Did you know that almost 700 million people contract a mosquito-borne illness every year?
These illnesses—like the West Nile virus, Zika, dengue, and others—contribute to over a million deaths each year.
Mosquito-borne illnesses are caused when a mosquito bites someone, swallowing not only their blood but any viruses or parasites, too, and transfers it to the next human or animal it bites. While the mosquito remains unphased, humans have seen devastating consequences.
Serious matters aside, a mosquito infestation is just plain annoying. If you’re tired of swatting off these pesky biters in your front yard, backyard, or worse yet, inside the home, we can’t blame you for wanting to take any means necessary to eradicate the problem.
Luckily, there are several methods for ridding your space of mosquitoes. Keep reading for a handful of ideas.
1. Address Any Standing Water Around the Home
- 1 1. Address Any Standing Water Around the Home
- 2 2. Consider Using EPA-Registered Mosquito Repellant
- 3 3. An Old-School Fly Swatter Does the Trick in a Pinch
- 4 4. Use a Fan Throughout the Day as a Deterrent
- 5 5. Make and Use DIY Mosquito Repellant
- 6 6. Double-Down on Bug Repellant With Plants
- 7 7. For Something Non-Toxic, Use Mosquito Dunks
- 8 8. Check for Gaps, Broken Seals, Damage, or Other Points of Entry
- 9 9. A Screen Door or Screens on Your Windows Goes a Long Way
- 10 10. For Individual Use, DEET Is Where It’s At
- 11 11. Hire a Pest Control Company for Help
- 12 12. Citronella Torches Can Offer Some Relief
- 13 Feeling Bah Humbug Over a Mosquito Infestation?
According to the CDC, all kinds of mosquitoes like water.
Mosquito larvae and pupae live in standing water (water that has little to no flow, like a puddle). Different types of water attract different types of mosquitoes, but regardless of the type, they all need water to breed.
Address areas of standing water around the home—tree holes that fill when it rains, containers that collect rain, plant pots without drainage holes that overflow when watering. These make your home a prime location for mosquitoes.
Eliminate as much of the standing water as you can. If there are certain things you can’t address, such as a nearby pond or riverbank, you’ll benefit from some of the following techniques.
2. Consider Using EPA-Registered Mosquito Repellant
There are at least three types of bug repellants registered by the Environmental Protection Agency—foggers, sprays, and aerosol.
You can buy repellants that are made for either indoor or outdoor use.
Use the EPA’s website to find the repellant that’s right for you. They’ll offer EPA-registered results that consider things like exposure time, specific active ingredients, company names, and more.
3. An Old-School Fly Swatter Does the Trick in a Pinch
If your mosquito infestation is primarily outdoors, but you need to eliminate a rogue mosquito or two indoors, rely on the trusty-dusty method of our ancestors’ past: the fly swatter.
Hang one close by inside or outside to kill individual bugs as they bother you. Bonus: fly swatters are incredibly cheap and they’re also effective—for smaller invasions.
4. Use a Fan Throughout the Day as a Deterrent
It may sound like a too-simple solution, but running a fan—especially an oscillating one—can help deter mosquitoes on an individual basis.
If you like to sit on your porch at night, you’ll benefit seriously from having a running fan overheard or an oscillating one that spans your porch space, as it disperses a concentrated population. If your home has gaps that allow mosquitoes inside, a carefully positioned fan can deter them from landing on you, your pets, and your housemates.
5. Make and Use DIY Mosquito Repellant
If you’re not a fan of using chemicals, you might be looking for a more natural and toxin-free solution.
Luckily, there are several non-toxic mosquito repellants you can make right at home that also smell nice! Bonus: they’re more affordable than buying repellants in stores.
Many essential oils are fantastic pest deterrents—eucalyptus, citronella, lemongrass, peppermint, and more. You can choose one or blend several in your solution.
There are several types of ingredients you can use as a base for a repellant, including witch hazel, apple cider vinegar, isopropyl alcohol, coconut oil, lemon juice, or white vinegar. Each one has its own recipe and application, so research further depending on which of these ingredients you’d prefer to use. Most recipes create sprays for individual use.
