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Fly scheme-29-3.jpg

There are many ways to get rid of flies in the house.


Ultraviolet Fly Killers

These use UV tubes to attract the flies, and a pair of electrified grids to fry them. Effective, and standard equipment in most catering premises.

Insects usually have a good wander round before going to the zapper, so they work but don't eliminate insects completely. No effect on non-flying insects.

Never use the wrong type of UV tube in these. Sterilising hard UV tubes can cause eyesight damage. (White tubes aren't recommended, but do work, even if not as good as UV ones.)

The grids need periodic brushing clean, as dead flies can short them out.

See also Zap Racquets, below.

Blue-violet Fly Killers

These are cheaper imitations of the above UV killers, but they use a blue or violet filament lamp & low grid power. Ineffective.

Halogen Fly Killers

DIY bug fryers may be made using a low power halogen lamp for insect attraction, a cockcroft-walton multiplier to produce high voltage, and wires for flykilling. A zero volt grid should be used at the front for touch protection.

Slow Release Insecticide

These small low cost boxes contain a gel block that slowly releases insecticide vapour over a couple of months. Vapona is a well known brand. These are very effective at killing flies.

Some contain pesticides that also kill fleas.

A very effective fly control strategy, but ineffective if windows are left open.

Fly Spray

Brief duration, ongoing hassle, gets insecticide on hands and food preparation surfaces.

Manual Methods: swatters etc

Swatters, vacuum cleaner etc

  • Require far too much labour to be practical.

Manual Methods: "Zap Racquets"

Another form of bug zapper. Quoting a practised user: Worth it. Swipe wildly at a whining bloodsucking mozzie in a dark bedroom at night, be rewarded with a crack, flash and spark, and you'll agree.

There are two kinds: one with three grids: anything between an outer grid and the inner one gets zapped. Hard to get a wasp in far enough, but good enough for mozzies and flies. T'other kind has just a single flat layer of wires: anything touching two adjacent wires gets fried. Makes it easy to zap larger insects, but hurts like the devil if you touch it, which can't happen accidentally on the three-layered one. Note that it takes ten seconds or so for the bleed resistor to take the charge down to painless levels after it's off, too.

Note also: these take two AA batteries, and you should use the non-rechargable 1.5v type rather than the (1.2v) rechargable.

Sash Windows

Opening a sash window half an inch at the top gives insects a way out. Insects fly upward towards light to try to escape, so this offers quick easy escape and helps keep the numbers down.

Sticky Fly Paper

These are sticky paper rolls hung from the ceiling. Effective, disgusting & cheap. Can be home made if necessary.

Venus Fly Traps

Limited effectiveness. Water them with rain, not tap water.


Fine mesh cloth screens closely fitted over open windows deny insects entry.

Bead or plastic tape curtains over open doors keep insects out, though they're less than fashionable.


Paraffin wiped around window frames repels insects considering entering the property. Monthly reapplication needed.

Clean up

Frequent checking of fridge & cupboard contents ensures deteriorating items are disposed of promptly, avoiding any items that attract insects.

If any buildup of spoiled food occurs anywhere in the kitchen, or elsewhere, flies are attracted. Overlooked buildup is sometimes the cause of fly problems.

Frequent cleaning of bins avoids any smell build up, which attracts insects.

Dirty floors also attract insects. Although we may not smell the film of dirt, insects can.

Fix any leaks. Sources of water encourage insects to move in permanently.


Citronella candles

Citronella candles repel insects.

Yellow lighting

Yellow lighting attracts insects less than white light.

Insect repellant

Insect repellant reduces biting. It can be applied to outer clothes rather than skin.

See Also

Keywords: flykiller fly killer killing fleas flea swat swatter insects bug