Does Bleach Kill Fleas In The Yard?

Your yard can get fleas, especially in areas your pet loves to frequent. When looking for the best way to get rid of fleas, the internet doesn’t fall short of solutions. But one of the most interesting questions readers have is does bleach kill fleas in the yard? 

Yes, bleach isn’t just a powerful cleanser, but is also billed as a powerful pesticide, therefore bleach will kill fleas and various insects and pests upon contact like drain flies, and mosquitoes. However, spraying bleach in your yard or garden isn’t recommended because the chemicals in bleach can also damage or kill favorable grass or plants in the area. 

If you’ve got a flea infestation, it’s imperative that you take the necessary steps to get rid of these pesky pests for several reasons. 

Fleas are tiny, jumpy, and multiply quickly, and if you don’t get rid of fleas and flea eggs in your yard, these annoying pests will quickly stroll into your home. 

And even though fleas prefer animals, especially animal fur, they can latch onto humans and suck blood to survive.

Once bit by these annoying creatures, you’re likely to develop an allergic reaction in the form of hives, for which you can use over-the-counter anti-itch creams or ointments to relieve itchy skin and discomfort.

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How to Identify a Flea Problem in Your Yard? 

First things first, adult fleas and adult ticks are typically similar in color, but the former may have some variations in color variations on their bodies than fleas depending on species such as grey or reddish-brown. 

Fleas can range from brown to reddish-brown in color and are much smaller than ticks. These small, wingless parasites feature thin bodies, and although they don’t have wings, they are capable of jumping long distances to travel from host to host. 

Both insects are equally dangerous where fleas can cause anemia and several infestations, and even spread bartonellosis and tapeworm, and ticks can transmit a number of potentially deadly diseases, such as Lyme disease and Rocky Mountain spotted fever. 

An easy way to determine whether you have fleas in your yard is by wearing a pair of long, white socks, and walking around your yard, especially in areas where your pet likes to frequent. If you have a flea issue, these bothersome pests will show up on your socks

Another sure-shot way of identifying fleas in your yard is by taking a closer look at your pets. If your pet is constantly scratching itself or is restless, it’s probably flea bites they’ve acquired from the yard. Here are 4 signs your dog has fleas.

Banfield Pet Hospital - How to Check for Fleas on your Dog or Cat

Where Do Fleas Live in Yard? 

Fleas are fully capable of surviving outside, and even though your pet’s fur is their favorite playground, wood, and debris laying around on your lawn can also be a breeding ground for fleas. 

Fleas on pets are a common occurrence, but fleas are also attracted to clutter such as improperly stacked wood piles in your yard.

Adding to this, fleas thrive in moist, shady, and cool places like shrubs, leaf piles, leaf debris, tall trees, and overgrown trees, but do not prefer sunny areas or open grass. 

Fleas generally like things all wildlife enjoy such as food, water, and overgrowth, and love being near stagnant pools of water, tall grass that they can leap off, and animals that they can much on

Fleas on leaves in the yard

Is it a Good Idea to Spray Bleach in the Yard? 

Bleach comes in handy for cleaning and laundry, and you’ve probably got a bottle or two lurking around in your laundry room cabinet, but what does bleach do to your yard? 

Sodium hypochlorite is the active ingredient in chlorine bleach, an ingredient that’s derived from salt. Then there’s non-chlorine bleach, aka oxygenated bleach or oxy bleach which usually contains hydrogen peroxide and sodium. 

Oxy bleach is a natural, safe, and gentle alternative to chlorine bleach, and is safe to use around lawns and plants. However, since oxygen bleach has minimal effects on plant life, it is not effective at getting rid of weeds on your lawn. 

Bleach is a non-selective herbicide, so along with weeds will kill flowers and good grass in your lawn. But that’s not all, bleach will also affect the soil pH, hence good plants and grass will not grow in the area it is sprayedDo you know the difference between selective and non-selective herbicides?

And needless to say, the salt content will also kill the beneficial microbes and beneficial insects in your soil, leaving your lawn starving for nutrients. 

How to Use Bleach to Kill Fleas on Your Lawn? 

