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Rodent damage - 2017 Kia Optima Hybrid

How do you deal with rodent damage on my second Kia?
The rodents chewed the wiring so they had to change the whole harness.

Tough problem to solve. There are a ton of ideas out on the web. Simply type;
“how do I keep rodents from chewing my cars wiring” into a search engine and you will get tons of links to articles. Read up, lots of ideas.

After I spotted some rodent droppings under hood in my 2017 Tucson in July I sprinkled cayenne pepper around (except the alternator air vents etc.).
So far so good.

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Home improvement stores sell products like this.

This is what we use in a pole barn where classic cars and hod rods are stored during the winter to keep rodents out.

Never seen any sign of any critters.


Cats! You need cats. They love to help.

A couple drops of Tabasco sauce cured my cat of chewing on a dining room chair.

There are a number of spray products that contain capsaicin, the chemical in chili peppers that makes it hot. These products are not toxic, but will keep the varmints from eating the insulation on your wiring. It the wiring gets wet, the repellant will wash off, so you have to respray it occasionally if rain water gets on the harnesses. I would prefer a nontoxic solution to coat the wires so that anyone working under the hood won’t get poisoned.

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The alternative to spraying the wires, is, if you park at the same place indoors, spray the ground there.

If you spray the ground, mix predator urine (get it at a sporting goods store that has a hunting section) with glycerine (hair care section of a drug store) and spray that. The glycerine makes it stick around longer.

Hot sauce won’t work because the rodents aren’t eating the ground. :wink:

That happened to my 2008 Focus.
They must like the taste of some wires better.

It was squirells. :slight_smile:

For whatever reason, voles ignored all of my wiring, and instead decided to invade my air cleaner box.
Of course, they damaged the filter and left a lot of detritus in the air cleaner box.
Because I don’t want to go through this situation again, I installed very heavy-duty steel mesh over the engine’s air intake, and the vehicle is literally surrounded by traps baited with a mixture of peanut butter and oatmeal.

In the six months since I found that infestation, I have trapped several critters in my garage, and the steel mesh is undisturbed. Hopefully these critters don’t decide to develop an appetite for my wires.

Certain wire insulation materials are more appetizing to rodents than others for some reason. Some manufactures have within the past few years switched to soy-based wire insulation material and that seems to be more interesting to rodents than the prior type, which was some sort of plastic made from crude-oil . I realize this isn’t of any help to you now b/c you already have installed a new harness; but if you have to do this routine again, ask if they have the option of installing a rodent-resistant harness made of the old type of insulation material.

Beyond that, if the wires that got chewed are in the passenger compartment, keep the doors and windows all closed when you park overnight. If it was the engine compartment the chewing damage occurred, whatever you can do to keep the rodents away is about the best you can do. I’ve never had that problem myself, but if I did I’d probably try a pepper-spray product (the type used for personal defense) under where the vehicle was parked at night, and lightly on the wiring harness areas the rodents seem to like the best. There is some chance some component of the pepper spray might itself damage the wiring insulation though.

The only car-related rodent damage I’ve experienced was on my car-repair creeper. That’s a flat board with wheels you lay on, supposed to make it easier when working under the car. For some reason the rodents chewed the vinyl material off of the headrest … lol … my solution was to give the creeper away and do my car repairs sans creeper. The value of the creeper is way over-rated imo.

“Let’s make wire out of squirrel food and then install it on something that’s stored outside. What could possibly go wrong?”

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