what works best on a patio for mosquito repellent

Patio Mosquito Repellent

What Works Best On a Patio for Mosquito Repellent?

Nothing will ruin your backyard barbeque or watching a movie on your outdoor television than a swarm of hungry mosquitos looking for dinner or afternoon snack.  As hosts and hostesses, we want to welcome our guests into an outdoor space that is comfortable and issue-free.  Unfortunately, a backyard mosquito always misses the memo reminding it that it is not invited.

Pre-party and get-together planning should encompass more than just food and drink. You have to take into consideration the environment and everything that includes.  Pests are a part of any outdoor venue and taking care to ensure that they don’t pose a problem for your guests is one of those thankless jobs. And after all your hard work on your outdoor kitchen and entertaining space, you don’t want to have to retreat indoors because the bugs are so bad it’s intolerable outside.

Recently, we had occasion to get ideas for pest repellents from an active group of backyard barbeque enthusiasts as to their favorite ways to get rid of mosquitos on patios, decks and yards.  None of the respondents had any stake in their responses – that is, they weren’t getting paid for their opinion nor are we.  They were just sharing their experience with the solution they recommended in the spirit of helping others solve a difficult problem – neighbor helping neighbor over the fence, so to speak.

We list the 18 bug control strategies in no particular order then we show you their rankings from the panel. We trust that you will be able to source your favorite solution from whichever vendor you trust, whether online or local retailer.  Some of the products were new to us as no one retailer we visited carries all these products in their store.  Online, however, all are available.

What we appreciate, and hope you will too, is the enthusiasm that each respondent had for their particular mosquito elimination solution. There are electric mosquito repellents, repellent candle options, repellent lantern choices as well as other clever devices from which to choose.

Here are their 18 best ideas for repelling mosquitos on a patio or outdoor deck from our panel followed by their rankings as effective bug zappers.

Garlic Barrier

A favorite of organic farmers and golf courses countrywide, Garlic Barrier is a strong liquid garlic that repels mosquitoes naturally and effectively.  It is a yard spray – spray it anywhere you need to repel insects including pesky mosquitoes. It also used as a control spray to keep animals away from crops without adding any taste to the fruit or vegetables.

Cutter Lawn Spray aka Cutter Backyard Bug Control Spray

This product attaches to a garden hose and is sprayed onto your lawn and plants where mosquitoes live and breed. Its active ingredient is Lambda-Cyhalothrin, a synthetic derivative of the natural insecticide in chrysanthemum plants.  Wait until vapors are gone and the ground is dry before letting children and pets on the grass.

Mosquito Barrier Backyard Bug Control

This natural insecticide uses liquid garlic’s sulfur component to repel mosquitoes.  It is safe for children and pets and fish.  It suffocates mosquitoes breeding in standing water.  In the air, the odor of the garlic keeps mosquitoes away but becomes undetectable to people in a few minutes after spraying.  This product is sold in quarts and gallon containers and will last a whole season.

MosquitoNix System

This is a residential service similar to MosquitoJoe that operates in the southeast U.S. and Texas. They offer a misting system that is available in aerosol cans for home use as well as technician-applied fogging treatments that cover the whole yard.

Mosquito Magnet

The Mosquito Magnet appliance is fueled by propane tanks for home use.  Its process is to attract mosquitoes with carbon dioxide, heat and moisture, then suck in and trap the mosquitoes in a holding container for later disposal.  The mosquito trap runs continuously and will cover a one acre area. It is designed to break the breeding cycle of mosquitoes and is increasingly effective the more it is continuously run.

PIC Mosquito Coil Repellent

PIC units are designed for patios and porches. When you burn the coil, pyrethrins are released into the air creating a bug free radius zone about 10 feet in diameter when there’s no wind.  Each coil lasts about 5-7 hours burn time.  The product has been around for more than 60 years. Take care to use their stands to keep them off your patio surfaces. Other brands of coils were not mentioned, although OFF and Coleman make similar products.

The same formula is also available in incense sticks form.


Mosquitoes are very light in weight and cannot stay aloft in high winds for very long. You’ve probably noticed that mosquitoes aren’t bad on very windy days. Placing several fans on ‘high’ around your patio area to maintain a windy environment will keep the bugs away from you and your guests without the use of pesticides or other chemical mosquito repellents for yards.

Mosquito Curtains

It is possible to have a screened in area on your patio or balcony without going to the time and expense of a permanent installation of screens.  Mosquito curtains are a solution that installs quickly on a track and can be opened or closed depending on how bad the mosquitoes are. A similar solution can be found with mosquito netting that you can buy pre-made that fits over a patio umbrella.  This netting is inexpensive and will get you through to the first frost.

