Why Do I Have Gnats on My Balcony All of a Sudden

Gnats on a leaf

You might be wondering why, all of a sudden, you have a swarm of gnats on your balcony. You probably had no idea they were even there before! But now that they’ve shown up, getting rid of them is hard. What could have changed?

Gnats are commonly found on balconies due to the attractive qualities of their environments. Gnats are drawn to sweet smells, fruity scents, standing water, body heat, eyes, nose moisture, sweat, damp soil in flower pots, crumbs left behind after food consumption, or an open garbage bin.

In this article, we will explore some of the reasons why you might be experiencing an influx of gnats on your balcony. We will also provide some tips for getting rid of them.

A Detailed Explanation of Why Do You Have Gnats on Your Balcony

Gnats influx

Attraction to Sweet Smells

A gnat on a daisy

Gnats are attracted to sweet smells, including fruity scents. These scents provide an easy source of nutrition for the gnats as they contain sugars and carbohydrates, which gnats feed on for energy. This is why open fruit bowls or dishes with sugary foods can attract these insects. Additionally, perfumes, air fresheners, humidifiers, and other items emitting sweet smells can attract these pests.

Attraction to Standing Water

A birdbath on the balcony

Not only are gnats attracted to sweet smells but also moisture. This means damp soil or standing water found on balconies will likely draw these pests in. Potted plants filled with soil that has become overly moist due to overwatering or rain is an ideal breeding ground for gnats if there isn’t proper drainage present. Also, stagnant water pools, such as bird baths or small fountains, may act as breeding grounds for these pesky insects. 

Attraction to Body Heat & Moisture 

A gnat on skin

Gnats are naturally attracted to body heat and moisture from people’s eyes and noses when they spend time outdoors on their balconies. The warmth from people’s skin provides a comfortable environment for the bugs, which can further attract them in droves. Furthermore, moisture produced from people’s eyes and noses adds yet another attraction factor for the little pests since it serves as another source of nutrition. 

Attraction to Sweat & Crumbs 

unclosed trash bin

Sweat is another attractant for gnats since it contains oils that act as food sources for bugs. Therefore, spending too much time outdoors on a hot day while not wearing proper protection can be enough to draw these creatures in large numbers. Similarly, crumbs left behind after eating on a balcony can also be attractive when they are not properly cleaned up afterward. Open garbage bins nearby can also serve as magnets if not emptied regularly and kept sealed off at all times. 

Preventative Measures 

Cleaning apartment balcony

The best way of avoiding having gnats swarming around one’s balcony is through prevention by eliminating any potential sources of attraction that may be present there, such as excess moisture or sweet smells emanating from open food containers or air fresheners placed on the deck railing. Additionally, keeping pets away from balconies and removing any standing water found near potted plants will go a long way toward keeping these insects at bay during warmer months of the year when they are most active outdoors.

Here’s everything else you need to know why you have gnats on your balcony

To get rid of gnats on your balcony, you can try these methods:

  1. Remove any overripe or rotting fruit, and make sure to throw away any food waste.
  2. Empty any standing water and clean up any spills or leaks.
  3. Keep your balcony clean and free of food waste and other debris.
  4. Use a gnat trap or an insecticide to kill the gnats.
  5. Consider using a natural repellent, such as essential oils or vinegar, to deter gnats from your balcony.

How do I find the source of gnats on my balcony?

You’ll have to take a more investigative approach to locate the root of your gnat infestation on your balcony. Start by looking for potential sources of moisture and ideal habitats for gnats—these include standing water, food spills, unsealed garbage cans, and potted plants that may be overwatered or kept in areas with high humidity.

It’s important to inspect these areas closely, as they can harbor eggs and larvae that you may not be able to see.

You should also pay close attention to cracks and crevices in walls and furniture, as well as other nooks and crannies in your balcony that may have gone unnoticed until now.

Additionally, check any outdoor items you might have stored on your balconies, such as patio furniture cushions or planters; these can provide the perfect breeding ground for gnats. 

How Can I Keep My Plants from Becoming a Breeding Ground for Gnats on My Balcony?

Wet soil in a pot

Keeping the soil dry is the key to keeping your plants from becoming a breeding ground for gnats on your balcony.

Gnats thrive in moist or humid areas, so it’s important that you only water your plants when necessary and avoid overwatering them.

If the top layer of the soil is still wet after watering, hold off on watering again until the top layer of soil is dry.

You should also be sure to properly drain any excess water that accumulates in the bottom of planters or pots each time you water.

Additionally, ensure that any drainage holes aren’t clogged up, as this will lead to a further buildup of moisture in the soil. 

What scent keeps midges away?

Citronella oil

Citronella oil is one of the most widely used and has a strong citrusy odor that midges find unpleasant. To apply citronella oil, you can spray it directly onto surfaces around your equipment or surrounding area.

Peppermint oil can also be used as a natural repellent and has a strong menthol scent that midges dislike. To apply peppermint oil, mix a few drops in water and spray on affected areas. Lavender and eucalyptus oils can be added for extra protection, as both contain properties that repel insects.

Again, these oils should be diluted before application for best results.

How do I keep midges away when I sit outside?

Citronella torches

Citronella candles are an incredibly effective way to keep midges away when sitting outside. Citronella is a natural oil derived from certain types of grasses, and the candles contain this oil to create an unpleasant scent for midges. Burning multiple citronella candles at once will double your chances of repelling the insects. Not all citronella candles are created equal—while many store-bought varieties may be effective, some natural ones may be more powerful due to their higher concentration of essential oils.

When using citronella candles, it’s important to ensure they’re placed properly. For maximum effectiveness, place the candles around the perimeter of your outdoor seating area—this will ensure that you and your guests can enjoy dinner in peace without being bothered by pesky midges. Additionally, you’ll want to ensure the candles are placed on flat surfaces—this will help prevent any wax from dripping onto furniture or clothing. If you’re using a citronella candle with a stand, ensure it is securely positioned before lighting it.

Finally, ensure that you keep an eye on your citronella candle and never leave it unattended for extended periods. While citronella candles can be extremely effective at keeping midges away, they should always be monitored closely, as open flames pose a fire risk if not used responsibly.

Final Thoughts

Congratulations! You now possess all the information you need to maintain an insect-free environment on your balcony. By following a few simple steps, such as keeping the soil dry, using natural repellents like citronella oil or peppermint oil, and burning citronella candles when sitting outside, you can enjoy spending time on your balcony without having to worry about pesky insects ruining it for you. Now that you know how to prevent these pests from taking over your outdoor space, go ahead and get out there—it’s time to start enjoying those summer nights!

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Zoltan Szatmari

Zoltan is a test and industrial engineer from Europe who loves learning anything new and working on small projects. When he is not working, he is usually hiking or going to the cinema.

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