Living in a house with high ceilings and clerestory windows is usually a good thing, but when flying or crawling pests -such as flies and spiders- invade the house, they tend to head up to the high corners, out of reach of the bug spray.
You can try to pump clouds of spray into the air and hope it reaches high enough, but that’s wasteful, ineffective and not healthy. Or you can climb on a chair and try to reach, but the flies just fly away, spiders tend to drop on you, and you’re risking a fall.
I pondered the problem and came up with a simple extension handle for a can of fly or spider spray to deliver a burst of spray right at the pests.
This could also be used outside to put surface spray under high eaves etc- but please consider the wildlife such as birds who may feed on the bugs and spiders, before you spray poison around.
Step 1: What You Need
What You Need(fig 1)
1. A long piece of dowel or old curtain rod
3. A small clothes peg
4. Insect or spider spray- see picture for can type (needs to have the “enclosed” type top – see fig.2). You can get a better quality spray as you only need a small amount at a time, since you are spraying right at your pest, not vaguely somewhere near it!
5. Tin can – tall, thin type to fit the spray can
6. Cardboard- e.g. cereal box
7. Duct tape
9. Small piece of Blu-tak/plasticine
10. Rubber band
Step 2: Get the Can Ready for the Holder
Empty and wash & dry your can. Check that the spray can will sit comfortably inside it
Step 3: Make the Collar for the Stick
1. Cut a piece of card about 4 inches (12 cm ) X 31/2 inches (4cm). Fold it in half and make a crease. Fig 4
2. Wrap the card around one end of your stick to make a cylinder. Check that the stick is snug in the cylinder, but not tight. Tape the bottom of the cylinder closed. Fig.5,6
3. Cut slits all the way around the cylinder, down to the crease, then open out the flaps you have made. Place on the bottom of the can. Fig.7,8,9
4. Tape the flaps onto the bottom of the can. Fig.10,11
5. Check that your stick fits in the collar. Fig.12
Step 4: Reinforce the Collar If Necessary
Your collar won’t be strong enough for a heavy can of bug spray, so reinforce the collar with pieces of folded card- first one way, then the other. Fig. 13,14.
Tape it up well. Fig.15
Step 5: Fit the Lever - Facing Away From You!
Take your peg apart and use one half as the lever to activate the spray:
Fig 16. Insert the tapered end into the top, as in the photo. *MAKE SURE THE SPRAY CAN IS ALWAYS FACING AWAY FROM YOU WHEN YOU ARE FIDDLING WITH IT!!!*
Check that the peg fits into the gap, reasonably securely, so that a little pressure on the end nearest you will press the spray button. Use a little blu-tak or plasticine to help hold it in place if you like - Fig.17.
Make sure the lower end of the peg doesn’t go so far through the gap that it obscures the spray nozzle (trim it if you need to). You may need to juggle it or even trim it to fit well.
Step 6: Add the String
1 Tie one end of the string to the peg lever- not too far up, but so that pulling on the string will activate the spray. Fig. 18
2. You may want to put a rubber band around the can, over the string, to keep the string action close to the can. Fig 19.
3. Check that the string is long enough to reach the full length of the stick.
Step 7: Try It Out!
Put your spray can into the can holder and carefully fit the peg lever into place.
Insert the stick into the collar under the holder, and hoist up your sprayer to the spot you want to spray- and gently pull the string down, not out (or you will pull the peg out).
You may take a few goes to get used to the action, and your peg lever may come out at first, but once you adjust it, you should have an efficient “high spray” to get all those bugs!
Note- in the photo, it's not being held up very high -to fit into the photo better. It will go much higher as long as you have a long handle!
Remember:cover any fish tanks etc before you spray, and
move away from the overhead spray before you breathe in!