Few things are more annoying than fruit flies invading your kitchen or bathroom, especially since they like to gather around standing water like in showers and other spots. Although usually harmless, they thrive on rotting foods and other organic matter inside moist drains, potentially carrying bacteria that can contaminate other foods It can also be hard to get rid of them since they can live for up to three weeks with new eggs hatching as quickly as every two days.
So how do you permanently get rid of them as fast as possible? We at All Things Drain are happy to provide our expertise to help you get solve this problem. With us, you will know what attracts drain flies and learn a plethora of natural DIY home solutions to create fruit fly traps that keep them away from your home.
What Attracts Drain Flies?
As previously mentioned, fruit flies are attracted to rotting food and other organic matter, which can wind up in your drain when you do dishes. They specifically seek decaying organic matter to lay their eggs, such as gunky build up in drains.
These flies also love moisture and organic debris, and are most likely to be found near sources of food and bacteria like sinks and showers. They tend to favor areas of occasional use, like a basement sink, and are also spotted after a long time away from home.
How to Know if You Have Drain Flies?
If you spot a few, you can try placing pieces of tape (sticky side down) over the drain, which will trap the escaping insects on the tape. This fruit fly trap will give you a good indication of how many of these creatures you have to put up with.
Remember fruit fly situations can go out of control rather quickly. One female specimen is capable of laying 500 eggs. Additionally, fruit flies will continue to reproduce as long as they can find decaying organic matter.
Although they don’t bite nor transmit diseases, fruit flies are an indicator of your drain’s cleanliness. You might want to deeply clean the area that attracts them. Otherwise, more fruit flies will appear, and different animals like roaches might also join them.
Tips to Get Rid of Fruit Flies
There are many natural ways to get rid of fruit flies, and your decision depends on your preferences and individual circumstances. Here is what All Things Drain suggests:
- The best thing to do is clean the drain by mechanically removing the build-up with a drain brush, so a drain brush is important. Once the gunk is gone, the fruit flies should leave as well.
- Use a form of drain cleaner. Drain cleaning formula can help dissolve the build-up and contribute to physical cleaning. You can try mixing a half cup of salt, half cup of baking soda, and one cup of vinegar, and pouring the mixture down the drain. You can also follow that with boiling water a few hours later.
- Speaking of, you can just pour boiling water down the drain if you want, but it should be accompanied by physical cleaning to remove the debris.
- Pour vinegar down your drain. It can help promote bacterial degradation of the food debris in the drain, breaking down the food and moving it out of your pipes. Due to the flies being around said debris, they will be forcibly moved out of your pipes too.
- Don’t put food down your drain. It’s better to dispose of food in whatever garbage disposal you may have before washing your dishes. Many fly problems are products of sanitation issues. It is always good to dispose of rotting food, regularly take out the trash regularly, and free your kitchen of food debris.
- You can also use baking soda by combining 1/2 cup salt with 1/2 cup baking soda and 1 cup of vinegar, and pouring down the drain. Leave overnight, and finish by pouring boiling water down the drain in the morning.
- If you’re still unable to kill fruit flies, create an apple cider vinegar trap using a small dish covered in plastic wrap. Poking holes in the plastic wrap will lure flies in but prevents their escape.
One common, albeit ineffective solution, is bleach. Pouring bleach or similar harsh chemicals rarely eliminates fly breeding from a drain. Fly larvae have the right size to burrow inside the gunky build-up. Organic debris will shield them from the bleach. After a certain point, if nothing else works, you will need to call an exterminator. Fruit flies’ persistence and reproductive habits can quickly lead to infestations spreading in your drains, and a professional can help you find the source of your problem, and get rid of the infestation.