Insects

How to Get Rid of Springtails

Springtails are pests that come in huge numbers, which is why they are feared by many people. These creatures don’t really do any harm, but can be quite bothersome when they appear in thousands. They are also known to withstand extremely cold temperatures, so can infest your home even in winter. You can’t let these creepy crawlies take over your abode. Learning how to get rid of springtails is a must.

Springtails at a Glance

Springtails are found in damp and dusty areas, particularly the kitchen, behind the walls, bathrooms and other areas where moisture is prevalent. They feed on decaying matter, fungi and molds, all of which often found in the given areas. Since they don’t breed inside homes, they are all bound to perish, but with their great number, you need more immediate solutions. Good thing many of them are available in your home and on the market.

Household Remedies

Springtails don’t usually appear in dry and clean places, which you clearly have to maintain. Although, there are times, especially during summer, when the conditions are humid, so moisture becomes prevalent. An infestation becomes is quite possible, given the humidity. You must have ready solutions in this case. Here are some of them:

  • Soap and Water – Washing with soap and water comes as the basic way to get rid or at least control springtails. The frothy mixture created by soap and water harms, not to mention drowns, torrents of springtails. The problem is, sometimes there are too many of them that a simple washing won’t hold them off. Just apply this remedy when the pests don’t appear in thousands.
  • Vinegar – Vinegar, being a highly acidic liquid, will burn through the pests exteriors, making it a more efficient solution than soapy water. Given the sheer number of springtails, you may need to pour it three to four times for every torrent of pests that appear, which can be quite pricey.
  • Bleach – Bleach is a slightly corrosive substance that can instantly kill springtails. Mix it with some water then flood the pests’ source, which will probably eliminate hundreds, or even thousands.
  • Improve Ventilation – Maintaining a cool temperature inside the house minimizes the appearance of moisture. Just leave your air-conditioner turned on when you’re at home and apply insulation on the ceiling (Learn how to insulate a crawl space). The springtails will eventually switch locations, as they search for damper areas.

Each remedy works well against springtails, but if you are faced with a seemingly insurmountable number of them, better arm yourself insecticides.

Insecticides

Just like any bug, a springtail is killed in an instant upon applying insecticide. These chemical-based solutions, sprays, or granules are poisonous to insects. With just a few applications, you can massacre many of the springtails lurking around your house. Some insecticide types work better than others, depending on where they are applied, so having more than one type is advisable, especially when up against a colony.

  • Bifen Granules – Bifen granules are potent and can be used indoors and outdoors, making them a pretty versatile solution. Their effect also lasts longer than most insecticides. Each granule emits fumes that are harmful to springtails, which is why a 25-pound bag is enough to cover two acres of land. Apply these babies around your property and your springtail problem will soon come to an end. Just keep your pets way from them since the granules are poisonous.
  • Insect Spray – Insect sprays work best when applied on cracks, crevices and hard to reach places. The poisonous cloud emitted will take out any pest that it touches, including springtails. Make sure you wear a safety mask when applying. Long exposure to the gas may damage your respiratory system.
  • Liquid Insecticide – Bifen granules work even better when partnered with liquid insecticide. Not only does liquid insecticide kill springtails instantly, it also increases the effects of the granules. Spread the granules around the springtail havens, preferably near the exit points. Once done, spray the insecticide onto where you placed the granules. If the springtails are hiding beneath an object, simply lift it up and exterminate everything that’s moving.
  • Insecticide Dust – Insecticide dust is highly corrosive, so you better wear safety gloves when handling it. Place a generous amount in a hand duster and blow the particles onto a springtail colony. Within minutes, the dust will eliminate them all. This solution is perfect for the smallest crevices.
  • Fumigation – In extreme cases, in which the springtails number to over ten thousand, the only available solution is fumigation. Hire an exterminator to fumigate the area. The insecticide used contains powerful chemicals, which can eliminate all the pests in your home in just a few hours. It can damage your lungs, so you have to leave the premises while the exterminator is fumigating.

Insecticides deliver results, as set by their potent formulations. They are pretty effective , but can sometimes come with stiff prices. Just apply in conjunction with the household remedies to maximize the insecticide you’re using. If you’re interested in reading this article, might as well read how to get rid of gnats.

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About the author

Nicole Harding

6 Comments

  • We have an overun of Springtails in our bath-rooms and Kitchen sinks. We are looking for diff. ways to eliminate them.

    Thank you for any info. you could e-mail me.

