Pests in the Plumbing: 3 Real-World Scenarios Flippers Need to Watch For

If you’re flipping houses, you’re already familiar with pest control and all the things you need to do to ensure a space is clear for the people who buy it – but how much have you thought about pests in the plumbing?

Pests in the Plumbing: 3 Real-World Scenarios Flippers Need to Watch For

Stumped about where a pest problem is coming from? Get eyes-on the plumbing. According to experts, mice and rats, frogs and even roaches can come in through unexpected places. Here’s a closer look at what you need to know.

Mice and Rats: No Admittance (Except Through Broken Pipes)

Mice can squeeze through just about any hole that’s larger than a dime, which means when they find a way in, they can take advantage of it. Even a small crack in a sewer pipe can be big enough for them to invite the whole family.

Rats don’t have a problem coming up through the toilet, either. They can swim for up to three days at a time, which means they’re happy to pop in that way.

Pro Tip: Installing a multiflap, which allows things out but not in, may be a great solution – and it can be a selling point.

Frogs in the Bathroom

Frogs can climb into a vent pipe from your roof, and from there, they can make their way down to your toilet. Sometimes they come up through the sewer pipe from underground, too, and then work their way through an opening. Check the roof vents to make sure they’re closed off (including stack pipes, which release gas and fumes up there). All you need is a small cover or screen to keep them out.

Roaches: Sneaking in Through the Drains

Perhaps the worst of all, cockroaches can get in through the plumbing. They can cause serious diseases, and they breed quickly – and that means you have to do everything in your power to head them off before they get in. If you’re not finding a source elsewhere, check the plumbing by covering each drain with masking tape (or something stronger) in an X shape overnight. In the morning, you’ll see which drain they’re coming in through because a few unlucky ones will be stuck to the tape. After you figure out which drain is giving them free admission, you can install a stopper that puts the kibosh on the party.

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