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Mosquito Trap FAQs

Jun 17th 2020

Mosquito Trap FAQs

Mosquito Trap FAQs

Mosquito Traps offer the most effective form of mosquito control available on the market. Mosquito trap models such as the SkeeterVac are proven to reduce the risk of mosquito-borne illnesses caused by itchy mosquito bites and overtime, exterminate the mosquito population.

This list of mosquito trap FAQs will help you operate and maintain your SkeeterVac or any other mosquito trap and its components season after season to ensure you get the best results out of your investment.

Mosquito Trap Frequently Asked Questions and Answers

1. Question: How do mosquito traps work?

  • Answer: Female biting insects require blood to nourish their eggs. They get that blood from you, your family, your pets and your friends. They track down hosts by sensing the carbon dioxide (the primary cue), moisture and heat from breath, body odors and color contrasts. Mosquito traps create a combination of those cues. This tricks the insects into thinking the trap is a host. Once the pests are attracted to the trap, they are captured on the sticky trap or sucked into an enclosure by a powerful vacuum fan. Once trapped, they quickly dehydrate and die.

2. Question: How much do mosquito traps cost to operate?

  • Answer: Backyard enthusiasts and commercial operations such as restaurants, resorts, golf ranges, and garden shops across America are discovering that propane-fueled mosquito traps are a simple and cost-effective solution to reducing the nuisance from flying biting insects. On average mosquito traps cost less than $1 per day to drastically reduce the biting insect population on up to one+ acre of property.

3. Question: Do mosquito traps make a lot of noise or produce bad odors?

  • Answer: Most mosquito traps function day-in and day-out without disturbing you. The fan system operates quietly and is difficult to hear from only a few feet away. The odor of the attractants is very difficult to detect. Most mosquito traps are designed to be away from the outdoor living area so you won't hear or smell them.

4. Question: Where should I place my mosquito trap?

  • Answer: Mosquito traps should be placed about 30-40 feet away from your main outdoor living area and areas that are frequented by humans and animals. Since female mosquitoes generally fly upwind in search of their host, your mosquito trap will be most effective when placed upwind of the primary breeding area where the attractants can lure female mosquitoes in toward the trap. Mosquito traps should be placed in shady areas out of direct sunlight and while lightly wooded areas are fine, mosquito traps should be kept away from areas with thick, tall grass and weeds that might interfere with the release and distribution of CO2. If one area isn't producing the results you had expected, experiment with different locations to determine the most successful placement for your trap.

5. Question: Can my mosquito trap be operated in all weather conditions?

  • Answer: Mosquito traps are designed to operate under normal moisture conditions, including rain and sprinklers. However, use caution that your sprinkler or hose does not target the unit directly as this may cause damage to the unit. If severe weather conditions are predicted, remove the mosquito trap and store it out of the weather.

6. Question: How soon can I expect to see results from my mosquito trap?

  • Answer: Although the mosquito trap will begin to catch immediately, there is other mosquito activity in the vicinity so it may take as much as 6-8 weeks of use to reduce local populations to the point that breeding cycles are interrupted. Subsequent re-infestations will occur after rain and it may take moving the trap a few times around your yard to find the most effective spot for the trap.

7. Question: How often should I operate my mosquito trap?

  • Answer: For the best mosquito control throughout the entire day and night, models like the Skeeter Vac are designed to operate 24/7 for round the clock protection. For models with a programmable timer, decide how often to run your mosquito trap, note the time of the when mosquito activity appears to be the greatest, usually dusk. If you are dealing with day-biting mosquitoes, set the programmable timer on the mosquito trap to operate from 4am to 8am to gain mosquito control (if equipped). If you are experiencing a problem with night-biters, set your programmable timer on the mosquito trap to operate from 7pm to 11pm.

8. Question: When should I start and end operation of my mosquito trap?

  • Answer: Mosquitoes tend to become active when the outdoor temperature reaches 40 degrees or higher marking the beginning of the mosquito season. At this time, you should start operating your mosquito trap. Generally when temperatures drop below 40 degrees, mosquitoes go into hibernation for winter marking the end of the mosquito season. At this time, you can turn off your mosquito trap. It is best to get your mosquito trap set up and running at the first sign of mosquitoes. Doing so will trap and kill the early mosquitos and dramatically reduce the mosquito population before they've had a chance to breed.

9. Question: Will my mosquito trap attract other insects besides mosquitoes?

  • Answer: Yes. Mosquito traps will also trap all types of midges, mosquitos, gnats and other biting insects that are attracted to humans and animals.

10. Question: How often should I empty the bug trap or bug bag in my mosquito trap?

  • Answer: Bug bags and bug trays on mosquito traps should be emptied when they are half-full or after 30 days of operation.

