Irish spring soap is often recommended as a go-to tool for keeping flies and many other insects at bay. It often sounds too good to be true, which is why many people ask does Irish spring soap keep flies away for good.
If it does – why is it so efficient? If it doesn’t, what can you do to keep flies away? In today’s article, I’ll be answering all these questions to explain just how to keep flies away from your home.
- 1. Seal Cracks, Holes, and Gaps
- 2. Keep Surfaces and Floors Clean
- 3. Seal Compost and Rubbish Bins
- 4. Grow Strongly Scented Plants That Flies Hate
- 5. Change Lighting
- 6. Improve Ventilation
Does Irish Spring Soap Keep Flies Away?
There is no academic research to prove that Irish spring soap keeps flies away. In fact, there’s very little evidence to suggest that soaps of any kind will keep flies away.
Does Irish Spring Soap Repel Other Pests
Irish spring soap can kill insects if combined with water. Soapy water washes away the top protective layer on an insect’s body. This causes the insect to dry out.
Regarding larger pests (e.g. squirrels and rabbits), it’s possible that they’ll avoid a plant surrounded by Irish spring soap because they dislike the intense smell. This is all theoretical and the results aren’t guaranteed.
How to Get Rid of Flies Naturally
Here are the best natural practices of fly deterring.
1. Homemade Fly Repellent
Make your own fly repellent with essential oils (lavender, lemongrass, and peppermint work best). Combine the oil with water and spray it around (5 drops to a liter is enough).
However, these repellents evaporate with time, so the flies will return.
2. Vinegar and Dish Soap Solution
Vinegar is not only lethal to insects because of its acidity, but they hate its intense smell too. Combine a tablespoon of dish soap with 300 milliliters of vinegar and half a liter of water then spray.
While this solution is effective at killing flies, vinegar also kills plants – so avoid contact with the ones you want to keep.
3. Citronella Candles
These candles are made from citronella essential oils, which are a proven repellent. They are most effective if used in closed areas.
Lighting them in the house or on a terrace will keep flies away, but they’re virtually useless in the open air because the scent dissipates easily.
4. Planting Herbs
Mint, catnip, lavender, rosemary, and thyme are natural insect repellents. But, there’s a big difference between concentrated essential oils and the plants they’re extracted from.
If you cover your porch with herbs, it’s possible that flies will stay away. But it’s unlikely that herbs can keep flies at bay in a garden.
Removing Flies with Chemicals
Chemical deterrents are often considered the most effective.
Insecticides are effective bug killers, killing all insects, not just flies. Just make sure that it’s legal to use them in your area before you spend your money.
2. Hanging Fly Traps
Hanging fly traps are covered with a sticky substance that attracts flies. This is mixed with a fly-killing insecticide.
These traps are effective in closed places such as barns and kitchens because flies can’t ignore the attractive scent.
Just like with insecticides, these traps aren’t a long-term solution.
How to Prevent Flies from Coming Back
While the methods above will temporarily get rid of flies, here is what you can do to eradicate them completely.
1. Seal Cracks, Holes, and Gaps
Close all entry points to prevent flies from getting into your home. Just like other animals – flies want to stay warm, and since they can squeeze through tiny holes, the best thing you can do is physically keep them out.
2. Keep Surfaces and Floors Clean
Flies need food to survive and they can eat almost anything that’s decomposing. So, if you spill juice and don’t clean it up, flies will be attracted to the sugar.
All food remains are attractants for flies.
3. Seal Compost and Rubbish Bins
Since decomposing food is the main source of nutrients for flies (not to mention that they need it for breeding), they often converge on rubbish bins.
By sealing them with lids that don’t let the air out, flies won’t smell the rotting food and they won’t be attracted to your bins.
If you remove all fly food and breeding grounds from your home, you’re almost guaranteeing a fly-free home.
4. Grow Strongly Scented Plants That Flies Hate
Planting around critical areas, such as bins, is a great way to distract them from scents that could be attracting them. However, bear in mind that scented plants aren’t 100% efficient in open areas.
5. Change Lighting
Believe it or not, insects aren’t attracted to all lights equally – they’re mostly attracted to lights within the 300 to 650nm wavelength range. Since the visible spectrum of light is between 400 and 800nm, insects are attracted to more than half of the visible light spectrum.
This isn’t good news for us. But there is light at the end of the tunnel (pun intended) – yellow lights and halogen tubes don’t attract bugs as much as UV, blue, and green lights. Consider changing your lighting to keep the flies at bay.
6. Improve Ventilation
This is a great thing you can do to get flies out of your home. Fresh air isn’t as attractive to them as stale air is instinctively attractive to them.
Since flies feed on rotting vegetation and animal parts, and oxygen is the most important element of degradation, places with less oxygen are inviting to them.
You may also be interested in How To Get Rid of Flies on Your Lawn
Verdict: Does Irish Spring Soap Keep Flies Away
Irish spring soap isn’t a proven method for keeping flies away although some people swear by it. However, it will kill flies if you mix it with water as a sort of DIY insecticide, but the smell itself isn’t a deterrent.
What is always more beneficial if you are experiencing an issue with flies is to focus on proven methods Instead. That means maintaining your yard and your home so as to not attract them.
You can also use citronella candles and various plants and herbs they dislike, as well as fly traps and insecticides (outside only), to reduce the fly population around your home.