How to Get Rid of Gnats Using Homemade Gnat Traps

How To Get Rid Of Gnats

Pinterest Hidden Image

Finding a cloud of flying, black gnats in your home is never fun—especially if those gnats bite.

Before you call professional pest control, here are some ways to get rid of gnats naturally, with or without using vinegar, and tips to keep gnats out of your home for good.

How to Get Rid of Gnats

Your first step is figuring out why they picked your home. Gnats seek out moisture and odors, so check for plumbing leaks, overflowing trash cans, drains that are full of gunk. Here are some other places they like.

Near Houseplants

Most gnats near houseplants are fungus gnats, which are attracted to moisture and decaying matter in potting soil. To get rid of these gnats, combine 1 cup of water, 1 tablespoon of baking soda (bicarbonate), and 3 drops of dish soap in a spray bottle. Mist the top of the dirt lightly with this mixture after each watering. The dish soap helps the mixture suffocate the gnat while the baking soda dehydrates and eliminates fungus gnat larvae.

To prevent gnat infestations of your potted plants, avoid overwatering, remove dead leaves, provide adequate air circulation, and repot plants that have grown too big for their container. If the gnat problem continues, try adding a sticky gnat trap to each plant’s soil.

Near Drains

Gnats that you find hovering near your sinks are most likely drain flies. This insect lays its eggs in the biofilm and other residues in drains, and they are especially attracted to odors. To get rid of them, combine equal parts household bleach and water in a pitcher and pour it down your drain to kill the eggs and bacteria. Clean smelly drains monthly and use a disinfecting cleaner on kitchen and bathroom sinks every week.

Near Pet Beds and Litter Boxes

Gnats often swarm near cat litter boxes and pet bedding. Wash your cat’s litterbox at least once a month, and scoop its waste weekly. To eliminate gnats near your pet’s bed, launder bedding weekly in hot water, adding vinegar to the rinse cycle to destroy gnat eggs. Do not use fabric softener, though: it contains protein-based surfactants that attract pests. This homemade flea spray also works on gnat eggs.

Near Your Computer

Gnats and other flying insects often mistake the blue light of electronic screens for daylight. If gnats swarm near your computer and phone at night, turn on a bright light across the room and place a homemade gnat trap, so it shines directly on the liquid’s surface. The light will lure the gnats away from your screen, and the trap will eliminate them.

Near Your Kitchen Trash

Some gnats are attracted to odors and decaying things like old vegetables and rotting fruit. So, it’s not uncommon to find them swarming around your trash can. Make a practice of emptying the trash every night, washing your trash can weekly to keep gnats out of your kitchen and switching to a trash can with a lid to reduce odors.

How to Make a Gnat Trap

Pour enough apple cider, red wine vinegar, or fruit juice into a jar to fill it one-third the way, then add just 1-2 drops of liquid dish soap. Cover the jar with cling film and secure that tightly with a rubber band. Now, poke three or four holes in the top with a toothpick so gnats can get in. Change this daily to keep the smell fresh so it attracts those pesky gnats.

And listen, the “1-2 drops of liquid dish soap” is there for a reason. Adding too much will mask the smell of the vinegar, at least as far as gnats are concerned. You’re only using enough to create surface tension that keeps them from flying out, and you don’t need much of that to trap a gnat. They’re, well, gnat-sized.

More Natural Ways to Trap Gnats

If you don’t have everything to make the homemade gnat trap recipe, you can still eliminate gnats using other items around your home.

1. Homemade Fly Paper

To quickly make a homemade flypaper sticky trap, wrap a piece of cardboard with double-sided tape. Poke a hole in one end, insert a piece of string, and hang the homemade flypaper where you need it. Replace as needed. If gnats are swarming near your houseplants, wrap the tape around a long stick and insert it into the plant’s soil to catch gnats.

2. Light on Water

Another simple way to get rid of gnats in your home uses a bowl half-filled with water and a few drops of liquid dish soap to create surface tension. Position the bowl under a bright light in a dark room — the light on your stove’s hood range works great for this. Alternatively, make a candle trap by placing a pillar candle in the center of the bowl. Then turn out all the other lights. The reflection of the lightbulb or candle’s flame will lure the gnats and any other flying bugs in your home, but the dish soap will trap and drown them.

3. Hairspray

An easy solution for a stray gnat, fly, or mosquito that’s bothering you is to spritz it with hairspray. The spray’s sticky mist will immobilize the gnat’s wings, so it falls to the ground and leaves you in peace. Sweep it up and enjoy a home with no biting gnats to bother you.

I have helped millions learn to manage their homes.

Ready to join my community? Subscribe today for real-world cleaning advice straight to your inbox.

By subscribing, you agree to the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

Similar Posts

Comment Policy

Comments are moderated. Not all are approved. Submitting a comment means you agree to the Terms of Service.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *