Here is the scene: you go to open your fridge door expecting to be greeted by the sweet smell of your freshly bought produce but instead of fresh produce all you see is a fresh swarm of tiny flies. Tiny little buggers that are hard to squish.
Sound at all familiar?
If so then you probably have a fruit fly infestation. They are only quite small so are not nearly as annoying as a swarm of blue bottles or bees or something, but they are still plenty annoying. Plus even though there are no known illnesses caused by fruit fly droppings, you still don’t want a bunch of flies crawling all over the food you are going to be giving to your family.
So what is there to do? Do you need to sell the fridge? Seal off the kitchen? Burn the house to the ground?
Just kidding. No there’s nothing too dramatic required to get rid of fruit flies. All you need to do is remove the flies food source, get rid of the flies and then take steps to prevent them coming back.
And that’s what we are here today to discuss. First we will examine why you might have fruit flies in the first place, then we will discuss the steps needed to get rid of them and then finally we will talk about how you can stop them from coming back for good.
For those of you interested in fruit flies from a scientific stand point here’s a good video describing the life cycle of the fruit fly. If you don’t care about that and just want to get rid of them then scroll down past the video and we will get started.
Why Do I Have Fruit Flies In My Refrigerator?
If you are concerned that fruit flies in your fridge means that there is a problem with your fridge itself then don’t worry. Just having fruit flies in your refrigerator doesn’t mean that your refrigerator is not sealed correctly – that said though it would not hurt to check though that the seal around the door is still intact, especially if you have a Beko Fridge.
Fruit flies often travel into your fridge with your food. Once they get in they will feed off your food and mate. The flies will then reproduce and lay eggs in your fridge. You have seen how small fruit flies are so you can imagine how small their eggs are also. That is why people often fail to see them.
This is why you can seemingly have no problem with fruit flies on one day and then all of a sudden you have hundreds of flies. Hundreds of flies didn’t get into your fridge, rather a couple flies got in and laid hundreds of eggs.
How To Get Rid Of Fruit Flies
Getting rid of fruit flies is a relatively simple task, get yourself into a good cleaning mindset and get started. Here are the steps you should take to clean your fridge from all the small flies:
- Completely clear out your refrigerator. Fruit flies love overly ripe food, any food that is not sealed or in an airtight container needs to go in the bin.
- Take out any drawers or shelves that your fridge has and give them a good wash. If they fit in your dishwasher then run them through a high heat wash.
- Use a fridge cleaning product to clean every nook and cranny of your fridge. If you are unable to locate a special cleaning product then use your usual kitchen cleaner. Ensure you give a thorough cleaning. Do two runs through to be sure.
- At this stage the fruit flies should have left your fridge either because they have died or they have gone to locate a new food source. If they are still sticking around give the fridge another clean. After you’ve cleaned again, fill a bowl halfway with honey. Put this bowl close to your fridge and leave there for a day. The flies will relocate to this new food source. Move the bowl every day until it is well outside of your home.
How To Stop Fruit Flies Getting In The Fridge
If you have followed the tips in the previous section you should now have a beautifully clean fridge that is most importantly free of fruit flies and their teeny tiny eggs.
So what can we do to prevent them from coming back?
Wash all produce before putting in the fridge – Fruit flies, as their name suggests, love fruit. When you buy fruit there’s a chance that fruit flies have already been on it and could have laid eggs on the surface.
Put all produce in air tight containers – Even if the fruit flies breach the perimeter of your fridge if you food is not accessible to them then they will quickly die.
Check your fridge’s seal – The flies most likely came in when you were loading the fridge aboard your food, however there is a chance that they snuck in a gap in the seal.
Be vigilant – Every time you open your fridge look to see if your food is exposed, if there are any flies around, if there is any sign of eggs.
Fruit Fly Frequently Asked Questions
An individual fly lives for between 2 and 4 weeks. This will be reduced slightly because of the colder climate of your fridge. This is enough time for them to reproduce and lay their eggs, therefore a fruit fly infestation could theoretically last for ever given enough food.
No. There are no known side affects from eating the fruit or vegetables that have been landed on by a fruit fly. In fact you could even eat the fruit fly itself and suffer no ill affects.
Fruit flies hate strong smelling items, settling instead for the sweet smells of fruit. Try using a strong smelling essential oil (like lavender) to drive them away.