Mosquitoes are among the most hated pests due to their irritating bites. However, they are also dangerous pests because they can carry and transmit diseases, like the West Nile virus, zika virus, malaria, yellow fever, and much more. There are many ways that you can go about getting rid of mosquitoes. However, many treatments aren’t effective, so we have rounded up the best ways to get rid of mosquitoes so that you can skip to the best DIY mosquito treatments.
If your mosquito problem persists, we recommend contacting a pest control company like Terminix to exterminate these pests. Mosquito control by a professional is highly effective. Professional treatment typically targets mosquitoes in multiple ways, including directly killing mosquitoes on your property and changing your environment so that it’s less attractive to mosquitoes. Keep reading to learn more about mosquitoes, how to get rid of mosquitoes, and why mosquitoes may be attracted to your home and property.
The Basics About Mosquitoes
Mosquitoes have been around for more than 30 million years. These insects have acute senses that allow them to detect carbon dioxide and lactic acid up to 100 feet away, making them excellent at finding mammals, humans, and birds to prey on. Mosquitoes also have a host of visual sensors and are good at sensing things that are “alive” and moving, which means that there is blood to be found. In addition, mosquitoes can sense heat, allowing them to find warm-blooded mammals easily.
A common misconception about mosquitoes is that they are bloodsuckers who feed on human blood. However, they only suck blood to nourish themselves before laying and hatching eggs. Many mosquitoes will lay up to 100 eggs at one time, making these pests difficult to control. As a result, you’ll find that most mosquito guides and exterminators will recommend taking several steps to control mosquito populations and repel them from your property.
Killing mosquitoes may seem like the best course of action, but these pests can be difficult to kill due to their large population and rapid breeding. If your home is attractive to mosquitoes, killing all the mosquitoes that visit will be difficult, so repelling mosquitoes is often the best choice. On top of this, mosquitoes can become resistant to pesticides, and these same chemicals can aggravate the environment and harm other animals that eat mosquitoes, such as bats and birds.
The Best Ways to Get Rid of Mosquitoes in Your Home
Mosquitoes are usually more of a nuisance outside than inside. However, if you find mosquitoes buzzing around your home, it’s time to take action to rid your home of these annoying pests.
Often, mosquitoes are attracted to lights within our homes. So, if you have a lone mosquito buzzing around your bedroom at night, try turning off all the lights and leaving a lamp or flashlight on to attract the mosquito before taking care of them. Keep reading to learn more about the many ways to repel mosquitoes that have taken over your home.
Use a Chemical Repellent
A chemical repellent can provide you with protection from mosquito bites. We recommend checking out products containing at least 30% to 50% DEET, which is by far the most popular and effective mosquito repellent. While there have been safety concerns in the past about using DEET on human skin, these concerns have been reviewed, and DEET is not considered harmful when used correctly.
Fix Any Gaps in Windows/Doors
Whenever you have pests in your home, it’s good to check for any gaps in window screens, doors, or your home’s exterior that the pests may have entered through. Inspect your home for any gaps or holes and immediately repair them. If your door has sunlight coming in around it, consider installing a door strip.
Invest in Mosquito Netting
If you frequently air out your home by opening your windows or like sleeping with your windows open, consider investing in a mosquito net. Mosquito nets are easy to install around your bed and are highly effective at keeping mosquitoes away from you while you sleep.
Set Up Mosquito Traps
Mosquito traps are a great DIY solution, or you can choose to purchase different types of mosquito traps online or in-store. Here’s a quick guide on how to DIY a mosquito trap:
- Cut a bottle in half and flip one of the bottle halves upside down.
- Tuck the flipped half into the lower half of the bottle.
- Boil one cup of water and one cup of sugar. Once this mixture has reached boiling, add two cups of cool water to it.
- Set the mixture aside and allow it to cool to around 90 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Add one teaspoon of dry, active yeast to the mixture.
- Pour this mixture into your bottle trap.
- Secure the trap with tape, then wait for mosquitoes to be attracted to the sweet, sugary scent, become stuck, and drown in the liquid. Remember to replace your homemade mixture occasionally to keep the mosquito trap effective.
Buy Oscillating Fans
Mosquitos are not strong fliers. If you have access to oscillating fans or can purchase them, turn them on to force mosquitoes to scatter and leave your home.
Bathe with Outdoor Soaps
Certain outdoor soaps are designed with ingredients that repel mosquitoes. Consider purchasing outdoor soaps and showering with them to repel mosquitoes. Mosquitoes rely heavily on scent to find their prey, so changing your scent can be a great way to repel mosquitoes.
