6 Easy Tips to Keep Beetles Out of Your Swimming Pool

Japanese Beetle By Swimming Pool

Many people look forward to taking a dip in their pool once it starts to get warm outside. However, sometimes pool owners are left with an unsightly swarm of beetles in their pool. Luckily, there are some simple things that you can do to prevent and get rid of these pests.

As a general rule, beetles are attracted to swimming pools in search of food and warm pool water. To prevent beetles from getting into your pool, you should keep your pool clean of debris, use a pool cover when it’s not in use, maintain proper chlorine levels and keep plants away from your swimming pool.

Read on to find out how you can keep beetles out of your swimming pool. We will be giving you a step-by-step guide on how you can keep beetles out of your pool. We will also be giving you some tips on how you can prevent beetles from coming back to your pool and keep them out for good!

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Why Are Beetles Attracted to Your Swimming Pool?

Beetles are attracted to swimming pools for different reasons. Some beetles are designed to thrive in water, and this is where their food source is. Most water beetles eat smaller bugs that get trapped in the water.

Other times beetles are attracted to swimming pools because they are warm. This is usually the case for those with heated pools or underwater pool lights that emit a lot of heat. Although beetles are not typically attracted to light, they are very much attracted to things that are warm. For this reason, beetles may fall into pools by accident if they have warm lights right next to the pool’s edge.

In addition to this, sometimes beetles and other bugs that are not meant to be in water make their way into our pools completely by accident. It is possible that they were going after food that fell into the water, or that they simply just landed there by mistake and became trapped.

Types of Beetles Most Commonly Found in Swimming Pools

Although you could technically find any type of insect in your pool, the following beetles are among some of the most commonly found in pools. These include Japanese beetles, Dicing beetles, Whirligig beetles, and other types  of water beetles. Most of these beetles can swim and thrive in water environments. The only exception to this on our list is Japanese beetles.

Although Japanese beetles are not meant to be in water and are usually drowned when we find them inside of our swimming pools, they are such a common garden pest that they are commonly found in pools. These beetles almost always end up there by mistake.

Japanese Beetles

These metallic green beetles are considered to be an invasive species in the United States. Japanese beetles and their grubs can do a lot of damage to gardens. This is because Japanese beetle grubs feed on grass roots, and flowers, fruits, and leaves of many plants. Therefore, they can not only damage specific plants but lawns as well.

This beetle can be found throughout most of the U.S. Interestingly, Japanese beetles usually find their way into swimming pools by mistake. They either landed there accidentally or they were going after a leaf, flower, or piece of fruit that fell into the swimming pool’s water.

Diving Beetles

Diving beetles are a type of water beetle that is commonly found throughout the U.S. Although these beetles thrive in slow-moving and standing water environments, excessive amounts of salt and chemicals tend to kill and repel these insects.

Therefore, if you have a saltwater pool or add the recommended amount of chlorine to your freshwater pool then these beetles are fairly easy to get rid of. Diving beetles are usually brown in color and can be found swimming in water or floating on its surface.

Whirligig Beetles

Like Diving beetles, whirligig beetles are water beetles, which means they thrive in water environments that involve standing or slow moving water.

For this reason they are commonly found in lakes, slow moving rivers, and sometimes swimming pools throughout North America. These small beetles are oval shaped, black in color, and can usually be found floating on the surface of the water. However, they can also swim and dive underneath the water.

Whirligig beetles usually do this when they are hunting for food, which is smaller insects that make their way into the water. So if you have other insects floating in your pool, you’ll be more likely to have whirling beetles in your pool as a result.

6 Steps to Keep Beetles Out of Your Swimming Pool

There are many steps involved when it comes to getting beetles out of your pool, especially if there’s an uninvited beetle pool party going on in your backyard!

The first step is to put preventative measures in place to ensure that these beetles are less likely to make their way back into your swimming pool.

The next step is to use insecticides. You should only do this when the preventative measures have not worked. While insecticides are fine to use on many occasions, it’s always best practice to use natural methods at first and see if that can alleviate the problem for the long haul on its own.

So, here’s the down-low.

In short, these preventative measures include keeping your pool clean, having a pool cover on your pool when it is not in use, and keeping plants such as trees and bushes away from your pool.

In addition to this, you can use some natural insect repellents to keep beetles and other bugs away.

Now for the detailed version, here are six steps you can take to prevent beetles from getting in your pool.

Keep Your Pool Clean

The first thing that you should do when trying to prevent beetles, and other insects, from getting into your pool is to keep it clean. This includes skimming it daily, vacuuming when needed, and having the recommended amount of chlorine in your pool at all times.

This will not only remove beetles from your pool, but keeping your pool clean will also eliminate things from your pool that beetles eat including: other insects, leaves, pieces of fruit, and flowers.

Have the Recommended Amount of Chlorine in Your Pool

It is crucial to have the recommended amount of chlorine in your pool at all times.

This not only keeps your pool clean, it can also deter some water beetles such as Diving beetles and Whirligig beetles from staying in your pool. That is if they end up going into your swimming pool at all!

Chlorine works by raising the pH of your pool water, which in turn, will help deter beetles from your pool by keeping it free of scum. The recommended pH for pool water is between 7.2 and 7.6, as these levels are not harsh on our eyes and skin, but still keep the swimming pool clean.

You can test the pH level of your pool water with test strips, and you should test your pool water’s pH twice a day. If you are looking for some quality pH strips, JNW Direct Pool and Spa Test Strips are a great option!

If your pH is below the recommended lowest level of 7.2, all you need to do is add a bit more chlorine. You may want to double check if your chlorine feeder is big enough for your pool as well.

