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April 24, 2024

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    The best mosquito traps give comfort and protection from those annoying insects that carry diseases, bite us, and generally lower our standard of living.

    I can think of nothing more torturous than hearing a buzzing sound in my ear as I fall asleep. We need to take action to reduce the impact that they have on our lives.

    A mosquito trap is a great device in the war against those tiny monsters. Don’t expect a 100 percent success rate all the time, but it’s a useful addition to your mosquito controlling toolkit.

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    What are Mosquito Traps?

    A mosquito trap, also known as a mosquito magnet, is a device that tricks the bugs into thinking it’s a warm-blooded animal.

    Mosquitoes are smart, but not that smart. They detect the tiny chemicals released from our bodies. If a trap produces a similar set of chemicals, the mosquito goes towards it and gets trapped inside.

    The best ones mimic our body with a high level of accuracy.

    How Do Mosquito Traps Work?

    Traps attract mosquitoes and suck them inside where they either die of starvation or drown in a pool of water.

    Mosquitoes are sensitive to carbon dioxide we breathe out and a chemical called Octanol that’s released when we sweat.

    They can also detect the heat produced from warm-blooded animals and are sensitive to specific light frequencies. Attractants take advantage to trick the mosquito.

    The best mosquito traps have an attractant finely tuned and optimized to match the specific sensitivities of the bug.

    Just be sure to do one thing when trying to get them to work…

    Place your trap DOWNWIND.

    This is key because if you turn on your mosquito trap on windy day and all the mosquitoes can’t actually get to the trap, then you’ll just end up being frustrated.

    Indoor Mosquito Traps or Outdoor Only?

    Some are for indoor use and others for outdoors. Indoor traps aren’t usually water-resistant and have smaller ranges whereas the outdoor ones tend to use high levels of carbon dioxide.

    The traps are effective inside a small, enclosed space where they have a limited number of insects to catch. Leave it inside the room, close the door, and within an hour or so it should be clear.

    Always exit the room or the mosquito will go for you instead. The traps aren’t very powerful and won’t be effective in open spaces like the hallway. An indoor trap is a short-term solution to manage a small number.

    They tend to be cheap, portable, and use light and heat to attract the mosquitoes. Zappers are also popular.

    The purpose of an outdoor trap is to control and reduce the number of female mosquitoes in the area. This leads to a lower rate of reproduction, which over time can all but eradicate the population.

    Traps need to be powerful and attract insects over longer distances. Some of the best mosquito traps have a range of more than 300 feet making it an ideal addition to the garden, especially if you live near water. It’s not an instant solution.

    Most take between six to eight weeks before you can see any significant changes. You need to be strategic and willing to experiment for the best results.

    What are the Main Types of Traps?

    The more powerful and sophisticated traps imitate the chemicals, scent, and heat profile of a warm-blooded mammal. Others use carbon dioxide, heat, and light.

    Carbon dioxide traps produce a similar emission to human exhalation. Propane-fueled traps are potent carbon dioxide traps – the fuel is converted to the gas.

    They’re expensive to buy and maintain over the long-term. You also need to remember that propane is highly flammable.

    These produce different frequencies of infrared and UV light as an attractant. The heat imitates body temperature giving the illusion that they’re about to feast on a mammal.

    The light uses frequencies that the bugs are sensitive to and zaps them when they approach.

    Heat and light traps are less powerful but tend to be more versatile. You can use them both indoors and outdoors.

    Homemade traps are often made using a solution of yeast and sugar to produce carbon dioxide.

    This attracts the mosquitoes into a container with a pool of water where they drown. It’s not very effective indoors and completely useless outside.

    What to Look for When Buying a Mosquito Trap?

    Different traps are effective in different places. You need to do your homework and research what’s best for you before you make a purchase. Below are some things to consider before you buy a trap:

    What’s The Size Of Your Mosquito Problem And What Do You Want To Achieve?


    If you’re at infestation level, even the best mosquito traps are going to be ineffective, and you’ll need to consider other more potent methods of eradication.

    The best mosquito traps for moderate levels are those that have a long range and use carbon dioxide or other powerful attractants. Smaller heat and light traps are great for getting rid of those inside the house or around the garden.

    What Types Of Mosquitoes Are In Your Area?

    Whether you live in a city like Atlanta, GA or Detriot, MI which consistently rank in the top worst cities for mosquitoes; or a city where mosquitoes are on the rise like Jacksonville, FL, and Pensacola, FL – you need to think about the type of mosquitoes that are causing the problem. This way you can make sure you invest in something that allows you to optimize it for those conditions.

    Did You Know

    There are more than 3,500 species of mosquitoes in the world, and their habits and tastes vary.

    Check out the video below to learn a bit more about mosquito types.

    Where Should You Put Mosquito Traps?

    This applies mostly for outdoor traps.

    Mosquitoes prefer the shade, and you want to take advantage of the wind direction. You could use a fan to blow the attractant towards the mosquitoes.

    What’s Your Budget?

    Some are expensive and the running cost over time may be high, especially with ones that use propane.

    You also need to replace carbon dioxide cylinders and anticipate a high electricity bill. The purpose of an outdoor trap is to diminish the population.

    This means it needs to be running for a long period of time. Indoor traps are more affordable and use less power.

    Do I need any extras (fuel, insecticide, etc) when buying a mosquito trap?

    Yes and no.

    The light and infrared traps use electricity. You plug them in, and they do their thing.

    Powerful carbon dioxide ones may need propane to produce the gas. You also need to replace the carbon dioxide cylinders and attractants over time.

