Does Neem Oil Repel Rats? | 3 Steps to Repel Rats with Neem Oil

If you’ve ever read about neem oil and you’ve wondered if it works to repel rats, the answer is yes, it does. While neem oil won’t kill rats outright, it does repel them. Rats hate the smell of the oil. Neem oil is so good at repelling rats and other pests that it’s now a popular ingredient in many pesticides.

This article will explore how to use neem oil to repel rats. There are 3 easy steps to follow to dilute neem oil to use around the home.

What is neem oil?

Neem oil, or margosa oil, comes from the seeds and fruits of the neem (Azadirachta indica) tree. This oil is extracted from the fruits and concentrated for use at home.

Neem trees are found in the Indian subcontinent, but they are spreading to other areas in the tropics as well. Neem oil is the most common product used in our home gardens.

Neem oi is even used commercially for medications and organic farming.

How neem oil repels rats

Neem oil is very effective at repelling rats and other pests because they are very sensitive to strong scents. The scent of the neem oil is one that rates detest so using it helps keep them away from your home.

Neem oil can get rid of pests in two ways: it can suffocate small pests such as sap sucking insects like aphids. For larger pests such as rats and mice, neem oil will repel them with its strong scent.

How to repel rats with neem oil

Here is what to do to repel rats with neem oil.

  1. Take a plastic spray bottle and fill it 3/4 full with water.
  2. Add 15–20 drops of neem essential oil and shake.
  3. Spray the mixture where you’re likely to notice rats, including door frames, window sills, and at the base of your bed.

As with other pests such as cockroaches, rats have a strong sense of smell, and there are certain scents they despise. If you spray a mixture that contains any of those smells anywhere they might be found, it will repel them because they’ll do anything to avoid those smells.

Neem oil and other essential oils are so simple to use that it sometimes surprises people that you can use them to get rid of rats and other pests in your home, but sometimes the simplest methods work the best, and this is certainly the case with essential oils such as neem oil.

Key tips to repel rats with neem essential oil

Always choose 100% pure essential neem oil to repel rats. If the oil is already be diluted with other oils or even with water it won’t be strong enough to repel the rats in the recipe.

Always follow the directions for the recipe above carefully to produce the results you want.

There are loads of pests that you can repel with Neem oil, check them out here:

  1. Ants
  2. Bed bugs
  3. Bees
  4. Fleas
  5. Flies
  6. Lice
  7. Mice
  8. Mosquitoes
  9. Ticks
  10. Wasps

Neem oil can sometimes take a while to work when repelling rats. It may take three or four days and several treatments to get the job done. This will be enough time to build up the scent around your house and keep the rats away.

It can be sprayed around any entry points to your house. This could be around doors, windows or ventilation holes on the outside of your house.

Nevertheless, if you’re patient and persistent, the neem oil will work, and eventually, the rats will keep away from your home.

Neem oil will need to be applied more than once. The smell will gradually wear off or be washed away when it rains. Make a habit of spraying this neem mix every week or two around your home to keep it rodent-free.

Although most pests will be repelled by the smell of the mixture, neem oil mixtures don’t work on every rodent. This is because rats can be very persistent and tough, and occasionally they may even become immune to the smell of the neem oil.

Nevertheless, you can get rid of the vast majority of rodents in your house by using this method.

Other essential oils that repel rats

If you can’t find neem oil or you don’t care for the smell of it yourself, you can use other essential oils in its place. Remember to always buy 100% pure essential oils, and use one of the following oils in place of the neem oil:

  1. Cedarwood
  2. Cinnamon
  3. Eucalyptus
  4. Lavender
  5. Lemon
  6. Orange
  7. Peppermint
  8. Pine
  9. Rosemary
  10. Tea tree
  11. Wintergreen

There are other items around your home that produce very strong scents, and many of them can be used to deter rats. This includes onion, hot peppers that contain capsaicin, garlic, used coffee grounds, clover, catnip, regular ammonia, and even citronella candles or oil.

Keeping your home as clean as possible at all times is still the number-one way to keep rats and other pests away, it’s good to know that there are simple, natural remedies you can use to get rid of them once you see them in your home.


Having rats in your home is a nuisance but they can also carry disease. It is important to get rid of them as quickly as possible. Neem oil is a great way to start because, as with many other essential oils it has a scent that is detested by rats. It’s a simple, inexpensive solution that works, and as long as you dilute the oil.