At some point, you may have dealt with pesky and annoying flying bugs that appear in your kitchen, bathroom, or outdoors. Although gnats don’t cause any harm, they can be annoying. These pests can be attracted to trash bags with spoilt food, dirty dishes, rotting fruit, and damp soil.

In this guide, learn how to get rid of gnats in house before the problem worsens.

Facts, Identification, and Control

Below are some facts about gnats.

Latin Name

Order Diptera


Grants are tiny, little long-legged insects.  Depending on the species, gnats can have yellow, brown, grey, or black color. Most measure one to thirteen millimeters in size. These tiny insects have spindly legs, a pair of long wings, and two antennae that exceed the length of their head.

Their body is divided into a head, thorax, and abdomen. Fungus gnats have elongated coxae, something other gnat species lack.

Facts About Gnats

There are over 600 species of gnats in the U.S. Gnats is a common name for small insects in the flying group. What most people refer to as gnats could be fungus gnats or fruit flies.

These insects are weak fliers and do not leave their eggs or homes. That makes it easy for homeowners to know their breeding grounds. Also, they have a short lifespan, but you may have to deal with a swarm when the mating season approaches. Drain gnats lay white-yellow eggs around food sources near water or plants.

Where Do They Live?

Gnats can be found in nurseries, greenhouses, and some in sod farms. Specific species stay near running water like streams and rivers.

What Do They Eat?

Different species have varied dietary habits. For example, female black flies consume blood from humans, livestock, and pets. Males feed on nectar. Fungus gnats consume different plants, but the larvae feed on fungi that are found on decaying organic matter or overwatered vegetation.

How Did I Get Gnats?

Gnats like to invade in the summer when the weather is moist and humid. You’ll notice less activity during the colder months. If your house has high levels of moisture, you may attract fungus gnats.

You may also get gnats if your home is already infested with their eggs through items you bought from the store. With their ability to reproduce at a fast rate, gnats can grow into large numbers and become a problem in and around your house.

How Serious are Gnat Problems?

Although gnats do not cause any life-threatening diseases, they can cause other problems like:

Being a Nuisance

Gnats are a nuisance pest, especially during the warmer months. You may have to deal with a swarm during the mating season. They reproduce quickly, which makes it challenging to eliminate.

Damage to Plants

Some gnat species affect the growth of greenhouse, potted, and ornamental plants. The larvae may attack the fungus in the soil, which stunts the growth of the plant resulting in damage.


Species like the buffalo gnat feed on blood from humans, livestock, and pets. Also, some tropical species of black flies can cause river blindness in humans. An animal can die from anaphylactic shock or blood loss when a large number of black flies attack it.

What Can I Do About Gnats?

If you have a gnat problem, try and find out what could be attracting them to your house. It could be rotten food in your trash cans or stagnant water on your plants. Avoid overwatering your plants to ensure that the larvae don’t develop into gnats. Get rid of any rotting fruit or food, and cover your trash receptacles.

However, if you try all the DIY methods and nothing seems to work, it’s best to get professional help. They have the experience and tools to help get rid of these pests.

Signs of a Gnat Infestation

One common sign of a gnat infestation is the presence of adult gnats flying around. You may also notice damage to potted plants. You can spot gnat larvae in the soil, which is another indication of an infestation.

Gnats Prevention and Control Tips

What kills nats? Below are some few tips on how to get rid of gnats and prevent future infestation.

Remove Potential Food Sources

Fungus gnats thrive in the soil of your plants. Check your plants for signs of fungus or mold. You can replace the soil or the pot liner to prevent them from breeding. Also, check if the plant’s root system is rotten, which would mean replacing the plant.

Drain flies or kitchen gnats breed in moist areas like under your kitchen sinks or drains that have a leakage. Check for any leakage and fix the pipes and drains. Cover any holes where wet dirt can hide. Keep the kitchen and bathroom dry.

Fruit flies consume overripe or rotten fruit. Remove and dispose of off these foods to keep these flies away. Ensure that you cover the bin properly to ensure that it doesn’t attract gnats.

Look for Breeding Grounds and Kill the Larvae

For you to figure out what gets rid of gnats, you need to find their breeding ground to prevent reproduction. If you have a fungus gnat problem, you can use steel wool and a sticky trap.

Covering the top part of the soil with steel wool will shred the baby gnats that fly out of the soil and capture the adult gnats that fly into the earth to mate. You can also use sticky fly traps to catch flying gnats.

If you’re dealing with drain flies, check your drains for signs of breeding. You can clean the pipes with soap and water, or use white vinegar. You can pour down drain treatment down your drain and run hot water to ensure that your kitchen is free from these flies. Use soapy water to kill gnats in sink.

Gnats Professional Pest Control

I hope that you now have an idea about how to kill gnats. However, dealing with these tiny, pesky creatures can be overwhelming, especially if you have an infestation. Some DIY methods and insecticides may not be useful if you’re looking for ways to get rid of gnats in house.

You may need the help of a professional pest control company. They will inspect your house for any gaps that could be allowing the gnats in, find the breeding source, and recommend the best treatment plan.

Frequently Asked Questions

It is very rare that gnats are harmful to humans. Gnat bites may lead to severe allergic reactions. If there are signs of anaphylaxis, it is recommended to get help immediately.

The gnats lay eggs in hidden, out of the way locations either in or extremely close to their development habitats that consist of moist areas containing decomposing, fermenting products and waste components.

Yes, gnats eventually go away once the weather becomes consistent summer. Their life cycle is short – usually mid-May to late June.