You are not the only one looking to keep mice out of the camper. The dreaded discovery of those nibbled food bags or mice droppings isn’t a rare case. Campers are just like a house, it’s just a little in size, but the mice will always be there if you don’t keep it nice and tidy.
Like the scavenging critters, mice love to reside around camping areas because they know there is always something to eat or nibble.
They live around these areas due to the near consistent supply of food available. They will always be there, so you have to be prepared for their arrival. You have to take some preventive measures to keep them out for good.
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Why Should You be Worried?
Well, you should be worried because these little creatures can be incredibly destructive. These little sneakers can reach out to unexpected places. One of the main reasons why they are so destructive is their numbers. There are thousands of teeth you’re dealing with.
Even if just a couple of them get access to your camper, they will soon build a nest and multiply fast. And that is something that you don’t want.
Mice are driven by food, and you will first discover them in your camper by their droppings. And they will be inside your food drawers or cabinets. They can also be found around garbage bins where plenty of crumbs dropped down on the ground.
If they are there for just a single night, they can chew through a lot to get to the food source. Mice can chew through walls, bags, clothes, containers, and even wires.
Moreover, if a rodent has accessed your food somewhat, you should better throw it out because medically, it is not advisable to consume that food because it might be carrying some disease.
During the winters, you might notice a large number of droppings. During the cold seasons, they seek a warm shelter that your camper provides. If you don’t keep it clean, they have easy access to your food
Various Preventive Measures to Keep Mice Out of Camper
The best way to keep the mice out of your camper is to go for some preventive measures. Here are some of them you can go for to get rid of them for good.
Keep everything clean
This is a no-brainer, but you have to be very careful and take nothing for granted here. Keep your camper and your campsite as clean as possible. You will manage to keep them out for a long time with cleanliness. You won’t only keep these little critters out, but the big ones like raccoons and even bears as well. They all love to chew on your camp food.
Before you store your camper, you need to run a deep clean on it, and the same is the case when you are taking it out. Get to cleaning daily on all your trips, no matter how small they are. With continuous cleaning, the process won’t take long either. Cleaning those tables, floors, and countertops regularly can make a significant amount of difference
You also need to wipe down the cooking surfaces and do your dishes straight after your meal. Doing so will not only keep mice out of the camper but also make your camper beautiful.
In the case of car camping, you should thoroughly examine your car for any food scraps or crumbs. As they can chew through anything soft, you should place your food items in hard bins because these are tough and time-consuming for them to chew onto. Also, don’t place your food items in your tent, or you will get a variety of visitors in addition to mice.
Keep the food items safe
We cannot emphasize this anymore. You have to store your food items in proper storage boxes. You can’t just leave them out in the open or place them in plastic food packages. Mice have very sharp teeth, and they can chew through even harder materials.
You cannot even place your food items in hard bins for extended periods because mice will have enough time to hew through them as well. You have to make sure you put all your food items in proper storage, and if they are in loose packing, you should get them out from there.
There is no way you should keep them inside your camper for any reason whatsoever. These food items include your drinks, condiments as well as non-perishables. Doing this will ensure that those mice don’t catch any smell out of your camper that resembles food.
Inspect your camper for any holes
If cleaning and maintenance is something you already frequently do, it’s time to check for those entry points for these nasty critters. You can assess your camper’s floor and see any holes thrown that you can find.
Even cracks within those connection points or look for any chew holes in your cabinets or drawers. You need to run this check both inside and outside of your camper. If there are some big enough places for a mouse to fit in, you need to fill in right away.
They can easily fit through a hole that is of a dime’s size, and some of them can even fit in small holes as well. A filling will significantly minimize their entry points into your camper. You can use expanding spray foam as well as caulk for the filling. Wire mesh is another good option to consider here.
Store your camper on concrete
Most people look for the availability of space when storing a camper. And that generally is right on the edge of the woods or right next to the garage in the yard. It might seem like a great storage point, but you keep your camper on the ground, which is where the critters look for food.
It doesn’t even matter how clean your camper is. If you are storing it for a few months, you will find some mouse nests in it. If you have enough space, you need to keep the camper inside your garage or at least on the concrete.
Mice don’t like to move around on hard surfaces because they feel vulnerable. Their little paws are designed to run around so fast.
Use mouse repellants
There is no hard and fast technique to keep these mice away. But some people use various types of homemade mouse repellents to keep them away.
Peppermint is regarded as one of the best mouse repellants. You can use its leaves, oils, or spray. A nice and easy way of doing this is to soak cotton balls and place them on the entry points. You can also spray the entry points with peppermint oil.
If you don’t like the smell of peppermint yourself, you can strategically place a small Irish Spring bar soap. You won’t have to replace it, and the scent is an effective mouse repellent. If you see that the soap is losing its aroma, it might be dusty, and you need to clean it up, allow it to dry, and put it back.
When you are done camping run a thorough clean process again
Returning from the campsite to your home can be pretty exhausting, and you are very relieved to reach your home. But your work hasn’t finished here. Besides unpacking, you also need to run a thorough cleanup of your camper once again.
No matter how long you will store it away, make sure no food items are left inside that camper. Don’t even think about putting them into plastic bins with the belief that nothing will go wrong.
You can leave your canned foods inside your camper but nothing else at all. Also, take care of any debris, crumbs, or spills along with those sticky spots on your camper. Check your fridge and microwave, and if you live in your caper all the time, you will have to do this far more regularly. It’s better to establish a schedule for your regular cleanups.
What Should You Do If They are Already Here?
If all your preventive measures turn out to be useless and the mice are already inside your camper, you need to remove them from your camper.
And to do that, you have to place mice traps and several different places. When they are caught, release them back into the wild far from your campsite. You can also go for ultrasonic pest repellents and conventional mouse traps.
But don’t hit your cleanup schedule. You might end up finding some holes or entry points and might get rid of a few mice while cleaning (if that doesn’t sound disgusting to you).
Many people don’t go for any prevention measures at all. When you regularly clean your camper in and out along with your campsite and park your vehicle on the concrete floor, you will significantly reduce mouse infestation chances.
Also, keep those access points properly sealed and be extra cautious during the winter season because this is the time mice are most active throughout the year.
You can also use mouse repellents to keep them out. And if you want to go old-school on them, then you can use those traditional mouse traps too.
But the best practice is to keep your camper clean before and after the storage and during usage. Not only will you be able to avoid mice for good, but you will keep some other larger critters like raccoons and even bears at the bay as well.
I`m a current Law Enforcement Officer working within the Counterterrorism Bureau in New York State. I have been Camping for over 20 years. My styles of camping include tent, car, truck, van, and RV travel trailer. I have a YouTube channel where I teach all types of camping with an entertaining method: https://youtube.com/@TheSmallsRVAdventures