House flies are well-known pests in homes around the world. Several methods can help get rid of house flies. The common housefly, scientifically known as Musca domestica, is a non-biting fly. However, each one can carry more than a million bacteria that can transfer to food and surfaces. Several methods can help control house flies, including drainage treatments and insecticide sprays.

In this article, we look at how to get rid of house flies. We also examine whether they pose a health hazard.

4 ways to get rid of house flies

There are a variety of techniques for eliminating house flies. Here are four of the most effective methods:

House cleaning.

Water is necessary for flies to reproduce. It is an essential part of their diet, as flies cannot live for more than 48 hours without access to water. Many house fly infestations are caused by excess humidity and a buildup of debris in the home. Water can often collect in damp or wet areas like sinks or drains.

The following areas should be checked and cleaned:

floors, removing food or food residue
sinks and tub or shower drains
dirty mops
inside trash cans
under appliances, such as refrigerators
cracks in floor or wall tiles where bacteria can grow.

House flies usually enter from the outside but sometimes breed indoors. Indoor breeding sites are more common in buildings with indoor trash rooms and compactors.

Keeping sites where houseflies tend to breed clean can prevent future infestations. Particular attention should be paid to:

to areas of standing water, such as gutters
keep doors or other entry points closed
clean pets
keep trash cans and surrounding areas clean
clean up rotting food, such as apples that have fallen from a tree
regularly cleaning kitchen and bathroom surfaces
Using Pipe Treatments

The constant humidity in the pipes provides an environment conducive to the breeding of flies. Sometimes they can land on the walls around a sink or shower.

To check for flies in a drain

Place clear tape over the drain inlet.
Make sure the sticky side is facing down.
Leave a small space to allow air to flow through the drain and encourage flies.
Check periodically for flies sticking to the tape. The number of flies that stick indicates the extent of the infestation.

Cleaning the drain should destroy the breeding site and end the infestation. There are several options for cleaning them. However, regular bleach or drain cleaners are ineffective in removing bacteria. A person can:

– Use a pipe cleaning brush to scrub the sides: The brush should be abrasive, like a wire brush. Use several pots of boiling water to remove debris after brushing.

Combine baking soda, salt, and vinegar to make a solution: Pour the solution down the drain and let it sit overnight. Then come back in the morning to pour boiling water down the drain to flush out the debris.

– Use antibacterial drain treatments: However, these can take several weeks to work.

Setting up fly traps

There are many types of fly traps that can help eliminate fly infestations. These devices include:

Light traps that use ultraviolet light to attract flies and a board of glue to trap them. They are more effective against large flies.
Traps that use a low voltage electric current to zap flies.
Traps that use bait to attract flies, such as honey or other sweet flavors.
Devices that use pheromones to attract flies. These fly traps are useful for identifying an infestation, but they rarely get rid of the problem.

Try fly sprays or insecticides

Several sprays and insecticides can help control flies. If they can eliminate flies individually, there are more effective ways to eliminate an infestation.

Pyrethrin, a pesticide toxic to insects, can be purchased as a spray to treat adult flies. These sprays are a temporary solution that can be useful in combination with other techniques. People who use fly sprays or insecticides should take care to avoid direct contact with the skin or eyes and not to inhale them. Pyrethrin is not very toxic but can irritate the skin or trigger other mild symptoms.

Health risks of houseflies

Flies are generally not dangerous, but they can be pests. A person may find a variety of them around the house, including house flies or fruit flies. Some flies carry germs, such as bacteria and other infectious agents, which spread when they come into contact with people or food. These germs can cause illnesses and symptoms, such as:

typhoid fever
epidemic conjunctivitis
skin infections

However, house flies are not considered an important vector of disease.


House fly infestations are rarely harmful. People can try different techniques to control houseflies. It is important to keep the house and outside areas clean to treat and prevent any problems they may present. Several products can help with house flies, including traps and sprays. Caution should be exercised when using insecticidal sprays, which may cause mild skin irritation.


Khamesipour, F., et al. (2018). A systematic review of human pathogens carried by the housefly (Musca domestica L.).

* criptom strives to transmit health knowledge in a language accessible to all. In NO CASE, the information given can not replace the opinion of a health professional.