How do stink bugs get their name?
When stink bugs feel threatened or get crushed, they release an unpleasant smell as defense through a special gland on their abdomen. This is a defense mechanism they have against larger threats or predators.
What smell do stink bugs hate the most?
Many insects, including stink bugs, loathe the scent of essential oils. However, a stink bug has a well-developed sense of smell and is very sensitive to minty scents.
Lucky for us, many scents stink bugs hate. The scents that we can use as a repellent for stink bugs and other pests are:
- Cayenne Pepper
- Dryer sheets
- Clove oil
- Lemongrass oil
- Spearmint oil.
- Ylang Ylang oil
5 Homemade or easily available stink bug repellents and killers
You can always make one yourself if you don’t buy one. In making a repellent for pests, we should use the right scents. Most of the scents should be turned into a liquid spray.
Scents or ingredients should be readily available or easy to acquire. Here are easy ways to make your stink bug repellent using ingredients that can deter or kill those annoying stink bugs.
1. Soap water Spray
This kills stink bugs and other insect pests by breaking down the protective exoskeletons of a stink bug which dehydrates them.
- Add around 3/4 cup (6 ounces) of dish soap for every 4 cups of water (32 ounces).
- Put on a spray container.
- Spray the solution directly on stink bugs.
This doesn’t keep the stink bugs away but can help when they’re in difficult-to-reach places.
2. Garlic Spray
Garlic is also an option to repel but not kill the stink bugs.
- You can boil garlic or use garlic powder to make the spraying solution. For a high concentration, you can use a crushed bulb of garlic, add it to water then boil it.
- For garlic powder, use 2 cups of water and 4 tsp of garlic powder
- Pour them into a spray bottle
- Spray the solution on places you expect the stink bugs to be. The areas can include plants, entryways, and cracks on walls.
This solution is less ideal if you hate the smell of garlic.
3. Vinegar Spray
- Mix 1/2 part vinegar or apple cider vinegar and ½ part water in a spray bottle
- Spread the solution at places you expect the stink bugs to be.
4. Mint Oil Sprays
Most natural commercially available insect repellents use essential oils. If you can get access to mint oils, you can make one independently. This is the best stink bug deterrent that’s homemade.
- All you need is 5 drops of geraniol, peppermint, or spearmint oil for every cup of water.
- Put the solution on a spray bottle.
- Spray on stink bug areas
5. Cayenne Pepper
Apply the product directly to the places where a stink bug frequently visits. You can put cayenne pepper almost anywhere, even outdoors. This repels other pests as well.
How to prevent stink bugs from coming back?
Stink bugs usually find shelter during the winter and come out during the late summer months. They’ll enter through the cracks and openings in your house and make it their home.
To prevent stink bugs from coming back, we need to deal with the entry points:
- Check for possible entry points where the stink bugs can enter. Usually, they’re cracks or gaps the stink bugs can enter. These can be where two different materials meet, like wood and concrete blocks. Use caulking compounds on these entry points.
- Inspect screens and windows. Small holes on screens can act as entry points for a stink bug. Make sure the materials are in good condition. Patch holes and install screens on your chimneys and attic vents.
- Check to make sure the doors are in their top condition. Conduct repairs if necessary. Make sure the rubber seal in garage doors is in good condition.
Apply a repellent on these locations even after sealing these places up. For gardens or yards, treat the area with plant-friendly stink bug repellents.
Indoor vs. Outdoor stink bug repellents – What’s the difference?
The difference between indoor and outdoor repellents is their design and the compounds used.
Indoor repellents are usually safe and use less or no toxins. Some repellent sprays are also designed to not spread the compound too much in enclosed spaces.
Outdoor repellents usually were designed to spread easily and be long-lasting. It can also refer to long-lasting repellents to apply to your clothes when visiting the great outdoors.
Some products can be used in many different environments. First, you follow the directions for use and see if the product is for indoor or outdoor use. Then, get rid of your stink bug problem using the best stink bug repellent for your situation.
5 Additional tips to repel and get rid of stink bugs effectively
1. Minimize exterior lighting
Light attracts stink bugs. If possible, turn off lights outside the house, like porch lights, and minimize the light coming out. You can switch to yellow or orange lights since it’s the least attractive for stink bugs and other insects.
2. Do some landscaping
Wood is where stink bugs usually stay at. Trim bushes and shrubbery. Keep woodpiles at least 20 ft. away from your property.
3. Inspect the things you bring it home
Stink bugs can hop on items you carry at home, like grocery bags or boxes. If possible, inspect these items before putting them inside the house
4. Use vacuum cleaners
The cleanest way to get rid of them is to use a vacuum cleaner. After catching them, empty the canister or discard the bag without opening the container to avoid smelling the stink.
5. Use traps
Here’s an example of a stink bug trap.
You only need a roasting pan, water, dish soap, and a desk lamp. The desk lamp will attract the insects while the other components are used for the trap.
Frequently asked questions
Does citronella repel stink bugs?
There isn’t strong evidence that citronella alone can keep stink bugs away. Instead, use stink bug repellents that have other ingredients.
Are stink bugs dangerous?
Stink bugs aren’t dangerous. They’re more like irritating pests and annoying to deal with. They release a horrible odor when threatened or stepped on. A severe infestation can damage gardens, crops, or yard plants.
Conclusion – Which is the best stink bug repellent?
Your best bet for pest control is Sawyer Permethrin Insect Repellent. What sets it apart from the rest is its general applicability and wide range of protection. In addition, it’s long-lasting due to the residual effect after spraying.
Permethrin has been proven to kill and repel insects, stink bugs included, for a long time. This is the best product to repel and get rid of stink bugs. It can work for other pests like ants and ticks as well.