Best Bug Zapper List 2018: How They Work & Which To Get

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While you might not need a bug zapper year-round, it’s a necessary device in most areas. Flying pests such as mosquitos and flies become irritating as the days grow longer and the weather gets warmer. But which is the best bug zapper to buy?

Today, we’ll examine how a bug zapper works, and discuss the efficiency and different kinds that are widely available. We’ll go over some of the pros and cons of each type. Then I’ll narrow it down to a few choices of the top bug zappers on the market right now!

Top Bug Zapper Picks:

Other Good Choices:

How Does A Bug Zapper Work?

Bug zapper with vertical tubes
Bug zapper with vertical tubes. Source: fly again

A bug zapper is actually very simplistic. It’s made up of a few parts:

  • an exterior casing, also referred to as a housing
  • a fluorescent light that attracts insects (usually ultraviolent light)
  • wire grids inside the casing and around the light which carry an electric charge
  • a transformer to create an electric charge

Occasionally, there are a few additional lure components to try to assist in drawing insects near.

When the light or other attractants catch the attention of an insect, it will move towards the light or attractant. This means it will go through the exterior housing and try to reach the light. The metal grid then electrocutes the bug.

Many zappers have catch trays to hold dead bugs that’ve been killed by the device. This makes cleanup of the dead insects easy.

But Does A Bug Zapper Actually Work?

That depends on the type of insect that you’re trying to zap, actually!

While flies and moths are easily lured by the ultraviolet light, some insects are less interested. Often, we buy a bug zapper to deal with more than just flies. For me personally, mosquitos are also of concern. While they can be interested in the light, mosquitos tend to be more attracted to the smell of human sweat, or possibly carbon dioxide from your breath.

Because of insects that are drawn for alternate reasons, bug zappers nowadays often include pheromone lures or carbon dioxide emitters in addition to the light. That way, they will catch a wider range of insects. Finding a mosquito zapper with one of these added lures will work better overall.

There’s only one thing to be concerned about: many beneficial insects can be lured by that tantalizing UV light as well. Since many insects use UV markings on plants to know where to go, a light is like a beacon, just luring them closer. And, well, ZAP. It’s good to be mindful of the placement of your zapper to avoid harming your beneficial insect population.

Types Of Bug Zappers

Bug zapper with horizontal tubes
Bug zapper with horizontal tubes. Source: That HP Chap

There’s a few different variations on bug zapper styles. Let’s go over some of the most common types.

Horizontal Light Zappers

These are typically large, boxy units intended for indoor use. A large mesh grid covers the two largest sides, allowing insects to enter and get zapped. There’s a number of different models on the market, but the most effective ones are in the 20 watt range.

Vertical Light Zappers

As the light bulb placement in these is vertical, this style of zapper is more easily made waterproof and thus can be used in indoor or outdoor settings. Many of these have a plastic exterior housing which protects the user from accidentally touching the charged metal grid inside. Because of the light placement, these can be made to look like lanterns or other more stylish light styles, instead of looking boxy and plain.

Bug Zapper Light Bulbs

Made to fit into a standard socket, these are specialized bulbs that also have a zapper component. Typically, these are intended for use in a sheltered location out of the rain, as they don’t have any additional protection. These are often used as a combination bug zapper porch light. While they don’t offer much light for us, they do help kill off insects in their placement area.

Electronic Bug Repellent

These mosquito repellent gadgets are a little strange. Intended as an indoor electric mosquito repellent, these plug into wall sockets and emit a high frequency sound which is reputed to deter pests. It often seems to work on mosquitos and on pests such as mice, but appears to be less effective as an electric fly repellent.

These are not your standard electric bug zappers, though. They don’t kill the pests. They just keep them at bay! Sometimes that can be more useful. However, it’s recommended that you don’t use these if you keep rodents as pets. Most dogs and cats do not seem to hear the high-frequency sound that they emit.

