Irish Spring Soap to Repel Rodents

As we live in the woods, we have many rodents such as mice and rats in the area. Recently we have had rats in the engine compartment of our vehicles. They have been leaving droppings and pulling the insulation from the hood of our pickup. They use the insulation and other materials to build nests inside the engine area. We needed to find a good solution to repel these rodents and drive them away from our vehicles.

Irish Spring Soap Piece


I took a bar of Irish Spring soap and cut off a small piece about 1 inch long. I then cut that piece in half ending with a piece of soap about 1 inch square as shown. I placed a piece of soap inside the engine compartment on the battery tray as this was one of the places we have been seeing droppings. I repeated this process for all our vehicles. Then I waited and watched.

Apparently the strong soap smell from the Irish Spring soap repels the rodents. Since I have placed the soap pieces inside the vehicle engine area, we have not had any signs that the rats have been back.

This idea may also work well for other areas where you do not want mice or rats such as your house, sheds, or garages. Give it a try and let me know how this rodent repellent works for you.

**Follow-up comment – I am hearing from several of you that this doesn’t work. I am adding a warning to others to beware that this may not work on mice. Please read the comments to see the outcomes of others.

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33 Responses to “Irish Spring Soap to Repel Rodents”

  1. Nicky B September 4, 2014 at 2:31 pm #

    I tried the Irish Spring Soap to repel the mice/rats, came back a few days later box was chewed open and soap was gone. They ate it.

    • Cindy September 7, 2014 at 12:50 pm #

      Nicky – Sorry to hear your results. I know some people have used this idea and it worked while others have had only marginal success. You might try the cayenne pepper tip as many people have had great results with it.

    • Esther November 17, 2016 at 6:00 am #

      Didn’t work for me either I put a bar behind my washer and 2 days later found it in the middle of my floor with naw marks all over it!!

  2. Nicky September 5, 2014 at 7:17 am #

    We have field mice in the attic (they don’t bother us) but the field rats are getting in the house/walls. But when the house was built they didn’t put in the metal to keep them out; plus no basement. I doubt they left cause my dachschund keeps hearing them. Oh well worth a shot.

  3. Darlene Wirll September 7, 2014 at 9:54 am #

    I totally agree with this. I have a cabin that I have to close for the winter..I heard about this and thought thati would try it….since I have been using the soap, I have not seen a mouse at my cabin…..I also have a puppy and I don’t have to worry about it harming him…

    • Cindy September 7, 2014 at 12:54 pm #

      Darlene – Thanks for sharing your success story with using the Irish Spring soap tip.

  4. Lisa October 24, 2014 at 6:26 pm #

    I use Irish Spring every year in my RV. The only time the nice chew the soap is if we accidentally get aloe instead of original. We also never leave the boxes out as mice love cardboard for nesting. It has definitely worked for us!

  5. pat deDat November 22, 2015 at 8:54 am #

    as I am a nurse assistant,i find that rats are curiously attracted to human droppings as well. crumbs are just one of these problematic areas as we all tend to hamper the procurity of our environments. I did tie a string of sheet metal to a cupboard as mice do have visual proximity. and finally, the smell of burnt nettlings can deter a multitude of critters as they tend to hone in on the parameters of their vessels. much luck to all !

    • Cindy November 23, 2015 at 6:26 am #

      Pat – Great information about the metal to detract mice. I hadn’t heard about that idea before. Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment.

  6. Miss BJ in Colorado December 15, 2015 at 7:19 am #

    Great info..husband and I are fighting a hord of invading mice this year. My cats cant even keep up and instead now often just watch them…. maybe the soap and nettles will help too. I’m desperate. If I start to say anything in town, the people act like we live in a shack or shed with trash all around that attracts the field mice, but this is just a really bad year for them. The field mice even try to build homes in my clothes hanging up. ..ewwww. i find dry catfood and dog food I feed our pets everywhere. We keep dry foods in plastic containers and the birdseed in a heavy plastic trash can with clasps that snap over both top sides. I’m about to try peppermint oil on drawers, as I’ve heard that repels them too. Thanks fot the ideas..these are all I have so far..just not enough this year. You can hear the little pests chewing at night all over different places. We’d move if we could, but its not an option, so all ideas are welcome.
    Sincerely, Miss BJ- in the mountains of Colorado

    • Mr. Big Alabama February 8, 2017 at 12:57 pm #

      Home Depot sell a night light that you keep plugged in .It lights up but there is a sound that it mates in which mice and rats are the only creatures that can hear it. It doesn’t affect humans or pet. Their ears cannot endure the sound. You get about 3 in a pack for 8 or 9 dollars. I custom built a 8000 square foot home with 4 acres and I was having a tuff time with them in my garage, hvac system and pantry. I could hear them in my duck vents. I bought several packs placed two in my garage , by vents on each floor level, by my HVAC in the basement and in ceiling of 3rd floor.I had tried everything and it didn’t work. I had then just build the home but I know after 39years of marriage it’s no way my wife would stay in our home. We love or home and I think God for those socket lights. Just go into Home Depot and describe this they will know exactly what you speaking about. It cost you about a dollar and fifty cent a day of electricity. However I don’t care about the cost.

    • C.L. February 20, 2017 at 5:06 pm #

      Hi Miss BJ
      Try making a mixture of oats and dry plaster of Paris. Mix together really well, then put in a bowl where the mice are. The mice will eat the mixture and the plaster of Paris will harden in their gut. Any cheap plain oats will do.

      • Cindy February 20, 2017 at 6:54 pm #

        @CL – What a great idea and I love the idea of no poison and a just homemade recipe for getting rid of these pests. I will have to try this idea.

