3 advices to protect the mouse proofing and how to remove a kickboard
To keep mice out, we need to block 100% of the access points throughout the property. The kitchen units are particularly important, above all, in the presence of a fitted-in dishwasher. You need to know how to remove a kickboard without damaging it and the proofing that may be at the back.
Why do you need to know how to remove kickboards and place them back?
Mice are small and can fit through small gaps. So, the standard is to block any holes or gaps larger than 0.5cm. We also call this the pencil standard; if a pencil can fit, block the hole until the pencil fits no more. Once the original proofing has been carried out, it is important to respect its integrity. Mice are resourceful and relentless so that they will be on the lookout for any entry point. They may also start creating new holes that will eventually let them in.
Three advice to ensure the proofing is kept in good condition
After the initial mouse exclusion work, we offer a one-year guarantee in case mice chew through new gaps. There is also the possibility that we overlooked an access point somewhere, and only time will tell. Nevertheless, the eyes of the clients are as good as ours, and you should always keep a sharp eye for anything that would be amiss.
1. Repair work carried out by a third-party company.
The most common callouts are regarding a plumbing issue. It may be a leak or possibly a domestic appliance that needs changing. The plumber is often required to remove sections of the proofing in order to access the required pipework.
Once the work has been carried out, it is important that the plumber/handyman puts it back exactly the way it was. Once done, he should double-check that he did not leave any gaps unblocked.
Also, if the work involves running new wires or tubes through the kickboards, you need to accommodate the size of the cables so the kickboard can still close tightly against the kitchen units.
2. Kitchen kickboard being pushed out of place.
It can happen that someone inadvertently kicks the kickboard of the kitchen units while doing the dishes. It could also happen while pulling out a domestic appliance. Sometimes it will be to pass through some cables or new pipework, as we saw in the earlier section.
Whatever the case, it is essential to ensure that the kickboards are tight against each other and the kitchen units. It is even more important if you have a dishwasher. Fitted in dishwashers, by their very nature, are difficult to mouse-proof. Consider that the proofing must be strong and tight and that the dishwashers have moving parts. The key is that the kickboards fit tightly against the proofing at the back.
Also, as a result of a kick, a gap may open up in the corners. If so, you may have to remove the kickboards and realign them properly. You will need to know how to remove kickboards without breaking them. In some instances, the kitchen fitters cut them so tight it actually takes some doing to remove them. We can use suction cups at the area of maximum pressure and hope for the best.
3. Do routine inspections of the proofing every so often
Inoculand Ltd. carries out mouse proofing until the eye can see in order to make the boundary between the void spaces and the living space perfect. So basically, when you look anywhere at the walls and floor, you should not see any gaps and holes. If the proofing is still good, you should see undisrupted surfaces and plans, like an unbroken line of sorts.
The way to proceed is simply to follow the walls, especially the line between the floor and the walls. Whenever there is pipework, double-check that it is sealed both at the front and also at the back.
When there are free-standing domestic appliances, they can be pulled out, and you can then check the proofing at the back. When for some reason, it is not possible to pull them out, we usually have to resort to proofing around the domestic appliance that is not as discreet.
How to remove kickboards that have been sealed shut with silicone?
When there is a gap above or under the kickboards, we may use wire wool and/or sealant to fill it up. In a Camden property, a plumber had forced the kickboard open and made a mess of it. You need to know how to remove a kickboard by cutting the silicone seal with a Stanley knife first, gently grab the kickboard by the gap below the dishwasher, and pull it toward you.
If there is no dishwasher or gap large enough for your fingers, you can remove kickboards by bending a fork at 90 degrees and sliding it through the gap.
What to do when you find a gap or hole anywhere?
Where there are gaps big enough for a pencil to fit, you want to fill it up in such a way that the pencil fits no more. Beware, the pencil standard is far too small for mice to fit in, but in doubt, it is always best to block too much rather than not enough.
In some cases, there may be a very large opening. So, the chance is that it was blocked at the back. One typical example is the case of the dishwasher. So even though you know how to remove a kickboard, ensure that it is not being held with screws first. It may be best to take some pictures and send them to us for confirmation first. Otherwise, there is a one-year guarantee on proofing, and you should call on it if you have seen any mice.