Where Are These Drain Flies Coming From? Not the Drain!

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Drain flies, also known as moth flies, are often associated with unsanitary conditions in drains where they lay their eggs and develop as larvae. These small insects are typically found in kitchens, bathrooms, and basements near floor drains and other moist areas source. However, not all drain fly infestations originate from drain systems.

In some cases, drain flies may breed in other areas that provide a suitable environment for their growth and development. Examples of such breeding sites include dirty garbage containers, rain barrels, and tree holes or in moist compost source. Identifying the true source of an infestation is crucial for effective and long-lasting drain fly control.

Identifying Drain Flies Not Coming from Drains

Outdoor Sources

Drain flies are not always found in the drain. They can also come from outdoor sources. Some examples of outdoor sources include:

  • Sewage systems: Drain flies can proliferate in sewage systems where there is decaying organic matter, which they feed on.
  • Compost heaps: If the area is moist and contains decomposing organic material, it can become a breeding ground for these insects.

Potted Plants

Drain flies can also breed in the moist soil of your potted plants. To identify if they originate from your plants, look for:

  • Larvae in the soil: Inspect the soil of your plants for any white or translucent larvae.
  • Adult flies near plants: If you notice adult flies near the potted plants, it’s a sign that larvae may be present in the soil.

It’s important to manage moisture levels in potted plants to prevent infestation.

Toilet Tanks

Another breeding source for drain flies can be toilet tanks. They can breed in the small amounts of standing water inside the tank. Key signs to identify infestation:

  • Adult flies near the toilet: Presence of adult flies around the toilet indicates possible breeding in the tank.
  • Larvae in the tank: Check the toilet tank for larvae to confirm the infestation.

Proper cleaning and regular maintenance can help prevent drain flies breeding in toilet tanks.

Here’s a comparison table to help identify drain flies from other common household pests:

Pest Size Appearance Habitat
Drain Flies 1/16-1/4 inch Fuzzy, with wings covered in scales, pale brownish-gray to black Drains, moist soil, toilet tanks, sewage systems
Gnats 1/32-1/4 inch Tiny, long-legged, various colors Soil, decaying plants, overwatered plants
Fruit Flies 1/8 inch Small, red or brown eyes, tan or black body Fruits, vegetables, trash cans, fermenting liquids

Remember to address the source of the infestation and maintain cleanliness to prevent reoccurrence of drain flies in your home.

Potential Breeding Sites

Garbage and Recycling Areas

Drain flies may not always come from drains. They can also breed in garbage and recycling areas where there is organic material. Proper disposal and regular cleaning of these areas can help avoid infestations. For example:

  • Proper disposal: Seal garbage bags tightly and store them in a covered trash can.
  • Regular cleaning: Empty and wash trash cans frequently to remove any organic residue.

Compost Bins

Composting is an excellent way to recycle organic waste, but it can also attract drain flies. To discourage breeding:

  • Turn the compost regularly to aerate and prevent standing water.
  • Cover compost bins with a tight-fitting lid.

Dog Kennels

Dog kennels can become breeding grounds if not maintained properly. Some tips for managing drain flies in kennels include:

  • Regularly clean and dry the kennel floor.
  • Remove any standing water or organic material.

Rain Barrels

Rain barrels can provide a breeding ground for drain flies if not managed properly. To prevent infestations:

  • Use a mesh screen to cover the opening of the barrel.
  • Eliminate standing water around the barrel base.


Birdbaths can provide a breeding area for drain flies as well due to standing water. Changing the water frequently helps prevent infestations. Tip: Avoid overfilling the bath to minimize organic residue accumulation.

Breeding Ground Prevention Method
Garbage/recycling Seal bags, use covered cans, clean regularly
Compost bins Turn compost, cover bin
Dog kennels Clean and dry kennel, remove organic material
Rain barrels Use mesh screen, eliminate standing water
Birdbaths Change water frequently, avoid overfilling

Bug Control Recommendation Tool

What type of pest are you dealing with?

How severe is the infestation?

Do you require child/pet/garden safe treatments (organic)?

Are you willing to monitor and maintain the treatment yourself?

