Does Soapy Water Kill Wasps & Hornets (Yellow Jackets)?

Wasps and hornets provide many benefits from the gardening point of view. But, if they develop their nest near your house or in your garden, then it’s more a problem.

Does soapy water kill wasps? Dealing with Hornets, commonly known as yellow jackets, and the wasps can be a little dangerous because they can sting you.

Therefore, it becomes important to wear protective clothes before using any wasp killing method.

killing yellow jackets with soapy water

We all know that wasp killing sprays are available on the market.

But, the question is,

Does soapy water kill wasps?

YES, it works.

Even, killing yellow jackets with soapy water is also possible, and effectively eliminates them.

As mentioned earlier, it’s important to wear clothes that can give you protection from wasp stings, because they can be real angry, and they may attack you.

How to Use Soapy Water to Kill Wasps

For using this home remedy, you will need a combination of hot water and dish soap.

For that, add 2 to 4 tablespoon of liquid dish soap or 30 to 60 ml, to the 2 cups or 500 ml of hot water. Make the solution, and mix them.

Now, put the solution in a spray bottle, and spray directly on the wasps & yellow jackets to kill the instantly.

For the safety, you can use the garden hose having end sprayer for spraying the dish soap solution on their nest. With the garden soap, you’ll be able to spray the solution to a long distance as compared to a spray bottle. With that, you can attack their nest directly and easily.

How does soapy water kill wasps?

The soap water is able to kill wasps almost instantly.

But, how?

Some experts say that the soap water clogs their breathing spores, and this results in an instant death. Therefore, it’s a humane way to kill them.

I Recommend

When using this home remedy, make sure to wear proper clothes because they can attack you.

Taking the help of exterminators is also a good idea. If you can afford them.

But, how do you know how much they are going to charge for your house?

Therefore, I suggest you take help of an exterminator search tool to find the exact price for wasp removal from your house.

If you can afford them, go ahead.

If their price is too costly for you, then use the DIY methods.

Just take the help of an exterminator search tool and get free quotes.

Final Words

It’s an effective home remedy, and therefore, you should definitely try it.

But, as I have said a few times earlier, don’t forget about the protective clothes.

What do you think about this method? What other methods you’ve used?

Dinesh Kumar
Hello, I'm Dinesh. I have 4 years of experience in dealing with pests. I try to provide you the best information that'll help you to make the pest control process easy & affordable. In recent years, I've helped hundreds of homeowners to protect their home from pests like bed bugs, cockroaches, fleas, house flies, snakes, rats and other pests.


  1. Is hot water truly necessary? Is its purpose just to mix the soap and water better, or does the mixture need to be hot in order to kill instantly? Because I just tried this, but with room temperature water, and it still crawled around for a while and I’m not sure it died.

    1. Hey Candace, hot water is just for the proper mixing of soap and water. because soapy water clogs their spores to kill them. Sometimes home remedies don’t work because we change the concentration of the materials or mistake happened in the application process.

  2. I also waited till the temperature dropped below 40F so they’d be relatively inactive. Before reading this, I used cold soapy water on them with rational that hotter water might warm them up and make them attack me! Anyhow, with cold temp outside, I was easily able to scrap off about 5 gallons of nest that had grown under my deck and totally saturate the wasps with soap solution. The larger pieces of nests with may of the wasps I then put into 5 gallon plastic bucket and sealed the lid for trash disposal.

  3. Can You leave a bowl of water and soap to attract them away from pool side? I just got a pool never had any wasps before and noticed the like the muddy water Thanks

  4. If i use the water hose spray bottle do i just make the soap solution a bit more soapy since the attachments are usually used with a concentrate. I have a nest under an eave I cannot reach and don’t want to get close to the wasps anyway. I’m going to wait until evening when they are less active (hopefully).

  5. I use a large drinking glass. Fill 3/4 with water, a squirt of dawn dish soap and fling the concoction at the nest. Spraying tends to miss a few, a big splash from the glass gets em all.

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