The Best Mosquito Traps of 2022

Need help keeping biting insects at bay? Add one of these mosquito-deterrent devices to your pest-control program.

By Mark Wolfe and Debbie Wolfe | Updated Jul 11, 2022 12:31 PM

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The Best Mosquito Traps Options

Photo: Debbie Wolfe

Controlling the mosquito population on your property is a matter of not only comfort but also health: These miserable adversaries cause skin irritation and itching, and they also spread deadly diseases like malaria, West Nile virus, and Zika virus. Using a high-quality bug repellent is the most effective way to protect yourself from being bitten by mosquitoes, but you can take additional measures to reduce the number of mosquitoes on and around your property. One such measure is the mosquito trap.

Mosquito traps mimic the presence of a mosquito host, such as a human or large animal. In doing so, they lure mosquitoes into a deadly trap so the bugs can’t bite people or spread disease. We’ve tested the best mosquito traps to keep your family and your property safe. Read on to learn the factors we considered when choosing the best traps and the advantages and disadvantages of our top picks.

  1. BEST OVERALL: DynaTrap 1-Acre Mosquito and Insect Trap
  2. BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK: Tysonir Electric Bug Zapper
  3. BEST WALL-MOUNTED: Faicuk WS108 Wall Sconce Fly Light Trap
  4. BEST FOR OUTDOORS: DynaTrap ½ Acre Decora Pole-Mounted Mosquito Trap
  5. BEST FOR INDOORS: Katchy Indoor Insect Trap
  6. BEST PORTABLE: DynaTrap Flylight Insect Trap With 2 AC Outlets
The Best Mosquito Traps Options

Photo: Debbie Wolfe

Types of Mosquito Traps

Mosquitoes are attracted to the carbon dioxide that humans and animals exhale and the body heat that’s produced. A mosquito trap uses several different ways to mimic the presence of a large, warm-blooded creature to attract and capture mosquitoes.

Heat

Mosquitoes are also attracted to the heat that emanates from humans and other warm-blooded animals. An effective trap produces a thermal heat plume that mimics the presence of an animal. When a mosquito gets close, the trap’s intake fan pulls it in.

Ultraviolet Light

Many plug-in mosquito traps feature compact fluorescent or LED UV lighting. Unlike other insects, mosquitoes are not attracted to ultraviolet light alone. However, UV light enhances the effects of heat and carbon dioxide in a mosquito trap. Traps with UV lights are usually more effective than those without them.

Propane

Propane-powered mosquito traps are portable, and they produce both heat and carbon dioxide. When propane is burned, it gives off carbon dioxide. Because humans and animals exhale mostly carbon dioxide when they breathe, the hungry mosquitoes approach the propane-powered trap because they think they’re hot on the trail of a warm-blooded creature. When mosquitoes come close to the trap, they’re drawn into the collection chamber by the trap’s fans. These propane-powered devices are portable and self-contained, but they’re usually more expensive than electric mosquito traps.

Carbon Dioxide

To a mosquito, the presence of carbon dioxide is the primary clue that a meal is nearby. Some mosquito traps use plumes of carbon dioxide, whether it’s exhaust from burning propane or a compressed gas cylinder, to attract the insects. The plumes mimic a human’s exhaled breath, which attracts blood-feeding mosquitoes looking for a meal.

Water

Standing water is a breeding habitat, and it should be eliminated in the landscape whenever possible. However, water also can serve as a trap for mosquitoes. Add Mosquito Bits to birdbaths, landscape ponds, and other water features. It’s a natural larvicide that kills mosquito larvae, but it’s safe for people, pets, frogs, fish, and other aquatic animals.

Paper

Although mosquitoes stick to sticky yellow flypaper, it’s not an effective mosquito trap. Glue boards, on the other hand, are an integral part of many mosquito traps. Essentially, a glue board is a piece of cardboard with adhesive on one side. When a mosquito is lured into a trap’s intake area, a fan sucks it into a collection chamber, where it crashes into a glue board and sticks to it.

