Many different insects invade homes in the summer, but one of the most common and notorious pests is stink bugs. Stink bugs are typically brown, gray, or green and have an oval shape with a shield shape on their backs. These pests feed on crops like beans, tomatoes, and peaches.
In addition, they also attack ornamental plants, rendering them inedible or unsightly. They often hide in cracks and crevices during the day and come out at night to feed on vegetables, fruits, plants, and even your trash.
Stink bugs can produce a foul smell when they land on something, which could cause an unpleasant smell in the house. Because they are so small, you may not notice them until they have caused damage to your home.
Fortunately, there are plenty of tips and remedies to get rid of stink bugs and keep them away. This article will discuss some best home remedies to get rid of stink bugs from your home.
14 Home Remedies to Get Rid of Stink Bugs Naturally
Some people use insecticides, but this is not always the best solution, nor is it safe for you or your family.
There are many natural alternatives that you can try instead of using harmful chemicals. If you want to get rid of stink bugs without using insecticides, there are several steps that you can take. Just follow these steps to rid your home of stink bugs safely:
1. Soapy water
Soapy water is a popular way to get rid of stink bugs as a home remedy. People also call it the “wet and clean” method.
For proper use, you need to mix hot water with 3/4 mild dish detergent. Place the soapy water in an empty spray bottle and shake it well. Spray the mixture on the stink bugs until they’re soaked. Also, spray any cracks and crevices where they might hide out!
Another method of using soapy water as a home remedy is to fill up a bucket with it. Pack the stink bugs in a careful way into the bucket and flush them down the toilet.
Follow the same procedure to get rid of other household pests like ants, roaches, and spiders invading your house.
If you have a vacuum cleaner at home, then you can use it to get rid of stink bugs from your house. Vacuuming stink bugs is one of the methods to remove these pests. Make sure you seal the bag after use to prevent the stink bugs from escaping.
You can also use a handheld vacuum to suck up the bugs. But do not allow them to touch or reach the sucking tube because they are very sticky and will not let go if they get on it. So make sure you keep them away from the suction tube by using a broom or other tool to sweep them into an area where they are easier to vacuum up.
The downside to this method is that the smell of their droppings fills the air. Wear gloves after you vacuum and be careful not to touch any of their smelly droppings while cleaning.
3. Diatomaceous Earth
Diatomaceous earth (DE) is a naturally occurring material composed of the fossilized remains of algae. DE is safe to use where humans and animals are, and it effectively eliminates stink bugs.
Simply sprinkle diatomaceous earth around the perimeter of your home, and the bugs will die when they come into contact with it. You can also put it in a jar or container with holes punched in the lid, and place it where you’ve seen stink bugs.
If you have cracks and crevices in your home, such as window sills or ledges, pour some DE down to kill any bugs inside. Just be sure not to apply too much DE at once because it can be toxic if ingested by people or animals.
4. Neem oil
Neem oil is another natural insecticide that you can use to kill stink bugs. Simply mix neem oil with water and spray it on the bugs. You can also use it to create a barrier around your home to keep stink bugs out. To use neem oil, follow this procedure:
Mix 1-2 tablespoons of neem oil with one quart of water in a spray bottle. Spray the neem solution down the windows and doors, as well as any nearby cracks or crevices.
Mint is a very powerful natural insecticide. It has several active ingredients that have been shown to kill stink bugs. These ingredients include volatile oil cineole, menthol, and methyl salicylate.
Plant mint around your home or in pots near entryways to prevent them from entering your house. Also, you can place a few drops of mint oil on a cotton ball and set it near where you see stink bugs. The smell will not only get rid of them, but it will also prevent them from coming back.
Another method of getting rid of stink bugs is to apply the mint spray. To prepare this mint solution, mix two to three cups of water with ten drops of mint oil or one to two tablespoons of ground mint leaves.
You can also use fresh mint or peppermint oil to repel and deter stink bugs.
