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How to Get Rid of Gnats

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Authored by Samantha Herman in Pest Control
Published on 02-06-2009

Call them what you will – fruit flies, vinegar flies, whatever – gnats are generally unpleasant. It is best to get rid of them immediately before they start to reproduce. But how does one eliminate them? Here are some solutions to your gnat problem.

If using hazardous chemicals in your home does not bother you, purchase a flying insect spray and go to town. Just be aware of what the dangers are before you start spraying because some sprays pose a danger to pets. Also, you will want to avoid spraying around foods.

Fogging is another option, but this should only be considered if you have a serious gnat infestation. A fogger can cover everything in a sheath bug poison. This can be highly effective, but downright dangerous if the right precautions aren’t taken. If there are just a few of those pesky bugs flying around, consider eliminating moist or fungal environments (i.e. overwatered houseplants, indoor compost piles, or overripe fruits) and using one of the following natural alternatives.

Since using chemicals that could poison your dog tends to make people a little nervous, there are other solutions out there. Vinegar traps are a safe option. Gnats are attracted to vinegar so simply fill a jar with vinegar and poke some holes in the lid. They will inevitably get trapped in the jar.

Another option is to put some apple cider vinegar in a glass and add a couple drops of dishwashing liquid. As with the other suggestion, the gnats’ attraction to the vinegar will lead to their ultimate demise.

Unlike vinegar which attracts gnats, pine oil repels them. Hang a rag drenched in pine oil outside of a window if that’s how they are entering your home. You can also use the rags with pine oil on them inside by hanging them in various rooms. The gnats will catch one whiff and want to leave the premises immediately.

While only you can determine which solution is the most effective for your needs, natural solutions to pest problems should always be evaluated first and foremost. The same chemicals that can eliminate your pest problem can cause major health problems if ingested. Read all directions thoroughly, use the requisite gear when applying insect sprays or fogs, and ensure those close to you are aware that poison is being applied so that they can take the appropriate precautions as well.

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