How To Get Rid Of Maggots In A Dumpster [ THIS WORKS]

Oh boy since you are searching for how to get rid of maggots in a dumpster tells me you are in a bit of a pickle. It’s that time of the year when the maggot problem is real. Seeing those little white crawlers in your trash can or where ever else a lovely fly decided it was the perfect place for a nursery is so gross. But it can’t be ignored.

Dirty trashcan intro image for how to get rid of maggots in a dumpster.

So I’ll get right to the point of telling you how to get rid of the maggot infestation then make sure to read on about how to prevent the maggots. Deal?

Here are the best ways to get rid of live maggots.

Free Farm Goal Planner!!!

➡️Get my proven system for choosing your farm goals so you don’t get burnt out.

My #1 Way To Kill Maggots – Raid

This might seem a little extreme but it is the most effective way as well as the easiest way to get the job done. Yep, I’ve used it before in our outdoor trash cans. It’s a quick spray and your problem is done. Raid is meant for much tougher bugs than a maggot so it’s not difficult. You also don’t run the risk of melting a hole in your plastic bag like some of the other methods do.

I will get to some other methods but the main reason I like this best is it is easily controllable and you don’t have to worry about clothes being ruined when splashing around strong chemicals in a trash can.

Dawn Dish Soap

dish soap in vinegar for killing maggots

The dawn liquid dish soap kills fleas on dogs so it will definitely do the job on maggots.

Fill a pot of water and get it to almost boiling temperature ( If you use a plastic pitcher you will melt it with fully boiling water. Use a pot or wait for just a minute or two before dumping it in the garbage cans) and add about 1/4 cup of soap for every gallon.


If you are pouring hot water into the trash can make sure to take the trash bags out. Or you will melt the trash bags and you will have an even bigger problem. It is best to spray the bags with some kind of chemical so you don’t have a huge mess on your hands.

Pour the mixture of soapy water around the edges of the dumpster or trash bin so it washes the maggots around the upper edges to the down to the bottom of the can. This way you will cover the entire infected area.

Wait for about 10 minutes and then dump out the water and maggots.

Dog shampoo that is formulated to kill disgusting pests is another alternative to dish soap if you don’t have dawn.

Other Home Or All-Purpose Cleaners

Maggots are pretty sensitive critters so any strong chemical you use to clean your home will do the job. 

Something like a bathroom shower cleaner or scrubbing bubbles will work well.

all-purpose cleaning solution

Don’t use toilet bowl cleaner because that could easily eat through your trash can. That is designed to be put on ceramic, not a thin plastic garbage can. 

If all you have is a mild all-purpose cleaner make sure to spray the trash can down a few times. Then take very hot and almost boiling water and dump it in the trash can.

Use Bleach To Kill Maggots

Yes, bleach will kill maggots. If you have a trash can with a lid that will hold the fumes in the can for about 25 minutes you can use this method.

If you don’t have a good lid on the trash can it won’t work as well. 

bleach bottle

DO NOT mix multiple chemicals if you are going to use bleach. You will have a chemistry experiment going on in your trash can if you’re not careful. 

Use equal parts water and bleach to kill the maggot activity.

Do not breathe the toxic fumes.

Helpful FInds ON Amazon

TERRO T800 Garbage Guard Trash Can Insect Killer

The deeply penetrating vapor fills enclosed spaces to kill visible and hiding insects and prevent new infestations. – Lasts up to four months.

Get On Amazon

Dumpster Pro Garbage Deodorizer Maximum Strength

It’s not an insect killer but keeping the odor down will help keep the bugs out of the trash can.

Get It On Amazon

Raid Multi Insect Killer

While raid doesn’t say it is for maggots I have used it a few times on them and it does kill them every time for me.

Get It ON Amazon

Want More Natural Ways To Kill Maggots

Have a maggot infestation in something you don’t really want to be pouring chemicals into. Like organic matter, you are trying to use for gardening or something of that nature. Here are some ideas that will help.

Diatomaceous Earth To Kill Maggots

Diatomaceous Earth is AMAZING it is basically ground-up fossils and it drys out the maggots and any other bugs it comes in contact with and kills them.

