This photo of a raccoon entry point was taken by one of our technicians during a property assessment in Ottawa, Ontario. It shows pretty clearly how raccoons managed to get inside this attic by destroying the rubber plumbing mat at the base of the roof.
Most homeowners don’t realize just how many parts of their home are vulnerable to wildlife intrusion. It’s not until unwanted house guests find their way in that people consider what measures can be taken to prevent raccoons from getting into the attic.
What are plumbing stacks anyway?
Plumbing stacks are cylindrical pipes, usually 3-4 inches in diameter that can be seen extending about 12 inches above the roof line. They are used to vent your home’s plumbing system and help drain water from toilets, sinks and appliances. The stack emits sewer gas safely outside so that the water used in the home can drain properly to the sewer system. If the top of the vent becomes blocked with leaves, snow or wildlife it could cause the plumbing in your home to drain slower than normal.
Why are they vulnerable?
To make sure that dangerous sewer gases are vented to the exterior of the home the plumbing stack runs through the attic and exits the home through a hole cut in the roof board. To make things easy during construction, builders cut a large square hole (sometimes as wide as 10 inches) to accommodate the round pipe. They then use a then rubber mat (often called a boot) to cover the gap they’ve left around the stack. The plumbing boot keeps rain and snow from flowing into the attic, but presents a perfect opportunity for opportunistic wildlife.
Raccoons only need to tear at the rubber mat and surrounding shingles to expose a hole in the roof that leads straight into their future den site. The security, warmth and darkness of attics make them a perfect home for raccoons year round. Once established, it can be tricky to remove raccoons from attic which is why Skedaddle Humane Wildlife Control always advocates for prevention.
Covering the plumbing stack with heavy gauge steel screening secured to the roof prevents raccoons, squirrels and other wildlife from entering the attic and causing thousands of dollars in damage.
Skedaddle Humane Wildlife Control has the experience and know-how to keep even the most determined raccoons from getting inside your attic. Connect with us today to book a property assessment and learn how to protect your home from one of our expert wildlife technicians.