Pest Away Tips

10 Easy Ways to Get Rid of Boxelder Bugs Naturally

Boxelder Bugs: What You Need to KnowHave you ever seen a red and black beetle with a black patch on its body around your yard or home? It is possible that you are looking at a Boxelder Bug.

Boxelder Bugs are insects that are commonly found in different parts of the world, including the Eastern United States and Canada. In this article, we will explore what Boxelder Bugs are, their appearance, habitat, behavior, and whether they are harmful.

Through this article, you will learn all you need to know about Boxelder Bugs. Appearance and Life Cycle:

Boxelder Bugs are a type of beetle that is primarily black or dark brown with three bright red stripes on their thorax and wings.

Their bodies are narrow and elongated, and they have a box-like shape, which gives them their name. They measure between 0.5 to 0.75 inches in length.

Boxelder Bugs lay bright red, elongated eggs on tree bark, leaves, or branch crotches, usually near the Boxelder Trees, Maple Trees, and Ash Trees. The eggs hatch within about two weeks, producing tiny nymphs that are red with black legs.

In the spring, these nymphs mature to become adult Boxelder Bugs. Habitat and Behavior:

Boxelder Bugs are most commonly found in the Eastern United States and Canada, though they can also be found in other parts of the world.

They prefer to take shelter in warm places like trees, buildings, and homes. During the colder months, they enter homes and buildings seeking a warm place to hibernate, which causes homeowners to experience a lot of frustration.

During the summer, Boxelder Bugs feed on sap from trees and plants, which can cause discoloration in the areas they were feeding on. Boxelder Bugs are known to emit a foul odor when disturbed, especially when crushed underfoot.

Are Boxelder Bugs Harmful? Boxelder Bugs are not harmful to humans.

They do not bite or sting, and their bodies do not contain any venom or poison. However, they can be harmful to pets if ingested by dogs or cats.

If eaten, Boxelder Bugs can cause stomach aches, vomit, and diarrhea in pets. Therefore, it is important to keep your pets from interacting with Boxelder Bugs.


In conclusion, Boxelder Bugs might seem like pests when they invade your homes, but they are just insects that are looking for a warm place to hibernate. They are harmless, and their primary diet consists of sap from trees and plants.

They are also not poisonous or venomous, and they cannot bite or sting. They are only harmful to pets if eaten, so it is important to ensure that your pets are kept away from them.

Now that you know all about Boxelder Bugs, you can appreciate them in your yard, instead of seeing them as a nuisance. How to Get Rid of Boxelder Bugs: A Comprehensive Guide

Boxelder Bugs are harmless insects that rarely cause any damage other than being a nuisance.

However, their attempts to hibernate in warm areas, including your homes, buildings, and trees, can become overwhelming. Therefore, it is essential to know how to get rid of these pesky bugs without harming them or any other living creature.

Here we will explore ways to prevent and eliminate Boxelder Bugs and how to kill or repel them. Prevention and Elimination:

Preventing Boxelder Bugs from entering your home or building is the most efficient way to keep them at bay.

You can eliminate outdoor bugs by using an outdoor insecticide such as pyrethrin, tralomethrin, or permethrin. Ensure to follow the instructions on the label carefully.

Other prevention methods include:

1. Keep your yard clean and tidy: Boxelder Bugs are attracted to cluttered outdoor spaces.

Remove piles of leaves, debris, or yard waste and keep your outdoor space tidy and clean. 2.

Seal all cracks and points of entry: Seal any cracks, gaps, or holes in your homes inside or outside structures where Boxelder Bugs could enter. Weatherstripping, caulking, and sealant are great options.

3. Vacuum up indoor Boxelder Bugs: Once indoors, vacuum up any visible Boxelder Bugs.

Here, it’s essential to use a vacuum with excellent suction power. 4.

Spray with water: Use a hose to detach Boxelder Bugs stuck to the side of your home or structure. 5.

Essential Oils: Use essential oils such as lavender, clove, eucalyptus, or mint to repel Boxelder Bugs. Mix the oil (15 drops) with water (1 cup) and spray around your home’s perimeter, doors, and windows.

6. Vinegar Spray: Mix vinegar with water in a spray bottle and use it to eliminate Boxelder Bugs.

Step-by-Step Instructions:

Here are simple and practical steps to get rid of Boxelder Bugs:

Outdoor Elimination:

1. Spray the perimeter of your home with an outdoor insecticide, concentrating on Boxelder Bug entry points.

2. Cut down or control boxelder trees and other attractive trees around your home.

3. Securely dispose of any fallen fruit, berries, or leaves that have gathered around your home or trees.

4. Seal any gaps or cracks in window frames, door frames, and other entry points.

5. Screen off weep holes, vents, gutters, and other openings to prevent Boxelder Bugs from entering.

Indoor Elimination:

1. Vacuum up any visible Boxelder Bugs.

2. Use a rag to clean up dead bugs and their debris.

3. Seal any gaps or holes where Boxelder Bugs may have entered such as your windows, doors, and foundations.

Getting Rid of Boxelder Bugs in Specific Places:

Getting rid of Boxelder Bugs outside your home or structure:

1. Spray an insecticide like Ortho Home Defense around the base of your homes foundation, sliding doors, windows, or any other entry points.