DEET Skin Spray

The USEPA approved DEET for use on the skin for all ages as insect repellents.  It is safe and effective if used according to directions and only used topically. As the active ingredient in most bug sprays, exercise caution when using the product around your face as it is harmful if it gets in your eyes.  Do not confuse this product with DDT, a different chemical insecticide which is banned.

Cyonara Patio Shield

The .5% Lambda-Cyhalothrun formulation is a synthetic insecticide which is known to be longer acting than natural pyrethrins in the control of insects.  Cyhalothrin disrupts the nervous system in insects which results in death as an effective means of mosquito control. This is a ready to spray product for use outdoors only as a mosquito killer. While not technically a feature, this product has the best name of all.

Spartan Mosquito Eradicator

The active ingredient in the Spartan Mosquito Eradicator is boric acid. The eradicator unit is filled with a powder which is activated when warm water is added.  The unit hangs in the yard, attracts mosquitoes which are killed when the boric acid solution is consumed. This is a set and forget system and needs to be placed 80 feet away from where people will be gathering.

Talstar P

Talstar P is a professional grade insecticide patio shield with the active ingredient bifenthrin which is a chemical derivitive similar to  that found in chrysanthemum plants.  It is a pyrethroid which disrupts the nervous system of mosquitoes resulting in death.

Appropriate for commercial and residential use both indoors and outdoors.  It is pet safe when dry and is applied with a portable mosquito sprayer or garden sprayer.

Mosquito Sniper System

This system consists of three parts, a a garden tank sprayer, a leaf blower and a nozzle to dispense professional grade insect repellents.  The system allows the insecticide to reach under plants and leaves where mosquitoes hide in the yard thanks to the leaf blower. Essentially your own leaf blower becomes a mist blower so you can kill the pests where they live and is intended to replace professional mosquito service at a fraction of the cost for an equally effective mosquito repellent.

Bifen IT Mist

Bifenthrin is a type of organic compound called a pyrethrin which is produced by the flowers of the chrysanthemum plant. In household concentrations, it is safe to use inside and outside but highly toxic to mosquitoes, ants, and other insects.  It is one of the more common insecticides and it is also used by professional exterminators in a different concentration.  Spray a 7.9% concentration around your patio. Will not leave a residue.

DynaTrap Outdoor Mosquito Repeller

This implement uses science to attract, trap and kill mosquitos.  The unit lures mosquitos using UV light and carbon dioxide (what you exhale when you breathe and what helps mosquitos find you).  A fan then pulls the mosquito into an inescapable trap where it eventually dies from dehydration.  These are electric bug zappers so you need to have access to a socket nearby.

Plant List That Naturally Repels Mosquitos

Among the plants that have been mentioned that help repel mosquitos are citronella, lemongrass, thyme, lavender, lemon eucalyptus and mint.  If  you are looking for a natural solution to the mosquito problem in your yard, a lot of these plants strategically placed will help keep your patio mosquito population down.

Permethrin 10

Permetrin 10 is a synthetic chemical derived from the chrysanthemum plant. It can kill a lot of pests including fleas, ticks, flies and mosquitos. Not surprisingly, you can get it at a farm supply store as it is used in barns to get rid of flies. It’s bug repelling formula is safe around pets and kids once dry. Apply with a pump sprayer and let it dry. Interestingly, permethrin is the active ingredient in lice shampoo which it also kills and topical creams used to relieve itch. Technically it’s not a repellent, it actually kills 55 different types of insects.  When used correctly, it can last 6 weeks, but you may need to reapply after a rain.

Thermacell Repellents

Hunters, fishermen and women, bbq grillmasters and backpackers all rave about the zone of protection that Thermocell provides which is about a 15 foot radius zone mosquito repeller around the device. In a nutshell, this is how the Thermacell mosquito repelling device works.

The appliance has repellent mats which are impregnated with the allethrin repellent.  Allethrin is a synthetic version of the natural repellents in chrysanthemum plants similar to the chemicals used in #2 above. There is a fuel cartridge that provides heat which activates the repellent in the mat and disperses it in the air.

Fans call it a ‘little miracle’. The unit itself is unobtrusive and you can put several around your patio or cooking space and not be aware that they are there, doing their job silently but effectively.  There is no odor, no flame, and no mess to clean up after.

Top 9 Panel Rankings

1.Thermacell Patio Shield Mosquito Repeller

2.Bifen IT


4.Spartan Mosquito Eradicator

5.Mosquito Magnet

6.Cutter Backyard Bug Control Lawn Spray



9.Permethrin 10

If you’ve discovered your citronella candle or other mosquito repellent candle isn’t doing its job effectively, try one of the above tried and true methods.  Your family and guests will thank you and your outdoor event won’t be ruined by a mosquito invasion.

As always, do your homework as to the safety and suitability of each of the suggested mosquito repellents recommended by the panel.  Your experience may differ.