18 tried and tested methods to get rid of spiders in your home once and for all

From the best spider catchers to DIY deterrents, here's how to prevent spiders from coming into your home

kitchen dining area with open doors out onto the garden
(Image credit: Getty images / jax 10289)

If you’re wondering how to get rid of spiders, there’s a high chance that your house has already been taken over by a hoard of eight-legged critters. Yes, you might even have spiders in your bed. But don’t worry, you don’t have to burn your house down and flee the country just yet.

Of course, spiders are especially prevalent at this time of year. The cooler mornings and evenings, coupled with the dreaded spider mating season (which is the beginning of September to late October, just FYI), mean that spiders are crawling into our homes more than usual. 

And while you could wander around your house with a pint glass and a piece of paper trying to catch every spider in your path, you might be happy to know that there are some much easier alternatives. 

We’ve asked the experts to come up with their tried and tested methods for getting rid of spiders once and for all, and we think you’ll agree that there are some good’uns here. 

How to get rid of spiders in the house

John Stewart from Pest-Stop, the UK’s leading manufacturer of high-quality pest control products, reassured us that of the 650 species of spider found in the UK, only about 12 have been recorded as being able to bite us, and only two of those give a bite that causes any significant pain.

'Spiders are beneficial insects that perform pest control on our behalf,' John argues. 'Most spiders would prefer to live outdoors in sheds, garages, and around our windows, with light attracting insects like moths.' As they don't cause us any harm, we have focused on humane and natural ways to send spiders on their way. However, if you have a serious, persistent problem, it's time to call in the professionals.

1. Repel with peppermint oil

Yankee candle diffuser lit up green resting on a kitchen surface with mug, book and glasses

(Image credit: Yankee Candle)

It's a scientifically proven fact that peppermint oil repels spiders. Another fun fact: spiders smell and taste through their legs. So, crawling through an area scented with peppermint is a highly unpleasant experience. 

You can pick this essential oil up cheaply at your local pharmacy, or places like Muji.  Use an oil diffuser or burner and enjoy the relaxing scent it creates, or mix with water in a spray bottle to target specific areas.

Peppermint oil also happens to be a great way to get rid of mice, so you can kill two birds with one stone. Pour drops of the oil on cotton pads and place in cracks through which these pests could be entering your home.

2. Stave off spiders with spicy cinnamon

kitchen spices with cinnamon powder in glass jar

(Image credit: Future PLC/Polly Eltes)

Next up, a good old cupboard staple: cinnamon. Discreetly place cinnamon sticks in areas where you've seen spiders in the past, replacing them every couple of months as the scent fades. Cinnamon does stain, so one good option is to push the sticks into the soil in your pot plants around your door, or, failing that, you could use cinnamon oil.

3. Use the old-fashioned conkers method

Have you ever tried this old wives’ tale before? Conkers have long been considered a spider repellent, but it seems as though the jury is still out on whether conkers really can keep spiders out of the house. 

‘There is an age-old belief that placing conkers in the corner of your room will repel spiders within your home,’ explains home expert Anna Elkington from Melody Maison. ‘Apparently, conkers contain a noxious chemical that, when in close proximity, can result in the death of spiders. However, there is a lack of scientific proof that conkers can successfully repel spiders, so there is no way to know if this old wives tale actually works.’ 

But that doesn’t stop people from trying this method every single year, so it’s worth a try, right? If you have pets, make sure you check with your vet, as conkers can be poisonous.

4. Spritz white vinegar

homemade household cleaning spray

(Image credit: Future Publishing Ltd)

Another household item that doubles up as a natural spider-repellant is vinegar, says Adam Pawson, from Safestyle UK, the UK’s leading window provider. 'Spray half water and half vinegar all over the crevices of your window, being careful to avoid varnished surfaces, as vinegar can be harsh on these. 

'Not only will you be keeping spiders out, but vinegar is also a great repellent for anyone struggling with ant infestations,' he says. Whether you want to get rid of ants or spiders, you can use normal malt vinegar or white vinegar.

5. Use garlic to ward them off

We didn’t think we needed any more reason to love garlic (especially as garlic can actually help your grass grow), but it seems as though they can ward off spiders, too. Yes, vampires aren’t the only ones who hate garlic, as spiders absolutely detest the smell of this vegetable.

This means that you can use it to your advantage when trying to keep your home spider-free. And the best way to do this is to make your own garlic water by placing a few cloves into a spray bottle full of water. When you have this, you can spray in corners and around skirting boards to keep the pests at bay.

Of course, this will make your house smell like garlic. So bear that in mind if you’re not a huge garlic fan.

6. Embrace your inner neat-freak

modern grey living room with berber rug, grey sofa and houseplants

(Image credit: Future Publishing Ltd / Anna Stathaki)

The next tip is all about keeping on top of household chores. Spiders love to find hiding places in rarely-visited spots behind furniture, so keeping your home tidy and clutter-free will make a big difference. Prevention's better than cure! 

About once a week, if you can, run your best vacuum cleaner under the bed, behind the sofa and around all pieces of furniture. Likewise, in the kitchen, try and keep your sink and worktops free of crumbs and spillages, as these will attract ants – which will attract spiders. It's all about the food chain.

7. Turn the lights off

Adam Pawson also points out that like many insects, spiders are attracted to light. So making sure that your lights are turned off overnight and while you’re not in the house is one fool-proof way to make sure you’re not inviting spiders in – and you’ll be saving energy at home at the same time.

8. Keep your bins closed

It’s important to dispose of your household waste properly, but stuffing your bins so much that you can’t close the lid is a surefire way to open up your house to all kinds of critters. You might find yourself dealing with maggots in your bin or an overload of spiders in your home. 

