Traitor. Double-Crosser. Snitch. Rats get a bad rap—these are just some of the personality types associated with rats that appear to be more human than rodent. But maybe, just maybe, rats deserve some grief. When you go out to start your car, get nothing but a click, and find out rats ate through your wires? Yeah, you might just call out rats for being socially unenlightened.
We regularly see this issue and want to make you aware of it. We’ll even provide some preventive tips!
Our most recent case was a customer that we built a high-performance Jeep Wrangler for. The car was not a “daily driver,” the kind of vehicle you use to get you where you need to go every day. But it ran beautifully when he did use it until one day it didn’t. When we took a look, we discovered a rodent’s nest and exposed wires that had been chewed through. This wasn’t the first time we’ve seen this.
What is that rats like about car wires? And why did this client’s vehicle look like a hotel with a 24/7 smorgasbord? Rats need shelter, especially during colder months. The engine compartment of a vehicle that isn’t a “daily driver,” such as our client’s brawny off-roader, looks pretty darn inviting. Once rodents make a nest, they need food and wires look like food. In fact, in a bid to make parts more animal-friendly and biodegradable, some manufacturers use soy-based wire coverings, making wires a five-star meal. Bon appétit!
Looking for ways to make your car less appealing to rodents? Make sure you pick up pet waste, keep garbage locked down in cans that have tight lids, remove unneeded organic material such as wood and ivy from near walls, secure pet food, and seal off any small openings to your property. A hole in a garage wall, for example, might as well have a blinking neon “Rooms Available” sign.
Rodents can damage everything from headlights to engines. The symptoms you run into might be a check engine light, the vehicle running poorly or not starting. It might take weeks or even months for a gnawed-upon wire problem to become noticeable. That’s why it’s good to have the ASE Certified Technicians like those at Central Avenue Automotive on your side. Our staff is eager to learn, listen, and assist you at all times—that’s how we’ve earned an A+ from the Better Business Bureau. Give us a call at 253-854-6762 or request an appointment online.