The Best Mosquito Traps Options

Photo: Debbie Wolfe

What to Consider When Choosing the Best Mosquito Trap

Whether your mosquito problem is indoors or out, in a large area or a small one, a mosquito trap is available. Keep reading to learn more about the criteria used to select the best mosquito traps for different situations.

Purpose

Mosquito traps cannot guarantee that the mosquitoes won’t bite. A trap is most effective when used as part of a broader mosquito control program that includes habitat modification, physical barriers like window screens and clothing, insect repellents, and more. Before buying a mosquito trap, understand how it functions and its limitations. Ask these kinds of questions: How does the trap collect mosquitoes? How much area does it cover? How is it powered? Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s directions for setup and maintenance. Indoor mosquito traps may be ineffective for outdoor use, and outdoor traps placed in the wrong location may even make your mosquito problem worse.

Types of Mosquitoes

As of 2020, at least 176 mosquito species are known to exist in the United States. Each species acts on a unique set of visual, thermal, and scent cues to seek and find a blood meal. For this reason, different traps are designed to appeal to different mosquito species, but the reasons are not entirely clear. Though these devices are capable of capturing a variety of mosquitoes, trap manufacturers rarely provide data on the success of their traps in attracting and eliminating specific species.

Indoor vs. Outdoor Use

Outdoor traps use carbon dioxide and heat—and sometimes light—to attract mosquitoes. Some traps also use scents meant to mimic human scent. Many outdoor mosquito traps capture a large quantity of insects inside a screened chamber where they dessicate, or dry out, until the chamber is emptied.

Indoor mosquito traps rely primarily on heat and light to attract bugs. A high level of indoor carbon dioxide is unhealthy, and the chemical odors some outdoor traps emit would be unbearable in a closed environment. Instead of a holding chamber filled with thousands of insect carcasses, most indoor traps contain the insects on sticky glue boards that can be replaced quickly, cleanly, and easily.

Longevity

The length of time a propane mosquito trap can run has everything to do with the size of the propane cylinder. A small tank of propane (the size that attaches to a gas grill) can run a propane mosquito trap around the clock for about 3 weeks. Every time you refill the propane tank, remember to stay abreast with the other aspects of an outdoor trap’s maintenance, such as replacing scent attractants, emptying the collection chamber, and cleaning the vents.

Indoor traps also must be cleaned and emptied regularly. Glue boards inside most indoor traps last up to 30 days. Ultraviolet lamp bulbs last for approximately 3,000 hours, or for about four months, of continuous use.

Ease of Use

An electric mosquito trap is easy to set up and use: Just plug it in and turn it on. As mentioned, it requires the regular replacement of glue boards, cleaning of collection chambers and vents, and the occasional replacement of UV bulbs. These tasks are simple and take just minutes to perform, and they are easy to remember because they happen at regular intervals.

Propane traps are easy to use on a day-to-day basis but require a bit more work to maintain. You might have to haul a heavy propane tank to the far corner of your property. Cleaning these traps can be more time-consuming as well, because these larger devices attract more mosquitoes than their electric counterparts.

Portability

Some traps are designed to be set up and used in a single location. Wall units and some of the larger electric traps, for instance, must be positioned close to an electrical outlet. On the other hand, mosquito traps with USB adapters are easily moved around because they may be powered from a charger hub that is plugged into the wall or with a portable power pack. Although their weight and bulk make them a bit more challenging to reposition on a whim, propane mosquito traps can be set up just about anywhere.

The Best Mosquito Traps Options

Photo: Debbie Wolfe

Our Top Picks

Although there are a wide variety of mosquito traps to choose from, the list below zeros in some of the best-rated picks across trap types. We put these traps to the test. Find out how each one fared.

