

That’s because no homeowner has the time to stand next to a strobe light all day and all night long to activate it as soon as a squirrel appears.

Alas, strobe lights with sound sensors may fail to activate even when squirrels are around. Squirrels are incapable of creating a sound loud enough to trigger strobe lights.

The good news is that there are alternatives to sound-activated strobe lights. They are none other than motion-activated floodlights.

Floodlights may not be as very good as strobe lights when it comes to annoying squirrels and other rodents that can invade your home. However, they can still discourage them from doing their mischievous deeds.

Here are some motion-activated floodlights that you can get your hands on:

JJC LED Motion-Sensor Floodlight

The majority of the body of this floodlight capable of being activated by motion is out of aluminum.

It doesn’t come as a surprise since it’s intended for outdoor use. However, it is very much possible to install it indoors, especially if you want to keep your interiors free of squirrels and other rodents, too.

One of the nicest things about the JJC LED Motion-Sensor Floodlight is that the lights can be automatically turned off anywhere from five seconds to five minutes.

What’s more, it comes with three heads — the angle of each one of them can be changed.

Because of this, you can direct the light to squirrel hotspots, making sure that they will get the message that they should scamper away.

The maker says that the LED lights can be of service for 22 years when used seven hours per day.

Mr. Beams Wireless Motion-Sensing Spotlight

If you want something that’s trouble-free to install, consider going for the Mr. Beams Wireless Motion-Sensing Spotlight.

That’s because it is wireless.

Needless to say, it is battery-operated. Fret not as each set of batteries can last for up to one year with an average of eight to ten activations a day.

Once motion stops, the LED lights shut off after 20 seconds to help prolong battery life. And because they are compact and no dangling wires are involved, you can keep indoor clutter at bay.

Although there are only two heads around, they can be adjusted to give you customized light coverage.

Just before you shop: By the way, there are motion-activated strobe lights available online. Unfortunately, all of these products that could be used as squirrel repellents are solar-powered.

It goes without saying that they are not intended for installation inside the home, in particular areas where squirrels find it agreeable to nest in.

Ultrasonic Repellents

Squirrels, just like other animals with a lot of natural predators, have amazing ears. They can hear sounds so well to help them survive, especially when danger is around.

Their ears can pick up sounds from a distance more than twice the range of your hearing. Squirrels can also hear frequencies that your ears cannot detect.

It’s because of this why ultrasonic repellents are some of the best when it comes to driving away squirrels. Just like what their name suggests, they work by emitting high-frequency sounds.

Worry not that the presence of ultrasonic repellents in strategic areas of your home will bug you while you are working or taking a trip to dreamland.

That’s because your ears cannot pick up the sound they give off. The ears of squirrels, on the other hand, can pick it up loud and clear!

However, there is something about ultrasonic repellents you need to know: they can repel more than just squirrels.

Many other animals can also hear the high-pitched sound that ultrasonic repellents make. They include cats and dogs. If you have a pet, you may want to look for a different way to repel squirrels.

Otherwise, your furry pal will end up stressed in the daytime and sleepless in the nighttime, which is bad for its mental and physical health.

But if you don’t have a pet, feel free to install ultrasonic repellents in your home. However, do take note that the pets of your neighbors and wild animals nearby might pick up the sound they create.

Let’s take a look at some of the top-selling ultrasonic repellents for squirrels out there:

Mos-Repel Ultrasonic Rodent Repeller

This ultrasonic repellent for squirrels and other rodents comes with dual speakers to ensure that the high-pitched sound it creates will cover the entire area.

Besides the dual speakers, the Mos-Repel Ultrasonic Rodent Repeller also has multiple functions, thus allowing it to repel an assortment of common household pests.

For instance, the product has what’s called TRANS mode. The maker says that this mode is the best for dealing with squirrels. That’s because it uses pressure waves that can shoo away those gnawing critters better.

To have an idea of how this ultrasonic rodent repeller works, switch the TEST mode on — the device will emit a sound that mimics the ultrasonic sound squirrels and other pests hear when it is activated.

Other modes available are the ULTRA mode (ultrasonic sound) and DUO mode (a combination of ultrasonic sound and pressure waves).

eHouse Ultrasonic Electronic Repellent

Purchase includes two ultrasonic repellent units, which allows you to keep up to a couple of areas of your home squirrel-free.