Bug Zapper Reviews

Best Bug Zapper (Indoor, Large Corded):

Aspectek 20W Electronic Bug Zapper

Aspectek UPGRADED 20W Electronic Bug Zapper, Insect Killer - Mosquito, Fly, Moth, Wasp, Beetle &...
  • POWERFUL INSECT CONTROL: Attracts flies, moths, mosquitoes,...
  • SAFE: A mesh screen protects you and your family, preventing...
  • CHEMICAL-FREE: Insects are attracted and easily killed by...
  • SIMPLE INSTALLATION: Hang the Electronic Indoor Insect...
  • EASY UPKEEP: The removable plastic tray at the bottom of the...

This specific Aspectek indoor bug zapper is the one that I find myself using the most often, and for good reason: it works. Made in a horizontal light style, it is boxy and visually not much to look at, but for sheer functionality it’s worth its weight in gold.

The Aspectek bug zapper has an outer shielding which protects you from accidentally touching the charged mesh within. Its pair of bulbs are replaceable when they burn out. A catch tray on the bottom captures most of the dead insects, although I do find that some escape containment. Because of this, it’s best to place this in an area which is easy to clean up.

It can be hung up by two small hooks placed on either side, or used as a standing model. I find myself using it as a standing model more often, as it can be placed near entrance points for the house easily.

For me, this is the best indoor bug zapper, but it will win no awards for its visual appeal. If you want something stylish in your house, there’s other options out there. But if you want to kill bugs, get this.

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Best Bug Zapper (Indoor, Socket Mount):

GLOUE Bug Zapper

Sale
GLOUE Bug Zapper Electronic Insect Mosquito Killer Night Lamp Eliminates Most Flying Pests,...
  • COMPACT SHAPE:3.7x2.55x2.36 inches small size, it's very...
  • CHEMICAL-FREE: No more pesticides or potentially harmful...
  • EASY INSECT DISPOSAL: To clean dead mosquitoes, ensure the...
  • AT NIGHT: its LED lights can effectively attract mosquitoes...
  • GLOUE OFFER A FULL REFUND GUARANTEE:If you are unhappy about...

I have to admit that I’m not a fan of socket-mounted bug zappers. For me, they’re always inconveniently placed, and don’t take advantage of insect travel paths. Most bugs tend to zoom around at a slightly-higher level off the ground than the average wall socket.

But if you’re going to be traveling and want a zapper in your hotel room, or you want smaller zappers in multiple rooms around your house, the GLOUE bug zapper is a great item. It’s designed to be compact, so you will need to clean dead insects out of it with surprising regularity. And it works, although the placement still can be inconvenient – be sure to put this on a wall where there’s nothing in front of it, so the bugs can easily find the light!

All things considered, this is a great electric bug zapper for people with low levels of insects. And as far as socket-mount zappers go, this is definitely the best indoor bug zapper.

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Best Outdoor Bug Zapper

Flowtron BK-40D Electronic Insect Killer

Sale
Flowtron BK-40D Electronic Insect Killer, 1 Acre Coverage
  • Advanced Electronic Insect Control
  • Non Clogging Killing Grid
  • 1 Acre Killing Radius, 40-Watt Bulb
  • Instantaneous Operation,Continuous and Uninterrupted Service
  • This product is for outdoor use only.

It’s hard not to sing the praises of the Flowtron electronic insect killer. With up to an acre of coverage, this thing kills bugs like a dream. It comes with an Octenol attractant that lures in mosquitos, and its UV light does wonders at drawing all manner of other flying critters.

Fair warning, though: the Flowtron bug zapper really does draw all sorts of bugs, so if you want to relax in your yard, you’ll want this at least 25-30 feet away from where you plan to be. Otherwise, you may find yourself surrounded by all of the bugs who’re being enticed by the attractant or the light. Suddenly, you’ll discover you’re on the mosquito’s menu too!

