You go to your kitchen sink for a glass of water, and suddenly a swarm of pesky fruit flies appears swirling around your head. Where did they come from? How do you get rid of fruit flies? You may hope tossing the overripe or rotting fruit will solve the problem, but there are additional steps you should take in order to kill the flies.
A clean home is vital if you want to get rid of fruit flies. Having a cleaning company for recurring visits will help in the prevention of a fruit fly infestation. TLC Cleaning knows how to get rid of fruit flies! Service areas include Fargo and Grand Forks, North Dakota, and Detroit Lakes, Minnesota.
Having a little knowledge of fruit flies goes a long way to prevent an infestation and deal with existing insects.
Where do the Fruit Flies Originate?
The misconception here is they come in with your fruit or produce. Fruit flies usually make their way into your home from outside when they get a whiff of the delicious ripening, overripe, or mostly rotten fruit. They are attracted to the fermentation, so beer and wine also seduce the little buggers!
Fruit Flies Explained by The Old Farmer’s Almanac
The Old Farmer’s Almanac explains that the tiny insects are part of a large family of small flies with about 3,000 species. Compared to the disease-spreading houseflies, fruit flies are relatively harmless. Other than fruit, they will live and breed in drains and garbage cans and anything damp.
Fruit flies range in color from a light tan to a reddish-orange and brown. In liquid, they will almost look almost like swimming coffee grounds.
Having TLC Cleaning get under the refrigerator for spilled juice or milk or discover a forgotten potato under your counter will take away the larvae’s breeding grounds. If you want to know how to get rid of fruit flies, start with deep clean.
Here is a fun fact, fruit flies can lay 500 eggs at a time! And in about 30 hours, the larva then surfaces and nourishes on the nearby fruit, developing into pupae. A week later, they are souring freely around your house and will lay their eggs.
The fruit fly only has a two-week lifespan but can do a lot of breeding. The cycle will continue without taking the proper cleaning precautions and removal steps.
What Are the Trouble Spots for Fruit Flies?
The biggest enemy of a fruit fly is a clean surface and a house free of spills, stains, and crumbs. Yes, overripe fruit is a big culprit, but so are garbage cans, garbage disposals, open vinegar or wine, or even whiskey bottles (and it is a sad day having to pour out a bottle of your whiskey because of the little buggers).
The Food Network recommends the following tips on how to get rid of fruit flies:
Toss the Fruit: Fruit fly larvae will work their way into food and begin feasting.
- Get rid of infested ripe fruit and vegetables that are out in your kitchen.
- Wrap up in a bag and securely fasten.
- Bring to your outdoor trash can.
Clean the Fruit:
- Wash uninfested fruits and veggies in warm water and blot with a paper towel, allowing them to dry completely on a clean surface, as their eggs may be on the surface.
- Put in a sealed container and refrigerate.
- Gently scrub with a clean vegetable brush. Brush more rigid skinned fruits such as apples, potatoes, melons, and bananas.
Wipe Everything in Kitchen, Bathroom, Family Room:
- All kitchen counters and surfaces need a good washing down, as female fruit flies may have laid eggs.
- Clean your refrigerator, tables, counters, and especially the sink drain and garbage disposal with a disinfecting spray (preferably food safe).
- For sinks, use rubber gloves, and spray a paper towel with disinfecting spray. Use the paper towels to wipe the entire sink.
- Check other house rooms, family rooms for hidden juice boxes, bathroom for dried toothpaste, basement for forgotten beer cans.
- Take the trash out and clean inside (including under the lid) and outside of your trash can.
As mentioned, the sink drains an often forgotten place. Keep continually free of food bits and clean all the icky buildup in and around the drain. It will become a breeding ground in no time!
Other suggestions on how to get rid of fruit flies include using overhead fans or portable fans. Fans will irritate the fruit flies as they fly and will help to deter them. You may also want to check screens and windows for holes or gaps and have them repaired or use caulk to fill if you find any.
Airborne Fruit Flies Must Die!
After a rigorous cleaning by you or TLC Cleaning, it is time to attack the mature fruit flies.
The basic premise here is to attract and kill the fruit flies is to drown them. Create fruit fly traps by setting up bowls or glasses filled partway with apple cider vinegar, red wine vinegar, or even leftover red wine (not that that usually happens).
The Old Farmer’s Almanac instructs to cover the containers (bowls, glasses, wine glasses, etc.) with plastic wrap, a plastic baggie, or aluminum foil and poke holes in it. Make sure it is secure around the sides (a rubber band works great). Use a toothpick to poke holes, as you want to get the fruit flies in but not get out.
Another suggestion on how to get rid of fruit flies is to try the “bowl and soap trap.” Fill a bowl with apple cider vinegar but this time, add a few drops of dish soap and leave it out uncovered. Warming the vinegar first will make it more aromatic and inviting to the fruit flies.
Why the soap and no cover as with the other methods? The soap decreases the surface tension, and landing fruit flies then drown.
Tip: No plastic wrap or aluminum foil? Use several pieces of paper and roll them together into a funnel and tape. Put the funnel inverted into each filled glass. Flies will get in and have nowhere to escape.
If You Want to Know How to Get Rid of Fruit Flies for Good, Contact TLC Cleaning
Nobody wants fruit flies in their home. TLC Cleaning helps in the prevention of the problem in the first place by cleaning the hard to reach spots for you. A clean house deters fruit flies from showing up at all. Let them know they are not welcome with a sparkling clean dwelling.
Keep your mornings peaceful. With the help of TLC Cleaning, you won’t have to worry about picking up a cup of coffee and seeing black dots floating in your cream!