Methods to Eliminate Drain Flies

Summarizing Natural Remedies

  • Boiling water: A simple remedy to tackle drain flies is pouring boiling water down drains weekly to flush out larvae and eggs.
  • Vinegar and baking soda: Combine equal parts vinegar and baking soda, pour it into pipes, and let it sit for 1 hour, followed by hot water to further clean pipes.


  • Environmentally friendly
  • Inexpensive
  • Easy to apply


  • May require multiple applications
  • Works best for minor infestations

Chemical Treatments

  • Bio-Clean: A non-toxic, enzyme-based cleaner that removes organic buildup in pipes, thus eliminating breeding sites for drain flies.
  • Drano: A strong, caustic chemical treatment for clogged pipes that can also help eliminate drain flies.
Treatment Environmentally Friendly Cost Application
Bio-Clean Yes $$ Easy
Drano No $ Moderate


  • Fast and effective
  • Suitable for larger infestations


  • Chemicals can be harmful to the environment and humans
  • May require protective equipment during use

Professional Extermination

In cases of severe infestations or persistent problems that cannot be resolved with the aforementioned methods, calling a professional pest control service might be your best option.


  • Highly effective
  • Usually provides guarantees on services


  • Expensive
  • May use chemicals that are environmentally harmful

Preventing Future Infestations

Proper Drain Cleaning

To prevent drain flies from returning, it’s crucial to keep drain pipes clean. One effective, eco-friendly method is using a mixture of baking soda and soap. Remove any visible larvae and pour the solution down the drain. Follow with hot water to flush the pipes. Remember to do this regularly.

  • Pros:
    • Environmentally friendly
    • Inexpensive
    • Easy to use
  • Cons:
    • Requires regular application

Tackling Common Problem Areas

Aside from drains, there are other potential breeding sites for drain flies. Places with high moisture can attract them, such as:

  • Sewer leaks and backups
  • Dirty garbage cans
  • Saucers under potted plants
  • Clogged gutters

Applying appropriate cleaning, maintenance, and avoiding water buildup in these areas can help prevent infestations.

Maintaining Cleanliness in High-Moisture Areas

Regularly clean high-moisture areas or use products designed to eliminate organic build-up. One such product is the green gobbler, which breaks down organic matter and prevents breeding grounds for drain flies.

  • Pros:
    • Effective in eliminating organic build-up
    • Easy to use
  • Cons:
    • May contain chemicals
    • Not as eco-friendly as baking soda and soap method

In addition to chemical products, setting up glue boards near problematic areas can help trap adult drain flies, further controlling the population.

Method Eco-friendly Cost-effective Easy to use Requires Regular Use
Baking Soda & Soap Yes Yes Yes Yes
Green Gobbler No Moderate Yes No
Glue Boards Yes Yes Yes Yes

By employing these preventative measures, you can minimize the chances of future drain fly infestations in your home.

Reader Emails

Over the years, our website, whatsthatbug.com has received hundreds of letters and some interesting images asking us about these insects. Scroll down to have a look at some of them.

Letter 1 – Bathroom Fly


black flying heart-shaped bugs everywhere!
Sat, May 2, 2009 at 5:13 AM
I live in Northwest Ohio. I have had a black heart-shaped bug flying around my house for about 2 or 3 months. I can’t figure out where they are coming from. They seem to like water. They hang around in our bathrooms a lot. I have pictures of them on a recently wet towel. When you kill them, they leave a black residue almost like black dust on your wall. I have not had them bite but they will fly close to people. They also like lamps and light bulbs when it gets dark out. They are about half the size of a common house fly. Please help, I need to get rid of them!!!
Northwest Ohio


Hi Maranda,
You have Bathroom Flies. The larvae of the Bathroom Fly live in the sludge of your sink and tub drains. If you want to get rid of them, you need to have the pipes cleaned.

Letter 2 – Bathroom Fly


This picture isn’t very good, sorry. But we have seen these little “flies” about .75 cm long, on our walls. They don’t fly off quickly and are easy to kill. We are on the sea in Croata. Thanks for any help.


Bathroom Flies breed in the sludge that accumulates in sink drains.

