Tips for Keeping Raccoons Off of Your BBQ “Invite” List

Our pesky neighbors, raccoons, love summer just as much as we do. We get excited for fresh fruits and veggies, hotdogs on the grill and a juicy hamburger, however, so do they. Long after we’ve cleaned up from the backyard BBQ is when the raccoons start gearing up for theirs. They insist on raiding and picking through our trash, and once they’re done they leave their mess all over the yard. To put a ban on a rodent after party, here are five tips to prevent raccoons from rummaging through your trash can.

1. Keep the trash can inside. Whether your can is in the garage or another enclosed area, a heavy door as the only option for entrance and exit will help with undisturbed trash. Luckily, raccoons can’t reach door knobs!

2. Install a 100 watt motion detecting light. If your trashcan is kept outside, a motion detecting light facing toward the area where your trash can stays, will help scare raccoons and other pests away during the night. The flash of bright light will frighten them from carrying on with their raid.

3. Sprinkle hot pepper or cayenne pepper around the trash can. While some stores do carry raccoon repellants, if you prefer using a more natural method, hot pepper and cayenne pepper will have the same effect. A thin layer of seasoning will let off a strong scent that raccoons will shy away from.

4. Place a cloth soaked in ammonia at the bottom of the trash can. The scent of ammonia has been found to ward off raccoons, so, keeping the scent around your trash at all times should help with the problem. Another option is to fill a spray bottle with ammonia and spray the perimeter of your yard to keep them from entering altogether.

5. Use a bungee cord to secure the lid to the trash can. If the pests can’t get in, there will be no mess. Using a bungee cord or a rope from one handle on the side of the can, through the handle on the lid, to the handle on the other side of the can should keep the lid in place and unwanted visitors out.

It is also important to remember to always keep trash tied in garbage bags and to keep a lid on the can at all times. Using these tips should help with any unwanted guests arriving to your party after hours and keep them out of the garbage.