6. Double-Down on Bug Repellant With Plants
By setting up mosquito-repellant plants around the yard, you can attempt to deter mosquitoes before they ever make their way near your home.
Mosquitoes are mostly deterred by the scent of the following plants, which wafts in the air:
- Citronella (also called lemongrass)
- Floss flower
For the most effective use, plant any of the above near areas where you like to hang out outside. For example, maybe you line the porch with mint, allowing you to easily reach out for a leaf to stick in your morning tea, while you use window planters to establish a border of colorful marigolds. Place fragrant lavender somewhere it’ll receive full sun, and put citronella in large planters.
7. For Something Non-Toxic, Use Mosquito Dunks
Mosquito Dunks are a non-toxic product used to help eliminate mosquito infestations.
They use bacteria toxic only to mosquito larvae—not to humans, fish life, or other animals—to prevent babies from ever turning into the adult mosquitoes we know and hate. Mosquito Dunks work within hours of initial use and can work for 30 days or more. Each Mosquito Dunk is effective for about 100 square feet of water.
This option is a great one for homeowners who have standing water on their property that they can’t, or don’t want to, get rid of, like lakes, rivers, or ponds. It’s also EPA-approved as being organic.
8. Check for Gaps, Broken Seals, Damage, or Other Points of Entry
If you’re experiencing any kind of infestation in the home, one of the first orders of business is establishing how they’re getting in.
Do you like to keep the windows and doors open? Do you have holes in your screens or gaps in the door frame? Any small hole is an entry point that needs sealing or fixing.
Go around the house and check for any damage or gaps that might invite this pesky (and tiny) bug into the home. If you don’t have screens at all, you might want to invest in them . . .
9. A Screen Door or Screens on Your Windows Goes a Long Way
Installing a screen door where you don’t have one doesn’t have to be challenging or costly.
If you want the option, you can consider adding a hinged screen door that attaches to the door frame as a regular door would.
But, you can also buy something affordable and easy to install, such as a magnetic door screen with a mesh curtain. As a bonus, they’re also pet- and kid-friendly, easily clasping shut behind you with their magnet closures.
While screen doors won’t eliminate the source of your problem, they’ll at least dissuade the pests from making their way inside as easily.
10. For Individual Use, DEET Is Where It’s At
DEET is not only the name of a product, but it’s one of the most common ingredients used in bug repellants of all kinds.
DEET is a chemical that interrupts the process mosquitoes use to detect carbon dioxide in your breath and the bacteria on your skin. The main thing that DEET does to deter mosquitoes has to do with its smell, which drives bugs away, as well as its taste, which is unappetizing to bugs.
When it’s used properly, DEET not only works but is unharmful to humans, despite popular belief.
11. Hire a Pest Control Company for Help
If your infestation is so great, you’re prepared to hire the experts, we recommend that, too.
Companies like those at https://www.holmesutah.com/ can come out to your home and conduct surveillance of the area, observing the type of mosquito, general number of mosquitoes, and where they live. This information helps them formulate a plan that’s specific to your home, addressing things like nearby bodies of water.
Once they’ve determined the source of the infestation, the type, and more, they’ll be able to formulate a mosquito control plan that works for you.
12. Citronella Torches Can Offer Some Relief
Citronella torches used to be one of the most popular ways to deter mosquitoes in the backyard. After all, most are designed to look like tiki torches, offering a cool accent to your space.
While citronella torches (or candles) do work—the aroma discourages mosquitoes from coming nearby—they’re not the most effective method you can use as their impact is minimal. Rather, they make an excellent supplement to other methods listed above.
Feeling Bah Humbug Over a Mosquito Infestation?
One of the most annoying—and potentially dangerous—bug infestations is that of mosquitoes.
They’re relentless biters and voracious breeders, and then there’s the matter of their illness-spreading ways. If you’ve got a mosquito infestation in or around your home, it’s imperative you address the issue right away.
As evidenced by this article, there are several ways to rid mosquitoes from the home. Try one or more methods in tandem to get the best results—and don’t be afraid to seek out more approaches, as this list isn’t exhaustive. If all else fails, hiring a lawn and pest company might be the solution.
Good luck with your bug problem! If you’d like more articles written just for homeowners like you, keep scrolling our page and see how else you can improve your daily life.