What’s an Earwig and Earwig Removal

Are you finding insects invading your home? No one wants to find critters where they shouldn’t be, and it can feel rather alarming. Earwigs are serial offenders for trying to get into people’s homes, so they could be what you’re seeing. Here’s what an earwig is, how to identify them, and how to get rid of them quickly. Facility Pest Control can be your Woodland Hills earwig removal expert.

What Is An Earwig?  

Firstly, let’s find out if that insect you’re seeing is an earwig. Earwigs are a type of elongated insect, which are typically 5 – 25mm long. They have an appendage that resembles pincher bugs or is claw-like in nature. They also have two small pairs of wings. There are around 20 different species of earwig in the USA to date.  

Earwigs use their pinchers typically for defense, and to spar with other earwigs. As well as the pinchers, they have the ability to produce a foul-smelling liquid, which contributes to their defense.  

They are typically nocturnal creatures, coming out at night to look for food. Earwigs tend to make their nests under rocks and logs, and in flower beds, as they prefer damp and dark places. They eat plants and insects but have also been known to eat old books and newspapers too.  

What’s interesting about earwigs is that they’re one of the few non-social insect species that cares for its young. Mothers will take care of her eggs until they hatch, ensuring that they’re safe and warm.  

 Why Are Earwigs In Your House? 

Ok, so you’ve identified that you’ve got earwigs in your house. Why are they there? The good news is, they aren’t going to cause any lasting damage. They don’t eat their way in, as termites do. As such, you don’t have to worry about renovations to your home after you’ve got rid of them. However, you’d prefer they didn’t get comfortable. What is it that draws them to your home? 


Earwigs are typically scavengers, and so they’ll get food where they can find it. Many find that homes are a great source of food, and so they get comfortable indoors. They’ll find crumbs on countertops, spilled food on the floor, and more will all be fair game to them. If you have fruit trees near your home, your property can offer very easy access to them as they love fallen fruit too.  


As well as food, earwigs need moisture to survive. They don’t need a lot of water to be happy, so even if you don’t think it’s too humid in your home, it could be enough for them. In nature, they’ll often be happy in moist soil, or wet leaves. In your home, they’ll be happy in a cabinet under a sink, or in your basement or crawl spaces. These offer moisture while being the right temperature, too.  


Finally, earwigs will be in your home as it’s an excellent shelter. It protects you from the elements, so of course, it protects them, too. They’ll often come in if there are harsh weather conditions outdoors. For example, if there’s extreme heat or cold outdoors, they’ll make their way in.  

How To Know If There are Earwigs In Your Home 

As earwigs are typically nocturnal, you shouldn’t normally spot them in your home. However, there are some signs that you should be looking out for.  

Firstly, you’ll sometimes actually just spot one in your home. They could be hanging out on the countertop, or in the bathtub. If you’ve spotted one, it’s likely that you’ve disturbed their hiding place. The key thing to know is that if you’ve found one, there’s going to be more hiding. # 

 You may also come across a strong, foul smell. That’s the substance they produce as a defense, and you’ll often smell it if you’ve disturbed them.  

Also, if you suspect there are earwigs, take a look around any bright lights. They’re often drawn to bright lights in the dark, so if you see any here that’s a sign they’re in your home.  

How To Prevent And Get Rid Of Earwigs 

Now you know where the earwigs are and why they’re there, you can start getting rid of them. There are a few ways you can prevent earwigs from hanging around too long, including: 

Keeping Clean

The cleaner you can keep your home, the better. Vacuuming is always a good idea, as it sucks up any remaining food crumbs. It also sucks up wandering earwigs, too.  

Dehumidifying your Home

The drier your home, the less inviting it is. Adding dehumidifiers to areas of your home that are damp will go a long way towards keeping earwigs out.  

Closing up Cracks

If there are any cracks in your home, earwigs are going to use them to get in. Go around and close up the cracks with caulk, so you can shut off their access points.  

Keep the Garden Tidy

Earwigs love piles of leaves and rotting vegetation. If you keep your yard tidy and neat, they’ll be less likely to hang out in your yard and leave your home alone.  

Clean Out Gutters and Drainpipes

As well as offering moisture, your gutters and drainpipes offer a way in for earwigs. Keeping them clean keeps them as dry as possible, making them less hospitable.  

Create Traps

There are several ways you can make traps to kill earwigs. Boric acid is often used on areas where they crawl, but don’t use this if you have small children or pets. Others have found success with olive oil and soy sauce, which attracts earwigs due to the smell, then drowns them.  

Now you know everything you need to know about earwigs and why they have made their way into your home. Take steps to prevent them, and if you do find any, call Facility Pest Control to help you get them out for good. You don’t have to share your home with these creepy crawlies, so they’ll find all the nests and make sure they’re exterminated for good.