6 Ways to Instantly Get Rid of Gnats & Fruit Flies at Home

Fruit Fly & Gnat Remedies

The presence of gnats typically indicates there's decaying fruit, vegetable, or food wastes that have not been properly thrown away. In this article, we cover the quickest and most effective ways to get rid of gnats in your house.

Where is the Gnat Infestation?

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Gnat Vinegar Trap

Use these Effective Gnat Traps

Gnats and fruit flies are attracted to the smell of decaying and fermented organic matter, such as apple cider vinegar and rotten fruit. This is a ready-made trap that makes use of non-staining lures to attract and kill the gnats. They even come in the shape of an apple so their appearance doesn't stick out like a sore thumb. Give it one night and you should see several dead flies in the trap the next morning.

Yellow Sticky Trap

Trap Them with Yellow Sticky Traps

Flying insects including gnats are attracted to these sticky traps due to their bright yellow color. If the gnats have taken over your house then just place a few of these sticky traps around the problematic area. You will notice the trapped flies in no time. This is one of the best products for controlling gnats and fruit flies because it's affordable, long-lasting, and non-toxic.

Gel Drain Gnat Treatment

Apply the Drain with Gel Treatment

Some gnats may have made their way into your house from the kitchen or bathroom drains. In this kind of situation, we suggest pouring this super-effective gel treatment into the drains. The gel consists of a citronella-based formula that will cling to the pipes and coat the gnats inside. There will be no way out for these flies once they get coated with the gel. Use it daily until you no longer see any gnats flying out from the drain.

Apple Cider Vinegar Trap

Make Your Own Apple Cider Vinegar Trap

If you have some spare apple cider vinegar in the kitchen then you can easily make your own DIY gnat trap with a few supplies. First, pour some apple cider vinegar into an old container and mix it with a few drops of dish soap, sugar, and water. You can start to place the DIY vinegar trap around the problematic areas once the sugar has dissolved. Watch this video for the step-by-step.

Candle Gnat Trap

Drown the Flies with a Candle Trap

You can also create a homemade gnat trap by using unused candles in the house. Once it gets dark, set up a water-filled tray next to the problematic area and place a lit candle on top of it (make sure the candle is firmly in position to prevent fire hazards). The idea behind this trap is to attract the gnats to the only light source in the room. Gnats that get close enough to the candle flame will fall to their death after getting their wings burnt.

Stale Wine Trap

Set Up a Gnat Trap with Stale Wine

Fruit flies and gnats love the smell of fermented food and beverages. If you have some leftover wine in the kitchen then you could use it as a substitute to the apple cider vinegar trap. Just add a bit of dish soap into a half-filled wine bottle and give it a good swirl. You can either leave the wine bottle as it is and place it next to the gnat-infested area or pour the wine into a container and cover it with plastic wrap (poked with tiny holes for the flies to go through). Beer may also work since it's fermented.

Here is an infographic that summarizes the above home remedies. Feel free to share this on social media and on other sites if you are a publisher or blogger.

How to Get Rid of Gnats and Fruit Flies

Where do Fruit Flies and Gnats Come From?

You need to know where the fruit flies and gnats are coming from in order to be able to eliminate them quickly. There are two common ways.

From Fruits and Vegetables

You aren’t going to like the sound of this but some fruit flies and gnats may come from the food we consume. These flies primarily live on plant-based materials. The adult flies will lay hundreds of eggs on unripe fruits so that the larvae can use them as their primary source of nutrition by the time the fruits start to rot.

From Outside

Some adult flies may have entered your home by flying through the windows and doors. If your house is spotlessly clean then you may want to check the outdoor surroundings to see if there’s anything that may be attracting a large swarm of fruit flies such as open garbage bags.

How to Prevent Fruit Flies and Gnats

The most effective form of pest control is prevention. Find out what’s attracting them in the first place then eliminate the source. Here are some ways to prevent fruit flies from appearing in the future.

Clean Up Dirty Dishes

Make sure there aren’t any dirty dishes lying around in the sink. Get in the habit of cleaning the dishes as soon as you are done with your meal.

Make sure any food leftovers are discarded in a tightly-sealed trash can. The fruit flies will start to appear if you leave the food waste in the kitchen for too long.

Cover the Trash bags

Make sure the lid of the trash can is tightly sealed. Don’t attract more gnats to your home by letting the trash odor spread to the outdoor surroundings. This will cause other pests, such as ants and roaches, to also make an appearance.

Get Rid of Damp Areas

Fruit flies also thrive in damp and moist areas. Examine the kitchen and bathroom for potential pipe and faucet leaks. You should also check the indoor drains in the bathroom and reduce the dampness and humidity by using a dehumidifier.

Change Poor-quality Potted Soil

Some types of flies, such as the fungus gnat, may appear from poor-quality potted soil. Check the container plants to see if that’s where the flies are originating from. If so, replace the soil with something that’s higher-quality.

Other Common Fruit Fly & Gnat Questions

The more you know about your enemy, which in this case is the annoying gnat, the better equipped you will be in handling these pest infestations moving forward. Here are some common questions that people have around these flying household insects.

How Long Do Fruit Flies Live?

Fruit flies don’t have too long of a lifespan. Their entire life cycle from egg to adult fly can only take about a week. This is why an infestation like this has to be handled as soon as possible, because as we mentioned earlier, these flies can also reproduce very quickly.

Will Fruit Flies Go Away on Their Own?

In some ways, yes. If you follow the fruit fly prevention steps that we outline above, you will end up making your home an environment that’s not favorable for the flies to live in. Most importantly, taking out the trash regularly is an effective way for the flies to disappear on their own.

At What Temperature do Gnats Die?

Species like gnats and fruit flies don’t survive well in cold temperatures. The optimal environment temperature is somewhere between the 75 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit range.