If your pH level is too high and above the recommended pH level of 7.6, then there are several things that you should do. If you have an automatic chlorine feeder, you will need to turn it off. You will also need to make sure it is appropriate for the sized pool that you have. Lastly, you may need to dilute your pool water by adding more unchlorinated water to it.

Keep Your Pool Covered When It’s Not Being Used

To prevent beetles, leaves, flowers, fruits, and other insects from getting into your pool you should keep it covered with a pool cover when it is not in use. This will also greatly limit the amount of daily cleanup you will need to do.

Better yet, there are also pool covers that have the ability to retain heat absorbed through the sun, and transfer that heat to the pool. Thus, when you go to take a dip, you’ll have a nice warm body of water to splash into! All while keeping bugs out of your pool in the process.

One of the more popular covers is the Sun2Solar Rectangle Solar Cover, as it’ll perform the dual task of warming your pool AND keeping bugs out in the process. Really, though, any pool cover will do, just as long as it provides a barrier over the water in the pool.

Keep Plants Away From Your Pool

As we have mentioned previously, Japanese beetles feed off of various parts of many different plants. These include plant leaves, flowers, and even fruits. Therefore, it is best to keep plants far enough away from your pool so that these things do not frequently get into your pool water.

When leaves, flowers, and fruits are out of your pool then Japanese beetles will be less likely to make their way into your pool water!

Use a Natural Insect Repellent

There are many natural insect repellents out there for beetles once you take a gander.

Although these are mostly geared toward Japanese beetles and other common pests such as ticks and mosquitos, they can also be helpful with repelling other insects. Here are a few great options for natural and effective beetle repellents you can use around your backyard.

Use these, and you should be setting yourself for some good ol’ fashioned beetle repelling!

Bug Soother Natural Insect Repellent & Deterrent with Essential Oils

Bug Soother can work on Japanese beetles and other common garden pests such as fruit flies and mosquitoes. It’s designed to be applied DIRECTLY to the skin, as opposed to nearby landscaping.

Due to its all-natural formula of essential oils, you don’t have to deal with any nasty chemicals here as well.

You still need to use the spray properly in accordance with the instructions, of course, but it’s DEET-free as well, in case that’s what you’re looking for.

Better yet, it comes in a large 1-gallon container, so you shouldn’t need to restock too often unless your bug population is getting out of hand!

Wondercide Outdoor Pest Control Spray with Natural Essential Oils

Yet another insect repellent that has an all natural formula of essential oils, Wondercide’s spray has been proven to work for Japanese beetles among other common insect pests such as crickets, roaches, and flies.

Unlike the Bug Soother spray above, Wondercide’s spray is designed to be sprayed on patios, lawn, and surfaces only.

Again, no harsh chemicals here, as it’s naturally derived from essential oils with a primary base of cedarwood oil.

Use Insecticides When Necessary

There may be times where you will need to use an insecticide in order to get rid of your bug problem around your swimming pool, especially if you have a large infestation on your hands!

Japanese beetles, and sometimes even the prey of water beetles, can quickly become out of hand if not treated quickly. Here are five of the best insecticides on the market that work for Japanese beetles along with some other common insects.

For instance, Harris Home Pest Control Beetle and Boxelder Spray has been reported to be very effective against Japanese beetles. This product has been EPA-registered for home use, but again, it’s still an insecticide and needs to be used properly.

Additionally, Bonide’s (BND196) Japanese Beetle Spray is designed, well, directly for Japanese beetles! It comes to your door ready to spray, and there is no mixing or diluting involved here and can be used indoors and outdoors with proper ventilation and equipment.

With Bonide’s spray, it’s designed to be used on foliage as well. So, if you have a beetle issue nearby your pool thats stemming nearby flowers – this may be a good tool for your sitation.

Remember, when spraying any insecticide you NEED and should be doing so with proper ventilation and equipment. You can read more about proper spraying equipment from Montana State University’s Pesticide Education Program by visiting here.

Of course, you may need to seek professional help if your problem is extreme, located inside of your home, or if all other homes and store-bought remedies you have tried just are not working.

That’s a Wrap!

Having beetles in your swimming pool can quickly become a problem. Luckily, there are several easy things that you can do to prevent beetles from getting into your swimming pool and eliminate them if they are already there.

To prevent beetles from getting into your pool, you need to make sure that you are keeping your pool clean. This involves skimming your pool daily, vacuuming your pool when needed, and keeping your pool’s chlorine level within the recommended parameters.

In addition, keeping a cover on your pool when it is not being used can greatly reduce your chances of beetles and it will reduce the amount of daily cleanup you will need to do. You should also keep plants and pool lights as far away from the pool’s edge as possible.

Although insect repellents can be effective at preventing beetles from getting into swimming pools, some may require the use of an insecticide to eliminate their beetle problem. You should always follow instructions and manufacturer recommendations as closely as possible.

Remember, don’t hesistate to reach out to a local professional exterminator if you feel the beetles in your pool are just a bit much!


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Fulcher, A. F., Ranney, T. G., Burton, J. D., & Walgenbach, J. F. (1998). Japanese Beetles. HortScience, 33(5), 862-865.

Loughrin, J. H., Potter, D. A., & Hamilton-Kemp, T. R. (1998). Attraction of Japanese beetles (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae) to host plant volatiles in field trapping experiments. Environmental entomology, 27(2), 395-400.

Voise, J., & Casas, J. (2010). The management of fluid and wave resistances by whirligig beetles. Journal of The Royal Society Interface, 7(43), 343-352.

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