There is a range of products on the market known as electronic rat repellents and they work on the principle of ultrasound – more specifically, they are based on the idea that emitting high-frequency sounds will drive rats away from an area or a building.

These devices have been advertised as effective against every type of pest from insects to rodents, and there are multiple brands offering electronic devices that emit ultrasonic, or even sonic, waves available. Allegedly, the pests will find these noises irritating, but there is not a lot of data regarding the efficiency of these products.

In theory, these devices should work because rats use high-pitched sounds to communicate with each other, meaning that they have sensitive hearing. Sonic devices will emit sounds that are audible to humans, and these devices are known to have little or no effect on rats. Some of these products are advertised as being effective against birds, but any effect is usually temporary, with some customers reporting that birds returned and actually nested on top of the devices.

Rats can perceive a much wider range of sounds than humans, so the theory behind ultrasonic repellents is that you can create a sound that has enough frequency where humans cannot perceive it, but rats can and it irritates them, forcing them to leave the area of the infestation. However, just like with the sonic repellents, there is little data to show that these devices are effective.

The ultrasound created by the device is supposed to stress and discourage rats from entering or settling in an area. However, the sound created by these devices has very limited range, and it cannot pass through walls or furniture. This greatly diminishes the effectiveness of the device, when you consider that rats nest inside walls and travel behind furniture.

As such, if you want to be effective against an infestation, you will have to use either traps or poison, which are both tried and tested methods. Traps in particular are best for DIY, because with poisons, you might end up with dead rats in hard to reach areas where they will start to rot causing a health hazard. You can also get in touch with pest control specialists if you are dealing with an extra large infestation. Contact us today if you need help getting rid of the rats in your home.