Make the most of your outdoor situation by keeping bugs out of it.

By Kaitlyn Wylde
June 26, 2020
Each product we feature has been independently selected and reviewed by our editorial team. If you make a purchase using the links included, we may earn commission.

Just as the temperatures become conducive for al fresco dining and (distanced) outdoor gatherings, the mosquitos arrive, creating itchy and intolerable conditions that will have you running right back inside. It doesn’t matter how nice the weather or how beautiful the sunset — a mosquito-infested yard will make any outdoor activity unbearable. With summer travels limited this year, we have no choice but to make the most of our backyards, which means finding a mosquito-killing lamp that actually works is a top priority. 

Credit: Courtesy of Home Depot

While a lot of bug-zapping lamps claim to demolish unwanted flying guests, many are not effective at actually transforming your backyard into a hospitable environment for exposed ankles and arms. Here we’ve rounded up a list of the best electric and battery-operated mosquito-killing lamps and bulbs that you can count on to protect you.

These are the best mosquito-killing lamps you can buy online: 

These devices are effective and easy to operate, and they eliminate the need for pesticides or toxic candles altogether. Simply plug them in or power them up and take back the yard to enjoy a bug-free zone. What’s more, many of these options can also be used indoors, combatting the bugs that took advantage of your open window or made themselves a little too cozy in that screened-in porch or garage. 

Most Stylish: Thermacell Cambridge Mosquito Repellent Patio Shield Lantern

Credit: Courtesy of Amazon

Not all bug zappers are exactly nice to look at, so if you’re looking for an effective device that doesn’t take away from your outdoor decor, the Thermacell Cambridge lantern will fit right in. The coverage zone is 15 feet, and there’s no open flame, which means it’s safe for crowded table tops. The lantern is lightweight and battery-operated, so you can also take it camping for up to 12 hours of protection and LED light, too. 

To buy:, $25 (originally $32)

Best for Large Yards: Dynatrap XL One Acre Insect Trap

Credit: Courtesy of Amazon

This device claims to cover up to an acre with protection from bugs, and customers vouch for it with glowing reviews. It uses UV light and carbon dioxide to attract bugs, and then a vacuum sucks them into a retaining cage to perish. Though it sounds like a noisy or potentially cumbersome device, it’s silent and free of odors, pesticides, and propane. And while it’s on the pricier side, its reach and functionality is much more impressive than other zappers on the market.

To buy:, $190 (originally $199)

Best for Small Yards & Patios: Bell + Howell Indoor/Outdoor Hanging Insect Trap

Credit: Courtesy of Bed Bath and Beyond

This insect zapper can be used indoors or outdoors, but you can’t get too far from an electrical outlet, as you’ll have to plug it in and the cord is only three feet long. But once powered up, it will protect an area of up to 1,200 square feet from bugs, which makes it a great option for smaller spaces directly off the house, like porches, patios, balconies, and decks. Though it has a more utilitarian look than some other patio-friendly devices, it comes with a hook so that you can hang it from the ceiling or overhang and keep it out of view.

To buy:, $30

Best for Outdoor Dining: Flowtron 1 Acre Mosquito Killer with Mosquito Attractant

Credit: Courtesy of Home Depot

This Octenol mosquito attractant works together with UV light to provide powerful pest protection. The Flowtron needs to be plugged in to work, but because it can control the mosquito situation for an entire acre, you can plug it in near the house and enjoy outdoor dining at a slight distance and still be protected. What’s more, it’s waterproof and weatherproof, and it emits a very bright light that can act as a lantern year-round.

To buy:, $75

Best Indoor Plug-in: Power Portable Home Electric Insect Trap

Credit: Courtesy of Amazon

Let’s be real, mosquitos aren’t only an issue outside. Feel better about leaving the windows open with a direct plug-in indoor bug zapper that will lure bugs away from your TV screen and lightbulbs at night and zap them modestly out of sight. This device is small, affordable, pet-safe and child-safe, and it can be easily switched on and off while left plugged into the wall socket. It covers about 215 square feet, so you’ll want to get a few to protect the whole house. 

To buy:, $30

Best Industrial-strength: Black & Decker 20-Watt Indoor/Outdoor (Non-Toxic) Bug Zapper

Credit: Courtesy of Home Depot

This heavy-duty zapper uses high voltage to attract bugs up to 6,000 feet away using non-toxic UV light. It can be hung temporarily using the ring and chain or mounted permanently to a wall to provide year-round protection in your kitchen, garage, sun room, or bathroom. Reviewers note that the catch tray slides out easily, which makes discarding dead insects a mess-free and stress-free endeavor. 

To buy:, $45

Best on a Budget: ZappLight Light Bulb

Credit: Courtesy of Amazon

Not only is this product inexpensive, but it’s innovative and effective, too. This zapper doubles as a lightbulb, so you can screw it into any light fixture without any additional cords. The LED 60-watt bulb can be used outdoors, perhaps in place of a porchlight that was inviting all of the bugs in the neighborhood to your house. You can also use this light indoors, and it comes with two different light settings for your preferred brightness. Swap out the bulb in your living room lamp to keep the bugs off your TV at night.

To buy:, $13

Best on Buildings: Black + Decker Indoor/Outdoor Bug Zapper Bulb

Credit: Courtesy of Home Depot

This powerful lightbulb zapper is industrial-looking and provides industrial-strength protection to boot. Though it’s not particularly decorative, it is perfect for garages, barns, sheds, and porches, providing light and zapping bugs within a 500 square foot radius. Simply swap out the bulb in your outdoor fixture and replace it with this product for the same illumination with a dual function. 

To buy:, $26

Best for Camping: Cokit LED Camping Lantern Bug Zapper 2 in 1

Credit: Courtesy of Amazon

This mosquito killer is battery-operated, which makes it a perfect option for bug protection on the go or for patios and outdoor spaces without plugs. The device runs on three AA batteries and uses UV light to attract mosquitos and zap them. It’s noise-free and waterproof, and it’s not a fire hazard, so you can keep it in your tent, on your deck, or on your picnic table. And because it also functions as an LED lantern, you can replace your go-to camping light.

To buy:, $30

Best Non-zapping: Katchy Indoor Insect Trap

Credit: Courtesy of Amazon

This device uses UV light and a quiet fan to suck in mosquitos and capture them on an internal no-escape sticky trap — that means no zapping and no fried bug smells wafting through your house. The device is completely silent, odor-free, and non-toxic. Customers love this option for buggy hotspots like the kitchen and the bathroom, as its appearance is discreet and sleek. 

To buy:, $40

Best for Gardens and Walkways: PIC Solar Insect Killer Torch

Credit: Courtesy of Bed Bath and Beyond

Get rid of the tiki torches and basic LED outdoor lights — these solar-powered insect-killing torches are going to create a bug-free barrier around your treasured outdoor spaces. You get two torches in an order and can stake them anywhere outside without having to worry about plugs, batteries, or rain. They are waterproof and weatherproof, and not only do they have a dual lighting function, but they also feature a flame effect that’ll run for six hours between charges. 

To buy:, $30 (originally $50)

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