If you suspect your home or garage has been invaded by bats, it is a good time to call an expert. We spoke with Gary and Eric Foss of Gary’s Bat Removal at Lake Almanor, who charges just $80 for a complete inspection in the Almanor Basin. The company charges a bit more for sending inspectors out of the area, but a consult with this company may save time and money in the long-run. They have been doing bat inspections and removal for 18 years and have learned much in the process. While many home inspection companies offer bat inspections, this pair claims that their comprehensive search of a structure is the best way to go.
Bats can enter a home through a crack or hole less than 3/8″,  so shining a flashlight in the attic may not tell the whole story. Often, bats will burrow their way through attic insulation. They have seen much evidence of bats doing severe damage to a home. Homeowners insurance will often cover damages caused by bats.
In one case, Eric told us bat urine was actually visible on the ceiling’s sheetrock, yet went undetected by a common inspection. In another case, the urine was visible on the ceiling, down the wall and even over the bed. He added that it takes years of infestation for leakage to penetrate through sheetrock. Another case revealed guano so deep in the attic that the ceiling actually fell through. Older homes and log homes may be more apt to attract bats due to crevices which expand and contract regularly over time and with changing weather conditions. Eric said, “While bats are beneficial to the environment, they are not beneficial to your house or your health.”
Safe removal of bats includes installation of a one-way barrier system. Eric has designed what he feels is the best available on the market today. The problem with sealing up a home and not leaving a way out for existing bats, is that when bats are trapped and need food, they will immediately begin searching for water. Heating and air conditioning vents or bathroom fans can provide access into the home. They once removed a bat from under the rim of a toilet. He explained that heading for water often means finding the shower or toilet.
It all sounds pretty creepy, I know. That’s why I had their crew out to my home after doing some research on sounds I heard last year. I was amazed at how many cracks and crevices they found and sealed. The one-way bat escape seemed to do the trick and the mysterious critter sounds disappeared from my 75+ year old home.
They stress the importance of finding every place where these critters can get in. “The point(s) of entry are not necessarily the same places where the bat guano is found.” He told us, “Bats are mammals and like to return to the same place each year to nest. They are persistent creatures who will search out any spot they can find to re-enter “their home” (aka “your home!)
Bat bugs, closely related to bed bugs, are another problem that come with bats. These insects suck the blood from bats and rely on the bats for existence. In the months when bats may leave the area, these bugs can go in search of their diet by biting humans. Eric said, “The invasion of bats can be a serious problem and requires a serious approach. Homebuyers should insist on a proper inspection and should beware of a the quick approach. Getting a second opinion is a good idea. Sealing off a few places near the evidence of bats is not likely to remedy the problem.” Their team is equipped with a state-of-the art vacuum system and 18 years experience. If you are buying a home or hear strange sounds like I did, you can contact them at 530-258-2811.