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How to Get Rid of Bugs Attracted to Light? (11 amazing tricks!)

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Insect infestation is annoying and may become uncontrollable if not addressed in time.

Insects can also transmit various diseases, leave itchy bites, and attack your plants, pets, and kids alike.

Having lights around the house can attract a lot of insects. We have assembled some excellent ideas to help you learn how to get rid of bugs attracted to light.

The lights attract many insects if you have a porch or a patio. It can pose many problems and nuisances, making you unable to enjoy some family time or dinner at the place. Insects will inevitably come to your deck, but it doesn’t mean you do not stand a fighting chance.

It would be best if you did not give up because our experts are here to save your day. In this helpful guide, we have discussed some amazing tips on how to get rid of bugs attracted to light and regain your territory.

Before we dive into the article, we first have to understand why and what types of insects are being attracted and how to deal with them.

There are various ways to keep the bugs away and to get rid of them. Some methods include killing bugs others are more preventative, so you won’t have to kill them.

Either way, we have got it all! Keep reading.

Bugs around light—how to get rid of bugs attracted to light
How to get rid of bugs attracted to light? – Image via Arjun Aravind.

How to Get Rid of Bugs Attracted to Light? | Why Are They Attracted?

You often see a massive swarm of bugs hovering around street lights or patio lights, and you wonder what causes this phenomenon.

To solve a problem, it is always best to understand the reason behind it. If you are curious as to why bugs are attracted to lights, then keep reading.

The following text covers some scientific theories that explain the reasons that cause the bugs’ attraction towards light sources.

  • Insects navigate their pathways using light sources in the dark. Natural light sources such as the moon, sun, or stars act as beacons to guide insects in the dark. However, it is common for insects to confuse artificial light sources such as bulbs with natural light. It explains why bugs are often found hovering in circles around light bulbs.
  • Bugs, just like other animals, consider the light sources as emergency signals or safety lights. The light is a savior for the bugs against the predators hiding in the dark. Hence the bugs are lured to safety.
  • There is a natural phenomenon called phototaxis, according to which insects are differentiated and categorized into two types; the ones that are attracted to light and those that are not. Many insects, including flies and moths, are drawn toward lights.

Now, let’s take a look at some common types of bugs that are attracted to light.

Which Bugs Are Attracted to Light?

Many bugs are attracted to light sources, among which the most notorious ones are moths.

Knowing the type of bugs will help you handle and control them accordingly. Enlisted below are some of the most common pesky bugs attracted to lights.

  • Wasps
  • Fireflies
  • Mosquito hawks
  • Moths
  • Beatles (crawling and flying)
  • Flying ants
  • Bees

With all that aside, let’s move to forward and see how to get rid of bugs attracted to light.

10 Ingenious Ways to Get Rid of Bugs Attracted to Light

So far, we have discussed why bugs are attracted to lights, and which types of bugs are usually attracted.

Now it is time to dive into the various methods of how to get rid of these pesky bugs and enjoy yourself at home without the intrusion of these irritating creatures.

1.   Changing Regular Bulbs to LED Bulbs

If you notice a massive swarm of these uninvited guests around your light bulbs, then the best and easiest measure is to switch to LED bulbs.

LED bulbs use low-watt power and hence produce minimal heat. They also produce very few UV rays; therefore, they are not easy to be detected and traced by insects.

Switching the regular bulbs with LED bulbs will keep all the insects at bay from your house, and it is also very cost-efficient because LED bulbs consume very little power.

2.   Place a Water Filled Bowl Beneath the Bulbs

Another ingenious trick is to place a water bowl filled with water just under the bulb.

The water will reflect the light from the bulb hence attracting the bugs towards it. When the bugs are lured to the water, they get drowned.

It will not only help get rid of the bugs but will also help control their population.

3.   Lighting Incense and Candles of Citronella

Citronella is an essential oil that has proven effective against insects, keeping them away.

You can add some citronella oil to your candles or buy citronella candles online. Citronella has a powerful scent that wards off any pesky bugs. Light a few candles or incenses infused with citronella near your windows and doors and outdoors too.

4.   Shut the Windows and Doors

When the indoors of your house is lit, the insects are attracted to the lights and try to get in through windows and doors.

They are often found hovering near the windows to get to the light.

The best way to keep them away from your living space is to shut your windows and doors, especially after the evening.

Do this every day before you turn on the lights.