Letter 3 – Bathroom Fly


I’ve got a bug for you!!
These first started appearing in our bathroom early last spring. (2005) It seems like there is always one or two in our bathroom every morning. This is before the showers start and there hasn’t been any activity in the bathroom overnight. They don’t fly fast and easy to squash. They’re about the size of a pencil eraser. It’s annoying as hell! Mater bathroom (where they’re appearing) is on the 2nd floor of a 2 story house in Omaha, Nebraska. Any help as to what they are and where they’re breading? Don’t be confused by the picture. It might look like a common housefly, but it’s not. It’s smaller and doesn’t fly as fast.
Thanks in advance.
Tim Hayes


Hi Tim,
This is a Bathroom Fly, Clogmia albipunctata. Indoors, they breed in sink traps, drains and dead flow areas in household plumbing.

Letter 4 – Bathroom Fly


tiny fly in bathroom
Hello, i can’t eradicate these tiny flies/gnats from my bathroom. I have no idea what it is nor why it and dozens of it’s brethren over the last few months desire my shower. Please help in identifying this freeloader and what steps i can make to have him/her look for lodging elsewhere. Thanks,


Hi Logan,
Your fly is actually called a Bathroom Fly, Clogmia albipunctata.  The larvae live in the sludge that accumulates in sink and tub drains.  Removing the sludge accumulation should help reduce the numbers of flies that are present.


Letter 5 – Bathroom Fly


Bathroom Fly
Hi bugman,
Couldn’t find this little bugger at first – I should have just searched for “bathroom” because I found this little one in a public restroom at Boston Logan airport! The iridescence on the wings was really quite impressive, and it looked rather like a crude ‘silver’ under the natural lighting. Thank you for running your site – it has already helped me identify 4 odd bugs!
P.S. the “American Homebody” website being linked to in the footer of all pages appears to be gone and squatted with ads?


Hi Richard,
Bathroom Flies are found in public restrooms as well as domestic bathrooms. They breed in the sludge that accumulates in drains. We will notify Lisa Anne that the domain license to American Homebody, our parent site, has expired, but she is probably devoting more time to Steal This Sweater and the other sites she maintains as well as continuing her busy personal life. Sadly the usurper of our former home is capitalizing on all of our web traffic.

Letter 6 – Bathroom Fly


Adult case bearing moth?
Hi again, thanks to your site I have identified the case bearing larvae I have found but you do not seem to have photo’s of the moth……….is this one? He was only a few millimetres in size but very quick. In one photo he is on a fine net curtain which should give you an indication of his size. If he is and the the photo’s are of any use feel free to post them. I live in Cornwall, U.K.


Hi Anthony,
This is actually a Bathroom Fly, one of the Moth Flies. They breed in sink drains.

Letter 7 – Bathroom Fly


What’s This Bug?
I live in the San Joaquin Valley in California, and these “flies” are mainly outside and in the garage, although they do not hesitate to enter the house if the opportunity arises. They seem to be sitting around more than they actually fly. When disturbed (like trying to take their picture) they fly a short distance and begin sitting again. I would appreciate your input. Thank you


Hi George,
This is a Bathroom Fly, so called since they are often found in bathrooms. The eggs are laid in pipes and the larval flies exist in the sludge caught in drainage pipes. A sewer in your garage would explain their presence.


  • Bugman

    Bugman aka Daniel Marlos has been identifying bugs since 1999. whatsthatbug.com is his passion project and it has helped millions of readers identify the bug that has been bugging them for over two decades. You can reach out to him through our Contact Page.

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  • Piyushi Dhir

    Piyushi is a nature lover, blogger and traveler at heart. She lives in beautiful Canada with her family. Piyushi is an animal lover and loves to write about all creatures.

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71 Comments. Leave new

  • I have lived in two houses in Southern California that had Jacuzzi bathtubs. Both are plagued by these flys. They lay eggs in the jets of the tubs, and everytime you take a bath there are tiny black larval worms, 1/4″ long, hair thickness, wiggling around in the water. Plumber said to fill up tub, add cup or two of bleach and run it for 1/2 hour EVERY WEEK. Current tub is huge like a hot tub, and we have a drought going on, so instead, I just jammed sample size shampoo bottles in jets. Now I only get maybe 3 to 6 per bath. Creepy!! Wrote Jacuzzi about it, surprise, never heard back from them, but I see that newer baths just use air jets, not water jets. Maybe they’re better. Hate these flies!

