gnat-traps-that-really-work

5 Gnat Traps That Really Work – Practice Based List

No one likes gnats. They’re tiny pests that swarm in the hot months, especially if you live somewhere humid. Gnats can come in small clusters sometimes, but mostly they are a massive swarm. If you have a gnat problem and are looking into gnat traps, we recommend these homemade gnat traps that really work!

Gnat Traps That Really Work

Trappify Hanging Fly Traps Outdoor: Fruit Fly Traps for Indoors | Fly Catcher, Gnat, Mosquito, & Flying Insect Catchers for Inside Home - Disposable Sticky Fly Trap for Indoor House Pest Control (8)
3,019 Reviews
Trappify Hanging Fly Traps Outdoor: Fruit Fly Traps for Indoors | Fly Catcher, Gnat, Mosquito, & Flying Insect Catchers for Inside Home - Disposable Sticky Fly Trap for Indoor House Pest Control (8)
  • CATCH PESKY BUGS: Trap mosquitoes, gnats, flies, horse fly, housefly, nat, lantern fly, knat, and many other irritating flying insect with this...
  • PROTECT YOUR HOUSE: Hanging hook lets you place the trap anywhere near common bug infested areas in your home to lure, and catch all pests. Try...
  • THE GREAT OUTDOORS: Perfect for porches, garage, patios, gardens, stable, lawn, chicken coop, and any popular hotbeds for flying insects to keep them...

Gnats are attracted to all kinds of things within a house – rotten fruit, houseplants, body heat, and anything that might have contaminated or old food (like dishes and drain pipes). These 5 gnat traps actually work to get rid of gnat infestations inside or outside your house, and you can make them with what you already have at home.

Remember, it’s vital to find the source of the gnats – if all you’re doing is killing adult gnats, they’ll keep coming. These traps work well for the gnats you can see, but once you find the gnat nest, you’ll need to eradicate it. Otherwise, gnats will be in your house and yard for the foreseeable future.

Gnat Trap #1: A Sticky Cocktail

Bragg Organic Apple Cider Vinegar With the Mother– USDA Certified Organic – Raw, Unfiltered All Natural Ingredients, 16 ounce, 2 Pack
26,763 Reviews
Bragg Organic Apple Cider Vinegar With the Mother– USDA Certified Organic – Raw, Unfiltered All Natural Ingredients, 16 ounce, 2 Pack
  • BRAGG APPLE CIDER VINEGAR: The Bragg ACV Vinegar is made from organically grown apples, and offers various health benefits. To easily incorporate ACV...
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  • MOTHER OF VINEGAR: The ‘Mother’ consists of strands of proteins, enzymes, and friendly bacteria that give the product its murky appearance. The...

The key to killing gnats is to attract them with something sweet and then trap them with another ingredient. For this gnat trap, it’s a small cocktail of apple cider vinegar, water, and dish soap. You can also use sugar in regular vinegar instead of apple cider vinegar or replace the vinegar with everyday red wine.

To make this trap, mix equal parts water and vinegar in a shallow dish or bowl, with a few drops of dish soap mixed in. Leave it on the counter for a few hours, and when the bottom is full of dead gnats, rinse it out and replace the concoction. If you want to trap even more gnats, you can use an empty soda or water bottle to make it harder for them to escape.

Easily the most popular gnat trap, the gnat attractant and dish soap combination also works on fruit flies. Once a pest is attracted to the sweeter liquid, they try to taste and get trapped in the dish soap. If you have the proportions right on this one, you’ll be able to see hundreds of dead gnats after a few hours.

Gnat Trap #2: Rotten Fruit

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Glad Cling ‘N Seal Plastic Food Wrap, 300 Square Foot Roll - 4 Pack (Package May Vary)
13,086 Reviews
Glad Cling ‘N Seal Plastic Food Wrap, 300 Square Foot Roll - 4 Pack (Package May Vary)
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Gnats love rotten fruit – why not use it to draw them in and trap them? If you don’t mind your kitchen smelling like old fruit while dealing with your gnat issue, this solution is very effective and easy. Bananas work best for this, but any rotting fruit will do the trick.

Mash your bananas or other fruit in a shallow bowl, and stretch plastic wrap across the top. Poke several small holes in the top of the wrap, and wait for the trap to work! The gnats will fly in the holes to get at the fruit and get trapped in the plastic wrap.

Gnat Trap #3: Drainage Issues

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Clorox Multi-Purpose Cleaning Spray System Starter Kit, 1 All-Purpose Cleaner, 1 Spray Bottle and 3 Refills, Citrus Groves, 1.13 oz Each
1,174 Reviews
Clorox Multi-Purpose Cleaning Spray System Starter Kit, 1 All-Purpose Cleaner, 1 Spray Bottle and 3 Refills, Citrus Groves, 1.13 oz Each
  • CONCENTRATED CLEANER SYSTEM: Clorox Multi-Purpose Refillable Cleaner Starter Kit includes one reusable spray bottle and one concentrated refill...
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Many gnat nests are in the bends of drains, where food and dirt build up. They lay several hundred eggs a week, so if you’ve been killing the adults and still finding more, it might be helpful to check your drain and make sure you’re getting all the pests.

To test if the gnats are coming from the drain, place a piece of duct tape over the drain overnight. Leave a small gap on the edge so the pests will come towards the sliver of light. If there are gnats stuck on the tape in the morning then you’ve found the nest.

