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PEX vs The Rat

Larry WeingartenLarry Weingarten Posts: 1,656Member
Hello, I started using PEX in 1991 and have always heard the rumor that rodents can chew through it. I've never actually seen a photo or known anybody with first hand experience of this. To me, it had attained urban legend status. So, imagine my surprise at seeing this! It's like staring into the eyes of a unicorn :o No doubt others here have run across this many times, but for those who wondered about the myth, here's proof.

Yours, Larry


  • EBEBRATT-EdEBEBRATT-Ed Posts: 6,309Member
    @Larry Weingarten

    You really need to keep those rats well fed so they stay off the pex diet LOL
  • DZoroDZoro Posts: 998Member
    Had red squirrels chew into the bottom of my camper. Then chewed pex lines that crossed through the main frame. That was a pita to repair.
  • JUGHNEJUGHNE Posts: 6,439Member
    You need to use larger PEX.
    We use Gopher Pipe for UG electric services here.
    It is SCH 20 2"PVC, in 20' lengths, you still have to install direct burial wire inside and use SCH 40/80 for risers.

    The idea of the size is that gophers can not open their mouth that large to chew. :#
  • plumbob44plumbob44 Posts: 7Member
    I've been planning for over 30 years and using PEX for at least 20 years. I have seen this only once.
  • NoeVillegasNoeVillegas Posts: 4Member
    Here in Chicago they do not allow the use of PEX but I’ve come across mice chewing through the plastic ice maker water supply lines plenty of times.
  • I've only had one job where rats ate through PEX in the attic. The PEX was for a future zone and did not have water in it.

    More recently, rats ate through this control wire in the attic for a residential steam system. Not for steam heating, but for steam in a shower.

    Often wrong, never in doubt.

    Click here to learn more about this contractor.
  • flat_twinflat_twin Posts: 232Member
    Rodents chewing on vinyl wiring insulation is a constant battle for telco techs. We were told vegetable oil was used in manufacturing the vinyl and that's what attracts mice, rats etc.

    On the other hand, squirrels will chew through aerial aluminum enclosures when they're seeking salt. The only thing that worked for that was to hang a salt lick near the damaged enclosures
  • BumpyHedBumpyHed Posts: 7Member
  • Larry WeingartenLarry Weingarten Posts: 1,656Member
    Hi, This was a pretty extreme case, rats were taking over inside of the house as well :# But, the lesson was driven (chewed) home for me that if I'm installing PEX where there is evidence of rodents, I'm going to run it in a conduit or sleeve. I suspect the smaller the PEX, the greater need for conduit, just as @JUGHNE says! o:)

    Yours, Larry
  • WillieJWillieJ Posts: 15Member
    House wiring too. I found this while rewiring some ceiling light fixtures in my house.

  • Intplm.Intplm. Posts: 1,034Member
    There is a unit that you can use that I purchased at home depot in the rodent / poison section years ago. I now use it at every building that I own or have owned. This item works! Plain and simple just works. It is called the Victor Pestchaser.
    I bought it out of desperation. Mice and other critters getting in no matter what I did to stop them. I Just didn't think it would work. I was a typical naysayer.
    It is not a poisonous bait, but a noise maker that only rodents can hear. It is about the size a cadbury chocolate egg. It plugs into a outlet and has a small night light on it too. I now swear by them.
    Before using this, I was poison baiting, trapping, using professional exterminators, you name it, I tried it. And what stinks about the baiting and trapping that I was trying had the little critters getting into the house before the poisoning or traps could take affect, and who wants these vermin in the house to begin with ? Not me !
    With this little pest chaser they do not come in. They dont want too ! After I started using this thing the little verman had left. Not a sign of them. No more clattering noise in the walls or ceiling at 4AM. No more of the little pellet or big pellet droppings. No more damage to the house.
    After trying them at my own house I have used them elsewhere with the same good results.
    One thing I did do was use more than what the directions suggested. Overdid it a little cause like I said before, I was desperate to be rid of them. The things work.
  • This guy nibbled one too many wires. Chewed through the insulation on a hot leg of knob and tube and then climbed over the wire to connect the circuit. It was a quick death.

    Often wrong, never in doubt.

    Click here to learn more about this contractor.
  • LeonardLeonard Posts: 840Member
    edited May 2019
    Think you just have to seal ALL openings to house.

    My cousin had mice in cellar, I told her to seal up openings to the house, she had some rotted wood over outdoor bulkhead steps to cellar. She did and mice were gone.

    In my house I notice 1/2 inch gaps under door frame to garage and celler steps. I'll have to seal those.

    I adopted some semi- feral cats and ran a power cord under overhead door to outdoor heated cat houses all winter, overhead door was open ~ 1/2 inch. Later found I had mice in attic. Read they can crawl thru openings size of a dime. Guesing they crawled under overhead door, and got into wall thru 1/2 inch shrink gaps between wood boards on wall, and climbed thru wall into unfinished attic. I once heard them crawling up thru the wall.

    Another time a bat got in crevice 6ft off ground and I listened to him crawl down garage wall, and along 50 feet!!! of wall in cellar. I sealed that opening. And this is a fairly well built house , 60 years old.

    That eating thru power cable is scarry

    I put one of those mice traps in attic, it worked pretty well, less scratching at walls. Was one of those pro types, trap them live. Peanut butter on a trigger pad, they walk in open ended tunnel to get the food, their weight on pad triggers assembly to QUICKLY spin flinging them into a side chamber. You wind it up like a clock. Nice thing about that is no corpses rotting in attic, stinking up the place.
  • Intplm.Intplm. Posts: 1,034Member
    Seems you can never find all the holes no matter how hard you try. The critters find more places than you can find. I used to bait with d-con. That worked but found the dead guys all over , and plenty of stored d-con piled in different places.
    The "victor pestchaser" keeps the rodents away. They didn't even come in the house. They had to stay away because they could not stand the ultrasonic sound.
  • ethicalpaulethicalpaul Posts: 1,341Member
    Aww, the little guy just wanted to take a shower!

    1 pipe Utica 112 in Cedar Grove, NJ, 1913 coal > oil > NG
  • Larry WeingartenLarry Weingarten Posts: 1,656Member
    Well, Had he been a true "Plumb-Rat", he woulda installed a chrome shutoff valve and showerhead, along with a towel bar. This had to be a standard "Dirty Rat"... Nice rodentart! :)

    Yours, Larry
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