  7. Michelle March 24, 2016 at 11:07 am #

    I’ve heard you have to grate the soap up using a cheese grater or an old food processor, then put it out, apparently leaving the whole bar does not work, I’ve got some friends who close their lake house up for the winter and they swear by this.

  8. Sandy April 22, 2016 at 3:34 pm #

    My daughter and a friend both have new trailers., last year when they closed up they both put down Irish Spring soap along with other potential mice deterents. Well when they reopened the trailers this week, both of them had mice droppings. And has for the Irish Spring soap, the mice had a field day on the Irish Spring soap. It was chewed away. SO, Obviously the Irish Spring “DOES NOT WORK”

  9. Frank May 2, 2016 at 8:59 am #

    We tried using the Irish Spring..Total Fail!!! The little buggers ate the soap and then ended up with the bloody shits all over our RV.

    • Cindy May 2, 2016 at 11:45 am #

      Frank & Sandy – I am so sorry to hear this didn’t work for you both. I am posting your comments so others know this may not work and avoid using this idea. I have added a warning to the original post too. Thanks for sharing your outcomes.

  10. Victoria June 7, 2016 at 8:12 am #

    I put a whole bar of Irish spring in my rv and never had any more mouse droppings. I’ve tried other methods like dryer sheets, they only lasted for maybe a month.

    • Cindy June 7, 2016 at 6:24 pm #

      Victoria – So glad you had good results with the soap.

  11. bill July 25, 2016 at 10:11 am #

    Recently went to light the bbq and heard a squeak. Didn’t want to fry the critter, so quickly shut it off. Then I tapped bbq with the brush and the mouse refused to budge! Out came the heavy artillery (garden hose) and that got his attention. After cleaning the bbq, a few days later noticed a small hole chewed on the bbq cover and attempted nesting material. I shaved pieces of Irish spring and laced them with cayenne pepper…no luck, pieces removed and guess eaten! The previous year I used @ 6 individual packets of moth balls throughout the bbq and that seemed to work.

    • Cindy July 27, 2016 at 11:43 am #

      Bill – Thanks for sharing your experience with mice in your BBQ. It is good to know that moth balls may be another deterrent for people to try.

  12. Jennifer October 10, 2016 at 4:45 am #

    Irish spring cut in pieces have deterred mice for me in my camper, however the smell does wear off and I swear they become immune. Our camper is stored on a campground during the winter, with weather permitting I switch the soap monthly with peppermint soaked cotton balls and I also use dryer sheets. I don’t use poison because it acts as a good source and I feel it attracts them, I am trying this year a homemade hot pepper spray to spray around the outside perimeter of the camper. I also rake all acorns, pine cones and other food sources away from the camper when I change my deterrent inside.

    • Cindy October 10, 2016 at 8:03 am #

      Thanks so much Jennifer for sharing your experience and ideas for deterring mice.

  13. Larry October 14, 2016 at 8:48 am #

    Irish Spring has worked for me in my car and my cottage for years, I found that it has to be the “Original” soap and not the Aloe or other scents

  14. Joni November 1, 2016 at 1:45 pm #

    I put a box of Irish Spring soap in my bedroom and the kitchen. and one in a closet. Since then, I’ve had NO mice nor droppings in either location. Works for me!

  15. trev Schwartz November 10, 2016 at 10:57 pm #

    Yes….ORIGINAL Irish Spring. If you don’t look closely you won’t notice it even says Aloe so beware. I’m about to attempt this right now.
    Been a Bad yr here, for field nice getting into our wall’s, during the early cold snap, combined with the fact that the farmer was turning the fields behind is and they ran to the nearest hear source!
    Will come back with my findings! Also, maybe certain mice in different region’s/species react differently? OR maybe it’s like Liver for Humans… Most hate it but a few of is just LOVE IT!? Lol

  16. Irene November 23, 2016 at 11:49 am #

    We have a great success with Irish Spring Soap from deterring mice – haven’t had any for years they hate the smell

  17. Lynda March 14, 2017 at 3:15 pm #

    It has to be “Original” Irish Spring soap. Other scents do not work and the mice/rata will eat the Aloe version.

    Original only!!!

  18. Amy March 26, 2017 at 11:42 am #

    I was told to put the Irish spring in a sandwich baggie but leave cracked open

  19. Doris March 26, 2017 at 8:07 pm #

    I was told by a life long friend about the Irish Spring soap. She says they have used it for years and no mice anymore. When buying it today I was talking to a lady there and she agreed it works, she uses it. My friend did say to hang it in a old sock by the opening in the garage (right now my mice is in the garage) …… the lady at the store said be sure to put around the car as the mice enjoy chewing up the electrical….I don’t think I’m infested as I’ve only see 1 and caught it in a trap….but I’m preparing for a battle. The snows have melted and the weather is turning warm and I’m anticipating a invasion……will see. I fortunately did buy the Original

    • dan June 9, 2017 at 6:46 am #

      Hello
      In my experience if you see ONE you have TEN.
      Have A Great Day

  20. Susan Frances March 26, 2017 at 11:56 pm #

    So far the original has deterred the flying squirrels we had in our attic!

  21. I.bernal April 16, 2017 at 1:54 am #

    Oh God! please wish me luck I just added two soap bars of original inside the engine, a rat got inside my prius a month ago & the mechanics had to dismantle the inside cars carpet etc to get it out as I have a baby. Im so afraid I had added moth balls everywhere which seem to help.
    I don’t even live close to mountains I’m in the city of l.a. seems to be an infestation where I liVe….we only been here six months….
    I hope & pray they don’t try to eat the soaps or become immune as those things have super powers before Taking to mechanics I set sticky traps they went around them ate poison and didn’t even died…. Good luck all!

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