6. Peppermint oil
Peppermint oil is one of the most effective home remedies to get rid of stink bugs. The strong smell of peppermint deters stink bugs and can even kill them.
To use this peppermint remedy, simply add a few drops of it to a cotton ball and place it near areas where stink bugs are commonly found. You can also add a few drops of peppermint oil to your vacuum cleaner bag to help keep your home free of these pests.
For an even more potent deterrent:
- Make some DIY insecticide by mixing two tablespoons of dish soap with one quart of water.
- Add 12–15 drops of peppermint essential oil.
- Mix well and spray on areas where you’ve spotted the pests.
- Shake the mixture before each use because it separates as it sits.
The easiest way to get rid of stink bugs is to trap them. Here are the different ways to trap stink bugs:
- You can set this trap by filling a bowl with soapy water and setting it near where you’ve seen the bugs. The bugs will be attracted to the bowl. They will crawl in, but won’t be able to get out because of the soap. Once the bowl is full, take it outside and dump the water. Repeat until all the bugs are gone and flush them down the toilet.
- Another way to set a trap is to use a lighted stink bug trap. This trap is one of the most effective home remedies to get rid of stink bugs. You can either purchase it or make your own. To make your own, you will need a small container (a cup or jar) and a light source (a flashlight or lamp). Put the light source inside the container and place it in an area where you have seen stink bugs.
- You can also go the extra length to make a special stink bug trap. Get a two-liter bottle, an LED light, electric tape, a long thin object, a razor blade, and black tape. Cut off the top third of the two-liter bottle, fill it halfway with water, then poke a hole in the plastic lid. Next, bend your skinny object (such as a metal coat hanger) and poke it through from one end to another. Place your metal contraption inside the top third of the cutoff part of the bottle (the neck). Then, twist slightly to secure its position. Attach your electronic components and make sure everything fits snugly inside. Secure your device with electric tape if necessary. Use more black tape to cover up any exposed wires and set your trap up anywhere you have found the pests. Turn on the power switch, wait a few minutes, then look inside – hopefully there will be plenty of dead stinkbugs.
- In addition, you can use a sticky trap to trap stink bugs. Simply place these traps wherever you have seen the bugs to kill them. These traps have an adhesive on one side that sticks to any surface.
Put some food such as apple slices or sweet peppers at the bottom of these traps, which will attract the insects towards it. It will trap them once they come into contact with the adhesive on either side of the trap, and they will starve as they try to eat their way out!
Garlic is a great home remedy for getting rid of stink bugs. All you need to do is take a few cloves of garlic and chop them up. Then, sprinkle the garlic around the perimeter of your home.
The strong smell of garlic will repel the stink bugs and keep them from coming inside. You can also mix some powder of about 3-4 teaspoons with 2 cups of water in a spray bottle. Use it to repel stink bugs that are already in your home.
Another way to get rid of these pests is to put about 10–12 cloves of garlic into a small saucepan with about 3 cups of water. Steam until all the water has evaporated, then strain the pieces left behind.
Once strained, add 4 teaspoons of cayenne pepper and 1 teaspoon of ground cumin to make a stronger mix. Stir this mixture with two cups of white vinegar in a spray bottle and shake well before you use it.
To keep stink bugs at bay, apply liberally wherever needed!
9. Hot Peppers
Hot peppers can be used as a natural repellent for stink bugs. All you need is to grind some hot peppers up into a powder. Then, sprinkle the powder around your home.
The strong smell of the powder will deter the stink bugs from entering your home. You can also get a spray bottle. Fill it with water mixed with hot pepper powder. Shake well and spray on the points of entry to your home.
Any type of pepper, like red pepper flakes or cayenne pepper, also works.
If you have a stink bug problem, hairspray is a quick and easy way to get rid of them. Just aim and spray! The sticky residue will trap the bugs, and they won’t be able to escape.
You can also use this method to prevent stink bugs from coming inside in the first place. Just spray around your doors and windows.
