I hate mosquitoes! I don’t know what it is about me, but they seem to bypass other people and come straight for me. It’s gotten to the point that I can’t even leave my garage door open in fear of getting constantly bitten by these annoying bugs.
Last summer, I started to look at different ways that I could keep mosquitoes out of my garage. I’ve tested quite a few of them and wanted to share what I found.
I know I’m not the only person that finds mosquitoes annoying, so I hope this helps you.
The most effective way to keep mosquitoes out of a garage is to remove any standing water in the vicinity, as mosquitoes lay eggs in stagnant water. Additionally, installing door screens, and the use of insecticides, mosquito traps, and insect repellent plants can keep mosquitoes at bay.
This article explains why there are mosquitoes in your garage and ways to get rid of them. It also contains a list of mosquito repellent plants.
Why Are Mosquitoes in My Garage?
When I was growing up, I had a creek running through my back yard. So I’ve always known that mosquitoes need water to live. The calmer the water is, the better.
Female mosquitoes lay eggs in stagnant water, and even the tiniest amount will do. Only a few inches of water is needed for mosquitoes to breed.
Common places mosquitoes breed include:
- Flower pots
- Trash can lids
- Rainwater barrels
- Ponds and ditches
- Areas with tall grasses
- Clogged drains and gutters
It takes as little as 14 days for adult mosquitoes to emerge from the eggs. Because garages are frequently left open to keep them cool, it is one of the first places that the newly developed mosquitoes visit.
Additionally, any standing water in the garage itself, such as in tires, buckets, or puddles from leaky roofs, will be prime breeding grounds for any mosquitoes that do find their way into your garage.
Getting Rid of Mosquitoes
Mosquitoes aren’t just annoying pests, they’re considered to be the world’s deadliest animals. They are carriers for malaria and can spread other diseases like the Zika virus, dengue, and yellow fever.
Here’s a few steps you can take to make your garage and yard less habitable for these pesky insects.
Remove Stagnant Water
The first, and most important step is to remove any standing water on your property. This is the surest way to deter mosquitoes since it prevents females from laying eggs.
No eggs = no new mosquitoes.
Here are some tips that you might not have thought about:
- Locate and fix any leaky roofs that result in puddles.
- Invest in drains to fix any puddles that do not disappear in 24 hours.
- Turn over buckets and similar containers after each use.
- Ensure that drains and gutters are not clogged.
- Change water in pet bowls, flowerpots and birdbaths, daily. Doing so will get rid of any eggs that may have been laid in the water.
Biological Mosquito Control
I’ll admit, there may be times where you don’t want to remove ponds or pools on your property.
In that case, you can control mosquito populations by biological means.
The Bti bacteria (Bacillus thuringiensis) release toxins that effectively kill various mosquito species, fungus gnat, and firefly larvae. The bacterium does not harm humans and has little to no effect on other species.
Animals like the mosquitofish (Gambusia affins) that feed on mosquito larva can be introduced to human-made ponds to control mosquito populations, as they can consume hundreds of mosquito larvae in a day.
Note that mosquitofish are only viable control measures if the pond is human-made and does not flow into any streams or rivers, as the fish is aggressive and can harm other fish.
It’s a good idea to check with your local regulations before introducing any invasive species into the environment, just to be sure.
Install a Door Screen
Garage doors are the biggest open space in our homes. During cool nights, I love to leave my garage door open while I work.
But that gives the mosquitoes free access into my garage.
One way to solve that is to install a screen door around the frame of your garage. This will allow you to enjoy the breeze while preventing mosquitoes from entering.
Block Holes, Repair Cracks
Another easy fix (and one you should do regularly anyway) is to locate and repair any holes or cracks in the walls, doors, garage windows, and screens.
Not only do they allow mosquitoes in, but they let other insects in as well. You’ll want to seal off any gaps in your garage before you start using stronger measures like insecticides and door screens.
Speaking of insecticides, they’re one of the only guaranteed ways to eliminate any mosquitoes that are already in your garage.
Female mosquitoes can live for up to three weeks after they bite you, so having one alive in your garage could mean many future bites down the road.
Always wear protective gear when spraying insecticides to prevent the chemicals from getting on your hands or in your lungs. When you spray, pay particular attention to corners, floors, and dark or damp areas, as these are areas that mosquitoes (and other bugs) like to hang out.
One major drawback to insecticides is that you can not remain in the room after spraying. Insecticides can be harmful to humans as well. Be sure to read the label to find out how much time must elapse before you can return to the garage.
Another disadvantage is that after the insecticides have killed insects in the garage, you can not open the door again, as doing so will invite more mosquitoes.
Use Mosquito Traps
Mosquito traps are an effective way of getting rid of mosquitoes. These devices work by emitting carbon dioxide, which has been shown to attract mosquitoes.
Once the device attracts the mosquitoes, it kills them. Since female mosquitoes are the only ones to bite, these traps can significantly reduce mosquito populations.
An advantage of a mosquito trap is that they allow you to be in the garage as they work, unlike insecticides.
Natural Mosquito Repellents
Besides chemical insecticides, door screens, and traps, you can take a natural approach to eliminate mosquitoes from your garage. The scent of some plants have insect repellent properties, as such, you can grow them around your home and garden, and in your garage by way of flower pots. For best results, use more than one mosquito repellant plant.
The following are some mosquito repellant plants you can plant around your home.
You might enjoy the citrusy smell of lemongrass, but mosquitoes do not share your liking for the scent. Lemongrass can also be grown as indoor plants. As such, you can have a few of them in your garage to scent up the place and keep the mosquitoes away.
Lavenders are not only beautiful; they also smell pleasant to humans, at least. Mosquitoes do not enjoy the smell and will give lavenders a wide berth. With proper care, you can keep the plants potted in your garage.
While you may enjoy the flavor that rosemary adds to your meals, the same cannot be said of mosquitoes as the insects generally avoid this herb.
Sulfuric compounds in onions can repel mosquitoes, cutting and placing some around your garage may help to combat mosquitoes.
If you do not mind the smell of garlic, then you can grow some in your garden. Cut up the cloves into small bits and spread them around your garage.
This green tropical grass contains great amounts of citronellol, geraniol, and citral, compounds that have been shown to repel insects, including mosquitoes.
Humans may like the smell of mint, but mosquitoes do not share the same sentiments for the plants.
Basil is an excellent spice for meals and a deterrent for mosquitoes. You can grow basil indoors.
The smell of marigolds is one that a lot of people do not like. Mosquitoes also do not like the smell of marigold. Accordingly, using this plant for hedges will help to deter mosquitoes from your yard.
Due to the garage’s location, and the practice of leaving its door open, this area is perhaps the one most plagued by mosquitoes. These insects not only constitute a nuisance, but they are also a health hazard, It is therefore vital that you get rid of them.
The most effective way to eliminate mosquitoes is to remove stagnant water from your surroundings, as mosquitoes breed in standing water. Biological methods, Door screens, insecticides, mosquito traps, and certain plants can also prevent mosquitoes.
For more on how to remove pests, check out our article on how to get rid of spiders from your garage.