If you notice a gnat infestation in your home, try not to panic and keep reading as we discuss the #1 home remedy for gnats.
While gnats aren’t harmful to humans, they can be extremely annoying and difficult to get rid of. However, you don’t need to break the bank by hiring an exterminator because there are a few home remedies to get rid of these pesky insects.
Two major types of gnats tend to find themselves inside a residence. The first kind of gnat (fungus gnats) loves to live and breed around static bodies of water. The other type of gnats (fruit flies) spend most of their time around overripe fruit in the kitchen.
- 1 What are Fungus Gnats?
- 2 Natural Home Remedies for Fungus Gnats
- 3 Home Remedy for Gnats – Tips for Preventing Gnats
- 4 Home Remedy for Gnats – Final Thoughts
What are Fungus Gnats?
These gnats are small, dark-colored flies that are often found near fungus-infested areas. Gnat infestations typically occur in damp, moist environments where larvae can thrive.
Fungus gnat larvae are small, maggot-like creatures that feed on fungus and organic matter. While gnats are not known to transmit diseases, they can be a nuisance, and their larvae can damage plants.
In order to get rid of a fungus gnat infestation, it is important to remove the source of the problem: the fungus gnat larvae. Once the infested material has been removed, it is important to clean the area thoroughly to prevent the gnats from returning.
Signs of Gnat Infestation
If you’re seeing small, dark insects flying around your house, chances are you have a fungus gnat infestation.
Fungus gnats are attracted to moist conditions, so they’re often found near potted plants or in damp basements and bathrooms.
Gnats lay their eggs in the soil, and the fungus gnat larvae feed on plant roots. If you think you might have a fungus gnat problem, there are a few things you can look for:
- Small, dark insects flying around your plants
- Damaged or yellowing leaves
- Sticky honeydew on the leaves of your plants (this is a fungus gnat by-product)
If you see any of these signs, you should take action to get rid of the fungus gnats.
Difference Between Fruit Flies vs Fungus Gnat
If you’ve ever noticed small flying insects near fruit or houseplants, you were probably looking at fruit flies or fungus gnats.
Here’s a rundown of the differences between these two types of pests:
Fruit flies are about 1/8 inch long and are tan or yellow in color. Their wings are clear, and their abdomens have black stripes. Fruit flies are attracted to overripe fruit, which is where they lay their eggs. The larvae feed on fruit, causing it to rot. Adult fruit flies typically live for about two weeks.
Gnats are similar in size to fruit flies, but they have darker bodies and wings. The larvae of gnats feed on decaying organic matter, such as compost or damp soil. Adult gnats only live for about a week, but they can lay hundreds of eggs in that time.
So, if you’re dealing with small flying insects near your fruit or plants, chances are they’re either fruit flies or gnats.
Fungus Gnats vs Drain Flies
If you find gnats in your toilet or sink drains, then you are probably dealing with drain flies.
Drain flies are small insects that breed in, you guessed it, drains! The organic matter that builds up in drains creates the perfect breeding ground for drain flies. They lay their eggs in this material, and the larvae then feed on it.
While they don’t bite or carry disease, drain flies can still be a nuisance.
Natural Home Remedies for Fungus Gnats
One of the worst aspects of gnats is they tend to get out of hand relatively quickly. Gnats can destroy all of your plants and cause severe annoyance while you’re trying to cook or clean.
What’s more, gnats don’t necessarily go away on their own. You have to find the source of the problem and deal with it right away if you want to get rid of a gnat infestation.
Here are a few of the top natural home remedies for gnats you can try:
Apple Cider Vinegar Trap
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Apple cider vinegar has become increasingly known as a natural gnat repellent. It can repel gnats and fruit flies, and it can trap gnats as well. The gnats love the smell of apple cider vinegar, so they’ll come racing to it whether they’re inside or outside your home.
For this vinegar trap, all you’ll need is a mason jar, rubber band, plastic wrap, apple cider vinegar, sugar, dish soap, and water.
Pour the apple cider vinegar, water, sugar, and a few drops of dish soap into the jar and stir the mixture for about a minute. Next, cover the top of the mason jar with plastic wrap and tighten it using your rubber band.
Take a toothpick or fork and poke small holes on top of the jar so the gnats can fly inside. Once you finish your trap, place it wherever the gnats are the most prevalent.
Depending on how severe your gnat problem is, you may need to make multiple traps and place them throughout your dwelling.
Baking Soda Trap
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Like apple cider vinegar, baking soda has numerous household uses. You can use it for cooking, cleaning, and getting rid of insects. One reason why baking soda is an excellent home remedy for gnats is that it’s completely non-toxic. Furthermore, it doesn’t have a strong smell that may be unpleasant for you and your guests.
For this remedy, mix baking soda, dish soap, and water inside of a spray bottle and apply it to all the areas where the gnats congregate. The mixture will not only kill the gnats inside your home but will prevent new ones from entering.
