How to Get Rid of Pincher Bugs / Earwigs Easily

Updated on by Jared Belson | Please note that there may be affiliate links on this page.

Pincher bugs or earwigs can wreak havoc in your homes. These bugs may not directly enter the house but can easily make their way indoors from your garden. And what’s worse? There are  2000 different species of them.

Be it from your yard, kitchen, or sewer lines, these pests can sneak into your property. Well, all they need is favorable nesting conditions.

Keeping these crawling mites at bay can appear challenging but isn’t impossible. In this article, I have tried discussing a few ways that can help you drive Pincher bugs away.

How Do You Identify the Intruders?

These insects are typically small in size and are also known as earwigs. Yes, they can fly and this can be scary at times, though you may also spot a few flightless ones around.

Here are a few signs that can enable you to determine that your home is infested by earwigs.

Pinchers mostly live outdoors, especially in the gardens. Occasionally, they pave their way into your house. They like to take shelter underground during the winter months and start breeding during the spring season.

Watch out for the Foul Smell

From my experience, I can tell by the smell that there are pincher bugs at home. Wondering how? Well, these tiny creatures release a foul odor that comes from the yellowish-brown fluid they secrete to ward off predators.

Check for Dead Leaves and Plants

Earwigs can feed on dying vegetation. So, if you love gardening out, watch out for these creatures as they can easily live on dead leaves piles. Not just for a food source, pinchers also take shelter in the garden for protection.

If you have a yard, earwigs can be your regular visitors. They love moisture and enjoy munching leaves. And it wouldn’t take them long to enter your home from the garden.

Soon before you realize, the population may seem beyond your control. Pincher bugs can breed at jet speed with the queen laying around more than 30 eggs.

They may not appear harmful as such but can quickly turn out to be annoying in the long-run.

How to Exterminate the Invaders?

Are you already troubled by these pests and scouting for full-proof solutions? Here are a few tips to help you handle these little mighty creatures.

Keep an Eye on All Entranceways

Preventing pincher bugs from entering your home can be the best solution indeed. Any entry point, be it extending from the lawn or driveways should be monitored and sealed well.

Most bugs find it easy to trespass through the basement. You can use a mesh to make sure that they don’t find the way into your house.

Did I tell you that pinchers are smarter than you may have imagined them to be? Well, better renovate those cracks and crevices in your walls if you don’t want them appearing from anywhere.

Prevent Dampness

Keeping your home dehumidified is a great way to keep most insects away. And earwigs love moisture. Such a condition makes it the perfect thriving haven for them. I’d regularly inspect my home from time-to-time to check for anything that can cause dampness.

Whether it is the flowerpot, your box bed, the washroom, or under-sink areas, make sure you leave the least moisture footprint. These clever bugs won’t waste time nesting in dry crannies. You can look for dehumidifying options such as moisture absorbers to ensure a damp-free home.

Pinchers are often sensitive to hot air and dry air and that’s one of the primary reasons why they look for humid environments. Cool and damp conditions are favorable as they make perfect hideouts for these creepy crawlies.

While you work on tidying the interiors of your home, make sure that the garden area is equally clean and well maintained. Mowing the lawn regularly, pruning overgrown shrubs, discarding dry leaves, and keeping the yard clean can make sure that they don’t become pleasing habitats for earwigs to breed.

You can also create a small birdbath for the birdies. These visitors can work as natural predators for Earwigs inhabiting the garden. However, don’t forget to keep this area clean as well.

Likewise, it is important to ensure that the drainage and sewer systems around the house are kept unclogged. Maintaining the gutters is equally essential.

If your landscape has an irrigation system, you must check that the soil isn’t left drenched or waterlogged. Also, avoid mulching and keep a close check on your property, especially after monsoons.

Keep Your Home Clean

A simple way to steer clear of Pinchers is to make them feel uninvited. Keep your house clean. You can sweep, mop, or vacuum the floors, entranceways, etc. so that it remains uncluttered at all times.

Simply get rid of anything that attracts these bugs. This way you will be able to effectively remove not just earwigs but myriad other pests eyeing your house.

Vacuuming can suck the life of those pesky pinchers that have the potential to rob your garden’s glory. You can look for signs of earwig eggs in the flower beds and vacuum up.

When emptying the vacuum bag make sure to drop those creatures into a soapy water solution. This way you can ensure they don’t come haunting you all over again!

Use Repellents

Another good way to prevent Earwigs is to use repellents. There is a multitude of pesticides available on the market. Pesticides such as Sevin and Diatomaceous are among some chemicals that can effectively kill them.

From powders such as boric acid to dish soap, there are plenty of solutions you can prepare to prevent these insects from inhabiting your homes. However, there are other advanced solutions such as ultrasonic pest repellents that can be simply plugged in to drive Earwigs away.

Alternatively, you can also use sprays and other pest-repellent solutions. Some options like the organic pest control spray work as a good solution for tackling yard pinchers. Potions that use natural ingredients are non-toxic and can be safely used around the house and garden.

You can also try changing the lighting arrangement in your house. Bugs such as pinchers can get attracted to lights. Most earwigs search for food at night thus drawing them to brighter lights. You can try switching from heavily illuminated lights to dimmer lighting options.

Home Remedies

If you’ve seen earwigs in and around your property, you may consider trying these DIY tricks.

Dish Soap and Water Solution

Dish soap works very well when it comes to repelling pests like Earwigs. You can simply mix some soap with water in a spray bottle and spray the solution in infested areas. If you are spraying around the garden, make sure it’s done on the leaves alone and not on the soil.

Rubbing Alcohol and Water Concoction

Now, this works pretty well! Just mix rubbing alcohol with water and spray it wherever you see the bugs. This can be one of your holy grails forgetting rid of pinchers permanently.

Boric Acid

Now, I can swear by the wonders of this powder. From ants, roaches to Earwigs, boric acid can be considered as a viable treatment for pest infestation. Just make sure it’s not within the reach of pets and children.

Let there be light! Are you wondering why I made that statement when I had already mentioned that pinchers are attracted to lights? Well, there is a reason behind that!

Fill a bucket with some dish soap and water solution and mount a bright light somewhere around those points at the bucket and see how this witty-small tactic results in killing those annoying pincher bugs.

Raid Your Kitchen

Come to think of it, how regular kitchen ingredients such as baking soda, salt, vinegar etc often come handy when trying DIY tricks. Similarly, soy sauce when mixed with olive oil can work as a grand trap for the pincher bugs.

That sweet-smelling sauce is enticing enough to captivate these insects. Just wait and watch them crawl into the solution left in a container. It won’t take long before they drown in that liquid.


You can try simple things to deter the growth of insects like pincher bugs at home:

– Set up dehumidifiers in damp corners of your home,

– Get leaky faucets fixed,

– Store food in air-tight, insect-proof containers

If you happen to come across an earwig infestation where they cluster in large groups, better hire professionals to get rid of these pests. Early intervention can always help nip the bug problem at the right time.

Prevention will minimize your efforts of dealing with the pests later. If the problem persists and seems uncontrollable, you can hire an expert pest control agency to resolve the issue.

If you are looking for some overnight solutions, I am afraid that might not be possible. However, early determination of these bugs and devising an appropriate plan followed by the right execution can help in eradicating the problem at the earliest.

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