Do fans keep mosquitoes away? What you need to know to deter the pest effectively

Looking to stay simultaneously cool and mosquito-bite-free? Experts discuss whether your fan will keep the fly away

Old fashioned fan sat on a desk, surrounded by books and artwork
(Image credit: Little Greene)

Do fans keep mosquitoes away? This simple yet effective trick could deter those unwanted pests.

We are amid the season where you may ask yourself the same two questions frequently. The first is how to get rid of mosquitoes, and the second is how to stay cool when the temperatures continue to arise. But what if the answer to both problems had one simple solution: a fan. 

Experts have already revealed several ways to deter this pesky creature away from your home, whether through citronella candles or mosquito repellent plants. However, some suggest that your fan may also be effective in keeping this unwanted house visitor away. But how powerful is this method? And do you need to pair your fan with any other mosquito repellents? Here's everything you need to know.

Do fans keep mosquitoes away?

Swarm of mosquitoes in a field

(Image credit: GettyImages)

The question as to whether fans keep mosquitoes away divides opinions. While the fan itself does not necessarily deter mosquitoes from a space, it does reduce the chances of being bitten by the fly. Here's why.

1. Fans make it harder to trace target scents

'Mosquitoes are attracted to carbon dioxide and other chemicals that we emit when we breathe. Fans blow air around and can make it harder for mosquitoes to detect these chemicals in the air,' explains Melanie Rose, a trained Pest Specialist from Nationwide Pest Control. This, therefore, means that the mosquito is less able to find their target – reducing the risk of them coming closer and biting us.

And Melanie is not exclusive in her observations. Thomas Dobrinska, Board Certified Entomologist with Ehrlich Pest Control, reinforces that 'high-powered fans will re-direct scents and carbon dioxide cues' that attract mosquitos. 

'Large box fans and oscillating fans placed in the backyard could effectively deter adult mosquitoes from potential warm-blooded hosts,' Thomas says. And multiple fans in an area are particularly helpful in confusing the scents – making it harder for the fly to find its target. 

Fan outside in the garden

(Image credit: GettyImages)

2. Fans create a breeze 

It may seem obvious, but the main purpose of your best fan is to emit a breeze to cool down a room. However, alongside its cooling qualities, this breeze may also help you stay bite-free for longer. According to Melanie, mosquitos get blown away from fans as they struggle to fly through the breeze. 

Do you need any other repellents? 

While a fan may make it undeniably harder for mosquitoes to reach their target, Melanie adds that using mosquito repellent (such as this one on Amazon) is the best way to ensure you keep the fly away effectively.

'Keep in mind that this is just one tool in the overall Mosquito IPM (Integrated Pest Management) toolbox and is best implemented with other reliable methods,' Thomas adds. He, too, recommends using mosquito habitat reduction/treatment, using repellants, and physical exclusion such as screens and netting.

It's also worth noting the colors that attract or repel mosquitoes so you can choose your clothing (and home accessories) wisely this summer.

Megan Slack
Head of Celebrity Style News

Megan is the Head of Celebrity Style News at Homes & Gardens. She first joined Future Plc as a News Writer across their interiors titles, including Livingetc and Real Homes, before becoming H&G's News Editor in April 2022. She now leads the Celebrity/ News team. Before joining Future, Megan worked as a News Explainer at The Telegraph, following her MA in International Journalism at the University of Leeds. During her BA in English Literature and Creative Writing, she gained writing experience in the US while studying in New York. Megan also focused on travel writing during her time living in Paris, where she produced content for a French travel site. She currently lives in London with her antique typewriter and an expansive collection of houseplants.