11. Question: Why are propane powered mosquito traps so effective?

  • Answer: When clean burning propane is processed through a catalytic combustion system you get warm CO2 and moisture. The mosquito trap produces CO2 to mimic a human or animal host using these variables as attractants. Also, certain mosquito trap models use the heat from this process to create electricity so you don t need batteries or power cords.

12. Question: How long should a 20lb propane tank last while operating my mosquito trap?

  • Answer: A full 20lb tank should last approximately 21 days to 30 days depending on the model of mosquito trap. It's a good idea to have a second full tank on-hand to swap to reduce downtime.

13. Question: Why should I purge my propane tank?

  • Answer: You should always purge your propane tank because new, previously unfilled, propane tanks can contain air, which will rise to the top when the tank is filled. This air may prevent propane operated mosquito traps from starting until purged. When purchasing a new tank ask your propane dealer to purge the tank.

14. Question: Is the release of CO2 from my mosquito trap bad for the environment?

  • Answer: The amount of carbon dioxide released by the trap is very small relative to other equipment. In fact, the amount of CO2 released is about the same as that from an adult human over the same period of time.

15. Question: What is Octenol and when should I use it in my mosquito trap?

  • Answer: Octenol is a secondary attractant that simulates human breath. When used in mosquito traps such as the SkeeterVac trap models, it attracts most mosquito species including salt marsh and no-see-ums. Octenol should be used in mosquito traps along the coast and in the Northern region of the US.

16. Question: What is Lurex and when should I use it in my mosquito trap?

  • Answer: Lurex is a secondary attractant that mimics skin emanations. When used in mosquito traps like the SkeeterVac mosquito trap models, it attracts hard to catch, aggressive day-biters such as the Asian Tiger Mosquito. Lurex should be used in mosquito traps in the southern and southeastern regions of the US.

17. Question: Which attractant will work best in my mosquito trap?

  • Answer: Most mosquito traps like the Skeeter Vac mosquito trap models can use both Octenol and Lurex. Both secondary attractants are very effective. However, they attract different species of mosquitoes. Octenol should be used to attract most mosquito species like the Northern House Mosquito and other flying insect like black flies, gnats, and no-see-ums. Lurex is the most effective attractant when targeting the Asian Tiger Mosquito.

18. Question: What is the difference between a mosquito trap and a mosquito mister?

  • Answer: Mosquito traps use warm CO2, Lurex, Octenol, and other secondary attractants to simulate human breath, sweat, and moisture to draw female mosquitoes toward it, where they are typically sucked into a net or holder by an electric fan and or stuck to a sticky trap where they dehydrate and die. The AllClear Mosquito Mister is a backyard mosquito misting system that doesn't trap mosquitoes but repels and kills the mosquito population instead. The AllClear Mister uses a variety of concentrates to repels them for two, four, or six hour increments.

19. Question: Are back yard misting systems effective?

  • Answer: Modern mosquito control strategies emphasize an integrated approach, based upon a profound knowledge of the target, so that s its various vulnerabilities can be exploited by the many tools we've developed for that purpose. Effective mosquito control can be achieved using the AllClear Mister or other mosquito misting systems. For total mosquito control consider using a mosquito trap like the SkeeterVac 40 to 50 feet away from your outdoor living area and set up the AllClear Mister closer to you to keep mosquitoes under control.

20. Question: Are bug zappers more effective than mosquito traps?

  • Answer: While bug zappers do attract and kill some mosquitoes, they actually are more likely to attract midges and harmless, aquatic insects from nearby bodies of water. Most species of mosquitoes are not attracted to ultraviolet light, and certain species of mosquitoes only bite during the day. Bug zappers are not effective in reducing biting flies, exact a heavy toll on non-target insects and are counterproductive to consumers and the ecosystem.

21. Question: Why won't my mosquito trap start this spring?

  • Answer: The most common reason your mosquito trap won't start in the spring is most likely due to spiders, bugs, wasps, or other insect crawling into your trap while not in use and building a nest or web thereby clogging the system. Always put your mosquito trap away when not in use and wrap a plastic garbage bag tightly around the trap head to keep unwanted insect out. Another problem is the flame blowing out. The orifice that supplies gas to these mosquito traps is very tiny and over time can accumulate enough residue to clog sufficiently to start going out. With a little know-how and a few simple tools the orifice can be removed and cleaned with acetone or alcohol.

22. Question: My mosquito trap is dripping with water is this normal?

  • Answer: Condensation on the outside of the mosquito trap is perfectly normal and may occur on very humid days. The drips you see on the outside is simply water vapor. This is a byproduct of the catalytic conversion of propane and oxygen to carbon dioxide and water vapor and is caused by atmospheric temperature differentials. This will not impede the operation of your unit in any way.

We hope this article of mosquito trap frequently asked questions will help you in all of your mosquito control efforts this mosquito season.