Seriously, though, if you have a large outdoor space, this is perfect for you. There are models which have half-acre coverage or less as well, if you’ve got less space to cover. The Flowtron outdoor insect killer will keep the pests away from you so that you can properly enjoy stargazing in your yard without being eaten alive.

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Best Indoor/Outdoor Bug Zapper

LumaPest 7 Watt UV Light Insect Killer

Sale
LumaPest Electric Bug Zapper by UV Light Insect Killer| Weatherproof Fly & Mosquito Eliminator|...
  • SO, YOU'VE BEEN ON THE HUNT FOR A GOOD BUG ZAPPER? Great for...
  • WE BET YOU WON'T FIND A SAFER DEVICE!: Compared to...
  • YOU DON'T HAVE TO FACE THE INSECTS YOU FEAR: No need to...
  • MULTI-PURPOSE & ULTRA-QUIET: As long as it's hooked up to a...
  • 2-YEAR WARRANTY: Your satisfaction is our top priority! To...

While this is not the strongest in terms of wattage (the Aspectek beats this one quite easily), this LumaPest bug zapper still does its job. Its vertical tube alignment allows for a more streamlined look visually, and a screw-off catch basin at its base catches most of the bugs it kills.

This is one of the best bug zappers on the market, but it does not handle everything. Large moths will be drawn to the light but will have a hard time making it inside due to the narrow spacing in the outside housing. While it handily takes out flies, from fruit flies all the way through big horseflies, it sometimes has a harder time luring some mosquito species.

Its shape enables it to be easily hung lantern-style in most environments. However, this is an electric bug zapper that does need to be plugged in, and its 6′ cord means you’ll probably need it relatively close to the house if using it outdoors. Indoors, of course, it’s easy to place and use.

Despite some small faults, this is still a very functional model and well worth spending your money on. Plus, it has a great warranty – if you have a problem, simply contact the manufacturer!

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Best Bug Zapper (Bulb Style)

LumaPest Insect Bug Zapper Bulb

Sale
LumaPest Insect Bug Zapper Bulb UV Lamp Mosquito Trap | Indoor & Outdoor Insect Killer Lantern |...
  • NO MORE ANNOYING MOSQUITOS OR BUGS: Our eco-friendly insect...
  • 100% WEATHERPROOF ZAPPER BULB: This eco-friendly bug trap is...
  • SUPERIOR UV TECHNOLOGY: Forget all about expensive...
  • SAVE ENERGY & TIME: Our mosquito trap comes with a 5W UV...
  • 2 YEAR WARRANTY OF INSECT KILLING: We've designed the most...

My personal preference is to avoid bulb-style zappers. After all, they need to be screwed into a light socket, which means that they’re right there in your personal space. And the closer that you are to your zapper, the more likely it is you’ll get bit by an insect that’s drawn to it.

But I can’t dispute that these are handy killers. For people who’re apartment-dwellers and find that they have insect problems on their balcony, placing one of these up high on the wall or in the balcony roof may deal with the majority of their pest issues. LumaPest makes one of the best outdoor bug light bulbs on the market, and it works extremely well.

There’s no concern about it lacking power, too. As long as your bulb socket is on, your bulb has ample killing force for anything which it might encounter. It’s a quiet bug zapper, and extremely weatherproof. So if you’d like a bug zap bulb that works, this is a great pick for you!

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Best Battery Operated Bug Zapper

Enkeeo 2-in-1 Camping Lantern Tent Light Mosquito Killer

Sale
Enkeeo 2-in-1 Mosquito Killer Camping Lantern Tent Light - Portable IPX6 Waterproof Bug Zapper LED...
  • 2-IN-1 ZAPPER LANTERN: a combination of camping lantern and...
  • ULTRA-LONG LIFE BATTERY: equipped with 2000mAh rechargeable...
  • EASY & SAFE TO USE: comes with a retractable hook, a...
  • IPX6 HIGHLY WATERPROOF: perfect for outdoor use; you can...
  • PORTABLE & COMPACT: super lightweight and compact design;...

