The Buzz About Bees: Exploring the Effectiveness of Vinegar as a Natural Pest Control Solution

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Home » Blog » Home Safety & Cleaning » The Buzz About Bees: Exploring the Effectiveness of Vinegar as a Natural Pest Control Solution

Bees are essential to flowers and the ecosystem in general. However, there are times when they become a nuisance, especially when they start to invade your house. And when they get inside your home, it may affect the safety of everyone. Hence, you may need to kill them. So, how do you get rid of bees the non-toxic, natural way before they begin invading your home? Can vinegar kill bees?

Yes, vinegar is an effective and natural way to kill bees quickly. Bees can’t withstand the acidic properties and smell of vinegar, causing them to die instantaneously after direct exposure. 

Want to prevent or get rid of bees in your home? We’ve got your back. Here’s a guide to eliminating bees in and around your house.

Why Are Bees Dangerous?

According to a study, bees help fertilize plants, which results in the “formation of seeds and fruit surrounding seeds.” They are essential to our ecosystem. If bees don’t exist, we might not exist, too, because their pollination tendencies are vital in producing food.

However, bees can be troublesome once they are around your house. They can be annoying, irritating, or harmful to everyone, especially if you have pets and children at home.

Whether they are bumblebees, honeybees, carpenter bees, or ground bees, the threat of getting stung is very unpleasant in addition to the possibility of causing an allergic reaction. Hence, a need to kill bees.

Can Vinegar Successfully Kill Bees?

Yes, vinegar can successfully kill bees. This solution is deadly to bees – it burns and eventually kills them.

Moreover, the smell of vinegar confuses these little insects. Vinegar masks the scent of flowers, which bees rely on for food. So, if you have recently used vinegar in your garden, bees will find it hard to locate the flowers they need to pollinate.

And since vinegar confuses bees, they can get lost, wander off, and die. Spraying vinegar in your yard can disorient bees and cause the entire beehive to starve to death.

Can You Spray Bees with Vinegar?

Don’t spray bees with vinegar unless there is a bee infestation in your house. All types of vinegar can be deadly to bees. As such, if bees are not causing danger to you or your home, let them be.

But if you intend to keep them away from your house to avoid harming anyone, you can surely spray them with vinegar. Vinegar is an excellent solution for deterring bees from entering your home. Unlike pesticides or insecticides, vinegar doesn’t contain harsh ingredients and is not harmful to plants and humans. 

What Types of Bees Can Vinegar Kill?

You can use vinegar to kill all types of bees, from bumblebees to honeybees, carpenter bees, and ground bees, vinegar effectively kills each of these insects.

A spray bottle of this solution does better than a chemical herbicide. Vinegar is safe and one of the best natural solutions for your beehive problems.

However, while vinegar can kill all species of bees, it will take time to kill all of them. The acid properties will take a few minutes to work. Hence, you need to be careful when using them because it may anger the bees instead of killing them.

What Type of Vinegar Can Kill Bees?


Fortunately, you are not limited to white vinegar when killing bees. You can use other types of vinegar like apple cider, rice wine, and red wine vinegar to solve bee infestation in your house. 

White Vinegar

White vinegar, of course, is the most effective way to get rid of bees. If you already have this solution, there’s no need to use an alternative. 

You can use white vinegar to kill other bugs such as bed bugs. To learn how, read our article – Can Vinegar Kill Bed Bugs?

Apple Cider Vinegar

If you want to use apple cider vinegar just because you have it, feel free to use it. It works well in killing bees, but its scent may not be as effective as white vinegar. As mentioned earlier the smell of vinegar is vital in eliminating bees.

Red Wine Vinegar 

If white vinegar is unavailable, it’s best to use red wine vinegar. Its efficiency in killing bees is comparable to white vinegar. In fact, it is known to be more effective than white vinegar in some cases.

Rice Wine Vinegar

This type of vinegar is less efficient when compared to other vinegar mentioned above. However, it still does the job of getting rid of bees. 

How to Kill Bees with Vinegar?

Vinegar is the best alternative to pesticides. It is natural, cheap, and safe for everyone’s health. Here’s how you can kill bees with vinegar:

Things you’ll need:

  • 1 cup vinegar
  • ¼ cup water
  • Spray bottle


Step 1. Mix vinegar and water in a spray bottle. The vinegar is the one that will kill bees, while water is vital to increase the volume of the mixture.

Step 2. Shake the mixture to blend both solutions thoroughly. 

Step 3. Now, it’s time to spray the bees. Spray them with intervals because spraying them for a long time makes them agitated. If they come after you, retreat from spraying them until they come down.

What Other Natural Products Can You Use to Deter Bees?

Here are other natural ways to get rid of bees in and around your house when vinegar is not available:


Cinnamon adds spice to food. You can also use it as a natural remedy to kill bees. Like vinegar, cinnamon has a potent smell that keeps the bees away. This ingredient can also deter other insects like flies and ants.


Soda or soft drinks can also kill bees quickly. Bees are attracted to sugar since that is how they are attracted to blossoming flowers.

They cannot identify the difference between soda and blooming flowers; therefore, they can approach both. Once bees follow the smell of soda into the container, they will end up drowning themselves.


You can also use lemons to deter bees. Bees hate the strong smell of lemon juice; therefore, you can use this fruit to your advantage. However, lemon will not kill bees, but these insects will avoid their pungent smell.


Citronella also has a strong smell that bees hate. The intense fragrance of citronella not only drives away mosquitoes but can also help prevent bees from taking up your home. Citronella is safe and has non-toxic scents, so feel comfortable using them around the house.

Safety Precautions to Follow When Spraying Bees with Vinegar


When handling bees with or without vinegar, you must be aware of your surroundings and follow safety precautions to keep yourself safe.

  • Wear protective clothing (i.e., sweaters, veils, gloves, etc.) when dealing with bees.
  • Don’t wear loose clothing and dangling jewelry.
  • Bees are attracted to perfumes so, don’t wear any when working with them.
  • Don’t go near the bees during bad weather. They are more aggressive during this time.
  • If you are stung by bees, remove the stinger and apply ice to the affected area. If you are allergic to bee stings, get medical attention immediately. 


Overall, vinegar is one of the best natural ways to eliminate bees. You can use it to kill them or use it as a repellant if you don’t want to kill them. The smell of vinegar confuses and disorients them, causing them to wander off, not be able to find food and die.

To get rid of any type of bee, you can use most types of vinegar. If you don’t have vinegar you can use cinnamon, soda, lemon, or citronella instead.

Follow our step-by-step instructions above while also using our safety precautions.

However, in cases of strong infestation, you may not kill them all with vinegar or other natural products mentioned above. When this happens, contact a professional exterminator to solve the problem.

It’s springtime, and soon, insects will try to enter your home. Check out our article “Can Vinegar Kill Ants?” to learn how to get rid of and kill ants that enter your home using vinegar.

You can also use baking soda to kill ants. Read our article – Does Baking Soda Kill Ants? to learn how.