Can Alka-Seltzer Actually Help Get Rid Of Pesky Rodents?

If you're dealing with rodents in your home or yard, there's a chance you've heard that Alza-Seltzer is sometimes touted as a solution. However, this is one hack you shouldn't waste time on. You're not likely to see results — and you'll also waste your Alka-Seltzer in the process. 

In the event that you haven't come across this hack, the general idea is that hiding Alka-Seltzer in things like peanut butter or dry instant potatoes will lure rats and mice in. Once they've eaten the concoction, some claim that the rodents' inability to expel gas will lead to a fatal case of bloating. It's a similar idea to the myth that the carbonation from soda can kill rodents for the same reason. The proposed hack falls short, however, because — unlike the cartoonish explosion the creator was probably envisioning — Alka-Seltzer does not, in fact, have that strong an effect on rodents. 

As many who have tried using Alka-Seltzer to get rid of rats and mice on their properties have pointed out, the method doesn't work, and in some cases, rodents won't even touch the bait. However, it could also backfire, with the rodents being attracted by a possible food source. In other words, this is a "hack" best skipped. 

Essential oils are a more effective way to ward off rodents

While Alka-Seltzer won't get rid of a rodent problem, there are other, more effective solutions you can try. One of them is using essential oils to repel them. Eucalyptus oil, in particular, has been scientifically proven to ward off rats. 

A study published in the Scientific World Journal found that a daily spray of Eucalyptus oil in areas frequented by rats can keep them away with the relaxing scent. As for mice, there's no science proving how effective this hack is. That said, some pest control companies claim combining 2 teaspoons of the oil with a cup of either water or rubbing alcohol in a spray bottle is just as effective for the smaller rodent species. Again, you'll want to reapply this spray regularly for the best results. 

Not a fan of the smell of eucalyptus oil? Another study for The Thai Journal of Veterinary Medicine found that peppermint oil, wintergreen oil, geranium oil, and bergamot oil are just as effective against rats. For mice, the hack hasn't been scientifically proven. That said, pest companies suggest peppermint oil as a possible option for those seeking a humane solution for mice

Keep your yard tidy to make it unappealing to rodents

Undoubtedly, the most effective way to get rid of rodents, whether rats or mice, is to create an environment they wouldn't want to be in. One way of doing that is to use the essential oils they're known to detest — and you can even use the plants the oils come from as a deterrent. Eucalyptus and wintergreen plants, for instance, help repel rats from your garden

Of course, ensuring the area outside your home is tidy also goes a long way in keeping rodents at bay, so keep your yard as clean as possible. Neglecting your lawn is a big mistake that can easily attract mice and rats – and when it comes to the former, they may even try to enter your home through small cracks in your house. Clean up any wood piles, and avoid throwing food out. If you are going to throw something out for your pets, be sure to clean up leftover bits and pieces as soon as possible. As for bird feeders, once again, make use of essential oils. Sprinkling them around your feeder is a great way to keep the pesky pests away without stopping your neighborhood birds from getting a bite to eat.

There are many ways to get rodents away from your property without going the Alka-Seltzer route. Keep that for when you need it — if you're dealing with rodents, tried-and-tested solutions are your best bet.