How to Keep Mice Out of a Tractor: Easiest Methods

A mouse can seem like such a small, harmless creature, and a tractor is a big hunk of metal and wires. How much harm could something so small do to such a big piece of machinery? Quite a lot, as it turns out.

Keeping mice out of your tractor isn’t as simple as it seems. Methods range from using super-strong scent repellents to more traditional methods such as getting a cat. However, it turns out that some of the easiest methods to keep mice out of a tractor are the most effective.

Many Places for a Mouse to Feel Cozy in Here

Mice and other rodents like tractor engines because they are cozy and relatively safe places to sleep. The trick is finding a method that will save your wires and prevent repair bills without costing a fortune. Let’s take a look at some of the easiest ways to keep mice out of a tractor.

Top Five Easiest Methods to Keep Mice Out of a Tractor

Has this happened to you? You go to start your tractor, and nothing happens. You open the hood and find a nice nest of leaves and twigs and other debris. But worst of all, you find wires that have been chewed through.

Rodent Damage can be Very Costly

And that’s not all. You may find that mice or other rodents have made a feast of hoses and any insulation or rubber seals. As you work to clean up the mess, you find more damage, and you start seeing dollar signs. What happened, and how do you prevent this from happening again?

The first step to understanding how to keep mice out of a tractor is to understand why they are there in the first place.

Mice Love Chewing on Wires and Hoses

It is simple. Mice and other rodents like to chew on things. It is necessary for them and one of the things they do best. A tractor provides a warm, safe place to hide. Conveniently enough, a tractor engine also has a lot of things to chew on. So, step one for how to keep mice out of a tractor is to make them not want to be there in the first place.

1 – Keep Mice Out of a Tractor by Making it Stink

Mice, like many other animals, are sensitive to odors. Some they like and others, not so much. The trick is to find out which odors your rodents detest.

Scents that drive mice away can vary depending on who you ask. Here are some ideas for smelly mice deterrents.

Peppermint and Cayenne Pepper Can Keep Mice Out of a Tractor

Peppermint and cayenne pepper have a reputation for driving critters of all types away.

Make a paste of cayenne pepper and water and spread it anywhere you suspect mice are staying or in their put some in their pathway.

You can use peppermint oil in the same way by sprinkling it on the wires mice might make a meal of. You can also saturate cotton balls with the peppermint oil and place them around the engine or wires. Just remember to remove them before starting your tractor.

Peppermint oil like this ShengKou Rodent Repellent from in my opinion is the best odor deterrent for mice. The only drawback is that it lasts only 30-90 days before needing replacement.

Use Mothballs to Keep Mice Out

These tried and true little balls or sometimes cakes are a combination of pesticide and scent. Traditionally the main chemical is naphthalene. However, naphthalene is very flammable and most mothballs today contain 1,4-dichlorobenzene instead. This is still very flammable chemical and should be used with caution.

The easiest method for keeping mice out of your tractor when using mothballs is to simply sprinkle them around the tractor, and anywhere you suspect the little buggers are getting inside. This may work, but you should also keep in mind that mothballs are poisonous, and while you might not mind the mice chewing on a piece of mothball, you might not feel the same about your cat or dog taking a nibble.

Another method when using mothballs is to tie several of them in a piece of stocking or pantyhose. You can then easily put the little bags of super-strong scent under the hood of the tractor and on top of the engine block. You need to be careful to keep your pets away. You should also be cautious when using any type of strong-smelling chemical in enclosed places.

I personally don’t like this method because of the amount of chemicals in an enclosed space, but if the tractor is stored outdoors or in a cold storage barn, this would be a viable option.

How to Keep Mice Out with Dryer Sheets

Some people swear by dryer sheets to keep mice away from machinery. Of course, the stronger the scent, the more effective the method.

Put some dryer sheets under the seats, around the engine block, and around or near any wires. Your tractor will smell fresh and clean and be rodent-free. Again this is more for longer term storage and the dryer sheets must be removed from the engine bay before startup.

These Meyer’s dryer sheets from have lemon peel oil and lemongrass oil which are also a pest deterrents.

Keep Mice Out of a Tractor Using Commercially Available Botanicals

There are several botanical methods available on the market like these from Fresh Cab on These little bags are similar to a pomander or room deodorizer, but much stronger.

One of the advantages of these little bags with a big scent is that they are natural and safe for animals. Usually a blend of scents like lavender, peppermint, balsam, and cedar as well as many other herbs and natural scents, some people find their strong smell tolerable, while others act much like the rodents they are designed for and are repelled.

2 – A Cat Will Keep The Mice Away

Cats are known for their hunting skills. If you have a mouse or two making a home in your tractor and a meal on your wires, then a cat or two might be ideal. They like being on the prowl and catching their prey.

If, on the other hand, you suspect you might have a bigger rodent issue such as rats, a cat, no matter how good a mouser they may be, might run into trouble if they corner a rat.

A Good Mouser Barn Cat is a Valuable Asset to the Farm

In this case, knowing your enemy is very important. Setting up game cameras can help determine what exactly you and your cat are up against.

3 – How to Use Technology on Mice

Technology is everywhere today. This is even so when hunting down mice that have invaded your tractor.

One of the most popular technological methods for keeping mice and rodents away from your tractor is an ultra-high frequency rodent repellent. These have been on the market for years, and while some people swear by them, other don’t see any effect.

It is proven that mice don’t like noises. Anything that makes noises, even if we humans can’t hear it, could have the potential for scaring the little pests and make them scurry away.

I have not tried these ultrasonic repellent devices personally so I can not recommend one. This one from has really good reviews and several different modes to repel critters from insects all the way up to squirrels.

4 – Make Those Mice Uncomfortable

The main reason mice infest your tractor is because the underhood environment of the tractor makes a nice, comfy place to sleep and live.

  • The mice are safe from predators like cats and owls.
  • They are protected from the elements.
  • There is enough room for them to raise a family.
  • There are things to do, like chew on wires.

So how do you discourage the mice from taking up resident in what seems to be a mouse paradise?

Simple. Open the hood of the tractor and leave it open during storage.

Of course, you want to protect your machinery, but the mice have no reason to stay if you leave the hood open. You have taken their protection away and exposed them to the world. With no reason to stay, mice and other rodents will find new homes that are more welcoming.

5 – Start with the Easiest Method and Adjust from There

Don’t Let Mice Even Think About Making a Home in a Brand New Tractor

So, how do you keep mice out of a tractor? While there are many other ways to keep mice and other pests out of machinery, such as poisons and traps, the techniques described here are some of the most popular and easiest methods around.

If you are having a problem with mice in your tractor and are worried about the repair bills that may follow, try a few of these easy methods before you resort to more serious and more expensive methods. You may find the easiest ways are the best ways.

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Corey Sitkowski

I love working around our homestead doing chores, building projects, taking care of our critters and livestock, making maple syrup, and messing around with old mechanical equipment.

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