  • After an sewage pipe burst under our apartment, we had quite a swarm of the bathroom flies (or drain flies) we found a chemical online for ours, we could definitely see a difference after a few days of treatment, that combined with raid to get rid of the live ones. although we were sweeping up dead drain flies for awhile.

  • I call them jail bugs because the first time I saw them was when I spent time in jail when I was younger. And everywhere I have gone since then i see them one or two.. I say its God reminding me to never go back..

    • Your anecdote is inspirational.

    • Lol that’s what I call them…. I was a office…..
      N that’s where I first say them……. When I was like em up….

    • I’ve seen those in jail too… I called them pee bugs because they hung out in the bathroom. I hadn’t seen them for a long time and now they are all over my bathroom and I clean my bathroom really well, they keep coming back. I’ve also tried vinegar. I don’t know where their coming from or how to get rid of them

    • Good for you! what ever works, right? Stay free!

  • I have these gross bathroom flies, but never had them until my husband put in a new shower.
    please help I am at my wits end

    • It probably leaking water behind the wall. That’s what happened in our bathroom. The other side of where the shower in, is a coat closet. Under booth the bathroom and closet water was gathering, at track bugs and growing mold. U have to address the water first.

  • The internet continues to amaze me. It’s like it sucked everyone’s brains into itself so no MATTER what one asks in a search engine there is an answer. So, yes, I was surprised that there is something called a Bathroom Fly, Clogmia albipunctata. I searched for “tiny black insect with wings.” And this bathroom fly was my first hit. And yes, these flies are in my bathroom. Time to clean out the sludge! (Actually don’t most insects have wings? Guess not.) Thanks!

  • I searched for “black heart fly.” This site is fantastic. I’ve lived with these little cuties in a couple different places and never had a problem with them. I just wish I could train them to stay off the bathroom floor, at night I can’t see them!

  • How do you get rid of bathroom flies?

  • What do you use to get rid of the sludge

  • Shirley thomason
    August 29, 2014 1:15 pm

    i have had these bugs for about 3 weeks now !!! have tryed pouring bleach down drain, this helped for awhile. hate drain bugs!!!!!!!! i wont to know if they bite you?

    • Drain Flies do not bite. They might carry the remnants of Drain Bacteria on their bodies when they emerge from the pipes.

  • How do I kill them .

  • What is the best way to clean our bathroom drains ? We are overun with bathroom bugs. We have live at our home for almost ten years and we are just having trouble with these bathroom bugs. Please help

    • We don’t have any suggestions, but perhaps one of our readers can provide information.

    • You have to get rid of the dampness in your bathroom also. Not just the gunk in the drains. Crawl under your house and make sure something isn’t leaking from your pipes into the crawl space., even the tub can leak from the drain. just a drip every few minutes is enough to cause damage to your home, create mold and fungus. The fungus and mold can attract other bugs than drain flies. If you r bathroom stays damp a lot of the time cause of showering.
      If your house creates a lot of condensation on the windows in your main house get damp or bedroom , try sleeping with the bedroom door open a little. If you cook at nite and use a lot of water, like boiling water for pasta, doing dishes by hand, crack the window closet too you while your doing dishes or cooking.
      This moisture can create mold which is unhealthy and as mentioned can attract drain flies fungus gnats. Too much moisture can break down your dry wall too. Plus some molds snd fungus can make you very very sick for a long time.
      Double pane windows will help too.
      Good luck

    • Hi
      I had same problem. Would easy kill them with electric mesh. It only kept their number down.
      But it looks much better if you get an insecticide spray.
      After just few short shots in whole bathroom
      they all disapeard.
      it looks like

  • I think they are very cute and are harmless . They don’t bite at all they are God’s creation.

    • no one cares roseann

    • I feel the same exact way! They are literally heart shaped! These bugs have never actually annoyed me, unlike deer flies or fruit flies, and I find them as a kind little presence! This view also helps with the fact that we’ve never had a problem with them!

