sneaky little bathroom flies
August 5, 2009 7:02 PM   Subscribe

Little flies coming into the house through the pipes in the bathtub - how to get rid of them?

My parent's apartment has flies that they have seen come out of the drain in the bathtub. They're bigger than fruit flies but smaller than regular flies. How can my parents get rid of them? Other than putting a plug/stopper/whatever-they're-called into the bathtub drain when they're not showering and then cross their fingers and hope the flies don't come out of other pipes while trying to escape, anything they can do to kill them inside the pipes? Would it keep the flies from coming back? This is an apartment building in Brooklyn, if that makes any difference.
posted by KateHasQuestions to Home & Garden (5 answers total)
Good ol' drain flies. The best way to get rid of them is to keep the drains clear and clean. More info here.
posted by thisjax at 7:06 PM on August 5, 2009 [1 favorite]

We had sewer flies in a basement drainpipe when we first moved into our house, because it had been vacant for a couple of weeks. Sending a couple buckets of 10% bleach solution down the drain, on the recommendation of our home inspector, solved it.
posted by palliser at 7:20 PM on August 5, 2009

Also, thinking of the last time we had drain flies, one thing that helped keep them away was to use a drain cover on the shower so that copious amounts of hair wouldn't end up in the drain and create a breeding ground.
posted by thisjax at 7:27 PM on August 5, 2009

I had those in my last apartment for a couple of weeks. Tried drain cleaner but it didn't shift them. In the end, I boiled a kettle of water and poured it down the drain, then boiled another kettle and poured it into the overflow drain (first removing the cover), once or twice every day. After about a week of that treatment they were gone.
posted by pocams at 8:19 PM on August 5, 2009

They're not coming through the drain, they're living in it. Boiling water is one way, bleach is another. If the drain is slow you'll want to maybe snake it out, because they're feeding on the biological gunk that's accumulating. Maybe cap it off with a good tub and tile cleaner job.

They don't really "come out of other pipes" -- flies can't swim, and the pipes have traps.
posted by dhartung at 9:49 PM on August 6, 2009

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