Or you may install both of them in the same room if it’s large, or there are lots of squirrels that have welcomed themselves in without your permission.

Plugging them into a wall outlet will start the repelling action. Because there are no buttons to press or switches to flick, you can avoid complications that come with using high-tech devices.

Besides squirrels, the eHouse Ultrasonic Electronic Repellent can also take care of many other common household pests.

Some examples are mice, bats, spiders, cockroaches, bed bugs, ants, ticks, and fleas. Lifetime customer service and care and a 100% money-back guarantee give hints on how reliable the product is.

Gadino 6-Pack Ultrasonic Pest Repellent

If you want to make sure that none of your indoor spaces will attract squirrels, consider opting for the Gadino 6-Pack Ultrasonic Pest Repellent — a single purchase allows you to install up to six ultrasonic repellents for fending off squirrels as well as many other types of rodents and pests.

According to the maker, each unit is capable of covering up to 1,200 square feet. If the room is large or it’s inviting a lot of squirrels, you may install multiple units.

There’s no need for battery replacements. It’s because the devices are operated by plugging them into a wall outlet.

Do sound repellents work on squirrels?

Sound repellents work on squirrels very well. This is especially true for those that emit ultrasonic sound, which squirrels cannot tolerate because of their heightened sense of hearing. For best results, however, one must use sound repellents that come with superb quality and extensive coverage.

When shopping for an ultrasonic sound repellent, make sure that you check out customer reviews (especially the reviews of those with squirrel problems, too) before placing anything in your cart.

Scare Squirrels With Water Sprinklers

Many people love keeping squirrels as pets. They treat them like cats and dogs, which is why they give their furry pals a bath every now and then to keep them clean and smelling nice.

In the wild, squirrels don’t mind swimming. If necessary, such as when running away from a predator or catching a fish due to the absence of other food sources, won’t hesitate to jump into a pond or lake.

Squirrels use their tails as some sort of a rudder to help them navigate in the water.

However, squirrels don’t like blasts of water, which is why they can’t stand water sprinklers.

If you don’t want any squirrels on your property, needless to say, consider installing water sprinklers. But don’t just install any water sprinklers — install those that can be activated by motion.

As soon as squirrels step foot into your garden or backyard, these devices will start propelling water in all directions, scaring those squirrels away.

There is no denying that motion-activated water sprinklers can help keep properties free of squirrels. Sadly, there is one downside to their use: just about anything that moves can activate them.

So, in other words, your cat or dog can cause motion-sensing water sprinklers to get activated. Birds that drop by to peck on seeds and worms can activate these sprinklers, too.

But if giving squirrels a lesson is a priority, then go ahead and install motion-activated water sprinklers in strategic places.

Some motion-activated sprinklers in the market come with additional features that can make repelling squirrels more convenient. For instance, there are models that are powered by the sun.

However, you can rest assured that the presence of solar-powered features and other bells and whistles can cause the price tag to soar.

When shopping, your budget is a major consideration. Identify which features can cause motion-sensing water sprinklers to still work against squirrels even if they are removed.

The following are some of the best motion-activated water sprinklers available online:

Orbit Yard Enforcer Motion-Activated Sprinkler

If you love your garden and you wish to protect it from any animals and pests at all costs, consider installing the Orbit Yard Enforcer Motion-Activated Sprinkler.

One of the nicest things about this product is that its motion sensor has a day-only mode, night-only mode and 24-hour protection mode.

Because of the availability of different motion sensing modes, you can get more than 7,500 activation cycles per set of batteries. The water sprinkler runs on four AA batteries.

Having the motion-activated water sprinkler installed is easy. All you have to do is thrust the spike into the soil or turf to keep it in place.

Afterward, connect your garden hose to it. Connecting multiple units if you have a massive property is trouble-free as each one comes with a garden hose inlet and outlet, too.

Hoont Cobra Motion-Activated Water Blaster Rodent Repellent

The name says it all — the Hoont Cobra Motion-Activated Water Blaster will make sure that squirrels will feel unwelcome on your property by blasting them with an intermittent jet of water.

Every blast lasts for five seconds only, which allows the product to save water while keeping the garden or yard free of squirrels. This feature also helps conserve power (it runs on two AA batteries).

