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How to Get Rid of Drain Flies for Good

A drain fly in a home.

Drain flies are mysterious insects. One day they’re nowhere to be seen, and the next, you find them crowding around your sink or shower. Although they are small, fuzzy, and harmless, these pests can be incredibly frustrating to deal with — especially if they keep multiplying and seemingly refuse to go away.

You might need to try a few different methods to remove these tiny insects once and for all. Before we discuss how to get rid of drain flies for good, though, it’s important to know what they are and why they’re attracted to your bathroom or kitchen.

What Are Drain Flies?

Sometimes referred to as “moth flies” or “filter flies,” drain flies are attracted to drains, pipes, and any place with standing water. You can usually spot these insects by their small, fuzzy bodies, antennae, and light-colored wings.

These bugs love to lay eggs in stagnant water, so you’ll often find them hovering around floor drains, sinks, and septic tanks. They feed on organic material, which can be found in many drains — especially those that haven’t been cleaned.

These insects are not to be confused with fruit flies. Although fruit flies are small and can be annoying to deal with, they are only attracted to overly-ripened fruit and vegetables. You likely won’t find them hanging around your plumbing.

How Long Do Drain Flies Live?

Most adult flies can live up to two weeks. However, if these insects have a regular food source, they can sometimes last up to 20 days. Even more concerning is that drain flies reproduce rapidly — so even as they’re dying, there are usually many more waiting to take their place. If you spot a drain fly, it’s best to take quick action to prevent the problem from worsening over time.

Whether you’ve just noticed a drain fly problem in your bathroom or you have known about their presence for weeks, it’s never too late to learn how to get rid of drain flies for good. Once you have the problem under control, you can get back to enjoying your bathroom or kitchen to the fullest.

How Do You Get Rid of Drain Flies?

When learning how to kill drain flies, it’s important to note that the process may take some trial and error. Not every solution works for every situation — and that’s okay! There are many tips and tricks to try.

You can always call pest control for professional advice. However, if the drain fly infestation doesn’t seem too complicated and you feel comfortable trying a few DIY methods, keep reading.

A shower floor drain with standing water.

Remove Standing Water

Do you want to learn how to get rid of drain flies for good? Let’s start with the easiest steps first. It may seem simple and straightforward, but removing any standing water from your bathroom or kitchen can make a world of difference.

Standing water is a common breeding ground for drain flies. Cleaning up any of this water — whether it’s around plants or your shower floor drain — can help prevent the flies from reproducing and wreaking havoc on your home.

A pot of water boiling on a stove.

Try Hot Water

When learning how to kill drain flies, it’s important to remember that these insects are drawn to drains because they feed off the organic material collecting inside them. If you haven’t cleaned your drains in a while, there are several ways to do so.

Boiling water can be an easy and effective drain cleaner because it breaks down sludge and other types of clogs. You will want to pour boiling water down the affected drain at least once a day for a week.

If this doesn’t work, you can try creating a vinegar and baking soda drain cleaning solution. Pour  ½ cup of baking soda immediately followed by 1 cup of vinegar down the affected drain and let them sit overnight. In the morning, flush out the drain with hot or boiling water.

A drain snake.

Use a Drain Snake

If you’ve tried pouring boiling water down the drain but still have a drain fly problem, consider using a drain snake. Drain snakes are drain cleaning tools that are designed to trap and remove drain clogs of all kinds. You can use one of these devices to remove sludge and other types of organic material from the affected drain. When you keep the drain clean, you can stop drain flies from breeding and collecting.

Although we’re discussing how to get rid of drain flies for good, you don’t have to try any methods that you aren’t comfortable with. If you don’t have a drain snake or are unfamiliar with using this plumbing device, don’t worry. You can contact a Jackson plumber for a professional drain cleaning service.

Make a Trap

Do you want to learn how to kill drain flies that are buzzing around your bathroom instead of those that are living in the drain? You might want to try making a DIY trap.

We’ll start with the dish soap trap. Add about ten drops of dish soap to a clear bowl, along with sugar and water. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and put a few small holes in it. The flies will try to access the soapy water through the holes, but once they’re inside the trap, they won’t be able to get out.

You can also try making an apple cider vinegar trap if you currently don’t have any dish soap on hand. Fill a clear bowl with a little bit of apple cider vinegar — just enough to cover the bottom — and place plastic wrap over the top of it. Once you’ve done this, poke small holes in the plastic wrap.

Keep Your Drains Clean With Environment Masters

Although learning how to kill drain flies can help fix the problem once and for all, you shouldn’t overlook the cleanliness of your drains. If you suspect your bathroom sink drain is collecting sludge and other types of organic material, it’s always a good idea to schedule a professional drain cleaning.
At Environment Masters, our drain experts offer a wide range of solutions to thoroughly cleaning drains and help prevent drain fly infestation in the future. To schedule a drain cleaning appointment in Madison, MS, call us today!

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