2. Cut down any boxelder or other attractive trees that are near your home.

3. Seal any gaps or holes where Boxelder Bugs may be entering.

Getting rid of Boxelder Bugs inside your home or building:

1. Seal any cracks or holes around windows, door frames, siding, and foundations.

2. Use a vacuum cleaner to suck up visible Boxelder Bugs.

3. Spray the baseboards, doors, windows, and other entry points with an indoor insecticide.

What Kills and Repels Boxelder Bugs? Bug Sprays and Insecticides:

Insecticides that contain pyrethrin, tralomethrin, and permethrin are effective at controlling Boxelder Bugs.

Ortho Home Defense is a registered insecticide that is effective at controlling Boxelder Bugs. Additionally, pellets or granules that contain spinosad are also effective at killing Boxelder Bugs.

Boxelder Bug Repellents:

Apart from insecticides, there are several non-toxic, natural Boxelder Bug repellents that can be effective. Some of the best options include:


Cedarcide: It’s a natural repellent extracted from cedarwood that is effective at repelling Boxelder Bugs. 2.

Lavender, Cloves, Mint, Sage, Eucalyptus, Catnip, Citronella: These essential oils are known to repel Boxelder Bugs when mixed with water and sprayed around your home’s perimeter. Natural Remedies:

There are various natural remedies that you can use to kill or repel Boxelder Bugs naturally.

Here’s how:

1. Essential Oils: Mix peppermint oil, cedar oil, lavender oil, cinnamon oil, or clove oil with water in a spray bottle.

Shake well and spray around your home’s perimeter, doors, and windows. 2.

Dish Soap: Mix dish soap with water to kill Boxelder Bugs. Spray the mixed solution on the bugs, and it will suffocate and kill them.

3. Vinegar Spray: Mix vinegar with water in a spray bottle, and you can use it to repel and kill Boxelder Bugs.


Boxelder Bugs are common insects that invade homes and structures seeking shelter from cold weather. While they are not harmful, they can be a nuisance.

By using the tips and tricks mentioned in this article, you can effectively eliminate them from your home, building, or trees. Preventing Boxelder Bugs from entering your home is vital, and if you must use insecticides to control them, always follow the instructions on the label carefully.

Boxelder Bugs: A Harmless, Yet Annoying Pest

Boxelder Bugs are a common insect found in various parts of the world, mostly in the Eastern United States and Canada. They are black or dark brown with a box-like shape, with three noticeable red stripes on their thorax and wings.

Though they are harmless to humans and animals, they can be an annoyance, especially when they invade your home looking for a warm place to hibernate. One of the key characteristics of Boxelder Bugs is that they do not reproduce indoors.

Therefore, if you discover them inside your home, they are most probably looking for a warm place to hibernate. It is essential to get rid of them instead of allowing them to cause more damage.

Easy to Get Rid Of:

Fortunately, getting rid of Boxelder Bugs is a relatively straightforward process that can be accomplished using various methods, including natural and chemical remedies. The most effective way to get rid of them is preventative measures that control their population before they become a problem.

These measures include:

1. Keeping your yard clean and tidy


Keeping your home sealed

3. Using insecticides



Managing Boxelder Bugs outside of the Home and Trees:

Boxelder Bugs are primarily attracted to host plants such as the Boxelder, Maple, and Ash Trees. Reducing the number of host plants near your home can help reduce the number of Boxelder Bugs that invade your home.

Below are various ways you can manage Boxelder Bugs outside of your home and trees:

1. Use pesticides: If you see Boxelder Bugs gathering on your trees or inside your home, consider using pesticides to get rid of them.

However, ensure that you follow the instructions on the label, and exercise caution when applying the pesticides. 2.

Use essential oils: Essential oils can also be effective in killing Boxelder Bugs. Simply mix your preferred essential oil with water and spray around your trees and home’s perimeter.

3. Keep your yard clean and tidy: Cleaning up all the debris, tree waste, and other cluttered areas in your yard can help control their population outside your home.

4. Seal possible entry points: Seal all possible entry points such as cracks, gaps, holes, and openings around your home’s foundation, and sliding doors to keep the Boxelder Bugs outside.

Final Thoughts:

Boxelder Bugs are harmless, yet annoying pests. They do not sting or bite, and their presence in your home may indicate that they are looking for a warm place to hibernate.

They never reproduce indoors and can only enter your home accidentally. Therefore, if they do enter your home, get rid of them using the methods mentioned above.

Keep them from entering your home by taking preventive measures such as sealing holes and gaps and limiting the number of host trees near your home. In summary, with the right preventive measures, Boxelder Bugs can be easily managed, and their nuisance can be avoided.

In conclusion, Boxelder Bugs are common insects found in various parts of the world, primarily in the Eastern United States and Canada. They are harmless, but their nuisance behavior can cause homeowners and building owners unwanted stress.

It is essential to learn how to prevent and manage their invasion to keep them from entering your home or trees. By using effective methods such as keeping your home sealed, cleaning littered areas, and preventing entry points, you can avoid giving the Boxelder Bugs an opportunity to invade.

With the right knowledge and preventive measures, you can comfortably coexist with Boxelder Bugs.

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