Many types of flies are seen flying in houses. Among those types are fruit flies and drain flies. For some people it is confusing to distinguish these flies. The difference lies in their habitats.
Flies in my house: identifying flies
- If flies like “hairy” moths come out of your sink, they’re drain flies. They love humidity and trash and can be found parked somewhere.
- If they fly near the flowers, they are mosquitoes.
- If the moths have occupied a fruit, beer, drink, or other food product, they are definitely fruit flies.
Drain flies are small flies that have different names, sewer flies, moth flies, etc. These are the moisture-loving flies that live near kitchen drains, sewer pipes, bathrooms, compost, and septic tanks as well as indoors . These flies annoy people because they can be sucked in (completely or partially) when you breathe. You need to get rid of these insects to avoid a drain fly infestation and the damage they cause.
We are eager to equip you with the most essential knowledge in the field! Trust us, if you learn about the behavior of these insects and choose the prevention and extermination methods correctly, the flies will leave your home quickly.
- 1 What do drain flies look like?
- 2 How to kill drain flies: a review of the best fly gels and traps
- 3 Extermination of toilet flies with aerosols and poisons
What do drain flies look like?
We call these insects differently, drain flies, sewer flies, moth flies, toilet flies… different names have been given to the same species. Drain flies are small (<2mm) they are flies with short, hairy bodies and wings giving a “hairy” appearance like that of a moth. The adults have a long antenna and the wings have a leaf shape, both fine and broad. Moth flies are easier to distinguish by their behavior than by their color or size. Drainage flies are active at night, and during the day they cease to be active and remain attached to the walls of their habitat. Moth flies are black and hairy in appearance.
They are not very skilled fliers so they are mostly found indoors, crawling, and flying for short periods of only a few feet. It is striking that some are seen flying as the drain flies only live for two weeks.
The life cycle of drain flies consists of the following stages. Adult flies that emerge from the pupa are fully mature, able to reproduce, and begin to lay eggs after emerging. Females lay between 30-100 eggs. The eggs of the moth flies hatch in about 48 hours. During the larval and pupal stage, the drain fly lives in thin layers of drain pipes, field lines, and septic tanks. The larvae feed on microscopic animals and plants, decaying matter, and sediment. The duration of the larva stage is 9-15 days while the pupal stage lasts 20-40 hours.
Why are drain flies dangerous?
- They infect through food . Drain flies love to land on your sandwiches or ham, especially if your pantry is near the laundry room. Their legs carry infections which they pick up from anything decomposing. This infection can go from ground to some extremely dangerous bacteria.
- The drain flies that live in the toilets are dangerous for children. You can’t bathe a child near a drain fly because they can get into the eye or mouth… moths are dangerous neighbors for children anyway.
- The drain flies bring their friends . Sewer flies and their offspring are also a breeding ground… for larger insects. Along with drain flies, you may find some spiders, larger flies, and other insects in your home.
- Allergies , of course, sewer flies are not allergenic like bees and wasps, but there are known medical and mental health cases; There are even warnings that these flies are dangerous for those who suffer from the most severe allergies – you have to get rid of the fast-draining flies!
Control and prevention of drain flies
A drain fly infestation in a home is extremely troublesome for those who live in that home. It is important to know what causes this infestation to prevent it from happening in your home.
To understand what attracts drain flies, you need to know a few facts. Garbage in the kitchen drain, clogged and dirty drains, clogged pipes that are no longer in use, and plants inside the house are some of the places that can attract drain flies.
Basically, the prevention is pretty straightforward: you have to clean all the drains regularly in your house. Check the entire plumbing system, as well as any pipes with standing water once a month, especially if your drainage system is old.
Getting the flies out: cleaning the drain
The first (and probably most important) stage in getting rid of moths is cleaning the tubes. Although it is a preliminary stage, it is crucial, because if you do not do it, you will not be able to eliminate these flies even with the help of special products.
- Identify your “enemy” and his breeding ground. Tape the drain (preferably as close to the sink as possible). You can even partially cover it. If you don’t see any dead flies the next morning, go to the next step.
