Q:

Do electronic mouse repellents work?

A:

There is no sustainable evidence that supports the idea that electronic, or ultrasonic, mouse repellents work. These electronic devices are plugged into a home's outlet and supposedly emit a high-frequency sound. This noise is said to deter pests from entering the home, and encourage those currently in the home to leave.

To homeowners who want a humane way to dispel unwanted pests from their home, an electronic device seems to be the perfect choice. The claims are that the machine emits a sound, unintelligible to human ears, that chases away mice as well as cockroaches, spiders and other pests. These claims, however, have not been proven to work as stated.

Orkin, a pest company rated A+ by the Better Business Bureau, states that these machines may seem to work initially. However, the effects may not last for long. According to Orkin, mice get used to the sounds and become accustomed to the pulsating tones, thereby diminishing the effect. Also, ultrasonic sounds are directional. This means they only go in one direction and are absorbed by any object, such as a wall or furniture, that might be in front of the sound waves.

The International Association of Certified Home Inspectors states that there are better options for humane disposal of mice or other pests. Homeowners should consider options such as live traps or environmentally friendly repellents.

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