Minimising Vermin Visits
9 June 2020 | HOTBIN Composting
This post references vermin and how following these guidelines will minimise the attraction of any unwanted visitors to your HOTBIN.
HOTBIN can be used in a garden that has seen rats before as long as you take precautions and correctly operate the HOTBIN.
The HOTBIN user guide says “Please ensure your HOTBIN is located in an area that hasn’t had any prior rat problems” this refers to the position in your garden. If you have had a heap in your garden that has attracted rats in the past, then we would recommend the HOTBIN is not sited in the same space and that the old heap is removed 2-3 months prior to setting up your HOTBIN. This is to encourage the rodents/vermin to move on from this site. Rodents/vermin are very much creatures of habit and will keep going back to an area where they have a food source/shelter - the compost heap, by removing this food source/shelter there is nothing of interest to them and therefore they are more likely to find a new source somewhere else.
With rodents/vermin an evident problem where composting is concerned, HOTBIN has been designed and tested to ensure its attraction to all unwanted visitors (including mice and rats) is minimised and in 99.5% of cases no issues are reported.
Unfortunately, we cannot guarantee 100% that there will be no occurrences, we continually work with our customers and advise on how to prevent the attraction of vermin. The details below are recommendations to prevent rats, mice, foxes, squirrels from showing any interest in the HOTBIN.
Where these guidelines are followed no instances of damage caused by vermin have been reported.
Locate your HOTBIN in a high traffic area on a hard, level surface. If you wish to raise the HOTBIN you need to create a barrier between the HOTBIN and the ground to avoid rodents nesting in any spaces under the base of the HOTBIN. You can do so using the HOTBIN Plinth or a patio slab with a layer of bricks underneath or just on a layer of bricks. However always ensure there is a solid layer underneath the HOTBIN and do not rest the HOTBIN on 4-small stones/bricks just at the corners.
Keep the front panel and lid closed firmly – Any odours will rise up through the HOTBIN like a chimney, however if there are gaps around the front hatch panel odours may escape. Always ensure that the front hatch is tightly closed. When replacing the hatch panel after emptying waste be sure to wipe around the edges of the opening and hatch to ensure no loose pieces of waste are left in the joints.
Cam straps - It is important you use the cam strap(s) provided to pull the door tightly closed before filling. You should not be able to see any gaps between the bin and the door panel.
Always clean up - Always ensure no food waste is left around the HOTBIN. If you are picnicking in the garden make sure there are no scraps left behind, this is a free takeaway and will attract inquisitive animals. If you are adding cooked food waste always ensure the HOTBIN is over 40°C.
Space / Clearance - Try to ensure the HOTBIN has a minimum clearance of 15-20cm around each side and is not pushed up against, walls, fences, gates, trees or bushes that are easy to climb. The surrounding area should be clean and tidy, not dumping ground for garden rubbish (old pavers, slabs, wooden boards/battens, plastic sheets, bricks, tiles, pallets) you can inadvertently create little nooks and runs for vermin to hide and nest if you are not too careful.
Cooked food waste - If you have had problems with rats in the past do not add any cooked food waste, meat, fish, bones, for the first year. Always when adding cooked food waste try to stir it in and cover with other waste.
The HOTBIN guarantee only covers material defects and not instances of animal damage so we are unable to offer a refund or a replacement bin should a problem occur.
Further Reading on the subject...
I already have rats - Will I be able to use the HOTBIN?
Collecting and Using Liquid Fertiliser (Leachate)
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