Best Overall

Best Mosquito Trap Option: DynaTrap 1-Acre Mosquito and Insect Trap
Photo: amazon.com

The DynaTrap Mosquito and Insect Trap can reduce mosquito populations on properties of up to 1 acre in size. It plugs into a standard 110V electrical outlet and operates quietly 24 hours a day. Carbon dioxide emanates from the titanium dioxide surface, along with the off-gassing of organic matter inside the collection chamber. Warmth and ultraviolet light from two bulbs attract mosquitoes to the upper housing. A quiet fan pulls the insects into the metal retaining cage, where they dry out and die without zapping or buzzing. It’s easy to maintain, too: Simply twist off the retaining cage and empty its contents.

According to the manufacturer, with constant operation, the DynaTrap takes 3 weeks to capture enough mosquitoes to notice an impact. It can take up to 6 weeks to kill enough mosquitoes to disrupt the mosquito breeding cycle.

The DynaTrap Mosquito and Insect Trap effectively lured mosquitoes and other flying insects in testing. We set up the trap in a covered porch area in our backyard and let it run continuously for 6 weeks per the manufacturer’s recommendation. It’s easy to set up and clean, and the fan is barely noticeable while running. The only con we had for this trap is that it kills all flying insects—even the beneficial ones like native bees and ladybugs. However, it did make an impact on the mosquito population in our yard.

Product Specs

  • Type: UV light and carbon dioxide
  • Indoor or outdoor: Both
  • Coverage area: 1 acre

Pros

  • Easy to set up and install
  • Removable base is easy to clean
  • Whisper-quiet fan traps insects without zapping or buzzing

Cons

  • Kills indiscriminately…even pollinators

Get the DynaTrap 1-Acre mosquito trap the WebstaurantStore.

Best Bang for the Buck

The Best Mosquito Trap Option Tysonir Electric Bug Zapper
Photo: amazon.com

The Tysonir Electric Bug Zapper uses heat and ultraviolet light from its 15W Blu-ray bulb to attract mosquitoes and a variety of other bugs. Its 4200V electric shock grid, which is surrounded by a protective ABS plastic housing, quickly kills bugs. This unit plugs into a standard 110V-household power outlet. It’s rated for both indoor and outdoor use in all kinds of weather. Hang the lantern-style housing by the metal hang loop, or set it on a solid surface. The Tysonir’s coverage area is 860 square feet. Simply unscrew the threaded base for quick cleanup.

Using this trap is as easy as plug-and-go. It’s simple and effective but best used in a dark room or an unlit outdoor area. Although this trap did kill any insect that had the misfortune of being lured into its electric grid, we did have two cons. First, there is no power button. You have to plug and unplug the machine from the wall outlet. Second, the zapping sound is loud. For some people, this may be insurance that it’s working, but it startled us almost every time we heard the zap. Nonetheless, for the economical price and easy portability, the Tysonir Electric Bug Zapper is handy as a backup unit or as an extra bug zapper to take to the cabin or use in an RV.

Product Specs

  • Type: UV light
  • Indoor or outdoor: Both
  • Coverage area: 860 square feet

Pros

  • Lightweight and portable
  • Hook on top for hanging
  • Easy to clean

Cons

  • No power switch
  • Zapping noise is very loud

Get the Tysonir bug zapper/mosquito trap on Amazon.

Best Wall-Mounted

Best Mosquito Trap Option: Faicuk WS108 Wall Sconce Fly Light Trap
Photo: amazon.com

Designed for indoor use, the Faicuk WS108 attracts mosquitoes and other flying insects with an 8W ultraviolet lamp. The trap’s reflective inner surface boosts the light’s intensity. It has a 5-foot power cord that plugs into a standard 110V household electrical outlet, and it operates quietly with no buzzing, zapping, or fan noise. The glue board collection system captures bugs efficiently, and it’s easy to replace when needed (the unit comes with six replacement glue boards). It covers about 900 square feet or a semicircle area with a 25-foot radius.