Extremely portable, the Enkeeo bug zapper is designed for people who love the outdoors. Easily hung inside a tent while camping, this model can act as both a traditional light source or a mosquito-killing machine. Completely waterproof, you can easily rinse off any insects it’s killed. It’s lightweight and easy to carry in your gear, yet has sturdy construction.

Enkeeo promises 15 hours of uninterrupted mosquito-killing time on its zapper setting, or up to 20 hours of light when used as a standard lamp. If you’re looking for a battery operated bug zapper, this is the best for your money.

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Best Solar Bug Zapper

VENSMILE Solar Powered Bug Zapper

VENSMILE Solar Powered Bug Zapper Mosquito Trap Waterproof Fly Insects Killer with Night Light for...
  • 【Solar-powered mosquito zapper】:In daylight, Solar Panel...
  • 【rechargeable Hanging bug zapper】:rechargeable lithium...
  • 【Solar mosquito trap Two modes】: Mode 1:A high intensity...
  • 【Bug zapper materia/ large area coverage】-Stainless...
  • 【Note】: When you first use it on, turn the switch to the...

One of the best things about the VENSMILE bug zapper is that while it is a fully-solar option, it has a backup USB charger. If you need uninterrupted zapping capability, that can be important, especially on those unexpectedly cloudy days!

This model requires eight hours of solar charging time daily to refill its 1200 mAh battery. Once full, it has two modes of operation: standard light, or bug-zapper light. You can simply flip a switch to decide which you want to use.

As far as any negative points, the only one that I can see is that solar bug zappers tend to not have as good killing force as the corded or socket-mount models. This is generally due to the battery size. However, this will still do a handy job killing most irritating insects and keeping your space bug-free.

See Prices >


Best Electronic Bug Repellent

Amuoc Ultrasonic Pest Repeller

Amuoc Ultrasonic Pest Repeller, Home Pest Control Repellent Plug In Electronic Nontoxic Insects and...
  • FREE FROM PESTS - The Ultrasonic Pest Repeller uses advanced...
  • HARMLESS AND ECO-FRIENDLY - It is safe and...
  • WIDE COVERAGE AREA - Amuoc ultrasonic pest repeller is...
  • Easy TO USE - Please install our item at 80-120cm away from...
  • PRODUCT GUARANTEE - Centering on the customer experience! We...

Inside your house is not a place for insects, and Amuoc understands that. That’s why there are ultrasonic pest repeller options that can help keep pests from ever entering your residence.

Emitting a high-pitched sound that human ears can’t hear, this system will repel a wide variety of pests, and not all of them are insects. While it claims to handle mosquitos, roaches, ants,  spiders and flies, the manufacturer also promises to keep rats, mice, and lizards at bay. If you have a pet hamster, this device is not for you!

It does not kill the pests. Instead, it makes them uncomfortable enough that they just don’t enter the residence. And sometimes, that’s better than needing a bug zapper indoors. If you want a solution that keeps your home free of pests, consider the Amuoc electronic pest repellent. Pair it with an outdoor bug zapper like the Flowtron, and you’ll never see a bug again.

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Other Good Choices

LumaPest Insect Trap & Bug Zapper

Sale
Insect Trap & Bug Zapper By Lumapest: UV Light Attractant For Mosquitos, Bugs, Gnats & Wasps – Fly...
  • KEEP ALL OF THE INSECTS AWAY: Mosquitos, flies, gnats, wasps...
  • A SAFE, NONTOXIC SOLUTION: You don't have to use pest...
  • FOR OUTDOOR AND INDOOR USE: You can use the fly trap both...
  • EASY TO CLEAN AND ACTIVATE: Do you want to activate the wasp...
  • A TWO-YEAR LONG WARRANTY: Here at Lumapest we're very...

