Fleas: if you’ve discovered an infestation in your carpet, you’ll need to find a way to eliminate these jumping, blood-sucking pests fast. Without immediate action, an infestation can multiply quickly.
Although there’s a variety of products you can use to eliminate fleas, not everyone wants to rely on manufactured products.
If you don’t want to introduce toxic chemicals into your home, you may want to consider using a natural remedy to tackle your infestation.
Whether it’s flea traps or repelling plants, stick with us to learn more about the natural, DIY remedies that you can use to quickly eliminate your infestation.
1: Diatomaceous Earth And Lemon
Diatomaceous earth is a powder made from the fossilized remains of small, aquatic algae called diatoms. This sand-like powder has long been considered an effective treatment for flea infestations.
When applied to the affected area, diatomaceous earth can dry out the fleas and cause them to die.
- To use diatomaceous earth for a flea infestation, start by vacuuming the affected carpet. The vibrations of your vacuum will cause the fleas to become active, which makes them easier to suck up. Once you’ve finished, tie up your vacuum bag and dispose of it immediately, so none of the fleas escape.
- Once you’ve finished, begin sprinkling a generous amount of diatomaceous earth over your carpet. Leave it for around 4 hours, and then use a vacuum to clean up the remains.
- Once you’ve sucked up the remaining powder, chop up a lemon and boil it with a pint of water. Once the solution has cooled, you can transfer it to a spray bottle and start spraying your carpet. Fleas are naturally deterred by citrus scents.
- Now, add drops of rosemary and citronella to a separate spray bottle with filtered water. Then, spray your carpet again to act as another deterrent.
2: Flea Repelling Plants
Plants can also be an effective natural way to deter fleas. Believe it or not, many common plants irritate fleas.
These insects have an incredibly strong sense of smell – although this is one of their biggest strengths, you can use it to your advantage by introducing plants that irritate and deter them.
Some of the most popular plants used to repel fleas include:
- Bay laurel
- Flebane daisy
If you don’t want to introduce a full plant to your home, you can simply place extracts of any of these repellents around your home.
We’d recommend focusing on dark corners and under furniture, as these areas are hotspots for fleas.
Many of these plants also deter other pests such as spiders and flies – so, if your home is also a hotspot for unwanted bugs, these plants may be a great way to deter them while tackling your flea infestation at the same time.
Although plants can be an effective deterrent, ensure they’re safe for your pets.
We also wouldn’t recommend solely relying on plants to tackle your infestation; this method works best when used in combination with other natural flea treatments.
3: Light Traps
Here’s one you might not have heard of before – light traps. Fleas are attracted to heat and light; if you can lure them with a light trap, it’ll be an effective way to handle your infestation.
You can make your own light trap at home with a light and a bowl of soapy water.
Suspend a bright light above your bowl – to lure fleas, we’d recommend flashing it every now and again to trick the fleas into thinking that their host is nearby and moving.
Once the fleas notice the light, they’ll start to move toward it and jump in the bowl of soapy water.
The soapy water will congeal around the fleas, making it hard for them to escape. Do this method several times to draw out large numbers of fleas from your carpets.
4: Steam Cleaning
If you already own a steam cleaner for your carpets (Also check out Which Is The Best Rental Carpet Cleaner?), you may just be looking at your number one flea elimination tool!
Steam cleaning is an effective way to kill fleas in the environment. However, if you plan on using insecticides or other natural remedies, always steam clean your carpets first.
Steam cleaning your carpets after application can reduce the efficacy of your insecticides or other natural methods.
Steam cleaners are naturally more effective at removing bugs and debris from carpets than traditional vacuums, and they’re often used to remove and kill fleas at all stages of their life cycles.
Not only are steam cleaners more powerful, but their high temperatures are lethal to fleas – once they’re disturbed and exposed to the steam, they’re unlikely to survive the extreme temperatures.
Although steam cleaning is an effective control method, it’s unlikely to completely end an infestation.
