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and this right here is why I tell people to not kill snakes. Killing snakes in your area just makes this worse.
Except for in the winter when the mice and other vermin are looking for a nice spot to destroy something, the lazy snakes are hibernating. At least they are here in Kansas. I actually had a pregnant female garter snake get into my basement through my dryer vent a couple of summers ago. She got caught in a sticky trap (for spiders, no mice in my house thank you very much) and died while struggling to get free. Found out the hard way that garter snakes don't lay eggs but give birth to live little snakes, which she did prior to expiring. Took weeks to catch all of the little boogers! I now keep the dryer vent wedged shut with a door stop.
 
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Except for in the winter when the mice and other vermin are looking for a nice spot to destroy something, the lazy snakes are hibernating. At least they are here in Kansas. I actually had a pregnant female garter snake get into my basement through my dryer vent a couple of summers ago. She got caught in a sticky trap (for spiders, no mice in my house thank you very much) and died while struggling to get free. Found out the hard way that garter snakes don't lay eggs but give birth to live little snakes, which she did prior to expiring. Took weeks to catch all of the little boogers! I now keep the dryer vent wedged shut with a door stop.
This story was wild from start to finish :lol: :lol:

I particularly laughed out loud at the phrase "the lazy snakes are hibernating"
 

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This story was wild from start to finish :lol: :lol:

I particularly laughed out loud at the phrase "the lazy snakes are hibernating"
The truth is often hilarious...and snakes are lazy!
 
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The truth is often hilarious...and snakes are lazy!
I will say that I make sure to not kill snakes so when they aren't being lazy they kill the other pests! Natural order of things!



Unless it's a copperhead and it's in near vicinity to our home since we commonly have kids at the house. Those I have no choice lol
 

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Ey, in the winter they are uber lazy, but if your letting the vermit population grow heavily during breeding months, you have more competition for food, resources, heat, ect ... they get more aggressive and get more "chewy" so they go after damn near anything including wires. If one would stop 90% of the snake killings we would have less vermin trying to get into those spaces, and less chances of being a victim.

The truth is often hilarious...and snakes are lazy!
 

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The main reason rodents chew wiring is they are looking for SALT, (or perhaps some other minerals)
The best preventive, if you know you have rodents around.. Is to put out a salt block on the ground near by.
Particularly if they have already eaten some wiring.. The fastest and best way to prevent any further damage is to put out the salt block.
Even breaking it up a little with a hammer, and spreading the salt on the ground near your car.
 

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The main reason rodents chew wiring is they are looking for SALT, (or perhaps some other minerals)
The best preventive, if you know you have rodents around.. Is to put out a salt block on the ground near by.
Particularly if they have already eaten some wiring.. The fastest and best way to prevent any further damage is to put out the salt block.
Even breaking it up a little with a hammer, and spreading the salt on the ground near your car.
It used to be because of the wires tasting like saline when chews on, but now that companies are going "green" they commonly use soy based wiring insulation which tastes good to them. On top of the fact they HAVE to chew to wear down their teeth. A shame the "eco friendly" alternative has a con of attractive mice, but now auto manufacturers also put rodent retardant tape on wires to keep them from smelling the soy based wire insulation. I have no idea if we have soy based wire insulation, but that would make sense.
 

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Oh, I feel your pain, not on the ST (yet) but on several of my cars over the years, and here in New York our mice are affiliated with the mob, so they are even worse.
I bought a bottle of highly concentrated peppermint extract from Amazon, I add just a few drops to a 32 ounce spray bottle, mix, then spray all over my engine compartments. Mice apparently hate the smell of mint (hot pepper flakes too, but then your car smells bad) and will look elsewhere. The issue is you gotta keep after it and spray at least once a month.
Honda, BTW, sells engine compartment tape laced with something like hot sauce so the little bastards stay away from the wires. Good to get if you've made a repair and want them to stay away from the newly fixed area.
 

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There is an abandoned home around the corner from my house that the "owner" has been just dumping his garbage on the property for years, now it has a huge 4x4 and 3 identical wrecked toyotas outside in the tall grass. Mice and rats have moved right in and now have made their way to my home.

Little bastards live under my sheds, ate my mother's vegetable garden and leave shot and piss stains everywhere. I found rat droppings on my engine cover a week ago when checking my oil.... Not happy. They better stay out of my car if they know what's good for them.

Thankfully I have a warranty against breakdowns through my insurance, hopefully it covers wiring, because I got a sneaky suspicion something similar to this might happen to me. Can't use traps or poison either, got pets that might eat the pellets or get hurt by snap traps. Tried using some of those catch traps, baited with peanut butter, little boogers are smart, they eat the butter and leave the traps tipped over and empty.
 

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There are little plastic "houses" you can buy where you put the solid block of mouse poison in and a cat or a dog can't get at it. I suppose if a cat ate a poisoned mouse it might be an issue but your problem is only going to keep multiplying, and at an astounding rate, and won't go away on its own.
 

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Discussion Starter · #34 ·
I'm still not convinced it was critters, mice, aliens or whatever...
I think it was probably a defective wire of sorts.
Here's my theory-
I've had the car 2 months now, it rained alot this week && this is the 1st time I've actually had the car on the road in the rain...what if the wire was already bad && the rain getting on the wire triggered it?
I asked the service writer if there was a chance this 'critter' chewed on this wire prior to purchase && it finally failed...?
He said there was no way to prove it.
But you can prove it happened in the 10 hours from me getting home to getting in my car the next morning?
I got blank looks && shrugs.

I'm not trashing Ford, the dealership or the service team...sh*t happens...I'm just not convinced it was critter damage.
 

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Old cloth wiring was also attractive to mice, it seems. An old boss had a POS early E-Type (POS is redundant as they were clearly built as disposable baubles) and one of the many major problems with it was rodent-eaten wiring (as if it the positive ground electrical system needed any help sucking).

A guy I work with said mice make nests inside his snow blower engine every year. First year he discovered this by trying to start it and seeing mice run out of the exhaust. Taking off the head, he couldn't tell how many he got, but they certainly didn't all escape. Now he takes it apart every year before snow. Not sure why he doesn't just plug up the intake and exhaust, but whatever.

There's some great youtube videos of various rodent traps with kill footage that are more entertaining to watch than they should be (maybe "satisfying" is the better word) and some good trap reviews as well as some creative ways of dispatching them. Best repeat multi-trap seems to be the baited roller across the top of a water bucket and variations of that.

I had a vole problem a few years back and tried rat traps baited with peanut butter. I checked on them a few days later and found three of four turned upside down without being set off. The fourth, Mr. Squirrel got greedy. Collateral damage, but screw them, too. Anyway, the rat-sized voles are as smart as actual rats. Anticoagulant bait stations are what finally worked with the voles, but I don't like that their poisoned bodies could kill raptors that might eat their corpses. I found out the better poison to use is zinc phosphide—when the rodents eat it, their stomach acid turns it into phosphine gas and kills them, but shouldn't be enough to affect any predators that may eat them in turn.

One thing I tell myself to feel better about junking Duchess is that the weird smell inside was most likely the damn voles and that's something not worth dealing with, especially if the things got into the heating system.
 
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