As the weather begins to get colder, rodents will find many places to find warmth and shelter. One of the places you do not want to find them is in your car. One American resident woke up one morning and went to start her truck up, and it was completely dead. This is due to rodents not only making her car a home, but making a meal of it too. It cost her $400 to get repaired – around £298.
Jon Linkov, Consumer Reports Auto Editor says, “we’ve noticed lots of complaints about rodents chomping their way through wires, causing huge headaches for car owners”.
The problem is getting so bad that lawsuits have been filed against Toyota and Honda as apparently soy-based materials are being used to cover wires, which makes them attractive to rodents. The lawsuits also claim that the car manufactures should cover the bill of any repairs that should need doing.
To help combat the issue, Honda sells rodent-deterrent tape which contains capsaicin which is the active component in chilli peppers, making it extremely unpalatable to rodents.
What can you do to prevent rodents eating your car wires?
Jon Linkov explains that if your car sits on the street or a driveway for a while, it is a good idea to often check under the bonnet to see if you can spot any rodent damage. If you do spot some, you should use the rodent deterrent tape over damaged wires to prevent any more damage occurring. If you can see an area where the rodents may be gaining access – E.G a ventilation area, you should contact a mechanic and ask them to install a wire mesh.
The manufacturers have responded to this by stating that there is no evidence to support that substances used for car wiring cause rodents to chew through them. A Honda spokesperson commented, saying that rodents are prone to chew on wires, whether they are in cars or homes.