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how to get rid of drain flies

How To Get Rid Of Drain Flies – Fast & Easy

What Is A Drain Fly?

Commonly known as a moth, sewer flies or sink flies, drain flies are a genuine 21st-century problem for many homeowners and businesses. Living and breeding in the organic matter inside the drains, these flies are mostly found in kitchens and bathrooms.

Even though they are not harmful and do not transmit any diseases, sewer and drain flies can make everyone feel yucky. Below, we are talking about them in detail, listing how to get rid of drain flies and how to kill drain flies and keep them away from returning.

What Are Drain Flies And What Do They Look Like?

If you are wondering what do drain flies look like, the best way to describe them is as insects that are very small (2mm to 5mm in length), light grey or tan-colored. Their body is short, and their wings are in the shape of a leaf. The fuzzy appearance of drain flies comes from the small hair that is present all around them.

The drain flies love organic resources located in the trash as well as ones that are found near the infested areas and are extremely small. Their live cycle is from 1 to 3 weeks, and the eggs can hatch in 32 to 48 hours, reaching the maturity age in 9 to 14 days.

Do Drain Flies Bite?

Thankfully, drain flies do not bite. They are merely nothing more than a nuisance and an annoying army of insects present in kitchens in bathrooms.

Are Drain Flies Beneficial In Any Way?

Believe it or not, the drain flies are considered as beneficial because their larvae can break down the drain-clogging materials. However, if you are wondering about the damages that they cause – they can contaminate the food (with their filthiness) and intensify bronchial asthma in some people.

Are Drain Flies Hanging Around Fruit, Stale Beer, And Soft Drinks?

No. If you are seeing the moths occupying your fruit, stale beer, soft drinks or any other alimentary products, you are dealing with fruit flies – which is another type of flies that is necessary to get rid of.

Drain flies do not hang around fruit or wardrobe (clothes moth). They only hang around kitchens and bathrooms – or in other words all damp areas with sinks, garbage, and pipes.

‘Flies In My House’ – What Are The Signs Of Drain Flies Infestation?

All areas with nutrient-rich organic materials attract drain flies. Hence, drains, sewers and septic tanks are the perfect habitats and breeding grounds for drain flies – which is where you should look and see the signs of drain flies infestation.

The most common one is the presence of adult drain flies, which hang out near drains or breeding areas. You can learn more about spotting drain flies in the upcoming part.

How To Get Rid Of Drain Flies And Make Them Disappear

Before you decide to get rid of drain flies, you should be sure that they are present in your home or any other area. To do that and learn how to kill drain flies, you should know how to spot the signs of their presence. They include:

  1. Detecting Them With Naked Eye – The first thing is to locate the drain flies with a naked eye – and see if they are precisely the type that you are ‘hunting.’ What you should know here is that there are many similar flies out there – such as fruit flies, house flies, gnats, cluster flies, deer flies, horse flies and blowflies – which is why you need to find a nearby pipe or drain that is probably their breeding source.
  2. Testing The Drains – Another great way to get rid of drain flies is to cover all of your drains outlets and pipes with sticky tape and see how they are getting stuck to the tape every time they get nearby. Even though this is a great way to kill drain flies, it is not a permanent solution that works in the long run. To do this test, you should:
  1. Clean and thoroughly dry the drain areas in your home (kitchen and bathroom).
  2. Since drain flies are most active at night, you should place a piece of clear tape over the drain outlets and pipes with the sticky side facing forwards – but don’t completely cover the drain with tape.
  3. Leave the tape overnight or during the weekend and if you find any flies afterward, you have successfully located the source(s).

Eliminate Drain Flies: Destroying Their Breeding Source

As soon as you identified their breeding source, it’s time to learn how to kill drain flies. To do that, you should first clean your drains from the outside and afterward pour 2-4 liters of warm water that will moisten the drain.

Next, you should use a metal pipe brush and push it through the pipe. While moving it up and down with your gutter cleaning tools, you will also clean the sides of the tube and pull out the grime. Once that is done, you should pour a drain cleaner gel into the sewers and coat the sides of your pipe.

As soon as you apply the drain cleaning gel, it’s time to pour plenty of water again and use a plunger to flush the organic matter trapped in your pipes.

Now, Time To Finally Get Rid Of Drain Flies…

If you did everything right (as described above), you have successfully removed the drain fly eggs and larvae. The only flies left are the adult drain flies. Since they have no place to lay eggs at this point, you should kill them and get rid of drain flies once and for all.

To do that, you should use:

  • Chemical sprays – perfect for killing mature drain flies but toxic for use in the kitchen.
  • Fly swatters – these work mechanically and can do a good job, even though they leave a bloody mess from the walls.
  • Liquid dish soap sprays – these soaps contain borax which has insecticidal properties and should be used in an empty spray bottle and sprayed onto drain flies (5-7 drops and 2 cups of warm water inside the bottle).
  • Drain flies traps – If your kitchen is infested, you need to take a bowl and fill it with an equal amount of sugar, water, and white vinegar, adding 5-10 drops of dish soap. Leave the bowl overnight beside your sink to attract and kill the drain flies.

How To Get Rid of Drain Flies From Returning In Your Kitchen Or Bathroom?

As soon as you have learned how to kill drain flies, it’s time to learn how to prevent the same problem from happening again. The truth is, many homeowners succeed in getting rid of drain flies periodically – but not when it comes to preventing them from coming back.

The best method in cases like these is to:

  • Always keep your drains clean and free of clogs
  • Make sure that there is no stagnant water in your bathroom/kitchen
  • Use an IGR (Insect Growth Regulator) in your pipes on occasions to prevent the drain fly eggs from breaking out the larvae stage

To prevent future drain fly infestations, you should repeat these processes and always make sure that your drains are clean.

Getting Rid of Drain Flies A Final Word 

In the end, the best thing about drain flies is the fact that they don’t bite – or pose a significant threat to our health. Also, there is very little evidence to back up the fact that they spread bacteria and disease.

However, no homeowner is comfortable with having drain flies inside the kitchen and bathroom. The little insects are annoying and create a feeling of a dirty kitchen or bathroom. So, if you merely want to get rid of them with pesticides, that is not possible.

Luckily, there are tons of products that can help you kill drain flies such as fly extermination products, organic gels, fly-freezing sprays, septic tank treatment agents, and foams.


One of the best-case scenarios is to hire a pest control company – or exterminator – that is specialized in dealing with drain flies – and one that can help you kill them and prevent them from coming in the future through a simple pest control audit.

Good luck!

Enjoy this post how to get rid of drain flies? Take a look at one of our recent article about gutter prices.

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