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Ammonia is a transparent gas found in numerous household products. To use ammonia to kill gnats, you’ll need to find a way to make them all gather in one place. Typically, putting some type of vegetable oil down your drains is an effective method of gathering gnats in a specific area.
Once the gnats are all grouped up, you can dump the ammonia on them. Since ammonia is a hostile living organism, it will essentially kill all the gnats it comes into contact with. After adding the ammonia to your sink, try to wait a few hours before using your tap to ensure all the gnats are gone for good.
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While cinnamon may have a sweet smell, it can also be an insect’s worst nightmare. Gnats hate it!
Sprinkle some cinnamon around where your gnats are gathering and you should start to notice them gradually disappearing. What’s more, cinnamon is rather non-invasive and won’t make your home smell funky like other remedies.
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Wine is an easy solution for getting rid of gnats because most people have a bottle or two of red wine in their home at all times.
It works similarly to apple cider vinegar as it actually attracts the gnats rather than repealing them. However, using wine to attract gnats makes it easier to gather them all in one place so you can exterminate them effectively.
All you need for this trap is some wine and a few tablespoons or a few drops of liquid dish soap. Place the container of wine and dish soap around the affected area and the gnats will be on your wine-dish soap traps immediately.
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Honey is an excellent and safe way to get rid of gnats and other small insects. The sweetness of honey attracts the gnats, making it an efficient ingredient for trapping. For this trap, spread some honey on colored paper and use a popsicle stick as your base. Place the trap around the affected area and watch the gnats fly right onto it.
One area of the house this trap works the best is around your household plants. Most of the time, gnats will work their way to your plants. So, placing your honey trap around the pots is the easiest way to trap them.
Overripe Banana or Rotten Fruits Sticky Trap
You can trap gnats using rotting fruits, such as an apple slice or mashed banana.
Place the rotten fruit in a bowl and wrap it with a plastic wrap. Make a few small holes in the plastic wrap, but cover the wrap once the flies crawl inside so they won’t be able to get back out.
Diluted Bleach Fly Traps
All you need is a diluted bleach solution, a container, and some moth balls. Simply place the moth balls in the container and add the diluted bleach solution. The flies will be attracted to the moth balls and will drown in the solution.
You can also use this method to get rid of flies in your garbage disposals. Simply place a moth ball in each disposal and add a cup of warm water. The flies will be attracted to the moth balls and will drown in the water.
These sticky traps are also effective for getting rid of other insects with moth like wings.
If you’re anything like me, you’re constantly finding adult flies and moths fluttering around your home, attracted to all the lights. While there are many store-bought options for fly traps, you could try creating a DIY candle fly trap.
To start, you’ll need a shallow dish or plate, a candle, and some sugar water. Simply place the candle in the center of the dish and surround it with the sugar water.
The adult flies and moths will be drawn to the light of the candle and will fall into the sugar water, where they will eventually drown. You can empty the dish and refill it as needed.
Home Remedy for Gnats – Tips for Preventing Gnats
When it comes to gnats and other insects, prevention is always the best cure. Insects tend to enter homes for either food or shelter from harsh weather conditions. While sometimes it can be challenging to keep gnats out of your home, there are a few simple things you can do.
Wash Dishes Right Away
Let’s face it, not many people enjoy doing the dishes. It can be extremely tempting to leave them in the sink for a while and plan to clean them up later. However, all that food debris is likely to attract gnats and other insects if left out for too long.
To prevent this, try and wash your dirty dishes right after using them.
Observe Proper Garbage Disposal
As soon as your trash bags are full, take them outside your home. Your trash can is like Disney World for insects, so having it in your home is likely to infest trash cans.
Throw away anything that can start an infestation in your trash can. Get rid of rotting fruit immediately. Dirty dishes, spoiled food, moist soil, damp indoor plants, wet potted plants, or damp potting soil can cause infestation.
Store Food Properly
Using sealed food storage containers will prevent gnats from sensing your food and finding a new breeding ground. Use proper containers whenever storing your leftovers.
Get Rid of Excess Moisture in Your Home
Have you seen insects with long legs and even larger wings? Well, the moisture in the various nooks and crannies in your home may be the culprit. Does your potted plant constantly have moist soil? Is your bathroom constantly moist?
Unfortunately, these pesky little critters are drawn to moisture, so if your home is too wet, you’re likely to end up with an infestation. There are a few easy ways to get rid of moisture and keep gnats away.
For starters, you can fix any leaks in your plumbing and keep an eye out for condensation. In addition, it’s important to ventilate damp areas like the kitchen and bathroom. You can do this by opening windows or running a dehumidifier.
Home Remedy for Gnats – Final Thoughts
No doubt, dealing with gnats can be extremely frustrating. Not only are they annoying, but they’re also tiny enough to evade your swatting. However, you can see from the information above that there are countless easy home remedies for removing a gnat infestation.
If you still can’t get rid of the gnat problem, you should seek the help of a professional pest control company. Say goodbye to gnats flying around your home for good!
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