We’ve all had to deal with them. Those tiny, annoying, indoor bugs that seem to always appear in your kitchen, bathroom, or anywhere you go outside. Gnats seem to be attracted to anyone and everything.

While a few can be irritating, many can be a huge problem. Fortunately, you don’t have to deal with these pests alone. The key is knowing what they are, what they want, and how to eliminate them. Here are seven tips to keep gnats away for good.

What are Gnats?

Gnats are tiny, flying black flies that tend to appear everywhere. There are a few common types: fruit flies, drain flies, and the fungus gnat. True to their names, these pests are tiny and may seem insignificant, but they can quickly grow in collective size if not properly dealt with. 

These pesky insects are often attracted to rotting fruit, dirty dishes, trash, and spoiled food. Drain flies tend to hover near drains, leaking pipes, and other damp areas. Fungus flies enjoy oil soil, fungus, and dirty areas. All these insects are also attracted to light and, unfortunately, humans. 

Common Places You Can Find Gnats

Some of the most common places you may spot gnats include places with decomposing organic matter, standing or leaking water, and garbage disposals. The tricky thing about gnats is that they can appear seemingly out of thin air, and it can be difficult to determine where they came from in the first place. Gnats are most active during the day, specifically mid-morning or at dusk, and are typically seen most during the summer months, otherwise known as bug season

If you are through with these annoying little pests, we’ve listed seven quick ways to repel gnats.

How to Get Rid of Gnats

1. Apple Cider Vinegar Trap

An easy and inexpensive way to get rid of gnats in any room of your house is by using the apple cider vinegar trap. You only need a small dish, apple cider vinegar, and dish soap to make your trap. Pour the vinegar into the dish and add a few drops of dish soap. The gnats are drawn to the sweet smell of the apple cider. As they fly down, they get trapped in the soap and drown. 

If you don’t have apple cider vinegar, no worries. This trap also works with wine as the base. It’s a quick and easy solution that can clear out any gnats.

2. Use Rotten Fruit

Place overripe fruit in a bowl and cover it with plastic wrap, keeping the plastic tight with a rubber band. Once the plastic is secure, poke a few holes in the plastic wrap using a toothpick or a skewer. The sweet scent of the rotting fruit will quickly draw gnats into the plastic. Once they crawl through the holes, they will not be able to find their way back out. This is a simple, inexpensive way to clear your kitchen of gnats.

3. Keep Counters Clear

You can avoid an annoying infestation by keeping your counters clean and clear. Keep an eye on fruit or food you keep on the counter. Store food or throw it away as it starts to turn. This holds especially true for fruit like bananas, which tend to go bad very quickly. 

Keeping dirty or wet dishes out of your sink is also a good idea. Gnats are drawn to rotting food, so keeping your kitchen tidy eliminates any possible food sources.

4. Take Trash Out Frequently

While it may seem like throwing spoiled food away in the trash should be enough, the opposite is true. Gnats love to lay their eggs in the garbage, particularly fruit flies. The best way to keep these annoying insects out of your home and away from your house is by keeping your trash covered and removing it frequently. It may also be worth it to invest in a stainless steel trash can with a lid, as these types of trash cans tend to seal in the trash scent more than other types of trash cans. 

5. Clear The Drain

Gnats can often be found in damp areas, such as drains and pipes. To keep them away, you should clean your drains regularly. This can be done with a simple bleach and water mixture. Using gloves and a well-ventilated area, combine bleach and water and pour it down the sink. Give time for the mixture to work away any fungus or dirt before running the water to rinse the solution down. 

When using this method, it is important to keep this mixture out of reach of children and pets. Also, be sure to open a window or run an overhead fan in order to ventilate the space and avoid breathing in the bleach. Once the mixture has had ample time to clean your pipes and drain, you should eliminate any gnats.

6. Light It Up

In addition to rotting food and damp drains, gnats are often drawn to light. Using this to your advantage, you can get rid of a few more gnats using a clever trap. Put a tall, tapered candle into a candlestick and place it in a shallow pan partly filled with water. Light the candle and turn off the lights. The gnats will be drawn to the flame, and the trap will take care of the rest. This trap is definitely a more unconventional way to get rid of gnats, but still worth a try!

7. Take Care of Your Plants

Plants may not seem like a likely source of a gnat infestation, but you’d be surprised. Rotting plants can be a breeding ground for gnats if you don’t care for them properly. Plants that have been overwatered or have old soil can be perfect spots for gnats to lay their eggs. An easy way to take care of this issue is by repotting or removing the plant from your home. Otherwise, you may find an overabundance of annoying flying insects in your home.

When to Call a Professional

Gnats can be irritating pests, but you can get rid of them easily by trying some of the techniques above.

If these methods fail and your home is overrun with these nasty little pests, it may be time to call in a professional. A good rule of thumb is to reach out to a pest control expert if you are noticing an abundance of gnats in your home, especially after you have tried the steps mentioned above to get rid of them. Take the necessary steps to keep gnats out and help your home stay pest-free.


Can gnats spread diseases to humans?

While some species of gnats bite humans, the good news is that these tiny pests are not known to spread disease. In rare cases, gnat bites can cause a bacterial infection in people who have been bitten if the skin is broken by scratching. However, the presence of gnats is usually not a cause for concern health-wise. 

How do I prevent gnats from invading my potted plants?

Gnats are particularly drawn to potted plants that have been overwatered or have old soil, but there are ways to prevent these pests from invading your plants. One effective way to prevent gnats from bothering your potted plants is by letting the soil dry out slightly and not overwatering them. It can also be helpful to create drainage holes in your pots if they don’t already have them to encourage excess water to drain properly. 

Are chemical gnat control methods safe for pets?

Many chemical gnat control methods on the market are safe for pets. However, it is imperative that you do your research and ensure you are carefully following the directions before applying any chemicals in or around your home. Contacting an experienced pest control expert may be your best bet for the best chance at getting rid of gnats in a safe and effective manner.