And they might just find the toastiest place right under the hood of your car.
"We've seen rats, snakes, squirrels, even a family of hedgehogs," said Larry Hambrick, a mechanic at Pittman's Garage in south Abilene, on Monday.
"It doesn't take them very long to eat through wires and hoses. They'll get into the air filter box and make nests," Hambrick explained.
Local auto repair shops said it is a problem that comes up often in the winter and always catches people off guard.
"It's usually under the hood or somewhere you can't see," Hambrick said.
And if the damage is done, it will cost you -- mechanics we spoke with said the fix can range anywhere from $12 to $1,200 -- and beyond.
But there are some simple solutions, including one invented by Abilene native Trip Gollmar.
A master technician at Lithia Toyota, Gollmar has seen hundreds of cases of rodent damage in cars -- and a few years ago, he decided to do something about it.
"I just started coming up with fun chemicals that would work and 99% of them didn't work," Gollmar said.
Finally, he stumbled upon a mix that did -- capsaicin and tire shine.
It's now marketed as Stop the Rodent, a non-lethal spray that coats your car's wiring to keep critters away for about six months.
"Everybody I've talked to, they don't buy just one bottle," Gollmar said. "They buy two or three and keep using it."
"Rodents don't like hot stuff like we don't, and they won't touch anything that's got it coated on it or run their little feet across it," he explained.
Little feet that can cause major damage if they're not caught early on.
Stop the Rodent is available online and at a few local retailers, including Jackson Bro.'s Feed and Abilene Fastener Supply Inc.. It runs about $17 a bottle.
If the damage is already done -- several insurance companies we spoke with said rodent damage is covered under some plans, so it's best to call and check.