- Clean the pipes with a tool like a brush or string. Make sure no organic hair, food, or anything remains. For this you can use the super flexible Brushtech drainage brush , which is very versatile and flexible for cleaning pipes.
- Slowly pour boiling water down the drain – a pot of hot water will suffice. It will destroy a significant amount of eggs and larvae.
- Also pour in detergent for pipes. Make sure to read the manual and follow it. You may need to pour in the gel several times a week.
- Kill any remaining moths with a fly killer!
Use professional products only after you have cleaned the pipes. We will describe drain fly traps , gel, insect growth regulating sprays, and other useful anti-moth products.
How to kill drain flies: a review of the best fly gels and traps
So you have to clean the pipes first before using the fly traps. Check out the most effective gels!
Invade Bio drainage gel
The Bio Drain Gel (rated 4 out of 5 stars on Amazon) is the most popular gel .
The only way to apply the gel is to pour it into the pipe ( 4-5 ounces will be enough for the first time although it is better to read the manual first). The gel does not contain any harsh or dangerous chemicals, but we recommend that you avoid any contact with your skin, so be sure to wear protective gloves. Citric oil makes the liquid attractive (its smell is rather pleasant) while the “natural germs” destroy everything in their path, be it organic, foam or odors.
As a result, the fly larvae have nothing to feed on. Most customers highlight the killing effect after using the Bio gel. Repeating the process is necessary and is recommended by the manufacturer. Either way, many users have almost the entire bottle left after killing all the flies, which saves them.
Among the many positive comments, we found a couple of opinions that the product is ineffective. They might have confused the drain flies with the fruit flies, it seems that looking for fruit flies in the wash is not very smart.
The Drain Gel is probably the main competitor of the Bio Gel. A quarter of this gel. In short, the prices are comparable. The rating of this product on is slightly lower with 4.1 stars out of 5 .
It also breaks down organic matter in the drainage system and provides a healthy environment in pipes and drains reaching the smallest crevices. It works well for both flies and other insects. It doesn’t have such a pleasant orange smell, but it does destroy bad odors.
Users highlight that the gel is very efficient, it kills the entire population of flies after two uses (take into account the fact that it is recommended to use 1-2 ounces of this gel). Many customers are hooked on the Drainage Gel and use it as a preventative measure. They say that with a monthly cleaning they prevent “relapses”.
This product is very similar to the previous one and saves you $ 3 when you buy the gallon of Bio Drain. To find out if Drain Gel is right for you, read customer reviews on Amazon.com.
Where should you put the fly traps?
In many chaos you will have to place them close to the focus of the infestation, either in the garbage, the drain or somewhere in the sink. Obviously, you shouldn’t place it right in the sink, as the flies will want to feed on the trap.
BEAPCO fruit fly trap
This trap was designed for fruit flies , but according to customer feedback, it works well for drain flies. All 6 traps alone, which is very accessible. Manufacturers say that a single packet can be useful for 180 days, which means a trap should last for a month.
Inside the small plastic container, there is a non-toxic mixture (for humans) which is similar to apple cider vinegar. The design of the trap does not allow liquid to spill even if the trap is dropped or broken. According to the description, BEAPCO traps catch twice as many moths as competitors. We don’t know if it’s true, but this cheat has the highest rating among its rivals on amazon.com – 3.8 stars out of 5 .
Users highlight the simplicity of its installation, high effectiveness of the trap and the fact that it works even for bugs and mosquitoes (although it is better to use the mosquito zapper to get rid of them). Even so, some of the customers complain about the quality of the plastic material that breaks when dropped or stepped on…. This is no surprise, as the trap is not made of titanium or platinum…
APPLE ECO TRAP fruit fly trap
APPLE ECO TRAP Fruit Fly Trap is ranked number two in fly trap ratings. This product looks great with its way of mimicking an apple. This makes sense knowing that TERRO designed this trap for fruit flies primarily. But remember that drain flies also love sweet and sweet juice, that’s why they can fall into this trap.
