DIY Insect Fogger


An insect fogger is a tool used for outdoor pest control. Unlike chemical insect control, insect foggers do not harm the environment or human skin. The devices use smoke that insects are attracted to because of the included potassium nitrate. Commercial foggers are quite expensive. You can make your own insect fogger for a fraction of the commercial price.

Things You'll Need

  • Hot plate
  • Potassium nitrate
  • White sugar
  • Large saucepan or skillet
  • Aluminum foil
  • Place your hot plate on top of a sturdy table in a sufficiently ventilated workspace. Prepare your foil by ripping it into squares according to how large you'd like your fogger to be. Larger insect foggers burn for a longer time and produce more fog. However, they take longer to be completed, as the mixture takes a long time to dry before you can use it.

  • In your skillet or large saucepan, mix white sugar and potassium nitrate. Use two parts sugar, three parts potassium nitrate. If you're making a large fogger, you may want to use 4 cups of sugar and 6 cups of potassium nitrate. If you're making a small fogger, use 2 cups of sugar and 3 cups of potassium nitrate.

  • Place your pan on your hot plate over low heat. Stir the mixture continuously. Pay close attention to the color of the mixture; as it heats up, it will start to darken, and your sugar will start melting. As soon as you see it melting, lower the heat setting to the lowest setting possible. After the contents of the pan are thick with bubbles and devoid of lumps, it's finished.

  • Turn off your hot plate and remove your pan. Pour its contents on your prepared foil squares to cool, dry and harden. This process should take about 48 hours.

  • Remove the foil from the dried, hardened material.

  • Place your insect fogger in a central, open spot outside.

  • Apply a lighter or matches directly to the material in the middle of it to inflame it. Your fogger will start to produce fog, which will keep insects away from the area.

Tips & Warnings

  • You can purchase potassium nitrate at a garden store; it's a common ingredient for fertilizer. After pouring out the mixture, you may want to fill your skillet or saucepan with water and let it sit overnight for easier removal of the sugar crystal residue.
  • Ensure you burn your fogger outdoors only. Place your fogger on nonflammable material.

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  • Photo Credit mosquito image by Daniel Wiedemann from
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