If you desire quick results, it is advisable to try the stickiest hairspray.
Other applicable home remedies to get rid of stink bugs include spraying wart remover or white vinegar on them, dropping candle wax on them, and freezing the stink bugs. Remember to follow the procedures for each remedy as discussed in this article to get rid of these invasive pests.
11. Essential oil
Essential oil is another natural way to get rid of stink bugs. Mix a few drops of essential oil with water in a spray bottle and use it to get rid of the stink bugs.
You can also add a few drops of oil to a cotton ball and place it near areas where you’ve seen stink bugs. They will attract the bugs to the scent and will eventually die.
12. Dryer sheets
Dryer sheets will also get rid of stink bugs from your house. You may not have known this, but those little dryer sheets you used to keep your clothes smelling fresh can also eliminate stink bugs.
Just crumple one up and place it near where you’ve seen the bugs, and it will draw them to it and away from your home. You can also put them in cracks or crevices where the bugs might hide.
Nicotine is another natural insecticide that can get rid of stink bugs. To make a nicotine solution, mix one-part tobacco with ten parts water. Let the mixture steep for 24 hours, then strain it and put it in a spray bottle. Spray the solution around the perimeter of your home and on any infested plants.
14. Electric bug zapper
Hang an electric bug zapper in your yard to attract and kill stink bugs. This remedy is one of the most effective ways to eliminate stink bugs, but it requires some maintenance.
You’ll need to empty the zapper regularly and keep it clean, so it doesn’t become a breeding ground for other pests.
How to Prevent Stink Bugs
First, inspect your home and see any signs of stink bugs. If you discover stink bugs in your house, apply the home remedies discussed earlier. But if you are fortunate not to have one, follow these steps:
- Before bringing things inside, look them over and shake them hard to get rid of any stink bugs on them. Keep your windows and doors closed as much as possible, especially during the summer months when they are most active. Install tight-fitting screens on all of your windows and doors.
- Ensure the outside of your house, gutters, and downspouts are clean and free of clutter and debris. Stink bugs might not hide in your yard if you keep it clean and get rid of the trash.
- Use a bug repellent with DEET (containing 0.35% or higher) on all exposed areas of skin and clothes to keep them away from you and your family.
- You can also use light traps to prevent stink bugs from entering your home. These traps are great for catching and killing stink bugs and other pests like moths or mosquitoes. You’ll need to buy a few different traps, but they’re worth it because you can use them throughout your home or yard.
- Seal cracks or holes around window frames with caulk or silicone sealant to prevent stink bugs.
- To avoid stink bug invasion, try to replace and repair any damaged doors or windows in the building.
- Cover outdoor lights with screens that keep them from attracting insects into the house at night. Cover the lights in a way that will not obstruct your view at night.
- Remember to turn off the porch light if it’s not needed, as they draw these bugs to artificial light.
- Use sticky strips around your windowsills to trap stink bugs before they enter your home. Avoid placing the sticky traps where children or pets can reach them.
- Remove piles of leaves or other organic matter near houses where pests may live and breed under such coverings (like loose bark).
- Check the exterior perimeter of your home periodically for openings where pests could enter.
- Trim vegetation around buildings that are close to walls.
- Remove all rotten food from inside your home or garden area where stink bugs like to hide.
- Protect your residence from pests if it has a fireplace by capping or screening the top of the chimney to keep stink bugs away.
- Get rid of stink bugs in the plants near your home’s foundation by hiring an exterminator to use pesticides that are safe for outdoor use around homes.
- Avoid squishing stink bugs when you spot them. Hence, they will release their unpleasant odor. Instead, pack them with your dustpan and flush them away down the toilet.
In conclusion, if you find stink bugs inside your house or yard, applying some of the home remedies discussed in this article is the best way to get rid of them.
Don’t crush them to avoid an unpleasant odor. In addition, avoid using pesticides and vacuums. Remember, they are not harmful to humans and animals. You can prevent them by taking the proper steps.