Three Ways to Repel Insects in Your Home
Whether you’ve spotted an ant or two or have a family of fruit flies that have decided your kitchen is their new home, it can be frustrating to find a quick, non-toxic way to get rid of these unwanted visitors. For homeowners who own pets or have small children, having a successful solution that won’t harm curious mouths or paws is essential. Here are three ways to safely repel insects within your home:
- Apple Cider Vinegar
The sickly sweet smell of apple cider vinegar is like heaven to fruit flies, and when mixed with a little water and dish soap, becomes a fantastic trap for these pesky fliers. The dish soap works to disrupt the surface tension of the apple cider vinegar and water mixture, once the fruit flies are attracted to the apple cider vinegar, they become trapped and eventually drown. You’ll want to wait for a couple of days to see the mixture work its magic (if you happen to place it in a glass container you can really see how many fruit flies have decided your kitchen is their version of a five-star restaurant).
Make sure to place the mixture in a place where you commonly see fruit flies, or somewhere out of reach of grabby hands and curious pets. Additionally, the apple cider vinegar scent tends to linger, so place it somewhere out of reach where you’re less likely to inhale its scent.
Lastly, fruit flies reproduce like crazy – once you’ve recognized the infestation, take out the trash, recycle, and throw away any old food laying out or in the fridge. Clean off all surfaces with a disinfecting wipe and run your garbage disposal. By getting rid of their breeding grounds, you can rest easier knowing your concoction sitting on top of the window sill will rid your kitchen of fruit flies for good.
- Diatomaceous Earth
One of the most common ingredients in most pet-safe ant killers is diatomaceous earth. Diatomaceous earth is comprised of silica, alumina, iron oxide, and diatoms – which are fossilized aquatic organisms. You can buy bags of diatomaceous earth at your local hardware store. Once you’ve brought home your bag of diatomaceous earth, sprinkle the powder directly onto any ants you see. The powder dehydrates their bodies and kills them on impact (think akin to what salt does to slugs). Additionally, you should also make sure to dust a line of powder in front of doors, baseboards, or common ant entrances you’ve noticed to prevent more ants from marching two by two into your home.
It’s important to note that while diatomaceous earth is considered safe around pets, it is recommended you stick with a brand that is considered food grade – just in case your pet suddenly decides they’d like to take a lick.
- White Vinegar
Ants may be attracted to many different smells and crumbs that may have snuck by your Swiffer recently, but white vinegar is definitely not one of them. Just mix equal parts white vinegar and water in a spray bottle and spray any areas you’ve noticed are popular ant hangouts. If that doesn’t seem to work, try upping your battle strategy to apple cider vinegar instead.
At the end of the day, no one enjoys dealing with bugs getting into their home. While these tips are great as a first line of defense, please call the professionals if your infestation gets worse.