Pool Equipment Troubleshooting

Protect Your Pool Heater From Mice and Rodents.

Covers for swimming pool heaters, lifts and starting blocks.

By Allen Hayward

Does your swimming pool have a heater installed? If so, then you probably have problems with it all the time, right? The reason for these problems might surprise you.

It is not a bad electrical wire or outlet that you need to worry about. Instead, the problem could be due to rodents, particularly mice.

When it gets cool outside during the fall and winter seasons, the rodents will want to find someplace warm to a shelter. What better place to go than your pool heater? It provides all the warmth they’re looking for.

Heater Damage 

Rodent infestations happen fast. Once rodents get into your pool heater, they won’t waste any time damaging it. Mice and rats will do everything, from chewing on the electrical wiring to filling the heater up with feces and debris. Most people never check the inside of their pool heater until the pool stops getting heated. By that time, it is too late.

You need to take precautions and shield your pool heater from outdoor rodents. Otherwise, they will cause damage to your gas pool heater, and then it won’t work anymore. You also neck to inspect your pool heater periodically to ensure everything looks okay. You can never be too careful. 

How to Get Started 

To begin building the barrier for your pool heater, you will need to obtain some basic tools from your local supply store or hardware store. These supplies include:

  • Rubber snakes
  • Chicken wire
  • Steel wool
  • Mothballs
  • Wood panel 

It shouldn’t cost you too much money to purchase these supplies. Just think about how much money you’ll save by protecting your pool heater. After all, it is greatly expensive to repair a pool heater. The supplies to protect it have a minimal cost in comparison. 

Once you have the supplies, you can start adding protection to your pool heater. Follow the steps below. 

Step #1 

Grab some mothballs and put them inside of the control panel. The aroma of mothballs will help deter rodents away. 

Step #2 

Look for small holes, cracks, or other openings in the pool heater. Place steel wool inside of these areas to cover them up. Make sure there are no openings whatsoever because rodents like to crawl through them, even when they’re tiny. The rodents will attempt to chew their way through the steel wool, but it won’t work. The wool will hurt their mouths and make them give up trying to get through. If they continue, they will eventually die from trying to get through.

Step #3 

Now you’ll want to create an additional barrier around the sides of the heater. Use hardware cloth to create the barrier because rodents won’t be able to chew through it. This makes a total of two unchewable barriers.

Step #4

To ensure all these barriers stay securely in place and protected from the wind and rain, you need to add wood paneling to the sides of the pool heater. The panels will cover the cloth and steel wool barriers that you previously made to keep them inside. 

Step #5 

You’re pretty much done at this point. If you want to go one step further, you could put down a couple of rubber snakes around your heater as an extra deterrent. Rodents won’t want to go near something that looks like a snake out of fear of getting eaten alive. It might not work always, but it cannot hurt either. Give it a try and see what happens.

Last Word of Advice 

When you’re ready to turn on your pool heater, you must remove all of the mothballs and barriers you added before. They should only be installed while you keep your pool heater off. Don’t turn on your heater with all of those materials installed or else it’ll cause problems for the heater. 

If rodents have already damaged your swimming pool heater unite, then shut off all the electricity to the heater. Have an exterminator come and remove the rodents and their nest from your backyard. After the rodents are exterminated, you’ll have to repair or replace the damaged wires or components of the heater.



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