How to prevent flies from the home

Flies can be responsible for the spread of bacteria and other pathogens both inside and outside the home. Some flies are even prone to biting humans, leaving painful welts on your skin. When it comes to fighting flies, prevention is definitely better than cure. After all, who wants flycatchers and sticky fly traps all over the house just because those pests have taken up residence? So, if you want to learn how to keep flies away from your home, we have a few tips to help you do just that. 

How to keep flies away outside

The best way to keep your home fly free is to banish typical breeding sites, particularly outside your homeFlies are attracted to sources of food, and there is nothing they like more than feasting on your leftovers. To keep flies away from your home: 

  • Put out the garbage and dispose of pet waste regularly  
  • Cover bins and compost heaps with tight-fitting lids  
  • If you have pets, aim to regularly wash or replace their soiled bedding 
  • Clear straw, garbage and any other decaying plant and animal matter from around your home and garden 

Wrap up any wet rubbish and put it into a plastic garbage bag, securely fastening it so nothing can get in or out. As you look around your home, remember your nose is a good guide — if it smells bad to you, it is perfume to a bug-eyed beast! 

How to keep flies away in the home

Once you have covered all your bases outside your home, make sure you do the same inside. One simple way to keep flies away is to use physical barriers such as nets on prams and cots and mesh screens on windows and doors.  

  • In the kitchen, avoid leaving food uncovered (including pet food), and make sure to throw away anything you spot a fly landing on. Just remember, every time they land, they defecate and vomit — enough said!  
  • Clear up any spills and cooking residue as soon as possible, including keeping your kitchen and other surfaces dry so flies do not see it as an easy spot to get a drink. 
  • If you enjoy gardening, you may also consider planting pyrethrum daisies near your front and back doors that may help repel flies and other insect pests.  
  • If you hear that familiar buzz right before bedtime, try turning off all the lights in the room and opening a window. If there are streetlights outside, the fly will naturally head towards it, leaving your home fly free! 
  • You might also want to hang sticky fly traps or fly paper, both of which are coated with a permanently sticky adhesive that captures (and eventually kills) any flies that are unlucky enough to venture close. Learn more about how to control flies in your home with our handy article on the topic. 

As well as keeping flies away from your home, you will need to take some steps to prevent flies from seeing you as a tasty target. Avoid being bitten by flies by applying insect repellent, wearing long sleeves and trousers, wearing light-coloured clothing and avoiding outdoor activity in the morning and afternoon when flies are most prevalent.  

While all these measures can help keep flies away from your home, it also pays to be prepared. If you find your home is particularly prone to flies – whether seasonally or on a more regular basis – you may want to have a product like the Mortein 2-in-1 Insect Spray handy.  

Designed to kill flying insects quickly and easily, all you have to do with the product is to shake the can and spray at any fly that manages to get through your many barriers and enter your home. You can use the dual-purpose nozzle to either spray directly at them or in their general direction, covering more ground. Learn more about how to kill flies in our article on the subject. 

Types of flies in India

As a final note, part of learning how to prevent flies from entering your home means finding out which ones you are most likely to encounter. India plays reluctant host to three common types of flies: the moth fly, the fruit fly and the housefly.  

  • Moth flies (family ‘Psychodidae’) are also known as drain flies, sewer flies or sand flies. As the name suggests, they thrive in damp spaces, with at least one species commonly found in bathrooms. Moth fly larvae feast on decomposing organic matter near water, or even on dung.  
  • Fruit flies (family ‘Tephritidae’) have light brown bodies with yellow markings. The mango fruit fly is known as one of the main culprits behind crop damage in India, accounting for a massive 27% of harvesting loss. Most fruit flies feast on fruit, although others gorge on rotting wood, plant stems and the flower heads of daisies. 
  • Houseflies (family ‘Muscidae’) like to consume liquid or semi-liquid substances as well as solid material that has been softened through saliva or vomit. Because they eat a lot, they tend to deposit a lot of faeces (and pathogens) along the way, too. Houseflies can carry over 100 pathogens, including the ones causing typhoid, salmonellosis, cholera, bacillary dysentery, tuberculosis, anthrax, parasitic worms and ophthalmia. 

Though we can try our best to prepare for severe weatherbad storms or floods may cause black flies to make an appearance, too. Whatever type of fly frequents your home however, following our advice above can help ensure they never feel welcome!