Has this ever happened to you? You’re scrubbing a dish in the kitchen sink and notice a tiny creature shoot up out of the drain. Is that a gnat? Then you see more of them flying around the kitchen. These aggravating little guys are actually fruit flies. And if you’re asking how they got in there and what can be done about them, you’re in the right place.
Fruit flies survive all over the U.S., and mate quickly. According to WebMD, “An adult female fruit fly can lay up to 2,000 eggs on the surface of anything that’s moist and rotting. Within 30 hours, tiny maggots hatch and start to eat the decayed food. Within two days, they’re all grown up and ready to mate.” Since they’re attracted to moisture and decomposing food, they’ll head for your trash can, your overripe fruit and the kitchen drain, which is filled with moisture and tiny pieces of food. Sometimes you’ll notice them fly up out of the drain. This can be particularly bad if you have a somewhat clogged sink or disposal that empties slowly. This maintains more moisture and food waste that appeals to these insects and lets them thrive and reproduce.
When fruit flies move from a dirty surface to a clean one, they lug germs with them. This may include listeria, salmonella and even E. coli. All of these bacteria can lead to serious cases of food poisoning.
Owing to this bacterial risk, keep your surfaces clean at all times. Use a kitchen surface cleaner that destroys bacteria. Don’t reuse sponges that can attract, retain and transfer germs. It’s cleaner to use paper towels and dispose of them.
Bug sprays can eliminate the adult fruit flies but won’t get rid of the eggs. And you likely don’t want to apply insecticide all over your kitchen. Instead, pour boiling water in your drain. Before bed, close up your drains with clear packing tape. In the morning, you can see some fruit flies attached to it.
Here are other barriers you can also use, all involving a jar:
To minimize encouraging fruit flies:
If the listed methods haven’t eliminated your fruit fly infestation, there may be something wrong with your p-trap. That’s the part of your drain pipe bent in a u shape to trap water and prevent foul air from drifting up into your home. It also keeps flies from hiding in your pipes and flying up out of the drain. If your pipe has a leak and is missing a water seal, this can produce a fruit fly infestation. Run the water and check below for a leak. If you find one, get it fixed quickly. Leaky pipes can encourage mold and structural damage to your home.
You should also call a plumber if your kitchen sink or garbage disposal is draining slower than usual. This problem not only helps encourage fruit flies, but over time the sink drain can entirely clog and become useless. The Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing plumbing team has the equipment, experience and expertise to diagnose the problem and resolve it promptly. We use a video drain inspector to obviously see what’s going on within the pipes, and a number of methods to clean them, depending on the type and extent of the blockage. If the problem is your garbage disposal, we can repair or replace it at a price you can afford. We also fix leaky pipes.
If you are looking for any sort of plumbing service at all, get in touch with the professionals at Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing. Whether we’re warming, cooling or making the water run, we take great pride in keeping our customers satisfied. With more than 4,000 team members, we can deliver and innovate better than anyone. Our can-do family attitude helps us get the job done on time, and right—the first time.
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