    It’s not essential to buy insecticide when you’re using a mosquito trap. But, the results may be much better if you combine a mosquito trap with a spray or fogger.

    Do Mosquito Traps Work?

    Sometimes yes, sometimes no.

    Effectiveness depends on various factors ranging from the size of the population, the location, to the species-specific habits.

    Even the best mosquito traps can be useless with infestations or if you live near major breeding grounds. This link has more information on mosquitoes and the effectiveness of different traps.

    It’s also true that traps may even attract more insects, especially those with longer ranges. This may make the problem worse.

    Indoor traps are usually effective at clearing the room. You need to be strategic and don’t turn it on when you’re inside.

    Outdoor traps can have amazing results over the the long-term when they’re used in combination with other eradication methods. You need to remember that nothing will be 100% and that technology always has its limitations.

    Top 5 Best Mosquito Traps

    Now that we’ve looked at the background, let’s have a look at some of the best mosquito traps.

    1. DynaTrap Dt2000xL
    2. Mega-Catch ULTRA Mosquito Trap
    3. Dynatrap Ultralight Mosquito Trap
    4. Aspectek Bug Zapper & Electric Indoor Insect Killer
    5. Patriot Mosquito Magnet 

    I’ve reviewed each along with a brief description and a short list of the pros and cons. I hope you find this informative to help you find the best trap for you!

    Mega -Catch ULTRA Mosquito Trap

    This is one of the best mosquito traps on the market. It mimics body chemistry with a high degree of accuracy and has a variety of attractants. It also has a range of up 150 feet or 1 acre.

    The settings are versatile, which is great because you can fine-tune it to suit your specific mosquito species needs.

    This is important because if you set it incorreclty you might just be catching moths all night and not mosquitoes. Make sure to read the directions and call support to set it up correcty for your specific situation.

    If you can get it going, it can do some serious damage to mosquito populations with some users reporting 10,000 – 12,000 mosquitoes caught over the course of 2 weeks. Just make sure you get the CO2 attachment to increase the attracting power of the unit.

    If you have the budget this would be our recommendation.

    Effective At Killing Many Mosquitoes Quickly
    Performs Well Near Breeding Grounds (Rivers, Ponds, etc)
    Significant Reduction Of Mosquitoes
    Expensive To Buy & Maintain / Need To Replace CO2 Every 3 Weeks
    Some Technical Issues

    Dynatrap Ultralight Mosquito Trap

    The Dynatrap is small and affordable with a coverage of up to 3002 feet. The trap works by using UV light to generate heat and a small level of carbon dioxide before vacuuming them inside. This trap is good for hanging in enclosed spaces, but you can use it outdoors where it isn’t exposed to the elements (rain, wind, etc).

    The Dynatrap is a portable trap for small-scale eradication inside the house or an enclosed space. At the same time, it’s quite fragile and may not be powerful enough to stop every mosquito that flies around your house.

    For the best results, make sure you open up the whitish segments to allow mosquitoes and insects to fly in.

    Odorless Operation
    No Requirement To Buy Additional Attractants
    Better For Small Indoor Or Outdoor Spaces
    Can Attract Unwanted Insects
    Suction Fan May Miss Some Mosquitoes
    Trap Is Slightly Fragile
    Operating Instructions Could Be Better

    Dynatrap Dt1050xl

    As opposed to some of the bug zappers noted above, this is a mosquito magnet.

    This magnet uses a combination of 3 different attractants to pull mosquitoes into the vicinity of the suction fan, which captures the mosquitoes until they die. The attractants are a ultra violet (UV) fluorescent bulb, a titanium dioxide coated surface, and carbon dioxide (CO2).

    This is an outdoor weather resistant product. The effective range is up to 1 acre.

    This is proven to be effective at reducing the population of mosquitoes over a period of time. Most claim to see results after a month.

    Similar to the Flowtron, we’d recommend keeping this a good distance away from your house as the attractants can (and will) bring swarms of mosquitoes to the area.

    Easy Plug n’ Play Setup
    All-In-One Product That Comes With 3 Pre-Packaged Attractants
    1/2 acre of coverage
    Not Portable, Short Power Cord
    Attractants May Work Too Well

    Mosquito Magnet (Patriot)

    One of the more popular traps for mosquitoes is the brand name Mosquito Magnet. The above version is the “Patriot”, which is their cheapest model.

    It comes with a 50ft power cord you can plugin into your house, but doesn’t come with attractant or the needed propane, both items you’ll need to buy in addition to the unit. We recommend getting their brand name octenol.

    It comes with a 30 day money back guarantee as well as a 1 year warranty so you should be fine if you run into most technical issues.

    The biggest difference we saw when reviewing the Patriot was the patented “Counterflow” technology built into the unit. Mosquito Magnet builds their traps in such a way that the unit emits carbon dioxide(CO2), heat, and moisture from the inner tubes, while the flared outer tubes vacuum the nearby bugs without vacuuming up the emitted CO2.

    There are more expensive options like the “Independence” and the “Executive”, which are both good, but a bit too much money for the mosquito killing power you get.

    If you want to go brandname, then the Patriot is probably a good bet.

    Uses a patented “Counterflow” technology to attract and kill mosquitoes
    Brand name recognition and trust
    1 acre of coverage
    Doesn’t come with attractant
    Some reports of broken units
    Custom service can be hard to get a hold of

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    Editorial Contributors
    avatar for Ed Spicer

    Ed Spicer

    Ed has been working in the pest control industry for years helping 1,000's of homeowners navigate the world of insect and rodent management.

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