Fleas like to live in a moist and dark atmosphere like grass. So when your pet plays outdoors, these insects jump into its fur. Fleas can then reproduce and spread in a matter of days all over your bedding, furniture, rugs, and floor cracks.
Naturally, you’ll want to eliminate them. But you may fall into the dilemma of using chemical insecticides or trying a natural flea killer. If you choose the latter, then borax has got you covered.
While most people use borax, also known as sodium borate, for cleaning, some individuals use it to kill fleas. But does it really get rid of fleas? Continue reading to find out the answer and learn more about this topic.
Yes, borax can effectively kill adult fleas, flea larvae, and flea eggs. In addition, because it’s a desiccant (drying agent), borax is one of the most powerful natural insecticides for eradicating fleas.
Once it adheres to their exoskeletons, legs, and antennae, fleas lick it while cleaning themselves. As a result, they ingest the sodium borate content, which induces and maintains dryness, one of the most brutal enemies for fleas. This dehydrates fleas’ bodies, eventually killing them.
Note that borax is most potent when used on fleas that are in the larval stage.
How to Use Borax Powder to Kill Fleas in Homes
If you decide to use borax powder in your flea control process to get rid of fleas, there are several steps you should go through.
First, you’ll need to vacuum your carpets thoroughly. Then, sprinkle borax powder throughout the infested areas in your home.
Using a broom, vigorously brush the powder into the carpet. After that, leave the borax powder on for at least 6 hours and up to 48 hours. The longer you wait before removing the treatment, the better. Also, during this period, make sure that no pets or children have access to the area.
Now, it’s time to vacuum the carpets again. Again, remember to use the vacuum hose to reach inaccessible areas like moldings or cracks where flea larvae may have burrowed. Finally, throw away the vacuum bags in an outside trash can.
Using Borax Powder With Other Flea Repellents in Yards
The borax powder can also be used to rid your yard of these insects. However, it’s more effective if you mix it with other flea repellents while applying it outdoors. For instance, when you combine the borax powder with refined sea salt and diatomaceous earth, this mixture will kill fleas quicker by dehydrating them.
For starters, you should check the weather forecast for the next 3 days and turn off your sprinklers. This is because your lawn must be dry for at least 3 days after applying the borax mixture, or else it won’t work.
After that, combine the components for the borax mixture, using a large bowl as your measurement container. Use the following ratio regardless of the size of your yard: 2 tbsp. of borax, 1 tbsp. of salt, and 2 tbsp. of diatomaceous earth.
Then, using a hand trowel, distribute the mixture throughout the yard. Apply the mix in large amounts but not in clumps. Next, using a rake, comb the area to make sure that the powder penetrates the grass.
After applying the mixture, keep your dogs and cats as far away from the yard as possible for the first 3 days. Also, water your lawn on the third or fourth day to wash away all the borax treatment.
Precautions of Using Borax Powder
It’s important to know the powder usage precautions to avoid any potential danger to yourself, your family members, and your pets. So, here are some tips on how to use it safely while getting rid of the pesky fleas:
- Wear a mask and protective gloves
- Always use borax powder in a well-ventilated area
- Wash your clothes if they got stuffed with borax powder (and change them as soon as possible)
- After finishing the process, thoroughly wash your hands with soap and water
- Keep the borax powder away from your plants because it can harm them
- Use a borax mixture on something like a collar to kill fleas on your pets, but never use it directly on them to avoid adverse reactions.
- Pregnant women should avoid all borate-containing substances
- Take care while using borax on carpets; it’s effective, but it can damage the carpets if they’re wet
- Avoid extended exposure to borax since it might irritate your skin and trigger other allergies; you want to get rid of fleas without injuring yourself
Borax Powder vs. Boric Acid
Another natural pest control is boric acid, which is a derivative from borax itself; it’s a hydrated salt formed by acidifying borax. They’re both white powders that dissolve quickly in water and contain boron, a natural mineral that effectively impacts flea infestations. But, despite their similarities, borax and boric acid aren’t the same thing.
For instance, the boric acid powder is slightly stronger than borax powder in killing indoor pests because it affects a wider range of pests, including fleas. It kills them by weakening their outer exoskeletons and distorting their central nervous systems.
In addition, boric acid powders are relatively more expensive than borax powder due to the additional refining process. Still, it may be easier for you to use borax for flea control because you may already have it in your house in the form of borax laundry soap, making it quite handy.
How to Use Boric Acid Powder
You can use a combination of boric acid powder with salt as a remedy against fleas. However, while the mixture is highly powerful against adult fleas, it’s not that effective against flea eggs. So, to get rid of newly-hatched larvae, you’ll need to repeat the following treatment for several weeks.
First, prepare 200 g of boric acid powder and 200 g of salt. You can put this mixture in an empty can lying around. Now, start vacuuming the carpet. Then, evenly distribute the mixture over it and gently rub it in with the broom.
Leave it for 1 hour before vacuuming up the mixture. But be careful; if you leave the mixture in the carpet for more than an hour, it’ll bleach the carpet fibers. And remember that vacuuming the treated areas complements the function of the boric acid by removing the dead fleas.
Note that if you’re suffering from a large flea infestation, you’ll have to repeat this process every day.
Are Borax and Boric Acid Bad for Pets?
If your pet is suffering from a flea infestation, don’t be tempted to try borax or boric acid on it.
This is because ingesting borax powder can cause stomach upset and skin irritation in your pet. And if your pet consumes large amounts of this powder, it may cause kidney damage.
In addition, if the boric acid powder is ingested or inhaled, it can disrupt the acid balance in your pet’s body, causing respiratory or renal distress, cardiovascular, and possibly failure in all body organs. Boric acid poisoning symptoms include general physical distress, diarrhea, nausea, disorientation, and vomiting.
So, yes, they’re bad for pets.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Long Does It Take Boric Acid to Kill Fleas?
It takes approximately 4 to 6 weeks to rid your home of these pesky insects.
Can Fleas Develop Resistance to Boric Acid or Borax?
No, they don’t develop resistance to them. Unlike other insecticides, you can freely use these flea repellents without worrying about the insect’s resistance.
Should I Use Borax to Kill Fleas on Carpets?
Yes, you can use borax to treat flea-infested carpets. However, make sure not to leave it on carpets for an extended time because their fibers might get damaged.
Can My Cats and Dogs Walk on Borax Powder?
No, it’s critical to keep your pets away from borax powder since it has the potential to create a wide range of health problems. So, make sure your pets aren’t around when using this remedy.
Is Borax Effective Against Bed Bugs?
Yes. Borax isn’t only effective against fleas but can kill other insects feeding on human blood, such as bed bugs.
What Kills Flea Eggs Instantly?
Washing bedding and garments in hot water can destroy the flea eggs and save you from future reinfestations.
So, are you suffering from a flea infestation? Is your dog scratching itself uncontrollably, and your home has become infested with an uncountable number of fleas? If so, you don’t need to pay for expensive flea remedies. Your flea infestation weapon is already in your laundry room; it’s the borax powder!
It’s an effective, inexpensive, and easy-to-use natural component that you can utilize to kill fleas, flea eggs, and flea larvae. You can either use it by itself or mix it with other flea remedies like salt and diatomaceous earth.
The borax powder can be applied on carpets, bedding, furniture, floor cracks, and yards. However, don’t use it on your pets and plants as it has a destructive reaction and may cause severe problems to them.