You might have noticed that your bathroom drains are surrounded with dozens of tiny flies. These insects may reappear even after cleaning the floors. They are nothing other than drain flies that do not bite or sting. But, they can be a real nuisance as they multiply in large numbers and occupy the areas around the drains and sinks. As they dwell in unhygienic areas, there are chances that drain flies can transmit diseases too. So, it is very much important to get rid of them at the earliest. This article deals with some tips and guidelines about how to get rid of drain flies.
What are Drain Flies?
So, as mentioned above, unless you get rid of drain flies as soon as you notice their presence, these insects will proliferate in large numbers and may become a nuisance as they settle themselves on window sills, walls, etc. So, first of all, you must know what are drain flies and how to distinguish them from other types of flies, like fruit flies. Drain flies are tiny insects with large wings. The body length of these flies is around 1/5 to 1/6 of an inch and the body as well as the wings are covered with dense hair. As compared to the size of their body, the wings of drain flies are large. But, they are weak fliers that fly in a jerky, irregular pattern. At a time, they cover only small distances. Their wings sport parallel venation and are almost leaf-shaped. These flies are grayish brown in color. Drain flies are also known as sewer gnats, moth flies, filter flies, etc.
Drain flies are mostly found in and around drains, sewage, etc., especially, in the evenings. You may find these flies in places with shallow stagnant water. They need moist places to live and breed. It is said that a drain fly can lay around 200 eggs a time and these eggs hatch within two days. Once hatched, the larvae emerge with no legs. These worm-like larvae are found to be gray in color with darker ends. They turn to adults within a short span of ten days. The average lifespan of a drain fly is around three weeks. The diet of these flies consists of the organic materials in and around the drains, sewage, sinks, etc.
Getting Rid of Drain Flies
Now that you have a basic understanding about drain flies, their habitat, etc., we shall proceed with the guidelines about how to get rid of drain flies. If these flies are found in large numbers, then, you have to find out the source, which could be a bathroom drain, sewage, roof gutter, damp basement or any other place with stagnant water. Such location can be either indoors or outdoors. Once you find out the source, you have to think about the right methods of drain flies removal. The right method to get rid of drain flies is to clean and sanitize the surroundings, especially, locations with stagnant water.
Once you have located the drain, open the drain cover. Make sure to wear your gloves, before doing this task. Pour some hot water into the drains, along with some cleaning solution. If there is dirt build up, clean and remove with a pipe brush. If necessary, use a plumbing snake to pull out the dirt. In case, you find it difficult to remove the dirt and grime completely, you may use a drain cleaning solution (preferably biodegradable one). Once done, clean the upper edges of the drain and even the drain covers. Before fitting the drain cover, flush the drain pipe with hot water, followed by a bleach solution. In case, you have already used a caustic drain cleaner, then, don't use bleach for some time. Even though, there are various pest control products aimed at controlling drain flies, the above said is the best, as it eliminates the source itself. You may also keep some glue boards near these sources, so as to kill drain flies by trapping.
The above said is only a brief overview about how to get rid of drain flies. It is always better to prevent its proliferation, by regularly cleaning the drain pipes, drains from sink, bathtub and showers, etc.