And by the way, it can cover a maximum of 30 feet. If you have a smaller area to cover, the range can be reduced without any trouble.

Unfortunately, one unit can be connected to a single garden hose only. It’s nothing like the motion-activated water sprinkler that we have talked about earlier, which can be linked to one another with just one garden hose.

KKmoon Solar-Powered Animal Repeller Garden Sprinkler

If you want to save yourself from changing batteries often, then the KKmoon Solar-Powered Animal Repeller Garden Sprinkler is the right one to install to keep squirrels out of your property.

That’s because it takes advantage of the sun to power up its motion sensor — yes, the product is motion-sensing, too!

Fret not that it will only work during the daytime since it’s solar-powered. This garden sprinkler slash squirrel repeller also works at night, thanks to its rechargeable internal battery.

One of the best things about this product is that its motion sensor can tell the difference between plants and squirrels (or any other animals).

This means that it will not spew out water when the wind blows. Also, it is possible to activate the motion sensor during the day or night only, or for 24 hours straight.

Pepper Area With Unfavorable Smells

Sometimes, there is no need to install any sophisticated devices such as floodlights, ultrasonic repellents or water sprinklers to keep your property off-limits to squirrels.

Especially if you are on a tight budget, you can make squirrels go away just by annoying them with smells that they do not like.

The good news is that there are many smells that can get on the nerves of those beady-eyed creatures, causing them to go away before they get the chance to steal from bird feeders, damage garden furniture or enter your home.

What do squirrels hate to smell?

Squirrels hate the smell of certain essential oils, especially those that smell minty. Leading the list are peppermint and eucalyptus. Squirrels also hate the smell of many kitchen items such as vinegar, garlic, onions and coffee. The smell of mothballs is hated by squirrels, too, not just by moths.

If you prefer a cheaper way to repel squirrels, all you have to do is annoy them with things whose smells they cannot stand. Squirrels may get the memo and never come back to your property ever again.

Continue reading if you want a squirrel-free life without having a gigantic hole in your pocket…

Will Essential Oils Keep Squirrels Away?

Essential oils with minty or intense smells can help keep squirrels away. A few drops of them can be placed on cotton balls, which can then be placed on various areas of the garden or yard. They can also be placed in the attic, basement or any other room in the home that squirrels tend to visit.

When it comes to repelling squirrels with essential oils, some of the most effective are peppermint essential oil and eucalyptus essential oil. Squirrels simply cannot put up with their unmistakable minty aroma.

Online, a small bottle of peppermint essential oil or eucalyptus essential oil doesn’t come cheap.

This is especially true if it’s the therapeutic grade kind, which is perfect for aromatherapy purposes. Worry not if you are on a limited budget. That’s because you can also count on peppermint or eucalyptus plants.

All you have to do is grow some peppermint or eucalyptus plants around trees, the pole of a bird feeder, and the base of a birdbath, or right next to lawn or patio furniture pieces that squirrels love to gnaw on.

Besides peppermint essential oil and eucalyptus essential oil, other essential oils that you may use are:

  • Clove essential oil
  • Thyme essential oil
  • Lemongrass essential oil
  • Cinnamon essential oil

Speaking of cinnamon essential oil, you may also rely on cinnamon powder to keep squirrels at bay.

By sprinkling generous amounts of this common baking ingredient where you don’t want any squirrels, you can save bird feeders from running out of seeds or your electrical wires from ending up chewed on.

Does Vinegar Keep Squirrels Away?

image of vinegar

The pungent smell of vinegar helps keep squirrels away. What’s so nice about this squirrel repellent is that it’s highly accessible. Vinegar is also cheap, although apple cider vinegar costs more than white vinegar. Spraying vinegar or soaking rags in it can help keep one’s property squirrel-free.

Some people cannot stand the smell of vinegar. All squirrels, on the other hand, cannot stand the smell of it.

This is why this common ingredient for making dipping sauces and dressings is an effective all-natural squirrel repellent.

One of the easiest ways to use vinegar for fending off squirrels is soaking cotton balls or rags in it and then leaving them where you don’t want any squirrels to hide or nest in.

Alternately, you may place vinegar in a spray bottle and spray it on areas frequented by squirrels. Refrain from diluting it with water or adding essential oils to it to make it smell better.

