Taking your campervan out should be a relaxing, exciting experience. However, as the summer days bring you outdoors, it also brings insects. Flies can be a pain at the best of times, even more so if they get inside your camper.
Don’t let flies spoil your trip. In this article, we will talk about what causes flies to beeline for your campervan, and what you can do to keep them away.
What Attracts Flies To Your Camper?
There are many different reasons that flies can be attracted to your campervan. Below, we are going to highlight a few significant factors.
Often when people are away in their campervans, they venture into the countryside and scenic parts of the country. Unfortunately, this is also where a large amount of the fly population can be found.
Flies migrate to fields and grassy areas, which means that you have likely parked right in the middle of their territory. Therefore, your chances of encountering flies have already increased without even doing anything.
Food And Smells
The common housefly is attracted to putrid smells, such as faeces, decaying animal carcasses, or rotten food. In general, this shouldn’t cause much of a problem when taking out your campervan.
As long as you get rid of any moulding food, and dispose of your portable toilet bucket contents in a location separate from your campervan, house flies should not be greatly attracted in the form of scents. Bear in mind that if you are travelling with pets, their natural smell is likely to increase the number of house flies.
Fruit flies on the other hand are attracted to sugary substances, and more commonly feed off soda, overly ripe fruits, or alcohol. This means that you will be a prime target if you’re trying to sit outside of your campervan to enjoy a glass of wine and snacks.
For foods and smells, fly variations that are attracted to sugar will cause a greater problem.
Warmth And Seasons
Flies are attracted to the warmth. Typically, if you were taking your campervan out, you would like to keep the mobile at a comfortable temperature. Albeit, flies will enjoy that temperature too.
There isn’t exactly a ‘win win’ situation when it comes to seasons. Of course, the fly population will massively decrease in the winter. However, it also means that the remaining flies will be looking for a warm place to shelter, aka, your campervan.
In the summer, as flies breed, the population will drastically increase again. They will no longer be searching for the warmth of a campervan, but they are more likely to be hovering around the greenery – and in larger quantities.
Light And Colour
Flies are known for being attracted to bright lights, such as flames or lamps. However, did you know that flies are also attracted to the colour white? – This is bad news for the majority of campervan owners, as normally, campervans are a white or cream colour.
If you are parked facing south, as the sun hits the south side of your campervan, you may notice an increase in the amount of flies sitting on the south side of your mobile. This is due to the combination of the light, colour, and warmth of the sun.
This is especially common in the colder months when flies attempt to migrate to warmer locations for the winter.
How Can You Keep Flies Out Of Your Camper?
Luckily, there are many ways that you can keep flies out of your campervan – and ways to get rid of them if they do get inside.
A honey trap is a cheap way of trapping flies and keeping them away from your campervan. Arguably, it isn’t overly humane as the flies will be unable to get out and likely die. It also isn’t a flawless plan.
As stated above, sugary substances will not attract every species of fly. This means that house flies will still be more attracted to any unpleasant smell in or around your campervan. Even for fruit flies, one jar of honey will not capture them all.
This technique is more helpful during the evenings or after dark, and can be used when you are sitting outside of your campervan.
Since flies are attracted to bright lights, placing a lamp or flame at a reasonable distance away from you and your campervan should deter a good number of flies, allowing you to sit in peace.
The downside of this technique is that it is a lot more successful if you are in a duller area from the distraction light, making it more difficult to see. Otherwise, they will just be attracted to both areas.
A favourite, and almost essential addition to your campervan is installing fly curtains. This is likely the best way to keep flies from getting inside. It hugely limits their access to the inside of your vehicle, but also allows you to open windows for air without insects entering too.
Using repellent on yourself and your vehicle is effective to a certain extent. It will deter flies when freshly sprayed and the smell is still strong, however, as the smell dies down, the flies will quickly return. This method requires frequent top-ups.
Insect Killer Spray
In the instance that flies have managed to get inside your campervan, the quickest and easiest way to get rid of them is by using insect spray. You can allow them to find their own way out, however, if there are a lot of flies, this can take a long time.
If you have pets with you, make sure they are away from the area when you are spraying, and allow them to return after a few minutes when the spray has fallen.
How Do You Keep Flies Away Naturally?
Below are some ways of keeping flies away from your campervan in a natural form.
Herbs And Flowers
Certain herbs and flowers can be used to repel flies. As a plus, some of these can also be used for cooking. This list includes;
- Bay leaves
It is also an option to have a venus fly trap in your campervan. This is a carnivorous plant that digests flies when they land on their two loped traps.
Cayenne Pepper And Water
The strong scent of cayenne pepper can help to deter flies away. Make up a mixture of cayenne pepper and water, and pour it into a spray bottle. Then, you can spray it on to the outside and inside of your campervan.
Cinnamon Scented Air Freshener
There is not a lot of science to back this theory, however, it is thought that flies dislike the smell of cinnamon. Buying a cinnamon-scented air freshener could help keep flies away from your campervan.
If successful, you will have no flies and a nice smelling camper.
What Should You Avoid Doing?
The methods we are about to get into may all seem fairly simple. Nonetheless, these are 3 of the most common ways that flies can get inside – and want to get inside your campervan.
Keeping Windows Open
Keeping windows open or having large gaps in vents are the easiest ways for flies to access your campervan. Keeping these closed as often as possible and using fly screens will lessen the problem.
Allowing Food To Go Off
Flies and other insects can detect food from great distances. House flies have been known to pick up odours from up to four miles away.
It is important to store food correctly when you are travelling in your campervan. Remember that food may not last as long, as the campervan may have limited power to keep the fridge running at all times.
Make sure everything is sealed, and that all bins are covered.
Traveling In A Messy Campervan
Not taking care of the cleanliness of your campervan will evidently result in unpleasant odours. Flies will detect these orders and be even more attracted to your mobile. Regular clean-ups, before, during, and after your trip will help eliminate this problem.
Can You Bug Bomb A Camper?
Technically, yes, you can bug bomb a campervan. A bug bomb will not stain or damage any of your property, nonetheless, it is advised to cover up any values or furniture prior to releasing the bug bomb.
Once you have released a bug bomb, you must not enter the area for at least 12 hours. For this reason, it is highly recommended to do this after your trip, when you know that you will not need to return for some time.
Flies can be attracted to your campervan for many reasons. Depending on the species, it can either be for rancid smells or sweet smells. Luckily, it is possible to keep them away. Methods such as fly shields for your windows, outdoor traps, or repellents will all help you to enjoy a peaceful trip.
If you want to make sure your campervan is less of a target then it is important to maintain a good standard of cleanliness, and if possible, avoid parking in areas with wet ground as this is where fly larva will be.