    Debbie Hunt

  • I have an infestation of springtails all through my house which is a two story house and around 3000sq. feet. I have had terminix out here 3 times in six weeks. I STILL HAVE SPRINGTAILS! Yes they have been reduced but they seem to just keep coming back. What I did to reduce them is clear any debris around the house and I ordered a granual insectiside with Bifen in it and spread it around the house. That has seemed to help control the springtails from continuing to enter but I realized they had already made there way into the walls. At this point I am trying to caulk around all of the water pipes and drain pipes in my bathroom and kitchen to basically seal them in the walls and prevent them from getting to the areas we use. One area you also might want to check is the electrical outlets and light fixtures, yes I found live ones in a light fixture while remodeling one of my bathrooms. They even found there way to the ceiling vent fan and clean your window vents then spray insectiside in them. They will come in any way possible. Don’t leave any damp towels laying around they will find there way to them and multiply. If you want to order insectiside there’s a website you can get them from. I believe it’s called “do my own pest control” or something like that. There are other you can order from. I would recommend researching the products yourself and doing your own pest control. Terminix has been great to me but they are not getting rid of the problem.

  • Thank you for the info. We are having the same problem. We have had Terminix come to our home 4 times now and I am still killing three or four in my bathroom every morning. I am definitely going to try the granules. Hopefully my dogs will stay away from it. The only thing is, I can’t figure out where they are coming from.

  • Yes me too if anyone has any advice on these bugs to get rid of them in the home. ive had them for the past 6 years in the summer months not in the winter .spring or fall just the summer and they are terrible. i need to get rid of them fast any advice will be greatly appreciated. i had the exterminator 3 times this same month and they wont go away

  • We have been inundated with springtails (verified by our county vector control entomologist) for almost 3 months since getting 4 new sliding doors installed. Showers, essential oil baths, washing all linens and vacuuming mattresses and floors every day have kept them down. We have had terminex spray inside 4x and outside 3x, which helps temporarily. Our outdoor sprinklers were leaking and we ripped up and replaced the sprinklers and front yard – new topsoil and sod. They die from flea powder for the carpet, but come back within a week. We are having some plants with whiteflies torn out, and removing all mulch. Diatamaceous earth work pretty well, as it compromises their joints and dries them out. There is a company called Diatect that sells an organic product with food-grade D.E. and natural pyrethrens from african daisies. It is safe for people and pets, you can even eat it, though I wouldn’t recommend it. It is used commercially for grain storage and organic crops. I have a hand pump sprayer and have sprayed it on my windowsills and doorframes. I have sprayed it on my mattress before the mattress pad, but it is scratchy so put it on the bottom of your upholstered furniture. They also die from lice and flea sprays, which I used on my car. DON’T steam clean your carpets. An enzyme laundry booster helps kill them in the washer. Cold water washing doesn’t kill them, so I have been putting those clothes in a plastic bag and microwaving the little devils for one minute. Boom! Just check clothes carefully for metal zippers or buttons. I’m now trying neem oil soap and it seems to help.

    People say to find the source, but I’m not finding that so simple. Hope this helps someone else..

  • I believe this article is near worthless due to the extremely false info. I am a Technical Support Specialist at one of the worlds top pest control industries. I have researched the Biology of Springtails and engaged in many battles with this invader! Yes Springtails have the capability to appear in great numbers and they need a high moisture content to survive. The first step in controlling this pest is identification. Don’t use the picture provided lest you are a defense lawyer on the Springtails defense team! Springtails are tiny creatures which are oval shaped. They have a spring projecting from their abdomen or booty. This is how the insect got it’s name. They are usually smaller than common ants, such as pavement ants, and have the ability to leap into the air. Yes, these insects are in seek of humid areas which contain fungus which is often microscopic. Here is the logical control measures needed to eliminate these nuisance pests:
    BATHROOMS: If found in bathrooms, inspect the calk around sinks and bathtubs or showers. Also inspect the grout surrounding showers or floors which may harbor moisture. Remove any discolored calk and re-seal and grout or calk holding or hiding moisture.
    BASEMENTS: Inspect floor drains and physically remove any grime accumulation found. Run a de humidifier and remove old cardboard, clothes or conducive materials promoting moisture on your floor.
    HOMES:Make sure your gutters are draining properly and the rain water is directed away from your homes exterior perimeter. Keep firewood away from your exterior walls and eliminate moisture and humid conditions inside. Run de humidifiers if needed.
    HOTELS: re-seal any moisture causing conditions. Remove dead foliage around the building and inside rooms. Fix any pool room floor cracks causing standing water. Run a fan over wet floor areas. Outside, eliminate dead leaves and green fungus issues.
    OVER ALL: If your exterior is shady and green fungus grows along
    exterior walls, fungicides can eliminate the attraction of Springtails! Insecticides should be a last resort in Springtail control and they are only to be used as a supplement to an over all moisture elimination campaign in all situations. If the moisture and fungus are NOT controlled, neither are the Springtails! Remove anything allowing moisture to hide between anything and the ground (plant pots, cardboard, wood…), eliminate drainage issues, bad sealants in wet areas, gutter build up, moisture issues…and stop trying to solve the issue with insecticides! Use fans, de humidifiers, sealants, grout, gutters, exterior sanitation and drainage trenches to solve the issue.

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