If you are trying to get maggots out of dirt or compost that you don’t want to spray chemicals into this is a great option. It can be found in almost any hardware store these days.

Vinegar To Kill Maggots

Apple cider vinegar is very mild and wouldn’t do a whole lot on its own. But it will help if you add 1 part vinegar to 2 parts boiling water. It will disinfect your trashcan and help deodorize it at the same time. 

How Do Maggots Get In The Trash

Well, maggots are fly larvae (baby flies) and your trashcan was deemed the perfect nursery by some female fly looking to lay her eggs. That makes you feel all warm and fuzzy right?

Now it doesn’t take long for fly eggs to hatch so don’t feel bad if you don’t see anything one day and the next day it looks like a rice factory has blown up in your trash can. Because that’s about all it takes for hundreds of maggots to hatch. Fly eggs hatch in 24-48hrs after being layed.

Then these fly larvae are in the pupal stage. This takes anywhere from 14-36 days for the maggots to become adult flies. 

How To Prevent Maggots In The First Place

Flies are the worst in the hot summer months. Smelly and hot is a fly’s favorite environment for maggots. 

The two main reasons fly show up in your trash is to find food or the female flies are looking to lay eggs.

It is extremely important that you do everything you can to keep all types of flies to a minimum because they can cause serious harm to your animals as well. A small scratch can be a breeding ground for flies to lay their eggs in open wounds. Causing bacterial poisoning to your livestock. Often known as fly strike in rabbits.

So if you have some extra nasty garbage be on the lookout. Now unfortunately we really don’t have much in the way of alternative spots to put our trash. So if you can’t handle seeing maggots then give your trashcan a sprits of Raid, insect repellent, or all-purpose cleaning spray if you think there is a good chance flies would like what you have to offer.

Keeping a mixture in a spray bottle close to the trashcan so you can use it on a regular basis will help keep guests away but also keep the trash can smelling a little less ripe.

Keep Your Trash Can Clean

This isn’t fun but it’s going to be key to keeping house flies out of the trash in the warm weather. It’s pretty common for trash cans to have food waste or leakage in the bottom of the bin. 

But if you can keep that clean on a regular basis it won’t be as nasty and will help keep from getting a maggot and fly infestation. 

clean trash cans

Fly Spray

This might be out of your usual products but use a livestock fly spray to repel flies from your trash. Something like Dumar Fly Spray does wonders to keep flies off our livestock so why not spray it in the bottom of your trash can. DuMar fly spray kills and repels stable flies, horse flies, face flies, deer flies, house flies, horn flies, as well as other types of flies

Water-based fly sprays are cheap but oil-based fly sprays last up to two weeks. Check out the fly spray here.

Cover Up Strong Odor

Are you an essential oil lover? They are a great natural method of repelling adult flies so they don’t lay eggs in your garbage bin. Well, they will also come in handy when trying to keep a trash can clean and cover up the smell of rotting organic material. 

Here are some essential oils that will do the job. 

Put Food Scraps To Use

Flies eat what’s left of our food. So if you can put leftover food to good use that will help. Meat scraps are a big fly attracting odor because will their protein.

  • Have Chickens? They are the best garbage disposal on the farm. They can eat old food and even food that is spoiled.
  • Like to garden? Create a compost bin that you can turn into valuable soil. 
  • (Be careful of this next one) If you eat healthier food your dogs wouldn’t mind a snack. Make sure to reduce the amount of pet food you give them if you make a habit of giving them food. It’s a whole lot easier to keep a dog trim than to put them on a diet. 

Don’t But Dead Things In Your Trash

The strong odor that comes from dead animals will attract the flies in seconds because it is a fresh food source for flies. If you can find a way to bury the dead animal if it is going to be several days before the trash man comes.

fish with maggots

How To Clean Up A Trash Can That Had A Maggot Infestation

If you’ve had a problem with maggots, you should start by cleaning out the garbage can. You might need to wait until your next regular trash pick-up day because likely if the maggots have already hatched they are in your trash bags.

