How to Use Apple Cider Vinegar to Get Rid of Gnats

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Gnats and may not bite you the way that rats or mosquitoes do, but just like houseflies, they're still pests you don't want in your house. That's because they are not only annoying as they fly around your kitchen in swarms but also because they can move dangerous bacteria from surfaces in your trash can to food that you plan to eat, which could make you sick.

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While fungus gnats, on the other hand, won't make you sick, they can damage the roots of your houseplants and spread disease from one plant to another. Luckily, both fruit flies and fungus gnats find the smell of apple cider vinegar alluring since it smells like sweet, rotting plant matter. There are two different ways to make an apple cider vinegar trap to catch gnats based on what you have on hand.

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Dish Soap and Vinegar

The most effective apple cider trap for killing gnats uses dish soap. That's because while gnats are small and light enough to land on water (or apple cider vinegar), dish soap breaks the surface tension of the water, meaning when they land on the surface to get a drink, they'll instead fall into the liquid and drown. Simply pour a few inches of apple cider vinegar into a jar or bowl (you'll need enough for the flies to drown) and then add a few drops of dish soap. You may also try to increase the allure of the concoction with a small piece of fruit or a little pinch of sugar for added sweetness.

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Plastic Wrap and Vinegar

If for some reason you find yourself out of dish soap, you can also trap the flies in a bowl or cup using plastic wrap. Fill the container with an inch or two of apple cider vinegar and then spread plastic wrap over the top before securing it with a rubber band. Use a toothpick to poke holes in the plastic wrap that are big enough for gnats to enter but don't poke holes so big that the gnats can easily discover how to get out.

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The gnats will be able to enter the holes to seek out the vinegar, but they won't be able to get back out through the top. If left a day or two, the gnats will die off on their own, but if you want to kill them more quickly to ensure they can't possibly escape, periodically swirl the cup around to swish any living gnats under the surface of the vinegar so they drown. If you don't like the idea of killing anything, you can take the trap outside your home and open the plastic wrap to release the gnats. Be sure to take them far enough away that they won't just fly back inside your house.

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