How to Use Rat Traps Correctly

The fight between humans and rats never ends. These rodents are attracted by the food in your home and leftovers in your outdoor dumpster. No matter how comfortable the rats feel at your place, you are probably not thrilled with their presence. 

Rats are carriers of all kinds of dangerous bacteria and viruses. And they spread them throughout your home very quickly. The only desire that arises in you at the sight of a rat is to get rid of it as soon as possible. Thus, find the best rat trap and set it up correctly using our tips.

Types of Rat Traps

There are many ways to exterminate rats. Below are the most important varieties, the main difference of which is the principle of operation.

  • Classic trap with wooden base and metal latch;
  • Cage with bait. Allows you to decide whether or not to keep the rat alive after being caught. Suitable for large hordes;
  • Modern electronic traps that kill the rodent immediately;
  • Glue trays. They are universal and suitable for getting rid of not only rats but also mice, spiders, snakes, and other pests;
  • Ramps: the rat climbs the structure in search of bait but can no longer get back out.


As you can see, the choice of traps is wide, and you can choose them according to your needs. Next, let’s look at the step-by-step setting of a classic metal pedal rat trap, as it is the most common and proven way to get rid of rodents.

How to Set up a Click Trap

  1. Correctly hold the trap from the side of the trigger and away from the working part so as not to injure your hand. 
  2. Place a small bait in the center of the trap;
  3. Put the arm bar back;
  4. Next, pull the kill bar in the opposite direction and carefully hold it with your hands;
  5. Place the arm bar in the recess on the bait pedal;
  6. Gently press down on the killer’s bar with your hand. This gives pedal pressure and makes the trap work;
  7. Make sure that your fingers are not in the affected area, and then remove your palm;
  8. Place a rat trap near the wall.

Basic Principles for Placing Rat Traps

Regardless of the trap’s mechanism of action, most species require the use of rat bait. Whether it’s a regular pedal trap or an electronic one, the rules for placing them around the house are similar. See below for more on how and where to set traps with bait.

Make sure it’s rats

We are not kidding. Indeed, many may confuse a mouse with a rat. Why is it so important? Traps should be selected for the type of rodent you want to get rid of. They are made specifically for their body’s size. A mouse trap will be small for getting rid of rats, and conversely, a rat trap is unlikely to be effective for catching mice. Look at the droppings that the rodent leaves. If it has the size of pumpkin seeds, it’s a rat. Rat paw prints are twice as wide as mice’s: about 20 mm.

Choose a lure

The fact that rats love cheese is a cartoon cliché. Determine the type of rats that have settled in your home. Black rats are usually herbivorous and can be lured using berries, fruits, and nuts as bait. Brown rats love meat and sweets but are generally omnivores. Peanut butter is a versatile bait for all kinds of rats. You can also “offer” rodents fish, dried fruit, chocolate, bacon, and even dog food. It is best to use food with a strong smell. Blue cheese, in this case, will be better than regular hard cheese. Avoid mint scents. Such a bait will only scare away the rat. 

Use gloves

Rats have a very delicate sense of smell and are good at picking up human smells that can scare them away. You spread your scent by transferring the oil from your fingers to the trap and bait if you don’t use gloves. To prevent the rat from bypassing the traps, set them only with clean gloves, and place the bait with cutlery.

Call trust to the trap

Rats are pretty smart rodents. And they can beware of an unfamiliar object or quickly drag the bait (especially if it is large). Therefore, accustom the rats to the trap, put the bait for one or two days, but don’t activate the mechanism. Let them eat in peace. Then activate the trap, and if there are a lot of rats, then several traps. Knowing that in these places, they can safely eat, rodents will go without fear and fall right into the trap.

Place the traps correctly

Rats don’t run around the center of your room, they travel along the walls. Set the traps at right angles, with the trigger side facing the wall. Place them in the attic, under furniture, along the walls in dark places, along the street fence, and on the sides of the house.

Follow the safety measures

If children and pets live in your home, ensure the traps are securely hidden and will not harm them. Choose safer options, and hide traps in boxes with holes. Don’t use poison! If the rat takes the bait but does not fall into the trap, it will spread the poison on its paws throughout the house and die in a hard-to-reach place.

Rat traps, when used correctly, will quickly and effectively get rid of annoying rodents. Follow our advice, and soon, at the mention of the word “rat” you will think of cute cartoon characters and not your nightmares. Be sure to follow all the precautions because our goal is to harm the rats, not your health.

What type of trap do you think is best for getting rid of rats? What is your experience in this rodent war?

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