That’s because spiders are attracted to food - and their dish of choice is a delicious fly, whose dish of choice is an all-you-can-eat bin buffet. So, by keeping your bins closed at all times, you can then keep flies out of the house. 

Without any flies to eat, spiders are less likely to come into your home. And that’s what we all want, right?

9. Blow away the cobwebs

grey living room with large window, grey sofa and leather armchair

(Image credit: Future Publishing Ltd / Chris Snook)

Get rid of cobwebs with your vacuum cleaner or a broom to encourage spiders to go elsewhere. Remove any webs from coving areas and around your windows as soon as you see them, which will also go a long way in making your space feel fresh and well kept.

'Spiders will often lay their eggs in sack, held in position with sticky silk around windows and doors,' comments pest control expert John Stewart. 'Removing these with a hard bristle brush will help to keep their numbers in check around the home.'

10. Sprinkle baking soda

White vinegar, lemons and bicarb for cleaning

(Image credit: Future PLC)

Most people already know that baking soda is a household essential. From helping you clean a microwave to stopping condensation on windows, baking soda can come in very handy. But what you might not realise is that baking soda can also keep spiders out of your home. 

If you sprinkle baking soda in corners and in any areas where spiders tend to congregate, you should find that they’ll stop coming back. No, it won’t kill them, but the powdery substance and the smell should deter them. 

However, it’s important to know that you’ll probably need to keep sprinkling down fresh baking powder to get the most out of this hack. And if you have pets, it’s best not to use this method as baking powder can be toxic.

11. Purchase a spider catcher

'Handheld devices like the Pest-Stop spider and insect vacuum offer a quick, safe, and scare-free answer to banishing these eight-legged intruders and other insects from the home,' says John Stewart.

Spider catchers allow the user to pick up a spider at arm's length, and release it outside by pressing a trigger. Could this be one of the best inventions of the last decade?

12. Tidy up your garden

White rendered wall with bistro set

(Image credit: Future PLC)

It may sound silly, but tidying up the outside of your house is one of the best ways to stop spiders from coming into the house. That’s because the further away you can keep the spiders, the better.

And while it may seem enticing to leave grass clippings on the lawn or keep a stash of firewood underneath your living room window, doing so is basically asking for spiders to come close to your home. 

Spiders are less likely to scuttle into your house if you keep them away from your garden, so keeping your garden tidy and less attractive to critters is the way to go.

13. Try cedar wood balls

Another green option is to buy some natural cedar balls, at Amazon. These aren't proven to work, but they're worth a try. If you're looking for a natural and budget-friendly option that will repel both moths and spiders, it certainly won't do any harm.

14. Grow lavender, fresh mint or eucalyptus

lavender in a basket

(Image credit: Future PLC/ Alun Callender)

A window box of lavender will help to ward off spiders, as well as giving window ledges a Southern France vibe. Be sure to include some fresh mint in your mini herb garden, too, and if you have space, grow some eucalyptus. Spiders aren't fans of any of these.

15. Order a spider-repellent spray

Just want something quick and happy to spend a fiver? Order a pre-made spider repellent spray that won't harm spiders, available at Amazon. This one has a four out of five star rating on Amazon, with customers claiming that it has helped keep spiders at bay. One reviewer even said they hadn't seen a spider in their house in 2 years since using the spray. 

16. Deter with zingy citrus

lemon and salt on wooden board

(Image credit: Future PLC/ Tim Young)

'Your best bet is to mix essential oils, such as tea tree, lavender, peppermint, eucalyptus, and citronella with water in a trigger spray bottle,' says John Stewart. Spray around the floor wall junctions, paying attention to the corners of the rooms. It'll help rid your home of spiders and give it a lovely fragrance.

13. Fill over any cracks

White living room with large windows, grey sofa and scatter cushions

(Image credit: Future PLC/David Giles)

Spiders enter the home via gaps under doors and around windows, so ensure that there's a good seal around window frames. You could also try fitting excluder strips to the bases of doors to help to prevent them from scuttling in.

18. Light some candles

You probably don’t need too much encouragement to light another candle in your home, but did you know that candles can actually get rid of spiders? Of course, this is definitely the case if you utilise candles full of essential oils and scents similar to the ones we’ve already covered in this guide.

But more than that, spiders hate smoke. And blowing out candles by windows and doors is a great way to ward off these creepy crawlies. Alternatively, you could just light matches every so often and blow the smoke in the direction of the spiders. 


What gets rid of spiders instantly?

'The safest and best way to deal with spiders is to simply pick them up and transfer them gently outside where they can be of benefit,' says John Stewart. Once you've removed them, you can use any of the methods above to stop them from returning.

What's the best spider repellent?

'Your best bet is to mix essential oils, such as tea tree, lavender, peppermint, eucalyptus, and citronella with water in a trigger spray bottle,' says John Stewart. Spray around the floor wall junctions, paying attention to the corners of the rooms. It'll help rid your home of spiders and give it a lovely fragrance.

What month is spider season UK?

While September often offers a welcome relief from the summer sun, the colder mornings and evenings do, unfortunately, signal the start of spider season. Spider season officially kicks off in early September and continues until late October.

During this time, spiders take full advantage of the colder months and come out of hiding to take part in their mating season. Because of this, you may find that there are more spiders than usual in your home during this time. That doesn’t mean that you have to sit back and take it, though.

By using the hacks above, you should be able to keep these spiders at bay.

Millie Hurst
Senior Content Editor

Millie Hurst was Senior Content Editor at Ideal Home from 2020-2022, and is now Section Editor at Homes & Gardens. Before stepping into the world of interiors, she worked as a Senior SEO Editor for News UK in both London and New York. You can usually find her looking up trending terms and finding real-life budget makeovers our readers love. Millie came up with the website's daily dupes article which gives readers ways to curate a stylish home for less.