If you can’t stand it you can also take all the trash from the trash cans and drop it off at the dump yourself. 

Once The Trash Is Gone

The first thing you need to do is choose a method from above to kill the maggots. 

If you are like me and don’t feel like reaching down into a nasty trash can get yourself a hose with a nozzle that has a jet setting. Spray that trash can down like you a baptizing it and sending it to heaven. 

Spray out any debris that is in the trash can and dump it out. 

Then get some strong cleaner whether that is using a cup of bleach water or something like a bathroom shower cleaner. My favorite is this Mr. Clean spray.

Spray that thing down. Let it sit for 5 minutes and hose the trash can down again. 

If you want to take it a step further and spray the trash can down a second time but scrub it out it shouldn’t be too gross this time. So get yourself a pair of rubber gloves and a cheap scrub brush and scrub down the trash can. 

Let the trashcan dry in the hot sun. This is another natural antibacterial treatment. 

If you want to keep your trashcan clean you can buy trashbags like this that go inside the outdoor trash bags. 

What Do Maggots Look Like

Maggots are a small little worm that is about the size of a grain of rice and is a cream color. Their head is a slight tan color that is pointed for borrowing into trash and debris so they can dig for food to eat. 


Some fly maggots feed on live materials which is why it is so important to keep them at bay around your animals. They will land on your livestock and bite them. Which will turn into an irritation and then a wound. Eventually leads to them laying eggs in the wound which will be very painful and deadly to an animal.

Helpful FInds ON Amazon

TERRO T800 Garbage Guard Trash Can Insect Killer

The deeply penetrating vapor fills enclosed spaces to kill visible and hiding insects and prevent new infestations. – Lasts up to four months.

Get On Amazon

Dumpster Pro Garbage Deodorizer Maximum Strength

It’s not an insect killer but keeping the odor down will help keep the bugs out of the trash can.

Get It On Amazon

Raid Multi Insect Killer

While raid doesn’t say it is for maggots I have used it a few times on them and it does kill them every time for me.

Get It ON Amazon

FAQs About Getting Rid Of Maggots

How Long Do Maggots Live?

The life cycle of a fly isn’t very long. An infestation of maggots can remain for about 10 days. Which is often longer than most of us have our trash at home. 

Will garbage man take garbage with maggots?

The garbage collectors will take the trash if it has maggots but it is kind to do what you can to get rid of them. Would you want to pick up a clean trash can or one full of crawlers that made themselves a home in your household trash?

Does vinegar kill maggots?

Personally, I think a vinegar solution is more of an annoyance rather than something that kills maggots. It would work great to clean the trash can if you add one up of vinegar to every two cups of water. Use vinegar to spray the trash can down every time the garbage pick-up has come before you throw another garbage bag into the can.

Will bleach kill maggots?

Yes, if you have a trashcan with an airtight lid preferably. The fumes will kill the maggots and clean your trashcan at the same time.

How To Kill Maggots Immediately

Honestly, I think the best way to kill maggots is a strong bug spray-like raid would be your best option. It works in seconds.

How Do You Get Maggots?

Thankfully maggots are not going to hurt people unless you have an open wound, live in absolute filth, and let flies land on you without swatting them off. 

If you leave rotten food in an open space for flies to get into. Animal waste like dog poop or a manure pill is going to be a favorite spot for flies to lay their eggs. 

Another way you might find them in your home is if food is eaten in the bedroom or another part of the house and the leftovers are not taken to the kitchen or trash bin. (hint, the leftover sandwich under your kid’s bed)


I hope these tips helped you with maggot control. Its extremely important to keep the adult fly away from your home because either it is fruit flies, blow flies, or some other type of fly they can be extremely nasty critters. Biting and causing some serious issues. The good news is they are pretty easily gotten rid of with chemical methods and repelled with natural remedies.

When the warmer weather comes around cleaning your trash can is an important step in your spring cleaning. Both indoor and outdoor use trash cans. 

If you see a lot of flies in the barn or your living area you will end up with more if you don’t do something about it. 

Prevention is the best cure. Keep an eye out for a build-up of waste or food.  

Similar Posts