How to Stop Squirrels from Chewing Through Your Outdoor Wiring Once and For All

Having squirrels chew through outdoor wiring can be extremely frustrating and costly to repair. However, there are several effective methods to deter squirrels and prevent further damage. With a bit of effort, you can stop squirrels from chewing through your outdoor wiring for good.

Why Squirrels Chew Wiring

Squirrels love to chew, and they are especially drawn to the plastic coating and rubber insulation around electrical wires. The main reasons squirrels chew wiring include:

So in short, squirrels don't intend to cause damage. They just find wiring irresistible as something to gnaw on. But this can leave exposed live wires and electrical hazards.

Preventative Measures

There are several approaches to make your wiring less appealing and deter squirrel damage:

Remove Food Sources

Eliminate any nuts, seeds, or fruit around the wiring. Hungry squirrels will be less likely to gnaw if other food isn't readily available. Clear away any fruit/nut trees or bird feeders nearby.

Install Physical Barriers

Wrapping wiring in flexible metal or PVC piping can prevent squirrels from accessing the cables. You can also encase wiring in tough steel wool for protection.

Use wire mesh screens over entry points like gables, attic vents, and eaves to block physical access. Secure with metal screws.

Apply Repellents

Strong smelling or spicy commercial squirrel repellents applied to wiring can deter chewing. Some options are capsicum pepper solutions or ammonia-soaked cotton balls.

You can also coat wiring with foul tasting soap bars or sprinkle on cayenne pepper. Reapply after every rain.

Try Ultrasonic Repellers

Battery-powered ultrasonic devices emit high frequency sounds that squirrels hate. Position them near wiring runs. Just be cautious of potential effects on pets as well.

Keep Cables Taut

Ensure wiring between connections or junction boxes has no slack or loose sections. Taut cables have less surface for squirrels to grab onto and chew.

Use Flexible Conduit

Enclosing wiring in flexible metal conduit makes it harder for squirrels to bite through. Secure conduit tightly with clamps so squirrels can't pull out cables.

Remove Existing Damage

If squirrels have already damaged wiring, you’ll need to remove compromised sections.

Repairing damage and sealing access points removes hazards and discourages further squirrel tampering.

Persistence is Key

It takes consistent effort over time to fully squirrel-proof outdoor wiring. Be patient and regularly check for new damage. Maintain physical deterrents and keep reapplying scent/taste repellents, especially after rain. Don't let your guard down.

With persistence and vigilance, you can successfully keep destructive squirrels away from your wiring for the long run. Employ several deterrent strategies together for best results. Protecting your wiring will prevent costly damage and the safety risks of exposed live wires.