The Trojan Apple is more expensive, per unit. The margin is to cover the cost for the unique, patented design. Everything else is similar to the previous model. The container has a non-toxic substance that can catch hundreds of flies and last for a month.
Experienced users recommend placing the trap under the sink and near the trash. If you have children, you should explain to them that they cannot touch or bite into this “apple,” even if it looks delicious.
Extermination of toilet flies with aerosols and poisons
When drain flies are more active, the following products may be helpful. They complement the traditional forms of extermination as well as professional solutions. These insecticides that restrict the development of insects and come in sprays and poisons can be easily combined with other products. What do insecticide manufacturers offer?
Gentrol Insect Growth Regulator (IGR) 16 oz can
This insect activity regulator, like many others, is a versatile chemical that can be used against ants, bed bugs, and moths if they live in isolated places. The main advantage of these sprays like Gentrol is their ability to penetrate the hiding places of insects. Are there hundreds of ants flowing from a small crevice in the wall or many little critters crawling on the carpets at night? You can simply spray the entrance to their dens with this spray and your job is done. The complicated chemical compound will sterilize insects instantly. The adults of the species will not die, but will instead contaminate the entire nest and thus significantly slow down reproduction. It will work the same way with drain flies.
When sprayed, it settles as a light foam that fills the space like building foam. You will be able to clean it later and use your drain later. Gentrol not only sterilizes the strands, but also paralyzes the growth of the larvae.
The rating of this product in is very high, it is 4.1 stars. Why? Well Joe, thanks to the complete extermination of flies for a long period of time, and Kristine calls it “the best product of the season” against insects. All the complaints concern exterminating other insects, such as water bugs, which are often mistaken for cockroaches. It turns out that this spray works perfectly for the purpose of this article.
5 useful tips to eliminate drain flies
- Fortunately, flies do not fly very far from the place they choose as home, which is why it is very rare for them to infest the whole house. This is especially true if you start removing them as soon as possible.
- Use a metal brush when cleaning the tubes. Clean them with the brush as deeply as possible. Do not rely only on chemicals only: you can do it without physical impact. Move the brush up and down to clean the dirt from the tube walls. It is desirable to hang the brush on a metal rope.
- After cleaning the tubes, you will only have to eliminate the places where the drain flies lay their eggs, and you will still have to eliminate the adults for the next 20 days or so. Don’t worry when you see them, everything is normal; just make sure to kill them systematically.
- Always store food in airtight containers so flies can’t land on it. They only live in toilets, and they could fly anywhere for food. There could be a battle for food between drain flies and fruit flies!
- Wear safety glasses and a mask when using even the least aggressive chemical for the sake of your health.
Sewer flies faq
What factors increase the chances that these flies will appear in my home?
Flies love heat. The official website of the New York Department of Medicine and Mental Health states that they reproduce in summer when the temperature is very high. Access to food also stimulates their reproduction.
Do drain flies bite?
No, they don’t need blood to reproduce, and they don’t eat fresh meat either. They do not have jaws or stingers.
Is just using traps and poisons effective in eliminating drain flies completely?
In theory, if you constantly kill the adults, they will stop reproducing in the winter only if the temperature in your house is as low as it is outside. That is why it is not an option, you have to remove the moth nest as well.
I’ve poured everything I could down the drain (except burning gasoline), and the flies are still intact. How can it be?
If cleaning the drain doesn’t help, then you’re dealing with fruit flies. You have to use other products to eliminate them since they live outside the drain (in your kitchen probably feeding on fruits and sweets). They can circulate anywhere when looking for food.
When you fight drain flies, you are hardly going to do it with just traps and chemicals. You need to do some physical work – you have to clean the drain and pipes. If you don’t feel capable of doing it, you can call a specialist. Any plumber or handyman can handle this task. On the other hand, once you eliminate the gutter flies, you will have learned a real skill. We hope that our review has helped you to know which product will be the most suitable for your infestation of drain flies.