9 Clever Ways to Keep Stink Bugs Away

Say so long to these indoor invaders with these quick ways to keep stink bugs at bay.



Halyomorpha halys, the brown marmorated stink bug, on a tomato. (Photo by: Edwin Remsburg/VW Pics via Getty Images)

Photo by: VW Pics

VW Pics

Halyomorpha halys, the brown marmorated stink bug, on a tomato. (Photo by: Edwin Remsburg/VW Pics via Getty Images)

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Just when things are getting all comfy and cozy indoors, those most unwanted of visitors show up: stink bugs! These little pests can quickly turn your hygge moment into something less than Scandinavian cool. 

Stink bugs are said to have arrived on our shores in the Nineties after hitching a ride in shipping containers from China and have now made themselves right at home. Though they are a major crop pest, they don’t bite, sting or pose a health risk, brown marmorated stink bugs—named for the brown marbled pattern on their backs—are an annoyance (especially if you smash them and release the eponymous smell that keeps predators away), and a sure way to put a damper on your nesting since bugs that enter the home when the weather turns cool tend to stay put in walls or attics until spring. So, yuck.  Following are some tips for keeping these unwanted visitors out of your home. 

Even better, these tips are environmentally friendly, natural and creative ways to combat these winter pests.

Brown Spray Bottle with Essential Oil Bottles and Blue Hydrangea Flower

DIY Essential Oils Disinfecting Spray

Skip the harsh chemicals and use natural ingredients to make an all purpose disinfecting spray.

Photo by: Debbie Wolfe

Debbie Wolfe

Use Essential Oil

Kill two birds with one stone by making your house smell great even as you are banishing stink bugs. Mix 10 drops of mint essential oil with 16 ounces of water and spray at interior entry zones like windows and doors.

Neem Oil

This plant-based natural insecticide may take a week or so to work since it interferes with bugs' instinctual behaviors. Combine 32 ounces water and two teaspoons neem oil and spray at stink bug entry points like windowsills.

Diatomaceous Earth for Pest Control

Diatomaceous Earth

Sometimes sold as insect dust, diatomaceous earth is the fossilized remains of a water organism called a diatom. Diatom skeletons contain silica, which dries out insects and kills them.

Photo by: Julie Martens Forney

Julie Martens Forney

Spread Diatomaceous Earth

This earth-friendly pesticide powder made from natural rock can be placed at entryways like doors and windows both inside and outside and breaks down the stink bug’s protective exoskeleton so they eventually die of dehydration.

Garlic Spray

Combine two cups water and four teaspoons of garlic powder or a handful of garlic cloves and spray on indoor windowsills where stink bugs are likely to enter your home.

Cleaning pet fur in the home with a vacuum.

Miele Vacuum For Cleaning Pet Fur

Find the best vacuum for managing and cleaning your home when it's covered in pet fur.

Photo by: Miele


Vacuum the Critters

Proceed with caution with this tip. This method only works for vacuum cleaners with bags. And you’ll need to throw the bug-filled bags away immediately to prevent a stink bomb from developing.

Water Pouring Into a Red Funnel and Brown Bottle

DIY Disinfecting Spray Add Water

Add the water and vinegar into the spray bottle.

Photo by: Debbie Wolfe

Debbie Wolfe

Soapy Water

Combine equal parts hot water and dish soap in a spray bottle and spray on windowsill entry points.

Fly Tape at Entryways

While it isn’t the prettiest of methods, strips of fly tape spread on windowsills and at other entryways will catch these critters.

HGTV Spring House 2016 Hands Holding Caulk Gun Outside Windows

Re-caulk Windows & Doors

Keeping your home cool and comfortable during hot summer months can be a challenge. Keep your AC costs down by re-caulking windows and doors in the spring. Maintaining a properly sealed house helps keep the cool air in, which means lower energy bills for you and your family.

Photo by: Tomas Espinoza

Tomas Espinoza

Safeguard Your House

Prevention is key in combatting these critters. Caulk all cracks and crevices where bugs can enter. Place fine mesh over air vents to keep bugs from trying that sneaky alternative entryway.

Dryer Sheets

Dryer sheet odor offends stink bugs, so rubbing dryer sheets on window screens or at home entry points can be a great way to keep bugs at bay.

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