We did have mixed feelings about this bug trap. As a trap, it worked well. It lured a variety of flying insects and effectively eliminated them. Cleanup was easy, and replacing the sticky paper was a cinch. The issues we had with this product were the plastic is flimsy, the unit is unattractive (to us), and it’s expensive. Aesthetically, it would work in some settings. Still, you will need to have a power outlet near it to power it without using extension cords. Price is relative, but we thought the cost of this bug trap seemed high given that you can only use it indoors, and its coverage area is small. Nonetheless, we still felt it is a helpful product in restaurants or covered patio eating areas that need a bug trap that doesn’t take up valuable floor space.

Product Specs

  • Type: UV light and sticky paper
  • Indoor or outdoor: Indoor
  • Coverage area: 900 square feet

Pros

  • Doesn’t take up floor space
  • Runs quietly
  • Easy to install and clean

Cons

  • Plastic casing is flimsy
  • Expensive

Get the Faicuk mosquito trap on Amazon.

Best for Outdoors

DynaTrap ½ Acre Decora Pole-Mounted Mosquito Trap
Photo: amazon.com

The DynaTrap Pole-Mounted Mosquito Trap uses light, heat, and carbon dioxide to attract mosquitoes from up to ½ acre away. It plugs into a standard 110V household electrical outlet and operates quietly. The titanium dioxide surface releases a carbon dioxide plume that attracts mosquitoes and emits warmth and ultraviolet light from two bulbs in the upper housing. A quiet fan draws nearby bugs into the metal retaining cage, where they dehydrate and die without noisy electrical zapping or buzzing. The capture basket twists off for easy cleaning. This freestanding mosquito trap is 44 inches high when mounted on the included lantern pole.

After allowing the DynaTrap Pole-Mounted Mosquito Trap to run for 4 weeks, we did notice a reduction in mosquitoes and other flying insects. According to the manufacturer, disrupting the mosquito breeding cycle takes about 6 weeks, so we were pleasantly surprised. Overall, we did like the way the trap looked and performed. The trap’s fan is quiet while in operation, and there is no annoying zapping sound when a bug enters the fan area. The only con we can report is that it’s cumbersome to assemble. Still, once it’s together, it’s easy to operate and clean. However, it does lure and kill any flying insect, including beneficial bugs and pollinators.

Product Specs

  • Type: UV light and carbon dioxide
  • Indoor or outdoor: Both
  • Coverage area: ½ acre

Pros

  • Durable construction
  • Attractive design
  • Easy to clean

Cons

  • Cumbersome to assemble
  • Kills indiscriminately…even pollinators

Get the DynaTrap Pole-Mounted Mosquito Trap at Amazon or The Home Depot.

Best for Indoors

The Best Mosquito Trap Option Katchy Indoor Insect Trap
Photo: amazon.com

The Katchy Indoor Insect Trap uses UV light to attract mosquitoes and other insects. Place the trap near the source of the insects (a trash bin, for example) and its quiet fan will draw the bugs into the capture basket and onto a sticky glue board. Run this unit day and night, and you should see fewer bugs within about 3 days. Both the light and fan are powered by a USB cable that plugs into a wall adapter or a portable USB power source. This electric mosquito trap is also compatible with scent attractants.

We loved how well this machine captured annoying fungus gnats and fruit flies. We did not think we had issues with mosquitoes indoors until we ran this machine for a whole week. We checked the trap daily and were amazed by the number of bugs stuck to the glue paper, including several mosquitoes! We do think the trap is a bit spendy. It only comes with four glue boards, and its coverage area is 320 square feet. Refill glue boards are available. However, it works well and will help eliminate fruit flies, gnats, and mosquitoes that invade your home.

