Can A Bar Of Soap Keep Spiders Out Of Your Home?

If spiders inside your home give you a feeling of terror, you're not alone — up to 15% of the population suffers from arachnophobia. If this describes you, you may be ready to try almost anything to keep spiders outdoors. Some people claim that a bar of soap (specifically Irish Spring soap) repels these eight-legged creatures. It's important to note that the company that makes Irish Spring soap has never performed a study on whether using the product actually keeps spiders out of the house or drives away other bugs. 

Additionally, Molly Keck, an entomologist at Texas A&M AgriLife Extension, is unsure that this process would work. "It's not going to replace your regular pest management. It's not going to eliminate all the insects away from your house or anything like that," Keck says in an interview with KHOU-11 TV in Houston.

Of course, just because there's no formal study doesn't mean it's not worth giving this soap hack a shot. "I mean, if you think it will, by all means, try it," Keck says.

Use soap and other non-harmful treatments to keep spiders outside the house

If you have areas where you see activity and webs from spiders, leave some soap shavings in the area. You also can rub Irish Spring soap onto the edges of doors and windows to leave the scent in the area, which may keep all kinds of pests out. Some people even place Irish Spring soap shavings in garden areas outdoors, which may repel spiders and other unwanted creatures.

Even after you give Irish Spring soap a shot in your home, you might want to try a few other treatments that will give you a better chance at keeping spiders at bay. If you don't want apply harsh chemicals around or actually kill the spiders, there are a few products you can use.

All-natural products, like peppermint oil, may keep spiders away. You can place a drop or two of the oil on cotton balls and place them in problem areas to repel spiders. You can also make use of a cleaning solution made up of equal parts white vinegar and water, as the odor tends to drive insects and spiders away. Arachnids also tend to avoid areas that smell strongly of citrus, so consider using a cleaning solution that has a lemon or orange scent.

Cleaning your home thoroughly can repel spiders

If you make sure to clean your house in order to make your home less hospitable to these eight-legged visitors, you'll be able to keep spiders away without having to kill them, use harsh chemicals, or call an exterminator. Start by removing any cobwebs that you see inside your home. Cobwebs are signs of areas where spiders have been living in the past, so you know the arachnids already like these portions of your house. By consistently removing the cobwebs, you'll disturb the spaces that they like, causing them to move away and look for another location (and hopefully one outdoors!).

If you have gaps and cracks around your doors and windows, apply weather stripping to the windows and doors to keep the cold out – and keep spiders and other insects out too. You may need to add caulking to these gaps and cracks too. Remember, spiders can be quite small, so it's likely impossible to block every gap. However, eliminating as many of them as possible should certainly lessen your indoor spider population.