You cannot ideally spray your entire garden or entire yard with bleach, but you can use a product such as a sprayer to spot-treat the areas of infestation. 

Spot treating is a method where you apply bleach only on the flea-infested areas, and not on areas of healthy plant growth. 

Using bleach to eliminate fleas in your yard is risky business, but here are the steps to perform the task correctly

  1. Mix 1 ounce of bleach with 10 ounces of water, preferably hot water or warm water in a bottle. Shake well. You absolutely cannot use bleach in its concentrated form. 
  2. Locate the flea-infested areas in your yard, and spray the mixture. 
  3. Repeat the process if necessary 

Bleach can kill fleas in all their life cycles including flea eggs and larvae, but there are permanent damage risks to your plants and grass. 

spraying bleach on fleas infected lawn

What Options are Better than Bleach to Kill Fleas in the yard? 

If you’re not keen on using bleach to kill fleas in your yard, the good news is that there are several other ways to eliminate fleas. 

1. Kill fleas with nematodes – organic method to kill fleas in the yard 

Beneficial nematodes are a natural solution to killing fleas in your yard and are 100 percent safe for humans, pets, grass, and gardens. 

These microscopic worms work by feeding on flea eggs and larvae and are easily available at local garden centers or online

You can apply nematodes using a sprayer, watering can, and hose attachment or a spray bottle instead, but make sure you mix and apply the nematodes quickly before they expire. One of the downsides of using nematodes to kill fleas in your yard is that they take roughly two weeks to work, but on a brighter note kill fleas from the inside out. 

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2. Use Vinegar – one of the natural and practical methods to repel fleas in the yard 

Drenching the fleas with vinegar will kill these pests almost instantly. It is a great alternative to chemical sprays or toxic chemical flea killers, and you can make this mixture easily by diluting household vinegar with a bottle of water. 

You can use any type of vinegar to kill fleas on your lawn, but apple cider vinegar is a popular option. Many professional pest control services and insect control companies swear by vinegar to kill fleas and other household pests like ants. 

If you don’t have apple cider vinegar, you can use good ol’ white vinegar to eradicate fleas. Start by combining equal parts of vinegar and water in a spray bottle, and spray the mixture generously over the flea-infested areas in your yard. 

Take note that apple cider vinegar or any other type of vinegar will not kill fleas on contact or ticks on contact but only repel them in your yard, owing to the strong smell and taste of the condiment. 

spraying vinegar on fleas infected lawn

3. Diatomaceous Earth – safe, non-toxic way to control fleas in your yard 

Diatomaceous Earth arrives in powder form and is made from soft sedimentary rock that’s found naturally in the environment. 

It consists of silica and other natural minerals too and kills fleas in as little as four hours after contact. Apart from fleas, Diatomaceous Earth is a great organic approach to ticks and works by dehydrating and killing them as they walk across the powder. 

Diatomaceous Earth is effective against adult fleas and ticks, and may kill some flea larvae, but won’t kill flea eggs or pupae

Diatomaceous Earth is non-toxic to pets and humans and doesn’t pose an environmental damage risk. Diatomaceous Earth shouldn’t however be applied directly to pets as it may cause dryness and irritation. 

Apply Diatomaceous Earth across flea infestation or even your entire yard, but only apply when there isn’t any rain in the forecast for the next three days. 

If you’re using Diatomaceous Earth indoors, the next step would be to use a vacuum cleaner to vacuum all the areas thoroughly. 

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Does Lime Kill Fleas in Yard? 

Lime can benefit your lawn in several ways including neutralizing the soil’s acidity and restoring its nutrient balance. But you can’t just use any type of lime to kill fleas in your yard, use hydrated lime, which is highly caustic that can kill a number of lawn-inhibiting parasites including fleas.

You can spread hydrated lime with a drop spreader, and use a lower amount if you aren’t sure about how much-hydrated lime to use, as it will kill the grass.


Final Thoughts 

Bleach can kill fleas in the yard, but can also kill your beneficial plants and insects. There are several alternatives to using bleach to kill fleas in your yard including different types of nematodes or Diatomaceous Earth. 

Another natural technique for pest control for fleas is to use vinegar with water or soapy water to eliminate fleas in your entire garden.