An unusual model, this LumaPest tabletop model can be used as a bug zapper or as a non-zapping insect catching device. A small fan will suck insects out of the air and down into a catch container, where they will starve and die. If needed, simply plug it in and it’ll easily take out larger insects like moths or wasps, too.

Very few models on the market are designed in a way that makes them moth-compatible, and so if you find that your nighttime pests tend to be of the larger variety, invest in this device. Similarly, it draws mosquitos due to its unique water tray. Mosquitos which are looking for a breeding location will seek out stagnant water, and when they near this trap, they’re sucked right in.

It’s a great alternative to the more traditional bug zappers, and well worth every penny!

See Prices >


PestZilla Robust UV Electronic Bug Zapper

Sale
PestZilla Robust UV Electronic Bug Zapper – 20 Watts, Large-area Protection - Up to 6,000 Sq. Feet...
  • HASSLE FREE PROTECTION - The PestZilla Bug Zapper provides...
  • ROBUST INSECT CONTROL - Features an extremely powerful high...
  • EASY SETUP & MAINTENANCE FREE - Simply plug in the bug...
  • SAFE & CHEMICAL FREE - The PestZilla Bug Zapper features a...
  • SPECIFICATIONS - For indoor use. May also be used outdoors...

Similar to the Aspectek, the PestZilla bug zapper is a horizontal bulb model. I’ve owned one of these in the past as well, and for me, the real difference between the two comes into play if you plan on hanging it.

Where the Aspectek has hanging hooks on the outsides of the unit, the PestZilla has them on top of the unit. It can more easily tilt on its chain than the Aspectek does. If you plan on hanging up your device, opt for the Aspectek model.

But if you tend to set your bug zapper on a flat surface like I do, you’ll find that the PestZilla is just as functional as the Aspectek. It’s also cheaper in terms of pricing. Both are 20-watt devices, both kill bugs equally well. The only caution I have is how it hangs.

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VENSMILE Pest Control Ultrasonic Repeller

VENSMILE Pest Control Ultrasonic Repeller 2 Packs Electronic Plug in Pest Control, Rodents & Insects...
  • 【How Does It Work 】:Our ultrasonic pest control uses low...
  • 【SAFE FOR HUAMAN & PETS 】: No harmful chemical or...
  • 【 EASY TO USE PLUG IN BUG REPELLENT】: Easy to install,...
  • 【ARGE COVERAGE AREA】: One ultrasonic repeller covers...
  • 【LIFETIME GUARANTEE】: Ultrasonic spider repellent is...

With a promise of 1200 square feet of coverage per device, the Vensmile electronic pest repeller is another great model. Its “Pest Reject” system uses ultrasonic sound to deter a wide variety of insect pests as well as rodents.

For me, the only difference between this and the Amuoc device is that Amuoc gives you four devices for only a little bit more than the price of two Vensmile units. That’s twice the coverage range, and twice the protection against furry or winged intruders. But if you’ve got a smaller space to cover, or don’t want that many devices running in your house, this is a great option!

As with the Amuoc, one caution: if you have pet mice, rats, or hamsters, don’t get one of these. It’ll drive them nuts.

See Prices >


So there you have it – a rundown on the best bug zappers on the market. What sort of insect invaders do you find yourself battling most? Flies, mosquitos, or moths? Tell me in the comments below!

I’m absolutely thrilled to be able to share all of the great information I’ve accumulated over the years with everyone. No matter if you have a foot of space or an acre, you can grow in it!

Last update on 2018-08-20 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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4 thoughts on “Best Bug Zapper List 2018: How They Work & Which To Get

  1. Nice review. I have used the Aspectec 20w for about three years and other than replacing 1 bulb, no problems. it works to attract and zap flys and mosquitos. I have no screens and live in south Florida ( I live on a boat and run a generator 4 hours a day). I use a large Citronella candle in the cabin i sleep in if I need to repel them after I turn the generator off.

  2. Wow, great writer & nice formatting. Just love it!

    I think everybody has to need to read this blog before buying a bug zapper.

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