Safe Way to Kill Yellow Jackets With Boiling Water

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Things You'll Need

  • Boiling water

  • Gallon pot

  • Liquid dish soap

Yellow jackets create underground nests with narrow entrances.

While pesticides and sprays work well against airborne yellow jacket nests, ground nesting yellow jackets require a different kind of approach. The safest way to eradicate the yellow jackets residing in the ground is with a mixture of boiling water and liquid soap solution. Once applied, the hot water will drown the majority of the insects, with the soap disabling motor skills and eventually killing them.


Step 1

Wait until sunset before creating the water and liquid dish soap solution needed to kill the yellow jackets. At sunset, the entire colony of yellow jackets should retreat back to their nest.

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Step 2

Create a mixture of water and 1 tsp. of liquid dish soap. Prepare in a heat-resistant pot with handles for easy pouring.

Step 3

Bring the mixture to a boil on the stove. You can either transfer the boiling solution to a easy-to-pour jug or pour directly from the pot.

Step 4

Locate the entrance ways of the yellow jackets' nest. If there are more than one, it would be safer to have more than one person filling the holes with boiling water.


Step 5

Pour the hot, soapy water into the entrances of the nest. The water should be enough to drown and kill the yellow jackets. The soap is a precautionary backup as the soap will hinder their motor skills and render their ability to sting and defend.

Step 6

Cover the entrances with rocks and dirt to seal up the nest.


Protect yourself from yellow jacket stings by wearing long sleeved shirts and thick, long pants.


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