    • Not everything is God’s creation, sorry.

    • You’re kidding, right? You must be one of those Animal Rights Fascists: “Animals Before People”, “Everything that Grows is Sentient!”

    • You’re crazy who thinks that they are cute and YES THEY DO BITE

  • Sheesh i got these in ma bathroom yo they mad annoying but i see tht i gotta clean thee pipes i will sure do tht bc they be flyin everywhere nd trynna get arpund the house nd im not jacckin it . Fuken hate em .

  • These bugs that look like a fly pop up around bathtub faucet and where they were fixing pipes top of the bathroom ceiling, they are everywhere! What do I do? What can I get to get rid of them?

  • actually, drain flies so most definitely bite!!! I know this to be a fact because I have been bit by them.

  • I didn’t think so but yes, they do bite, I can tell you. They’re in my basement bathroom and one got upstairs in my bedroom and I saw it flying around me. My arm had a couple of bites in the morning. They’re hard to kill, too. It’s like they know you’re going to swat them.

    • Yes, I live in Boynton Beach, FL and now I finally know what has been biting me! I knew it didn’t look like a mosquito, and from the shape I learned it’s a drain or bathroom fly! Every night, I can see it fly across to TV screen in our living room and also in the bedroom. It’s impossible to catch! Even when it alights in my bathroom sink, I can’t swat it or spray it fast enough! I’m going NUTS!

    • Yep they sure do….I thought I was going crazy, my husband was convinced I was crazy, and it took months to even get a picture of the culperate…It definitely looked like a drain fly but everything I read said they don’t bite or carry diseases… Now…..since I know they do bite some people can they transmit diseases???
      We figured out our problem was a crack in the outside pipe that carries waste from the home to the septic tank….grosssss. So I got a few flying in or hitchhiking on someone when they entered the home every week.
      Anyway… maybe my exp is similar to someone else who keeps being told it can’t be….hope it helps.
      I noticed once I settled in at night on the couch, lights out, tv on I kept feeling like I was being bit. Couldn’t hear or see anything, but it definitely was itchy and left small red bump. Eventually one evening this tiny fly hovered around my face. Was too fast and too small for me to follow thought it must have been a gnat…. but realized gnats aren’t as shy and they don’t care day or night…. Then I was on a mission so one evening I finally decided to shut all the doors in the house and once it quit biting me I was going to find that lil bastard. Took a while…wasn’t expecting to find it resting on a baseboard. Yes it had cute heart shaped wings, a lot smaller than a house fly, and amazingly never moved and was easy to kill. Right to dust it went which sucked because I was going to take it to be identified… So if anyone else has this issue and you keep being told it couldn’t be a drain/sewage fly because they don’t bite, I promise you they are wrong. No they don’t bite my husband…but they love me. They stay low on the wall a foot or less from the floor. Real easy to kill when at rest, obviously like to feed at night, but pretty hard to see due to size and they fly low to the ground which most of us wouldn’t expect. I could have had this taken care of long ago if all these so called professionals knew what they were talking about smh. They need to test with people who get flea and mosquito bites when no one else does lol… Some of us are just more delicious than others.

  • In a plastic spray bottle I mixed white vinager, peroxide, mouth wash, liquid dish soap and about ten drops of peppermint essential oil with a little water. Then I spragyed then the mat under our dogs food n water bowl, the walls in the shower, the tub, toilets and all the sinks and even damp mopped the bathrooms, hall, foyer n kitchen tile floors because they loved my white-white walls. They were dropping like flies! (no pun intended 😉 as I sprayed it directly on them. I treated all the drains with a scoop of baking soda followed with a chaser of peroxide, enough to wash down the baking soda. Then after about ten minutes I poured boiling water into the drains to flush them, even doing it to the toilets. I also placed drain screens in the sinks and rubber flat stoppers over the shower and tub drain. I covered the sink overflow slots with a piece of decrarive duct tape. Sorry I don’t measure. I was on a mission. I rarely see one of then now. I think they might come in once in a while from outside when we open one of the doors. Next to Spic n Span all those black streaks on my white-white walls. Before I mixed my desperate concoction I would use a knit garden glove that had a rubber palm without putting it on to swat them n I discovered that you had to swat them head on so they couldn’t fly away from you. They are fast n so tiny but they can’t fly backwards! This worked for me.

