How to Scare Off a Raccoon


Finding products that frighten raccoons into leaving your yard and garden isn't difficult. Finding those that scare them away for good, however, is trickier and often expensive. To find the raccoon-repelling solution that works best for you, begin with household items and work your way through more sophisticated and costly products.

Personal Confrontation

When raccoons approach your house, switch on outdoor lights, grab a broom and run outside, making as much noise as you can. Wave the broom in their direction. If there's a hose nearby, blast them with water.


    • While you chase raccoons, keep the family dog inside. Invading raccoons may be nursing females with nearby dens. Injuring or killing them dooms their babies to starvation.
    • To be successful, this method may require staying up or getting up for several consecutive nights, until the raccoons get the message.

Flashing Lights and Noise

Learn from police cars on the way to a crime scene: Flashing lights and loud noise are excellent attention-grabbers. Place a weatherproof, battery-operated portable radio tuned to an all-night talk station where approaching raccoons are sure to hear it.

Predator Lights

Double the radio's impact with solar-powered predator lights. Set the lights 25 feet apart on each side of your property, where they'll receive at least five hours of sun each day. Attach them to posts 10 to 15 inches above the ground and facing outward. Each unit's red LED light flashes continuously between dusk and morning. Approaching raccoons aren't sure what they're seeing, so they tend to move on.


  • Several brands of predator lights with different features are available. Some have two flashing lights to resemble the eyes of another animal, and one has an on-off switch so it can be removed and stored without losing its charge.

Motion-Sensing Sprinklers

Install battery-operated motion-sensing sprinklers around the yard to startle intruding raccoons. One such device greets the animals with a three-second spray of water broadcast over a 1,200-square-foot area.


    • Periodically moving sprinklers prevents the raccoons from avoiding them.
    • One hose-attached sprinkler brand operates at between 30 and 80 psi -- or pounds per square inch -- of water pressure. A heavy-duty hose is most likely to tolerate the constant pressure without leaking.
    • Another manufacturer gets around the water-pressure problem with a tank-attached sprinkler.

Electric Fencing

If all else fails, installing a simple electrified fence can scare raccoons off for good by giving them a mild shock every time they touch it. It's also the most labor-intensive and expensive alternative.


    • Position two stands of tape at 5 and 10 inches off the ground and bait them with jam-smeared aluminum foil secured with metal paper clips.
    • Mark the polytape clearly with "Caution" flags to protect passersby.
    • Mow surrounding vegetation regularly so it doesn't short-circuit the fence.

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