A typical spring-loaded bar mousetrap is set by placing the preferred bait on the trigger, or trip, loading up the snap wire and laying the trap in mice infested areas. Setting the mousetrap against a wall with the snap bar facing the wall is believed to increase the chances of catching a mouse.
The iconic spring-loaded mousetrap was first patented by American William C. Hooker in 1894 and the designs of modern day spring-loaded mousetraps remains largely the same. Spring-loaded mousetraps work by holding the tension on the snap wire and releasing it with enough velocity and force to kill the mouse when it sets off the trigger.
Step 1: Attach the bait
Place the preferred bait onto the trigger. Peanut butter is an ideal bait because it sticks to the trigger and not just lay on top of it that a mouse can snatch off without setting off the trap.
Step 2: Set the trap
Pull back the snap wire into the loaded position and attach the lock bar into the trigger. It might take several tries to get the lock bar onto the trigger properly, so it will be a good idea to practice doing so without the bait. It is also important to keep the fingers away from the area around the trigger when loading up the snap wire as the snapping wire may cause injuries.
Step 3: Position the trap
Place the trap in areas where mice are often seen. Set the trap against a wall as mice will often wall along walls, rather than in the open.