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How To Keep Rats Out of Pool

Why Rats Invade Pools

Have you ever been enjoying a dip in the pool, only to look up and see a rat scurrying across the deck?

Rats are among the many fun killers you may encounter around your pool. These small-bodied critters have an affinity for water, making your backyard pool the perfect place to hang out.

But not to worry — if you are looking for ways to keep rats out of your swimming area, we’ve got you covered! This article will explore effective ways to keep rats from pools and everything you should consider.

Ready to frighten rats from your pool area? Let’s help you get started!


Although small-bodied, rats are fun killers when around a pool environment. To keep these critters out of pools, you can:

  • Install rat traps.
  • Seal cracks and crevices.
  • Grow repellent plants like lavender, lemongrass, mint, and rosemary.
  • Use mothballs against them, etc.

Below, we will walk you through six ways to get rid of rats from your pool and another seven ways to prevent them from returning.

Why Rats Invade Pools

How To Keep Rats Out Of Pool

Do you ever feel like you are sharing your pool with some uninvited guests?

While that may feel like a bit of a stretch, it is the reality for many pool owners who find their pools overrun with rats.

But why do rats seem so attracted to pool water?

Well, it likely seems like a great source of hydration to them, and they can find plenty of food in and around the water. Your pool also provides them with shelter and protection from predators.

Plus, rats are expert swimmers — so they can use your pool easily to get from place to place without worrying about anyone spotting them.

6 Ways To Keep Rats Out of Pools

Ways To Keep Rats Out Of Pools

At first thought, the idea of rats swimming in your pool is cringe-worthy.

If you spot these rodents in or around your pool, quite a few strategies can keep them at bay.

Below, we considered some of them:

1. Use a Swimming Pool Cover

Use A Swimming Pool Cover

Using a heavy-duty cover that is water and puncture-resistant will protect your pool from getting any uninvited guests.

Cover the pool’s entire surface and ensure it is tightly secured.

This will also help conserve essential energy resources for those hot summer days when you are not using the pool.

2. Install Rat Traps

Install Rat Traps

Rats love food so much, so having traps around the perimeter of your pool can help keep them at bay.

You can get some rat traps and place them outdoors. The rats will come to get the food and, in the process, get stuck in the trap.

Make sure to check on them frequently and replace baits if needed so that they remain effective.

3. Seal Cracks and Crevices

Seal Cracks And Crevices

Pay close attention to any holes or openings near your pool, especially around pipes and drains.

As you probably know, gaps around pipes and drains are some of the access through which rats get into pools.

Seal cracks or crevices with wire mesh or plaster, preferably in an inverted cone.

This way, they won’t be able to get in or out through the openings.

4. Use Peppermint Oil

Use Peppermint Oil

The scent of peppermint oil is powerful — just what you need to deter rats and mice from your yard and pool surroundings.

You can either buy peppermint sprays or make your own by mixing peppermint oil with water in a spray bottle and spritzing it around the perimeter of your yard.

By doing so, the rats will stay away from your yard and, consequently, your pool.

5. Use Mothballs

Use Mothballs

The pungent smell of mothballs is something rodents don’t like.

Just be careful where you place them — they are hazardous if pets or children ingest them.

To use the mothballs, place them around the outer edges of your pool. This will do the trick and get rid of the rats.

6. Grow Repellent Plants

Grow Repellent Plants

Certain plants, such as lavender, lemongrass, mint, and rosemary, have unpleasant scents to mice and rats.

You can plant them around the edge of your yard and the pool area to be a natural restraint against little critters looking for a way in.

How To Prevent Future Rat Infestations

How To Prevent Future Rat Infestations

You can do some follow-up maintenance to prevent future rat infestations.

Rats and other pests can be pretty persistent, so taking the necessary steps to keep them away is a good idea.

Here are some habits you add to your routine to prevent a future rat infestation:

1. Regular Inspection

Regular Inspection

Perform regular inspections around your pool to identify potential entrances for rats and other pests.

This includes checking for holes, cracks, or gaps that could provide access.

Additionally, assess any trees or shrubs near your building line. They may offer a perfect “highway” for rats to enter your pool.

2. Pest Exclusion

Pest Exclusion

Take preventive steps such as investing in sturdy fences and screens.

This can help keep rats out of your pool area and prevent future problems.

Additionally, sealing any openings or cracks in foundations or siding effectively ensures that rats cannot enter your pool area from outside.

3. Store Firewood Away From the Pool Area

Store Firewood Away From The Pool Area

Be sure to store firewood away from the pool area. This will reduce the chances of inviting rats into the room searching for nesting material or food sources.

Trim back trees and shrubs as well. This will help remove potential hiding spots for rodents.

4. Keep the Areas Around the Pool Clean

Keep The Areas Around The Pool Clean

Keep your pool surrounding tidy and free of food waste. Pet food and other food sources are nourishment for rodents.

Keep all these away from your pool area. Otherwise, you will be tempting the rats to come and share your pool with you.

Make sure you also pick up after picnics or barbecues right away. After cleaning the area, dispose of your trash properly.

5. Secure Trash Receptacles

Secure Trash Receptacles

If you have outdoor trash receptacles, make sure that you store and cover them adequately so rats can’t get in them easily.

In addition, you can also consider getting lids that close tightly to prevent odors from escaping.

6. Manage Water Sources

Manage Water Sources

Is there any standing water on or near your home?

If you answered yes, you’ve got some work to do. Not only is standing water unpleasant for people, but it can attract rats too.

It is best to fill it with sand to ensure it doesn’t become a breeding ground for mosquitoes.

So, if there are any puddles or other forms of standing water on your property, use a pump or some drainage system to remove them.

7. Seal Any Holes in Your Home and Pool Deck

Seal Any Holes In Your Home And Pool Deck

Check your home and pool deck for any tiny holes or cracks that rodents could use as entryways into your home or pool space.

Seal these areas tightly with proper tools like calking materials and steel mesh barriers when needed.


You can keep rats out of your pool and your family safe with the proper preventative measures and precautions. Above, we outlined some ideas we know can help keep these troublesome rodents away.

But know this — when it comes to keeping rats away, the best thing you can do is stay vigilant and aware of the conditions in and around your pool and take the necessary measures to protect yourself from unwelcome guests.

But beyond eliminating a pool rat infestation, it would help in the long run if you followed up with some of the preventive strategies we discussed. This way, you can permanently shut the door of your pool against these fun killers.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Do I Get Rid of Rats Around My Pool?

If you have rats around your pool, one fast action deterrent idea you can deploy is to lure and catch them with traps.

Can Rats Swim in a Pool?

Yes, rats can swim in a pool. Some rats are, in fact, powerful swimmers.

What Repels Rats Naturally?

Peppermint oil, black pepper, and cayenne pepper will naturally repel rats.

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