Product Specs

  • Type: UV light and sticky paper
  • Indoor or outdoor: Indoor
  • Coverage area: 320 square feet

Pros

  • Easy to set up
  • Easy to clean
  • Catches gnats, fruit flies, and mosquitoes with ease

Cons

  • Expensive

Get the Katchy mosquito trap on Amazon.

Best Portable

Best Mosquito Trap Option: DynaTrap Flylight Insect Trap With 2 AC Outlets
Photo: amazon.com

The DynaTrap Flylight is only slightly larger than an electric outlet cover, which makes it easy to move as needed. It plugs directly into a wall outlet, and it includes two built-in AC outlets to plug in other devices. Choose from three different models, this one, another that’s plug-in only (without AC outlets), or a version with two AC outlets and two USB ports. This model uses warm ultraviolet light to attract flying insects, discreetly trapping them on a sticky glue card hidden behind a decorative cover. The replaceable glue cards last for 30 to 60 days. This mosquito trap is suitable for indoor use, and it covers up to 600 square feet.

This trap is perfect for a small space. We tested it in our RV travel trailer, and it effectively keeps flying bugs at bay. We also tested the trap in a garage area, where it performed extremely well. We liked how easy it was to set up and clean. Depending on where it’s placed, you will need to clean and replace the sticky glue paper often, but refill glue pads are available. We did not like that there was not a power switch on the unit. You have to unplug the whole contraption to turn it off. However, it’s a design flaw we can overlook for its effectiveness and portability.

Product Specs

  • Type: UV light and sticky paper
  • Indoor or outdoor: Indoor/covered outdoor
  • Coverage area: 600 square feet

Pros

  • Portable and easy to use
  • Easy to clean out and replace paper
  • Extra outlets on the side of the trap

Cons

  • No power switch

Get the DynaTrap Flylight mosquito trap at Amazon, The Home Depot, or at Tractor Supply Co.

Our Verdict

We selected the DynaTrap 1-Acre Mosquito and Insect Trap as our top pick because of its 1-acre coverage area, weatherproof housing, and its ability to attract and trap a variety of flying pest insects including mosquitoes, biting flies, and more. We also recommend the Tysonir Electric Bug Zapper because it attracts a variety of insects and features all-weather housing at an affordable price.

How We Tested the Best Mosquito Traps

We tested each mosquito trap according to established rubrics, including how easy it was to set up and clean, how well it attracted insects, its durability, and how well it keeps an area insect-free. We rated each trap based on these rubrics on a scale between 0 and 4 to determine their score.

We placed the trap in the appropriate area recommended by the manufacturer. We also ran each trap according to the manufacturer’s recommended time frame to achieve the best results. After each trap ran for its appropriate time, we checked the trap to determine how well the machines attracted and killed the targeted insects. Lastly, we tested each trap’s ability to maintain an insect-free environment when continuously in use.

FAQ

Get the most out of your new mosquito trap. Read on to learn more about owning, operating, and maintaining mosquito traps for the best possible results.

Q. How do mosquito traps work?

Mosquito traps use various attractants, such as warmth, carbon dioxide, and ultraviolet light, to draw in mosquitoes. Many of these traps employ powerful fans to pull mosquitoes from the nearby air space into collection chambers. Inside the collection chamber, the mosquitoes are contained inside by the force of the fan’s air or a glue trap.

Q. Are mosquito traps safe for pets and humans?

Mosquito traps are safe for pets and humans when used as directed.

Q. Do mosquito traps attract more mosquitoes?

Traps are intended to attract mosquitoes, and they should be placed away from high-traffic areas. Mosquito traps are most effective when used as part of a broader mosquito control program, including the elimination of the mosquito breeding habitat in the adjacent landscape.

Q. Do I need any extras (fuel, insecticide, etc.) when buying a mosquito trap?

Propane-powered mosquito traps require fuel initially, and they must be refueled approximately every 3 weeks. Traps that use glue boards come with boards for the initial setup, but these boards must be replaced every month or so. Replace ultraviolet light bulbs about every 4 months.