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How To Keep Animals Off Your Roof

Depending upon where you live, one of the concerns you might face is dealing with an infestation of animals. Few sounds are as unsettling as the subtle scratching or rustling in the walls or roof of your home in the middle of the night. 

How do I keep animals off of my roof? Thankfully, there are a few simple solutions that can help you keep unwanted critters off of your property. How can you keep animals off of your roof? You can keep them off by doing the following: 

  1. Use Animal Repellent to keep the Squirrels and other Animals off of your Roof
  2. Check Your Attic Regularly for Unwanted Animals
  3. Make Sure the Trees Around Your Home Have Been Treated
  4. Keep Your Trash Contained to Discourage Unwanted Attention 
  5. Ensure Your Gutters Are Clear
  6. Inspect Your Chimney Regularly

keep animals off of my roof

There are quite a few animals that you can find either on your roof or in your attic that can be very unpleasant to encounter unexpectedly. Animals like squirrels, possums, bats, woodpeckers, mice, rats, and raccoons.

Unknown to some, these kinds of animals can carry some dangerous diseases. Some of the diseases that can be found in some cases are rabies, leptospirosis, giardia, histoplasmosis, murine typhus, coccidiosis, coronaviruses, raccoon roundworm, and Lyme disease. 

However, If you follow these next few steps carefully, you can be sure to have an animal and disease-free roof that you can be proud of. 

1. Animal Repellent can be a Great way to Eliminate Squirrels and other Pesky Animals

Animal can be a nuisance. There are several products that are made to keep these little animals away from you roof. You can spray around the eves or areas where the squirrels are accessing your roof. Rodent Defense is made to protect your roof from pesky squirrels, rats, mice and raccoons.

animal repellent to keep the off of your roof

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2. Check Your Attic Regularly for Unwanted Squirrels and other Animalssquirrel damaging a roof

Figuring out how squirrels and other animals are getting into your attic is often not the easiest task. Unless you find every single entry point, you will never fully get rid of the issue completely. 

In fact, you won’t even be able to capture the animal and get rid of it because it will continue to escape in and out of the access point. However, because animals need to leave regularly for the basic essentials of water and food, you’ll be sure to find plenty of signs that will help you find them. 

Checking your attic will actually start outside of your home instead of inside the attic. You will want to use a ladder to climb to the roof of your house to begin examining the exterior. Inspect things like vents, wood that the animals can chew through, and look for chewing damage or tracks. There could be many different areas where the animal could be entering. 

Once the exterior has been examined, now we can move on to the attic itself. Using some form of head lighting will prove very useful in this situation. Something else you might want to consider using is a face mask so you aren’t inhaling insulation fibers or feces that the animal has left behind. 

As you are examining the attic, be sure and only walk on the wooden beams so that you don’t accidentally fall through the drywall. Take your time looking at all of the ducts, wiring and for any damage. Similar to the outside, look for tracks, feces, and any chewing damage. As cute as they might be, don’t be surprised if you even find a nest with baby versions of the invader. 

Once you have made your assessment, you will want to take time to patch any holes you have found, install vent covers, and set a few traps in key locations. 

3. Keep Animals Away By Making Sure Your Trees Have Been Trimmed

You will most likely have some trees that are close to your home, and these can be easy access points for animals to get onto your roof. If there are branches that are hanging over your house, take some time to trim them to a point where access is no longer possible. 

Because critters like squirrels are able to leap pretty far, you might want to consider trimming them down to around 8 ft to ensure they won’t be able to make the jump. You might also be able to take this time to consider if there are any trees that you don’t want near your home at all so that you can remove them completely. 

Tree guards are another solution that can be considered when trying to protect your roof. A small fence around the base or sheet metal wrapped around the trunk will keep some critters at bay. 

keep animals off of your roof by trimming trees

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4. Keep Your Trash Contained to Discourage Unwanted Attention 

The main reason that animals are in or around your home in the first place is that there might be a food supply nearby that they just can’t resist. Sometimes the easiest way to keep animals at bay is to make sure that there is no easily accessible food readily available. 

