Q: Mice can get into the ventilation

asked by on November 07, 2015

I drive a 2012 Toyota Highlander and it started to smell just revolting the other day when I started it up to go to work. Turns out some mice got into the ventilation system and died. Now my vehicle with 24,000 miles on it smells like dead rodents. Not ideal, to say the least. Toyota should have made the air filter harder to get to for rodents, everyone knows they love the warm engines in cold weather! Can I fix this problem myself? The filter, not the mice. Those have been taken care of.

Rodents can become a serious problem for almost any vehicle. If they don’t find their way into the HVAC system, they will often chew on wires, which can cause serious problems with vehicle operations. In this case, cutting and installing some thin wire mesh in the HVAC system air intake and tightening it down with Zip-ties or Tek screws should help eliminate the problem. I would recommend that a certified mechanic (like those with YourMechanic) perform the installation just to make sure the wire mesh doesn’t fall into the HVAC air intake or interfere with any vehicle systems.

Was this answer helpful?
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

Get a quote

What others are asking

How do I customize the Remote Start Auto Heat Seat settings?

The Remote Start Auto Heat Seats setting allows you to choose whether or not the heated seats turn on when using the remote start feature on cold days. Adjusting the settings takes only a few steps: 1. Turn on the...

What does the CD CHECK error mean?

The CD CHECK error will appear on the display when there is a problem with the CD. When this error occurs, eject the CD, inspect it for visual damage, wipe it with a clean, soft surface, and insert it again,...

What causes a DTC P0010 to come up and how easy/difficult is it to repair?

The code P0010 is for a problem with the intake camshaft sensor. The camshaft sensor is common to have to be replaced to fix the no start condition. The sensor is on the front of the engine on front timing...

Related articles

How a Car's Heating System Works
The The sun sets, and the air has a chill. You pause to flip your jacket collar up, and you walk briskly to your car door and slide into the driver's seat. Once you start your car, it’s only moments...
4 Essential Things You Should Know About the Heating and Air Conditioning System in Your Car
When When you get into your vehicle, you simply expect the air conditioner or the heater to work when you need them. When something goes wrong with these systems, it can make driving unbearable in some climates. Consider the following...
Symptoms of a Bad or Failing AC Pressure Switch
If the AC is cutting on and off rapidly, unable to cool the cabin, or failing to turn on the compressor, you should replace your AC pressure switch.