Bats in the Chimney: What to Do and How to Get Rid of Them

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Bats prefer dark and enclosed spaces since it protects them from bad weather and predators. In their natural habitat, we find bats in caves and covered areas. However, due to a large number of homes being built, these creatures are finding refuge in enclosed spaces.

We’re talking chimneys, sheds, and attics.  

Bats in the chimney are often a common occurrence and can become a real nuisance for homeowners. So, the pressing question most homeowners have is, “How to get bats out of chimney?”

It is always best to take preventive measures. Bats are small animals and can find their way in through a crack as small as a quarter-inch wide.

Bats in chimney almost sound like the chirp of any common bird. And their presence cannot be detected until they have grown into a colony or if one accidentally lands up in the living room.

If you are noticing bats in fireplace alone and not in other areas of your home. (such as the attic, shed or basement.)

So, let’s come back to the main issue — how to remove bats from chimney? 

In this post, we’ll discuss basic steps and measures that will help you remove chimney bats:

Know the season

Before removing bats, it is important to know if it is maternity season for the bats. This generally occurs around the summer months. And it is best not to take any action during this time since there are could be many flightless baby bats inside the chimney.

Inspect the house

In order to get rid of bats in chimney, you need to first carry out a thorough inspection of the entire house.

Do two crucial things:

  • Inspect within the chimney to identify the species of the bat as well as the size of their colony. This will help predict their behavior.
  • Observe closely from dawn and dusk. This process gives clues as to where they are flying out to and what their entry points are in the chimney.

Find out how you got chimney bats

Before answering the demanding question, “How to get bats out of your chimney?” it is important to know how they got in. Bats have a very flexible body structure and can squeeze themselves in through a small crack anywhere in the attic, duct, vent or wall.

Seal all entry points

Once you have identified all entry points for the chimney sweeper bats, the next step is to seal all entry points. Again, it is important to be aware of the season. It’s best if it is spring or autumn. 

Firstly, and most importantly, do not ever start a fire in the fireplace, even though this might seem like an obvious thing to do. Not only could it lead to the bats going berserk, but it could also result in a burning bat entering your house and causing more damage and chaos.

As an alternative, it is best to leave the damper of the furnace shut. Finally, install a one-way exclusion netting on the opening of the flu.

Observe the chimney sweep bats behavior

Since the bats will not be able to find their way back to the nest, they are likely to react differently and even find alternative ways to get back to their usual resting spot. Notice them at dawn and dusk, so that the bats can get out of the chimney but not return back inside.

If the bats are not able to find their way out, changing the position of the exclusion nets will help them to find an alternative way to get out of the chimney.

Try alternative methods

Bats in fireplace can also be scared by putting repellants down the chimney and scaring them away. Although this method is effective, you need to ensure that the repellent is non-toxic to your pets. Since bats are nocturnal animals, the best time to use the repellants is near dusk. This will ensure that they leave in the evening and are less likely to come back at dawn. These chemicals will be in the chimney for a few days so you’ll also want to take measures to avoid their fumes from entering your home. 

Alternatively, you could also use light and noise. This will act as an irritant to the bats. Your chimney will no longer be a great place for them to rest (since they require darkness) and they will refrain from returning back to your home.

Install a bat proof chimney cap

Once all the bats are out, install a bat proof chimney cap. Before doing so, ensure that the chimney cap does not have any small gaps or holes as this would enable the bats to get back inside.

Clean up and maintenance

The entire process of removing bats from the chimney is incomplete without the final step of a thorough clean up. You need to remove signs that bats in the chimney were ever there! 

The biological waste matter left from the bats can attract other animals as well as other bats. There could even be dead bats left behind that can decompose and be the breeding ground for flies, maggots, mice, and rats. Before you know, the entire house could start stinking. Furthermore, bat droppings can even be a carrier of some serious diseases which can affect the residents of the house.

Hire an expert

Chimney bats are not easy to get rid of if you are planning to do it as a DIY project. The steps above need to be thoroughly executed or you could be left in a difficult situation. If you feel that the situation with “bats in your chimney” has grown to a larger magnitude, it is best to hire a professional to undertake the task to avoid any damage to your property.