Preventing Birds From Nesting In Your Vents

There are a few different choices when it comes to stopping birds from nesting in your air vents. The first choice is simply purchasing a bird screen or some mesh wire to install on your dryer vent. Tailor the size of the panel to your fan. Or, homeowners may invest in a dryer closure system. These devices are slightly more costly but they’re more energy efficient, as they help prevent air from the outside from re-entering your home. Homeowners could try physical or visual deterrents, but these often don’t work given the location of most vents. Changing your vent from a flap door to a grate door might work as well. You can mount any of these types of vents yourself. You just need to pick the one that’s perfect for you. Secure any vents before birds start nesting in there! Protective vent items you should use:

  • Hardware cloth—galvanized wire mesh 1/2 in x 1/2 in square holes.
  • Commercial vent covers—dryer-vent exclusive and general use versions.
  • Both are available at your nearest hardware or big box construction supplies store.

When covering your dryer vent make sure to use a pattern that can be cleaned of accumulated lint by using removable fasteners or a dryer-specific commercial model.


Once a bird nests in your vent, they may be there a while if anything is not done about it. Depending on how the mother bird successfully completes her nesting period the first time, she can be in the vent for about 8 weeks. In these 8 weeks, she will lay the eggs, sit the eggs and hatch them; she will then become increasingly noisy, going back and forth between 40 and 50 times a day, feeding the chicks that she just hatched. If the cycle does not complete itself, she will lay another clutch of eggs and the cycle will start all over again. If this occurs the noise in the vents may be there for up to 4 months. Prevention is the best way to take care of a bird problem before it takes over your house.