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Does Vinegar Kill Flies?

There is a popular notion that using vinegar fly traps can eliminate pesky flying insects that make their way inside. But does vinegar truly repel or kill fruit flies and other types of winged invaders? 

Understanding the science and methodology behind DIY fly traps is crucial to ensure best results. Explore the ways in which vinegar can be a natural way to eliminate fruit flies or house flies in this blog from the experts at Clegg’s Pest Control.

Does Vinegar Repel Flies?

Although it may be accurate to say that vinegar “repels” flies in the long run, the opposite is technically true. In fact, vinegar attracts flies, as opposed to being repulsive to them. Particularly in the case of fruit flies, these insects are on the hunt for overripe fruit and the microbes they carry. Flies detect the scent of acetic acid—the very same chemical in vinegar responsible for its strong aroma—which also collects in greater volumes as fruit ferments. 

When it comes to pest control tactics, it’s important to note that flies are more likely to avoid lower concentrations as well as higher concentrations of vinegar, as this would imply that fruit is either under-ripe or overripe to the point of decay.

Does Vinegar Kill Fruit Flies? 

If fruit flies are drawn to vinegar, then, how does it help get rid of them? It is true that a vinegar trap can kill a fly, but it’s not because the liquid solution is poisonous to them. Rather, a container with vinegar and dish soap functions as an attractant: The strong smell of vinegar lures flies to enter the trap, then the soap helps break the liquid’s surface tension, causing the flies to sink, drown, and die.

This method can potentially drown both regular flies and fruit flies, as the principle behind using vinegar is the same for both types of flies. However, it’s worth noting that larger flies like house flies or blowflies might be less susceptible than smaller, lighter fruit flies. This is because larger flies are generally more robust and might be able to escape from the liquid more easily. 

How to Get Rid of Flies

A brown-haired man in pajamas sitting up in bed, holding a yellow flyswatter while scanning the room

With a functional understanding of vinegar traps in mind, you might be wondering about the best do-it-yourself fly control tips for your home or business, including how to kill flies with vinegar. Some steps to take and tricks to try include:

Vinegar Fly Trap 

Fill a cup or small bowl with white vinegar or apple cider vinegar for flies, then add a few drops of dish soap. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap, and secure it with a rubber band. Poke holes in the wrap to create entry points for the flies. When they land on the liquid, the soap will disrupt the surface tension and cause them to drown.

Vinegar and Baking Soda 

If you think an infestation is coming from your sink, vinegar and baking soda for flies is an effective household drain cleaner. You can mix a half cup of baking soda with either a half cup of salt, lemon juice, or vinegar for an environmentally-friendly disinfecting option. 

Getting rid of flies involves a combination of preventive measures, sanitation, and targeted control methods. While vinegar can help control flies to some extent, it may not be the final solution for larger fly infestations. Additional ways to help keep flies out of your space include: 

Identifying the Source 

Determine what is attracting flies—such as damp areas and decaying food, trash, or other organic matter—and eliminate the source. Common sources of fly infestations include rotting produce, dirty sinks and sink drains, and house plants.

Proper Sanitation

Once you identify potential sources of a fly infestation, a combination of methods like proper sanitation, fly screens, and targeted insecticides may be more effective in managing fly populations. Maintain a sanitary space with these tips:

  • Keep your living space clean and tidy. 
  • Regularly clean up crumbs, spills, and food debris.
  • Wash dishes and kitchen surfaces immediately after use.
  • Empty trash cans frequently and seal them with tight lids. Properly clean your trash can on a regular basis.
  • Store and seal fruit and other produce in the fridge, while ensuring it does not become overripe on counters and other open areas.
  • Clean pet waste promptly, maintaining clean feeding areas, litter boxes, etc.
  • Avoid overwatering house plants.

Sealing Entry Points

A man’s hands, wearing a wedding ring, uses a utility knife to cut a new screen for a white screen door. The old, tattered screen that’s being replaced sits in a pile just next to where he’s working.

A simple fly prevention step is to install screens on doors and windows to prevent flies and other pests from entering your home.

Ventilation

Ensure proper ventilation in your home to discourage flies from settling in damp or humid areas.

Outdoor Maintenance

Make sure your outdoor areas are free from standing water, which can attract flies to breed.

Purchasing Fly Traps and Baits

Consider getting commercial fly traps or baits that are designed to attract and capture flies.

Professional Help from Pest Control Experts

If you’re dealing with a severe fly infestation, it’s time to seek help from your local pest control company. Only trained, experienced professionals have the latest methods for fly elimination and management so you don’t have to battle these insects alone.  

Don’t Fly Solo in Fighting Flies: Call Clegg’s!

At some point, a fly or two is bound to enter your home or business through an open door or window. However, if you’ve got flying insects swarming your kitchen or other areas of your building, you’ve got a problem. 

Bid farewell to fly troubles, and make informed decisions about fly control with expert advice and services from Clegg’s Pest Control. Serving the entire state of North Carolina, we are happy to start treating your home for flies ASAP. Simply contact us or request your free estimate today!

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Asheville
276-B Haywood Rd.
Asheville, NC 28806
Charlotte
1520 Industrial Center Cir.
Charlotte, NC 28213
Clinton
205 Wall St.
Clinton, NC 28328
Durham
2401 Reichard St.
Durham, NC 27705
Fayetteville
500 S. Eastern Blvd.
Fayetteville, NC 28301
Greenville
864 Rivit St.
Greenville, NC 27834
Kernersville
740 Indeneer Dr.
Kernersville, NC 27284
Morehead City
2700 Bridges St.
Morehead City, NC 28557
New Bern
218 Kale Rd.
New Bern, NC 28562
Raleigh
3751 Bastion Ln.
Raleigh, NC 27604
Smithfield
1520 S. Brightleaf Blvd.
Smithfield, NC 27577
Southport
4075 Old Bridge Rd. SE
Southport, NC 28461
Wilmington
3417 Enterprise Dr.
Wilmington, NC 28405

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Do you think you may have an infestation?  Don’t waste any more time.  We need to fortify your defenses against an array of formidable foes.  We offer a wide array of residential as well as commercial grade services throughout North Carolina.

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276-B Haywood Rd.
Asheville, NC 28806
1520 Industrial Center Cir.
Charlotte, NC 28213
205 Wall St.
Clinton, NC 28328
2401 Reichard St.
Durham, NC 27705
500 S. Eastern Blvd.
Fayetteville, NC 28301
864 Rivit St.
Greenville, NC 27834
740 Indeneer Dr.
Kernersville, NC 27284
2700 Bridges St.
Morehead City, NC 28557
218 Kale Rd.
New Bern, NC 28562
3751 Bastion Ln.
Raleigh, NC 27604
1520 S. Brightleaf Blvd.
Smithfield, NC 27577
4075 Old Bridge Rd. SE
Southport, NC 28461
3417 Enterprise Dr.
Wilmington, NC 28405

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