  • Yes they do bite,and I found out that it’s hard to swat them because they are so light that the wind force as you swat pushes them away if you swat easy perfect, and you can buy what’s call boi invade liquid to rid themselves.

  • Thank you all! My husband and I thought we were losing our mind! We had never seen them before we moved into our new apt. I was so happy to have a bathroom in my bedroom until we realized that we had an infestation of sorts. Everyday I would kill like 4-5 of these little black winged bugs. I covered up the drain in the shower but neglected to do the same in the sink! Now thanks to you all I have the answer. THANK YOU!!!!

  • “Little flies, black wings” and I found out exactly what they are! I live in the South, though, and I also see them outside. What’s with that?

    • Before they adapted to living indoors in drain pipes, they were found in sludgy conditions in the natural habitat.

  • I’ve had great success using a product = InVade Bio Drain. You pour around 4-5 oz a day for about a week and flies are gone (actually gone in about 2 days for me), but kept pouring just to make sure! Good Luck!

  • Some drano in each drain works for me

  • The picture above is exactly what these bathroom flies look like! It took me awhile to find the right insect picture until entering “small black flies with tiny black wings”on the internet. I just treated mine today with Zep, a product similar to Draino, then pouring boiling hot water in each tub and sink drain. I may need to do the treatment again, then I will let you know if it is successful.

  • I sprayed on Tilex on them and they dropped dead as a door nail. Gonna try bleach see what happens.

  • Thanks everyone. It really helped. The concoction with vinegar & mouth wash and the like worked but was a chore making it and the InVade Bio Drain was already done. Just pour & wait for death & disappeance of those critters.

  • I used to try to squish them with a piece of damp toilet paper, but found that putting an empty, small, clear-plastic peanut-butter jar over them and quickly putting the lid on after they fly into the jar is the most reliable way I’ve found to get them.

  • Where do you buy the invade bio drain?

  • I have them around my fish tank and I cannot use anything harsh in fear of messing with my fish…. any recommendations?

  • I use product called Earthworm – which is all enzymes – to keep drains from being slow. No harsh chemicals. But I’ve been out of it for few months & drains getting slow & flies showed up. It’s not enough to kill flies THEY ARE LAYING LARVAE IN YOUR DRAINS! caustic materials will not cleanse the thin layer of organic debris in the pipes that they live off of (these are also called sewer flies). The enzyme products stay put, foam, and decompose the organic material so no place for fly to lay eggs. Halp, my skin is crawling from this talk!!

  • Thank you all for your suggestions to get rid of this horrible pest! I hope it works! In all the years of living in my house, this is the one insect that I can’t catch or eliminate! I get bitten every night! I knew it wasn’t a mosquito, and finally googled the triangle or heart-shape of the bug and found the answer: a drain fly. The only place it alights is my bathroom sink, but it flies around the whole house until it bites me without making the buzzing sound associated with a mosquito. It’s driving me crazy!

  • We have had these little bugs for 2 years, and we think we just got rid of them. It took 2 days. I poured Pectracide Bug Stop (indoor plus outdoor)
    down all our drains (bathroom sinks and bathtub, shower and sink in 2nd bathroom, kitchen sinks). one cup for each drain. We quit seeing them yesterday, except for a few who we think have died now of old age. They definitely are breeding in the drains. Whenever we had to take a shower or bath, we replaced the spectracide when the water drained. The stuff costs about $7 at WM. I only used 1 jug which was 1.33 gal., but I bought another for maintenance.

  • Any enzyme drain cleaner will get rid of the drain flies. They contain natural non-toxic enzymes that feast on the organic matter and slime that builds up in our drains which is where the drain flies lay their eggs. The enzymes get rid of the slimy build up therefore eliminating the drain flies and their eggs . You must be vigilant and use it periodically in your drains to keep them free from organic matter. As for the comments above that said the drain flies are cute because they’re heart shaped, they are FLIES and can carry disease. Yes, they are small, but they ARE a true fly. Would you want your house to be overrun by house flies? I don’t think so…..They are truly disgusting. Ugh!