Some trash cans just don’t cut it when it comes to keeping out animals, but there are a few things you can do to ensure that it stays untouched. 

  • Try installing motion sensor lights — If your lights come on right when the animal comes close to the trash, they will often bolt.
  • Use two bags instead of one — Double bag your trash! It’s a simple way to protect the trash but also keep any attracting odor contained.
  • Make sure the lid is tied down — Take some rope, or even some bungee cords to keep the lid of your trash can closed and secure. Doing this will make it almost impossible to access.
  • Spray your trash with Windex — Surprisingly, the ammonia scent that comes from Windex will actually keep animals far away from your garbage. Spray your bags and close the lid.
  • Use Mothballs — If there are mothballs in or around your garbage, animals will find the smell very unpleasant and will move on. You can even toss a few into the garbage before you take it out. 

squirrel on roof gutters

5. Ensure Your Gutters Are Clear

No matter what type of home, gutters are a huge attraction for any type of critter. Nests can be created by birds and squirrels, or insects will be very comfortable living anywhere there is rotting or wet debris. If the infiltration of these animals in your gutters are left unchecked, they can lead to many other problems, so you want to address this right away. 

The fastest way to keep animals away from your gutters is to make sure you get into the habit of cleaning them out regularly to get rid of any debris that might be blocking the regular flow of rainwater. Standing water is a huge attraction to a lot of nasty things, so keeping your gutters open is crucial. 

If you are tired of cleaning out your gutters on a regular basis, there are some other solutions. A big one is to take time to install gutter guards. These types of guards have been created with you in mind, and keep unwanted debris from falling into your gutters and creating a blockage. There are a few different types of gutter guards. Here are the ones you might be interested in: 

  • Slit or hole gutter guards
  • Mesh covered gutter screens 
  • Bottlebrush gutter guards
  • Sponge gutter guards
  • Foam Gutter Guards 

Be sure to address these problems head-on so that you can avoid having to deal with more difficult challenges later on. 

foam gutter guards

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6. Inspect Your Chimney Regularly to Keep Animals Off Your Roof

Chimneys can be an irresistible place for an animal. Chimneys are built in a way that creates protection from the outside elements, and if they are not used they offer the perfect place to settle in and call home. Inspecting your own chimney can be dangerous. It may be best to contact a local roofing company to climb up on the roof and thoroughly inspect the chimney.

It’s best if you are preventative with protecting your chimney, otherwise, you might have a problem. If animals have decided that your chimney is their home, it is very difficult to remove them from this state. The process can be frustrating and very expensive in the long run.

You will most likely need to call a local pest control company instead of trying to remove the critter yourself. These animals can be carrying diseases like parasites and rabies with them, so the professional route is the way to go.

If you are trying to protect your chimney from these kinds of invasions, one of the best things you can do is invest in installing a chimney cap. Chimney caps are made from a variety of different materials like aluminum, copper or steel, and can be fashioned in many different styles to best fit the style of your chimney. This type of cap will have a mesh screening that will keep out raccoons, birds, bats, possums, and squirrels easily.

As an added benefit, chimney caps are able to keep water and snow out of your chimney. This will keep you from having to pay a large sum to address water leak damage that has taken its toll. These kinds of caps will also keep sparks from escaping your chimney, keeping your home safe from unwanted fire hazards.

If you wait too long to get a chimney cap, and accidentally install one after an animal is already living there, the damage can be extensive. If this happens, the animal will end up feeling trapped and go downwards instead of upwards.

This means there is a chance that the animal can get into your home, causing even more damage than you ever thought possible. There may also be nests that the animal has created that present more fire hazards that can be extremely dangerous. These kinds of blockages will prevent smoke from rising, and fill your home with harmful gases.


While there is a lot of great information here, the best way to keep animals off of your roof will always be preventively, so be sure and follow these tips before you have an animal problem and not after. For more information on how to keep animals off of your roof, contact your local roofing company today.

Written By

Hi there! My name is Matt and I write for Expert Home Report. I enjoy writing about everything related to home improvement, home tips and DIY. In my spare time, I'm either spending time with my family, doing a DIY project or learning a new skill.