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jtrain 04-24-2013 11:57 AM

Found a rat's nest in my car
I cleaned my car on the weekend after a long winter and the last step was to check my fluid levels and oil. I probably haven't done this since November. I know, my bad. So I pop my hood and there is a rat's nest sitting on the engine [rant] It was a bit of straw, mostly foam insulation, and a ton of rat droppings. This makes sense because during the winter I would notice my fans sometimes had a bit of a dank/burning smell and I park outside near a garbage can. Now I know it was burning foam and rat smell. So I proceed to pull the nest out, vacuum the droppings, and carefully spray out what I could not get with the vacuum. I did a visual check and thankfully it looks like all the wires are intact.

On the drive to work today I noticed the smell was still there though. I tried to air it out and I turned my fans up to the max speed. On the top 3 fan speeds, there is a pretty loud whistling noise. Does anyone have an idea what's causing that? And any suggestions on how to get rid of rat smell?

PratoN 04-24-2013 12:05 PM


Originally Posted by jtrain (Post 4697813)
On the top 3 fan speeds, there is a pretty loud whistling noise. Does anyone have an idea what's causing that?

Happens to me when my dash vents are closed or very close to being closed. Try wiggling them around? (including the passenger's side)

Ethie1990 04-24-2013 12:06 PM

there might be rat crap in the air ducts going to your blower motor if i were you i would locate the ducts usually under the fascia of the wipers and try and blow air through there if all else fails get an air freshener.

nseah 04-24-2013 12:07 PM

This is actually a pretty common issue. On my work truck There's rat's nests everywhere. Last winter there was one in the radiator grille, which caused my engine to overheat all the time. Next was in my exhaust pipe. Gotta be careful of these guys

skiboarder119 04-24-2013 12:48 PM

I also thought I had a rat/mouse nest. Checked my fluids the other day and there was a ton of small leaves and grass all around my coil packs - it looked more like 3 nests (between the 4 coil packs). I dug through it looking for poop, found nothing.

I'm wondering if maybe it wasn't a mouse and crap just accumulates there? I have no engine cover.

jtrain 04-24-2013 12:56 PM

I wish it wasn't a mouse. But I had TONS of rat droppings and some of the insulation was chewed. From what I could see, they had a bit of the insulation on the underside of the hood and some other foam thing. None of the wires look chewed though.

And correct me if I'm wrong but the air ducts are literally right under the wipers. The first time I saw that on a car I thought they were speakers lol. Those are clean so I'll probably have to just get an air freshener.

raptor1956 04-25-2013 06:30 AM

You gotta be careful with rat dropping as it can carry the Hantavirus and that's kind of like the plague -- not good. Be sure to clean everything and disinfect. I don't know how it could get into the duct-work but that could be real bad.


2008 Ford Focus 04-25-2013 06:39 AM

Could it be the rats whistling along with your tunes?

asting 04-25-2013 08:42 AM

If you haven't done so already, I'd clean out your engine bay. Start by pulling off the cover under the engine bay. Then cover the alternator, battery, air intake, fuses with a bag. The battery and fuses have a quasi cover, and the stock air intake is probably pretty well protected too. With a hose on shower spray down the entire engine bay. Then spray it down with a foamy application of your degreaser of choice. Let it soak 2-3 minutes and scrub any problem areas. Rinse the engine down, drying it by hand if you want to avoid water spots and then remove the bags and put your stock skid plate/engine cover back.

It should take you half an hour or so, and if it's stuff in the engine (perhaps rat crap burning on a warmed up engine) this will take care of it.

jtrain 04-25-2013 10:58 AM

I cleaned my engine bay for the most part. I didn't know how to remove the cover underneath so I skipped that step. I sprayed it down, applied the motorcraft engine shampoo, scrubbed it down, and then rinsed clean.

What's annoying though is that I checked it this morning and there were a couple new droppings. I need to find a new place to park.

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