DIY Spray Repellent
Spray using Essential Oils
Certain essential oils, such as lemon, eucalyptus, lavender, lemongrass, tea tree, clove, and peppermint, are known to repel mosquitoes. However, keep in mind that these essential oils may not be as effective as traditional pesticides. Some essential oils may also be toxic to pets and children, despite being a natural choice, so we recommend being cautious if you have pets or children.
To use essential oils as a DIY bug spray repellent for mosquitoes, add a few drops of one of the above oils to one cup of water and mix inside a spray bottle. Then, spray this mixture on your skin and around your home. Avoid spraying on delicate fabrics. We also recommend a patch test on your skin first, as some people experience irritation from certain essential oils.
Spray using Coconut Oil and Neem Oil
If you’re interested in creating a natural mosquito repellent, try making coconut oil and neem oil repellent. Simply combine these two oils and dilute them with water. This combination can repel mosquitoes for up to one day.
Spray using Garlic
Like essential oils, you can use garlic as a repellent for mosquitoes. Many people would prefer to smell like lavender or eucalyptus than the strong scent of garlic. However, if you like the smell of garlic, this can be an excellent mosquito repellent.
Light Lavender or Citronella Candles
Mosquitoes hate the smell of lavender or citronella, so try burning lavender or citronella candles to repel them from your home. Please place your candles out of reach of children and pets.
Camphor repels many insects, including mosquitoes. Try leaving camphor tablets in your room and giving them time to evaporate. Alternatively, you can burn camphor, which will be faster. Simply close all doors and windows and burn camphor in a room with mosquitoes for 20 minutes, and watch as mosquitoes exit the room.
Burn Coffee Grounds
The smell of coffee and smoke is repulsive to mosquitoes, so try burning coffee grounds in an egg carton or coffee tray to create a smokey repellent that mosquitoes can’t stand. Ensure that you place the burning coffee grounds in an area that isn’t near other flammable materials or where it won’t set off the fire alarm.
Use Repelling Herbs
Sage & Rosemary
Many people love the smell of rosemary and sage, but mosquitoes can’t stand it. To repel mosquitoes, try burning sage and rosemary in your home.
Basil is a delicious herb to keep on hand. On top of this, mosquitoes hate it, so try keeping a basil plant on your windowsill to keep mosquitoes away. You can also purchase a topical basil oil and apply it directly to your skin.
Lemon balm is another great mosquito repellent, especially in frequently bitten areas like wrists and ankles. Simply crush it and apply directly against your skin.
Kill With a Bug Zapper
Bug zappers are an effective way to kill mosquitoes on contact. However, if you have a significant infestation, this may be a tiring choice for dealing with them.
The Best Ways to Get Rid of Mosquitoes in Your Yard
Apply a Chemical Repellent
If you’ve noticed many mosquitoes in your yard, consider applying a chemical insect repellent in your yard. A chemical insect repellent can create a barrier around the perimeter of your backyard, home, and garden for as long as eight weeks. We recommend combining this with a mosquito repellent spray on your skin for the best results.
Set Up Mosquito Traps
Mosquito traps can be an effective way to control mosquito populations in your backyard. Most mosquito traps work by attracting mosquitoes with smells and visual stimuli that mosquitoes rely on to find humans and prey. Once the mosquito flies into the trap, it may electrocute them, catch them in a sticky trap, or vacuum them up.
These traps should be placed in shady areas in your yard. Experiment with different mosquito traps until you find one that works best for you. Certain mosquito species may be more attracted to different types of mosquito traps than others. We also recommend moving your mosquito traps around frequently until you find the best placement for capturing the most mosquitoes.
Get a Bug Zapper
Bug zappers quickly electrocute mosquitoes, making them an effective way to deal with these pests. However, this method does require a lot of time and effort on your part. You may also end up killing harmless and even beneficial insects in the process.
Apply Treatment to Pools or Ponds
Larvicide dunks or liquid larvicides are effective ways to prevent mosquitoes from laying eggs in your pool or standing water around your property. If you are hesitant to treat your pool or pond with chemicals, consider covering your pool or water fixtures overnight or when not in use to prevent mosquitoes from laying eggs and creating a breeding ground on your property.
BTI is an excellent option for treating your pool and ponds because it’s a naturally occurring bacterium found in soil that creates toxins that are poisonous to mosquito larvae. It is non-toxic to humans and can be sprayed into birdbaths, flowerpots, pools, and ponds.