It’s a great way to remove fleas from your environment, but as many fleas live on their hosts, you’ll also need to treat your pet to get the situation under control.
5: Boric Acid
Boric acid is a compound of oxygen, hydrogen, and boron that is an effective control treatment for a number of pests and insects. A boric acid solution can also help treat your flea infestation.
Boric acid is naturally dehydrating: when applied to your carpet, it will help dry out and suffocate the fleas.
Although there’s not much scientific evidence on this topic, boric acid is believed to be effective at killing larvae, but it’s not as effective at killing adult fleas.
So, if you’re applying boric acid, it’s important to keep vacuuming your carpets regularly and use another natural flea treatment if you can.
- To use boric acid, simply fill a shaker (prepare your own or buy one at your store) with two-thirds boric acid. Carefully sprinkle as much of the solution as you can over your affected carpet. Take care to sprinkle your boric acid in thin layers.
- Once you’re done, leave the boric acid to soak into your carpet for around two days. Then, vacuum your carpet to remove the boric acid and dead fleas.
6: Use Salt
Like boric acid, salt is another popular dehydration agent that can help eliminate adult fleas from your carpet.
Not only can salt help kill adult fleas, but it can also be used as a deterrent for future fleas once the infestation is removed. Using salt to tackle your infestation is simple:
- Source some finely-ground salt, and sprinkle it over all of the affected carpets.
- Leave the salt to sit in your carpets for two days – this will give it a chance to dehydrate and suffocate the fleas.
- After 1-2 days, vacuum each of the affected carpets. Remove your vacuum bag immediately and dispose of it outside to prevent any live fleas from escaping again in your house.
7: Vinegar Spray
First off, let us start by saying that vinegar WON’T kill fleas.
However, if you’ve already treated your carpets and you want to deter any more fleas from making their home there, using vinegar spray is a great way to do it.
Fleas hate the smell of vinegar, and they’ll be unlikely to settle in your carpets if they can smell it. You can make your own vinegar spray at home by following the steps below:
- Mix one part of vinegar and one part of water together, and mix them into a spray bottle. Shake the spray bottle up to disperse the solution. You can use either white vinegar or apple cider vinegar for this method.
- Now, spray your solution over the affected carpet. Focus on any specific problem areas or hotspots where your pet likes to spend the most time.
- Leave the solution to soak into the carpet, and it’ll deter fleas on its own.
If you want to kill your fleas with vinegar spray, we recommend adding salt to the mix. Salt will naturally dehydrate and suffocate the fleas, while vinegar will prevent any more fleas from transferring from the host to your carpet.
8: Baking Soda
Last but not least, we have baking soda.
When mixed with salt, baking soda can create the ultimate dehydration formula that will kill any fleas living in your carpets.
Baking soda is believed to kill both larvae and eggs, which means you can tackle your infestation at the source, and prevent it from getting out of control.
You’ll probably already have baking soda in your home, and it’s safe for both you and your pets. However, you’ll need a pretty large amount of baking soda to treat your carpets, so plan ahead, and stock up!
Here’s how to use baking soda to treat your carpets:
- Mix an equal solution of salt and baking soda. We’d recommend mixing it in a canister or another device that makes it easy to sprinkle the solution over your carpets.
- Once mixed, apply the solution generously to your carpets. Leave it to sit overnight so that it can suffocate and kill all the larvae and eggs in your carpet.
- In the morning, use your vacuum to clean up the solution and any affected fleas.
- Remove your vacuum bag immediately. Secure it tightly and dispose of it outside to prevent any fleas from escaping.
Flea infestations can be overwhelming and hard to control, especially if they’ve been left for some time to worsen.
However, not every infestation requires store-bought chemical solutions. You probably already have many natural remedies in your home that can be used to kill fleas and prevent future infestations.
So, if you want an effective natural remedy, feel free to use any of the suggestions above to bring your infestation under control, and make you and your pet comfortable again!