5.   Turn on a Light Bulb Outside

Another clever trick is to turn on a light bulb, preferably situated a little farther outside your house.

As dusk starts to fall and it starts dark, turn on a light bulb outside the house.

You should light this bulb at least 20 minutes before other light sources. It will lure all the bugs to the light farther from the house and keep them away from the sitting and living areas.

Bonus tip: If the bugs have entered your house, open all your doors and windows, turn off the lights inside the house, and turn on the lights outdoors. Let the house stay dark and open for about half an hour. It will lure all the insects to the outdoor lights. Before turning on the inside lights, close all the doors and windows.

Outdoor light bulb—how to get rid of bugs attracted to light?
How to get rid of bugs attracted to light? Lighting an outdoor light bulb can lure the bugs outside the house—Image via Ethan Hoover.

6.   Add Mesh Windows

Keeping insects out of your windows is possible with mesh wire window panes.

The best option is a fiberglass or stainless-steel mesh screen that you can use on windows to avoid mosquitoes and bugs.

A no-see-um screen is also effective that comes with tiny holes to not allow bugs but air to pass through. The mesh screens are handy as they need no professional installment.

You can easily install them using some simple tools.

7.   Bug Zappers

If the infestation gets out of hand and is difficult to manage using simpler methods, install bug zappers at the entryways and near bulbs.

The bug zappers lure the insects to them, and when the bugs come in contact, they will be zapped with a low voltage of electricity and instantly die.

The grid on the bug zapper is electrically charged, which electrocutes any insects touching it.

8.   Insecticides and Repellants

An effective and faster way to get rid of bugs is by using insecticides and insect repellents.

Using chemicals can harm you and the environment, but if the infestation is terrible and you need to get rid of them quickly, it is a quick fix.

Insecticide spray cans are widely available everywhere.

Wear a face mask and cover your eyes with goggles. Just read the instructions, spray the insecticide around the areas where insects are hovering, and you are done.

Related article: Why Are There So Many Bugs in the Summer? (5 Likely Causes)

9.   Grow Insect-Repelling Plants

Instead of using chemical repellents, you can use insect-repelling plants to keep insects at bay. It is the best and most organic way to get rid of bugs.

You can easily grow such plants in pots and keep them on your window panes. Their fragrance is soothing to humans but causes discomfort to bugs.

Bugs-repelling plants include basil, mint, chives, neem, and thyme.

10.   Keep the Patio Clean and Get Rid of Organic Matter

Bugs are drawn to dirty areas or places with food spillage or rotting organic matter.

If you have pets or kids, it is more likely to get the house messy and have food, and other organic matter spilled around.

Keep your house clean and remove any organic matter to keep the bugs at bay.

If your pets leave droppings around the house, immediately clean them off. Keep the litter boxes in places inaccessible to insects.

11.   Tinting the Windows

Another method to get rid of the bugs is to tint the windows.

You can use tint spray or tint sheets to cover the glass windows. It will dim the intensity and brightness of the light for the insects, decreasing their temptation to get attracted and get in.

How to Prevent Insects

Here are some additional tips that can help you to keep bugs away.

  • Insects are likely to appear inside your home after a rainy day. So, remember to keep your windows and doors shut during and after rain.
  • Insects can also enter from the bottom of your doors, so use an under-door seal to ensure there is no space left for the bugs to enter.
  • Drape your doors and windows and avoid turning on lights situated near the doors and windows.
  • It would help if you drew the curtains as the evening arrives. It will cut off the light for the insects, and they will stay away.
  • If you have plants in your home, they might attract insects too. Move them outside or keep the outdoor plants in check to prevent bug infestations.

That would be all!

Window in rain—how to get rid of bugs attracted to light?
How to get rid of bugs attracted to light? Keeping windows and doors shut during rain and using curtains can help keep the bugs away—Image via Danielle Dolson.


However fascinating and beautiful some insects can be, their abundance can be a real nuisance.

Sometimes they infest houses in massive swarms and become very difficult to deal with and manage. If you are annoyed by these pesky critters and cannot control them, we have you covered!

Our experts have compiled an elaborate guide for you consisting of 11 ingenious, tired, and tested methods on how to get rid of bugs attracted to light.

Not only have we discussed the ways to get rid of insects, but we have also shared preventative measures to keep them away.

We love to hear your feedback, so keep them coming in the comments.

Tell us which method worked the best for you in getting rid of bugs and if you have any other method to add, share it with our community.