    • Draino and other chemical drain cleaners will not get rid of these pests permanently. You have to use a natural enzyme drain cleaner!!! Putting harsh chemicals down a drain is very bad for the environment and it does not work on this fly problem.

  • We have had these flies for about 2 years now and we have lived in this house for 14 years. We have a septic system and I always thought this was where they were coming from, I just kill as I see them but now there are more and more of them . I’m going to try some of the suggestions above, wish me luck. Oh, and by the way, if they are God’;s creation well, everyone makes mistakes at times, and this isn’t the only one I can think of.

  • Per someone else’s suggestion, I boil a large pot of water and somewhat slowly pour it all down the drain, including into the overflow hole of a bathroom sink. This *does* seem to get rid of them. Also, drains not in constant use (like perhaps shower drains) can be tightly covered to keep the flies from getting into them and laying eggs. I’ve also found that it’s more effective to catch the flies in a clear plastic jar than to try to smash them.

  • Alexis SKORINKO
    September 16, 2017 9:00 pm

    What enzyme product can be safely used around my dog and cat?

  • Steven Cimino
    May 28, 2018 3:15 pm

    When I was twenty years of age, I rented a house that had these flies. They would come up from the crawlspace through the ventilation ducts in the floor, probably attracted by the lighted area in the entry hall of the house. We would come home in the evening and six or eight flies would be on the walls waiting for us. When you went to hit them, black smudge on wall.
    When I inspected the crawlspace area, I found that there were numerous puddles of water always present on top of the plastic sheet that layed on top of the clay floor of the crawlspace.
    I knew then what the source of the flies were.
    I complained to the landlord. He did nothing and I lived with the problem for a year and then moved. Later I learned from the landlords wife that upon the new tenants moving in, an inspection of the crawlspace indicated the sewer pipe joint had failed…. raw sewage from the toilets in the house was seeping into the crawlspace. This is what created the environment for those bugs to grow. It was a very simple fix and I was sorry to hear later that I was right and had to live with that unsanitary condition because of a landlords ignorance of not taking me seriously.
    Anyone who thinks these flies are “cute”, do not understand that another way of saying “organic material” is ….sh*t. I call these “sh*t” flies and they are definitely not something anyone should live with.
    Now forty years later they have shown up in my house. From reading this, I am going to use baking soda and vinegar in my drains, especially the two floor drains in my basement. I poured bleach down the drains yesterday but the baking soda / vinegar will help break up and clear the “organic”material within the pipes and then I will flush with hot water.

    • A lot of wackos posting on this topic. People – listen up (especially Susan & Angie)…..THEY DON’T BITE. If something is biting you it is NOT a drain fly. And the fact that these same people are saying they’re impossible to catch, kill, swat, etc. is further proof it is something else they are dealing with. These little moth-like flies are actually easy to smash. They are not as quick-acting or as fast-flying as flies and mosquitoes. Some people are so thick-headed. And you, Steven….”Organic Material” is not necessarily “sh*t”. Do you sh*t in your sink or shower???? Drains are lined with sludge made up of soap, tiny skin particles and hair…..Think before you write.

  • I’m a full time RV’er and get these annoying creatures whenever I have the hose attached to a sewer. I’m able to use septic tank safe RV chemicals or I use bleach and the attachment on my garden hose to flush my tanks.
    But in a residential situation I would think an otc drain cleaner should suffice, or try vinegar lemon juice, and baking soda – but you’ll have to make it thick like pancake batter so it just creeps down the pipes and doesn’t get too thinned out in the p-trap.
    Good luck!

  • I have these bugs. N ow I know what they are. thank u.

  • That is a Drain Fly also called a Moth Fly due to their appearance. They bread in drains or anything with slimy water. They are a pain and it is hard to get rid of them.

  • Wikipedia says they are harmless.

    But they are rather annoying when they buzz near your ear and leave a black powdery smudge on the wall when you squish them.

  • Wikipedia says they are harmless.
    (“Clogmia albipunctata” article).

    But they are rather annoying when they buzz near your ear and leave a black powdery smudge on the wall when you squish them.


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