Leave out Thermacell
Thermacells are useful divides that don’t need to be sprayed around your property. Simply place this scent-free repellent in your yard, and it will provide you with about 15 feet of protection. Thermacells are ideal for patios or areas where you and your family sit outside as they are mess-free, don’t smell, and can be easily refilled.
Attract Mosquito Predators
If you are experiencing a minor mosquito problem, consider attracting mosquito predators to your yard to decrease your mosquito numbers. One of mosquitoes’ most common natural predators is birds, such as waterfowl, swallows, songbirds, and purple martins. To attract these birds, try setting up bird feeders or birdhouses. Bats are another common mosquito predator. However, you probably don’t want bats near your home because bat guano can carry disease, and they may choose to roost nearby, creating a new pest problem.
Other natural predators include insects, such as spiders and dragonflies. While you probably don’t want to attract spiders to your yard, a healthy garden can be enough to encourage a healthy ecosystem that takes care of bugs like mosquitoes. Another option is adding natural predators, like koi and goldfish, to your pond to eat mosquitoes that try to breed.
Get Rid of Standing Water
Adult mosquitoes lay eggs in standing water. From there, larvae will hatch and continue to grow the mosquito population in your yard. If possible, eliminate standing bodies of water in your backyard. While you may not want to get rid of your pond, check for other standing water sources like pools of water in your gutters, ditches, bowls, or buckets. If you have a birdbath or plants you water, frequently change out the water and make sure your potted plants can drain excess water easily. If build up in your gutters is a consistent issue consider investing in quality gutters guards to reduce the amount of debris that can build up.
Buy a High-Power Oscillating Fan
Mosquitoes are not strong enough to fly against a high-powered fan. Consider installing a high-power oscillating fan in your yard or on your patio to disperse mosquitoes and keep them away from your backyard.
Use Warm LED Lights
Mosquitoes love light and will regularly hang out near traditional light bulbs. However, they don’t care for warm, yellow LED lights, so try replacing outdoor light bulbs with warm, yellow ones to create a less appealing environment for them.
Lay Cedar Mulch
Cedar mulch is great for soaking up extra moisture and keeping moisture in the soil, rather than creating pools of water for the mosquitoes to lay eggs in. Use cedar oil and cedar mulch to deter mosquitoes from breeding and hanging around in your yard and garden.
Maintain Your Lawn
Cool, dark, and damp places are ideal for mosquito breeding and resting. To prevent mosquitoes from making your yard their home, maintain your yard by keeping your lawn tidy and short. Short grass will eliminate hiding places and cool, dark areas for pests to rest in.
Citronella candles are a popular way to repel mosquitoes. Simply purchase a few of these and light them around your yard to repel mosquitoes. As always, exercise caution when placing candles and ensure that they are not near other flammable materials and are out of reach of children and pets.
Plant Natural Deterrents
For long-term mosquito maintenance, consider planting flowers that repel mosquitoes. The following plants are well-known, natural deterrents to mosquitoes and many other pests:
- Lemon balm
Please note that some of these plants, like garlic, are toxic to dogs, so please consult with your veterinarian if you have a dog to make sure you don’t choose anything harmful to pets.
Professional Pest Control Companies
DIY mosquito control methods may work if you have a minor mosquito problem. However, if you are experiencing massive numbers of mosquitoes, you’ll probably need to contact a professional pest control company to deal with your mosquito problem. A professional will have the expertise and training to efficiently kill mosquitoes, including mosquito eggs and larvae so that you won’t have a recurring problem. They’ll also know about proper safety procedures and what chemicals to avoid if you have kids or pets.
Terminix has over 90 years of experience in the pest control world and is comprised of many PhD-level professionals who have created many significant innovations in the world of pest control. Terminix mosquito control begins with a thorough inspection of your home and yard to identify the extent of your mosquito infestation and if mosquitos are breeding on your property. Then, Terminix technicians will apply a chemical treatment to start immediately working against the problem.
Terminix offers one-time mosquito treatment applications and monthly packages to create a thorough protection zone around your home. Terminix’s treatments target all mosquito species found in the United States and combine both liquid and granular outdoor treatments to create a tight, effective barrier around your property. The ongoing Terminix mosquito control package also includes monthly treatments to keep your home protected throughout mosquito season.
Learn more about Terminix and its treatments.
