You can have common fruit flies in your apartment at any time of the year, but during the summer months, these tiny pests begin to populate more rapidly and can become a real nuisance. They’re incredibly small, roughly 3-4 millimeters, and it can be incredibly difficult to even determine where the fruit flies are coming from.
Fortunately, there are several ways you can prevent a fruit fly problem in your apartment. Keep reading to learn why fruit flies stick around and how you can prevent the spread in your apartment.
Why Do I Have Fruit Flies in My Apartment?
Fruit flies are small and can hide and lay eggs in the most unsuspecting spaces of your apartment. All fruit flies need to live and reproduce is moisture, warmth, and a source of food. For this reason, these pests love to hunker down in both the kitchen and bathroom.
Even if your apartment appears clean, tiny spills or puddles of water can quickly become a breeding ground for fruit flies. Fruit flies also have a strong sense of smell, so unsealed food containers, garbage cans, overripe fruit, and debris in your sink drain can all attract them to your apartment.
I Can’t Find Where the Fruit Flies are Coming From!
It can be hard to pinpoint the source of fruit flies in your home, especially when you see them hovering in multiple areas. No matter how thoroughly you clean your apartment, it feels as though they always come back!
If you want to pinpoint the source, take a close look around your apartment. Do you see any food residue, overripe produce, spills, or clogged drains? Any of these spots could be the source of a fruit fly infestation.
How to Get rid of Fruit Flies in Your Apartment
We’ve compiled eight proven steps you can take to eliminate fruit flies in your apartment, once and for all.
1. Throw Out Old, Rotting Food
Fruit flies are attracted to food that’s starting to go bad, especially decaying fruits and vegetables. Juice from over-ripe fruit can quickly become a magnet for a family of hungry fruit flies. As soon as you see fruit flies, go through the produce in your cupboards, on your counter, or in your refrigerator. Any fresh fruits or vegetables that are oozing liquid should be thrown out and removed from your apartment immediately.
2. Wipe Down Trash Cans
Trace amounts of liquid from soda cans, juice boxes, and other beverages provide a great free meal for a fruit fly. Take a look at the inside of the trash can in your kitchen or recycling bin. Use a warm washcloth and soapy water to remove any sticky liquid you find.
3. Clean Your Kitchen
This one may seem like a given, but even the smallest spots of dried liquid or crumbs can provide a feast for a fruit fly population. Sweep and mop your floors thoroughly and wipe down every inch of your counters to get rid of these leftover particles. Make sure to tackle areas that may normally get missed, like behind your fridge, behind your oven, and underneath your trash can.
4. Replace Old Sponges, Mops, and Dishrags.
The food particles that build up in old sponges and rags can easily attract fruit flies to your kitchen or bathroom. Plus the moisture in these tools creates a perfect environment for adult fruit flies to lay eggs. If it’s been a while since you’ve replaced any of these items, now is the time to do so.
5. Set Up Vinegar Traps
Fruit flies may be annoying, but they aren’t intelligent by any means. Fruit flies will dive head first into anything that smells like fermenting fruit. To create a homemade trap, set out a few small dishes filled with apple cider vinegar. The flies will feast on the apple cider vinegar, and by the time they realize their mistake, it will be too late.
6. Address Backed-Up Drains
Ask your landlord to fix any slow-moving or stopped-up drains in your apartment. Slow-moving drains often contain food or organic matter—another potential attraction for fruit flies and drain flies. You should also remove any food waste from the basin or stopper of your sink.
7. Seal Food Containers
Fruit flies only need a tiny gap to squeeze through a container and find free food. Make sure that every food container in your apartment is sealed completely before going back into the cupboard or refrigerator.
8. Clean Dishes Immediately
It can be tempting to leave dirty dishes and glasses sitting out after a big meal, but this will only give the fruit flies the chance to feast on your leftovers. Make sure to wash dishes with soap and hot water immediately after using them.
9. Make a Fruit Fly Glass Trap
This trap is similar to a vinegar trap, but it incorporates a bit of dish soap. To make this fruit fly glass trap, pour a small amount of apple cider vinegar into a glass. Then, add 1-2 drops of liquid dish soap. The apple cider vinegar will attract the fruit flies, but the liquid dish soap will get onto their wings and trap them in the glass.
If you don’t have apple cider vinegar, you can also leave out a glass of red wine or a bottle of beer with just a few dregs left. Add a couple of drops of dish soap to achieve the same effect.
Talk to a Pest Expert
Are you struggling with a fruit fly infestation—or perhaps something even bigger? Pearson Pest is here to help. We offer comprehensive pest treatment programs that are safe for apartments with both kids and pets. We’re the most trusted choice for Rockford exterminators!
Call us today at (815) 398-8312 for a free pest control estimate! Ask us about our Ultimate Pest Control Protection Plan.