This will weaken the characteristic smell of vinegar, which is what repels squirrels, thus rendering it an ineffective solution to the problem.

Unfortunately, there is one downside to the use of vinegar as a squirrel repellent. Especially when used indoors, it can make any area of your home smell like, well, vinegar.

Also, you will have to apply vinegar as soon as it dries to keep squirrels at bay.

Just a word of caution: Refrain from spraying squirrels with vinegar just to drive them away. That’s because it may irritate the eyes of squirrels. In some instances, it may also damage the cornea (the outermost lens of the eyes).

This may leave squirrels blind.

Will Garlic and Onion Keep Squirrels Away?

The strong smell of both garlic and onion helps keep squirrels away. Chopping them up and placing them where squirrels are off-limits tend to deliver the best results. Squirrels can also be kept from visiting one’s property and wreaking havoc on it by having lots of garlic and onion plants around.

Everyone knows that garlic and onion can make so many dishes taste and smell better. They offer many health benefits, too. They range from lowering blood cholesterol levels to increasing the immune system.

While many are drawn to adding lots of garlic and onion to their meals, especially health-conscious people, squirrels are drawn away from them.

Mainly, it’s because they cannot stand their overpowering smell. The minute the little noses of squirrels detect garlic and onions, they will leave you alone.

Other than using actual garlic and onion or planting them on your property, you may also use garlic essential oil and onion essential oil. These aromatic oils are being used for aromatherapy purposes.

Just a quick tip: Aside from garlic and onion, there is another common culinary ingredient that you may count on — cayenne pepper. Squirrels don’t like its smell and the way it feels in their teeny mouths. You can add three tablespoons of cayenne pepper to a pound of birdseed. Worry not as cayenne pepper doesn’t have any effects on birds.

Do Coffee Grounds Keep Squirrels Away?

Coffee grounds can help keep squirrels away. Squirrels do not like the way coffee grounds smell, which is why they will stay away from them at all costs. Used coffee grounds can be used for repelling squirrels. No matter if caffeinated or decaffeinated, coffee grounds can help drive off squirrels.

Using coffee grounds is beneficial, especially if it seems like it’s your garden that squirrels love to target. By sprinkling it around your plants, you can keep squirrels from munching on them.

image of squirrel and sprinkler

What’s really nice about coffee grounds is that it not only repels squirrels but also nourishes the soil.

That’s because it contains nitrogen as well as potassium, phosphorus, and other minerals that the soil needs. So, in other words, coffee grounds double as fertilizers.

Squirrels are not the only creatures that coffee grounds can repel but also others that can harm your garden, like:

  • Ants
  • Slugs
  • Snails
  • Beetles

Unfortunately, coffee grounds tend to lose their smell quickly when exposed to the air. It’s because of this why you will need to replace coffee grounds on a regular basis if you want to keep squirrels at bay.

Will Mothballs Keep Squirrels Away?

Placing mothballs indoors and outdoors, too, can help keep squirrels away. Mothballs contain the chemical naphthalene. This chemical gives off a very strong odor that squirrels and many other common household pests dislike. However, naphthalene is toxic, which is why it can kill animals and kids.

Despite the name, mothballs can deter many other insects than just moths. They can also repel larger animals such as rats, snakes and of course squirrels.

Although effective, the problem with mothballs is that its main ingredient, which is naphthalene, is toxic.

When squirrels accidentally ingest mothballs, they could die. Squirrels are not the only ones that could die from consuming mothballs but also cats, dogs, and little children!

By the way, naphthalene in mothballs is bad for the environment, too.

Just a word of caution: If you have kids or pets, steer clear of using mothballs as squirrel repellents. There are many alternatives to mothballs, some of the most effective we have talked about above.

Just Before You Try to Repel Squirrels

When it comes to keeping squirrels at bay, all you have to do is answer the question “what do squirrels hate the most?” Luckily, there are many answers to it, which is why there are numerous ways to repel squirrels.

Installing floodlights, ultrasonic repellents or motion-activated water sprinklers and using essential oils, vinegar, garlic or onions, and mothballs are some of the most effective ways to keep squirrels at bay.

When looking for the best way to repel squirrels, consider your budget and the severity of the problem.

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