Orkin has over 100 years of experience as a pest control provider and uses Integrated Pest Management (IPM) to change your home’s environment so that pests are less likely to return. Orkin technicians will begin with a thorough inspection of your home and yard to evaluate the severity of your mosquito problem. From there, they’ll develop a specific treatment plan to tackle your mosquito infestation.
Orkin has three main treatment choices for mosquitos: microbial treatments that prevent mosquitoes and other insects from breeding in water, pesticide application on plants that adult mosquitoes use for shelter, and insecticide that targets insect growth regulator hormone, which prevents mosquitoes from growing and developing. Like Terminix, Orkin offers both one-time mosquito treatment options and monthly treatment options.
Learn more about Orkin and its treatments.
Compare multiple providers with our Best Pest Companies Review.
In short, mosquitoes may be managed through DIY methods, especially if you have a small mosquito problem. However, a professional should deal with most large mosquito problems because mosquitoes are rapid breeders who can quickly take over a property. Mosquitos can also carry and transmit harmful diseases, like West Nile and zika, so they should be considered a threat to human health, especially if you have children, elderly, or pregnant visitors who are at a higher risk of health complications from mosquito-transmitted diseases. Pets can also suffer from mosquito bites and may struggle with health complications or be infected with a potentially fatal disease. Don’t wait until your mosquito problem gets out of hand. Contact a pest control professional today to have the problem swiftly dealt with.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why does my house have so many mosquitoes?
Mosquitoes may be attracted to your home for many reasons. If you have stagnant water from your garden, a leaky pipe, or an air conditioning unit, they may be attracted to this for breeding purposes. If you frequently leave your windows or doors open or have gaps or holes in your home’s exterior, they may also be entering your home through these holes. Mosquitoes are also attracted to uncovered trash, lights, and sweaty items, like dirty clothing.
When is mosquito season?
Mosquitoes are most active throughout late spring, summer, and early fall months. For most parts of the United States, mosquito season is March through early November, depending on how cold it is where you live. You’re most likely to spot them during the evening and whenever it’s more humid outside. Mosquitoes will bite at any time of day, but the early evening is the time of day when you are most likely to be bitten.
How do I make mosquitoes go away?
Start by identifying how mosquitoes are getting into your house and what may be attracting them to your home or yard. Standing water and plumbing issues are common problems that attract mosquitoes because mosquitoes love cool, damp areas and need standing water to lay eggs in. If you have standing water, consider treating it, and immediately take care of any leaks or plumbing problems. Tall grass is another popular place where mosquitoes may take shelter, so keep your grass trimmed and your yard well maintained. We recommend using citronella candles, yellow LED bulbs, and mosquito sprays to help manage mosquito populations in your backyard.
Why does my yard have so many mosquitoes?
Mosquitoes love tall grass and cool, damp areas to rest in. If your grass and foliage are overgrown, mosquitoes may be flocking to your yard for shelter. Standing water, like birdbaths and pools, is also attractive to mosquitoes. So, if you notice many mosquitoes in your yard, consider treating standing water with mosquito repellent tablets. You can also plant different flowers or herbs that are repulsive to mosquitoes, such as garlic, marigolds, and lavender, as a long-term solution to mosquitoes in your garden.
What smells do mosquitoes hate?
Mosquitoes have a strong sense of smell that allows them to find their food sources. You can use this against them by using scents they despise, like peppermint, lavender, lemon, eucalyptus, citronella, basil, catnip, rosemary, cinnamon, and pine.
Why do mosquitoes bite me more than other people?
Mosquitoes find people based on smell, so humans who sweat more are easier targets for mosquitoes. Other possible factors include body odor, body temperature, and even blood type.
Today's Homeowner Rating & Methodology
Our research process involves a multi-step process to get real insights into the customer experience for each company. We contacted each pest control company directly and spoke to representatives via phone and online chat (if available). This allowed us better understand the company’s treatment offerings and customer service. We also consider BBB accreditation and what customer reviews say about each company. Additionally, we fact-check and update company data regularly to ensure accurate and up-to-date information.
We developed a 100-point rating system to compare the companies numerically.
- Plan options (35 points): Companies with more plans and flexibility on services to address specific issues were given a higher score.
- State Availability (5 points): Those that offer coverage in fewer than 45 states were deducted points for availability.
- Trustworthiness (10 points): This is based on whether companies have money-back guarantees, service guarantees, and additional satisfaction assurance measures.
- Customer Service (30 points): We considered accessibility (including on weekends and holidays) of technicians and customer support.
- Additional Benefits (20 points): Companies that offer further conveniences such as an app, comprehensive resources, and other benefits were rated higher.