DIY Solutions to Keep Bugs Out of Your Home

DIY Solutions For Bugs

With the arrival of fall comes cooler weather and everyone relishes the comfort of a warm home, including a few uninvited guests – bugs. Creepy critters will seek shelter from the changing temperatures, making a nuisance of themselves as they hide away in your home. Don’t reach for the chemicals just yet; getting rid of pests can be done without risking the safety of your family and furry friends.

Prevention First

Your first line of defense should be aiming to keep the bugs from ever invading, and the best way to do that is to maintain a tidy home.

  • Wipe down countertops and other surfaces that food touches with a mixture of equal parts water and vinegar. Not only does this get rid of food odor and particles, but it also repels spiders and ants.
  • Transfer dried goods to sealed containers. That box of fruit loops in the cupboard is an open invitation to insects; transferring it to another container will keep pests at bay while keeping your food fresh.
  • Clear leftover food from sink drains by pouring one-half cup baking soda followed by one-half cup vinegar down the drain. Leave the mixture for at least 5 minutes, then clear everything out by running hot water through the pipes.
  • Vacuum, dust and clear clutter wherever possible.

Mint Spray

Peppermint essential oil is natural, easy to find and best of all – spiders and ants hate it. As a bonus, mice also hate the smell of peppermint, as do many biting bugs.

  • Fill a spray bottle with tap water and add about 15 drops of peppermint oil. Sniff to make sure the mixture has a strong minty smell, and then shake and spray around cracks or gaps where spiders can enter. Pay close attention to windowsills and doorways.
  • For extra potent peppermint power, put a few drops of oil on a cotton ball and place it near areas where spiders or ants are entering the home. This remedy will get rid of spiders in no time at all.


Spiders and ants hate citrus just like they hate peppermint, so this is another natural option to keep them out.

  • Rub citrus peels along windowsills and around doors to prevent bugs from entering the home. Use this trick on any areas where spiders are known to hang out in your home, including bookshelves and baseboards.
  • Citrus essential oils such as lemon or orange can be used to make a spray for wiping down surfaces.


What’s more natural than plants? Basil will keep flies away and as a bonus you can use it to cook.

  • Fresh basil plants can be put outside entrances to your home, or kept inside in hanging planters.
  • If fresh basil isn’t available or if your thumb isn’t as green as it used to be, satchels of dried basil will work. Just be sure to press or rub the bags every so often so it keeps releasing scent.



This perennial plant that cats go crazy for can keep away mosquitos and other insects.

  • Dried catnip can be used to make catnip tea, which you can put in a spray bottle and spray around entrances to your home. Dried catnip can also be put in a satchel and placed in windowsills.
  • Catnip essential oil can be used just like the mint or citrus spray. Fill a spray bottle with water and several drops of oil, then spray entrances and problem areas.

While it may be tempting to bust out the chemicals to keep your home bug free, using these natural DIY solutions is safer for your family and can be just as effective. With a little work and some due diligence, you can evict those bugs in no time at all.


Ali is a tea-sipping blogger who focuses on healthy and sustainable living via her family blog Homey Improvements. She was born and raised in Alaska and dabbles in PR, Pilates, and is a princess for hire for kid’s parties.

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