Can Mice Get in Through a Window Air Conditioner?

Having mice enter your home through a window air conditioner is a common concern for many homeowners. Mice can squeeze into very small spaces and an air conditioner that is not properly sealed can provide an entry point. In this article we’ll discuss how mice can get in through window ACs, signs of mice entry, and tips for keeping mice out of your home.

Can Mice Really Get in Through a Window AC Unit?

The short answer is yes, mice can get into your home through a window mounted air conditioning unit. The gaps around an AC provide opportunities for mice to squeeze through. Mice are able to fit into spaces as small as 1⁄4 inch wide.

Air conditioners are often not completely sealed around the edges where they meet the window frame. These small gaps allow mice access to enter from the outside. Additionally, the accordion-like exchanger in the AC contains many nooks and crannies mice can hide in once they’re inside the unit.

Signs Mice Have Entered Through Your Window AC:

  • Strange odors coming from the AC – Mice leave droppings and urine that give off unpleasant odors.
  • Visible droppings around the unit – Mice poop constantly, so mouse droppings around an AC often mean they’ve made their way inside.
  • Shredded insulation – Mice will shred insulation from the accordion-like exchanger to build nests.
  • Strange sounds – Sometimes mice noises can be heard through an AC if they’ve built nests inside.

How to Keep Mice Out of Your Window AC:

  • Seal all gaps – Use weather stripping, caulk and other sealants to close any exterior gaps around the air conditioner. This helps block access points.
  • Clean under the unit – Don’t allow dust, dirt and debris to accumulate under the AC outside. This protects potential nesting spots.
  • Install mesh covers – Steel mesh covers specifically made for ACs help close large gaps mice can squeeze through.
  • Use mint oil – Mice dislike mint. Apply some mint oil around your unit to deter mice.
  • Avoid clutter around the AC – Don’t give mice places to hide by keeping the area tidy.
  • Check for interior signs weekly – Look for any signs of droppings, shredded insulation or nests to identify an issue early.

Take preventative measures to ensure mice don’t make their way into your home through the air conditioner. With regular AC unit maintenance and awareness of signs of mice, you can help protect your home. Act quickly at the first sign of mice to stop an infestation before it starts.

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