Once you’ve decided that the drain is the culprit, clean it out well by pouring a bleach and water solution down the drain. Diluted bleach won’t hurt your pipes but will clean out the nest and any old food or gunk that was attracting the flies in the first place. You can use this solution regularly to prevent any further nests from forming.

Gnat Trap #4: Plant-Based Gnats

Mrs. Meyer's Liquid Dish Soap, Biodegradable Formula, Lemon Verbena, 16 fl. oz - Pack of 3
24,916 Reviews
Mrs. Meyer's Liquid Dish Soap, Biodegradable Formula, Lemon Verbena, 16 fl. oz - Pack of 3
  • This liquid Dish Soap cuts through grease, while making dishes clean and bright
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Gnats are also attracted to houseplants, especially when the soil is damp. They can congregate around wet plants and cause a swarm in humid conditions. If you want to get rid of the gnats but don’t want to kill your plants, use this trick.

Fill a spray bottle with water and a little bit of lemon or lime scented dish soap. Spray your plant well with this mixture – it will protect the plants and kill the gnats. If your plant is the source of the gnats, hold off watering until the top few inches of soil are dry.

Gnat Trap #5: Come Towards the Light

This homemade gnat trap works on gnats’ attraction to light. They will fly toward a light source in a dark place, so why not use that to your advantage. For this trick, you’ll need a candle and a dish or tray of water mixed with a tiny amount of dish soap. Always be careful with candles and never leave them unattended.

In the evening, put your water and dish soap tray in the center of the room infested with gnats. Light the candle and place it in the tray, turning off all the other lights in the room. The gnats will fly toward the light and burn in the flame or drown in the candle’s reflection.

Bonus: Commercial Gnat Traps

Trappify Sticky Gnat Traps for House Indoor - Yellow Fruit Fly Traps for Indoors/Outdoor Plant - Insect Catcher White Flies, Mosquitos, Fungus Gnat Trap, Flying Insects - Disposable Glue Trapper (25)
2,799 Reviews
Trappify Sticky Gnat Traps for House Indoor - Yellow Fruit Fly Traps for Indoors/Outdoor Plant - Insect Catcher White Flies, Mosquitos, Fungus Gnat Trap, Flying Insects - Disposable Glue Trapper (25)
  • Pest Control: Dual sided sticky bug cards for mosquito, leafminer, aphid, and other flying pest problems. Protect your best inside plant from fungus...
  • Easy To Use: Peel off a trap from the stack and place in a houseplant, a home kitchen, or a garden. Highly rated zapper catchers to finally protect...
  • Organic Gardening: Safe way to remove small pests with non toxic and no harsh ingredients. Fruit Flies, Gnats and other small flying insects are...

If you’d rather buy a commercial gnat trap and not spend the time or energy required to put together these traps, don’t worry! There are several trap options for you. You can buy light-based traps for the outside or sticky traps for inside the house.

Some fly traps work for gnats, but most don’t – I would avoid fly traps unless they also advertise gnats. Ensure that any trap you get has a formula that includes the specific type of gnat you’re trying to kill. However, there are traps available specifically for gnats, which work inside and outside.

If you have a big outdoor gnat problem, you can get a light-based zapper. These are usually used in commercial settings (such as restaurants), so they’re more expensive. But for a campsite or backyard patio, a bug zapper will take care of all the winged pests you don’t want around!

Of course, you can always opt for natural essential oils to treat your gnat infestation.

Preventative Measures

Of course, the best way to get rid of gnats is not to have them in the first place! Keeping things clean and clear of what attracts gnats will prevent a summer swarm. If you have a regular cleaning schedule and make sure that there is no dirty or rotting food around, you should avoid the problem.

Here are some preventative measures to avoid gnats and fruit flies: 

  • Repair sink leaks
  • Fix holes in window and door screens
  • Seal cracks in walls or ceiling
  • Keep dishes clean
  • Cover and seal food left outside of the refrigerator
  • Empty trash cans regularly
  • Clean sinks and drains with diluted bleach solution regularly
  • Install sodium light bulbs in outdoor fixtures
Sunlite 03620-SU LU150/MED High Pressure Sodium Light Bulb, 150 Watts, ED17/MED, Medium Base (E26), ANSI Code S55, 15000 Lumen, 20000 Life Hours, Clear, 1 Count (Pack of 1), 2100K
268 Reviews
Sunlite 03620-SU LU150/MED High Pressure Sodium Light Bulb, 150 Watts, ED17/MED, Medium Base (E26), ANSI Code S55, 15000 Lumen, 20000 Life Hours, Clear, 1 Count (Pack of 1), 2100K
  • HIGH PRESSURE SODIUM - Sunlite High Pressure Sodium lamps are a long-life replacement for your existing HID fixtures. Standard ED17 shape.
  • HIGH INTENSITY DISCHARGE - This 150 watt bulb puts out a bright 15000 lumens of light. Color temperature is 2100K. Clear glass bulb.
  • MEDIUM BASE - Standard medium base (E26). Use in street lights, parking lot fixtures, perimeter lighting, and other commercial and industrial lighting...

If your house is generally clean and you make sure that your drains are clear and food is protected, you shouldn’t have to worry about attracting too many pests in the summer months. You can put these measures in place before you have gnats or after you clean out a nest. Either way, they will prevent further infestation and help your house to stay clear of pests.

Gnat Traps That Really Work – Final Thoughts

Whether you opt for the candle or vinegar, you can get rid of your gnats and other insects without spending extra money. With these traps, the gnats will not be a problem any longer. Find the source of the pests, clear out the adults, and take preventative measures for the future. You’ll never have to worry about a gnat infestation again!

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