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The burning of aromatic plant materials to keep away swarms of mosquitoes has been an integral part of many cultural traditions around the world, but it wasn’t until the early 1900’s that the distinctively shaped mosquito coil was born – thanks to Japanese entrepreneurs Eiichiro and Yuki Ueyama and their Katori Senko (Mosquito Killing Incense).

How do they work?

Mosquito coils produce a smoke that confuses mosquitoes, much like citronella candles. Mosquito coils, however, contain insecticides. The insecticide works effectively to kill (or at least “knock down”) the mosquitoes, while the aromatic substances (such as citronella) will repel mosquitoes or reduce the likelihood of them biting. Mosquito coils are expected to burn slowly once the coil is lit which gradually releases the insecticide. There is enough evidence to show that when used outdoors, burning a mosquito coil will assist in reducing mosquito bites, but they should be used judiciously. Using them in conjunction with topical insect repellents will provide the best protection.

Coghlans Mosquito Coils – each coil burns for up to 8 hours and contains 0.20% D-CIS Trans Allethrin. Each pack contains 10 coils and 2 stands.

Lifesystems Mosquito Coils – each coil burns for up to 6.5 hours and contains 0.036% Prallethrin. Each pack contains 10 coils and 2 stands.

Advantages of using mosquito coils

The main advantage of mosquito coils are that they allow you to repel or kill mosquitoes without the need to put anything onto your skin. Even if the mosquitoes are not killed, the smoke will confuse them thus reducing the chances of them biting you.

Other advantages are that they are relatively cost-effective and have long burn times, with each coil burning for around 6-8 hours.

How to use

Mosquito coils usually come packaged as pairs, so first you will need to separate them. Start from the middle of the coils and gently pry each coil open in different directions. Trace the coil pattern with the pulling motion until the pair come apart from each other.

Once they are apart, light the end of one coil, letting it smolder to form an ember. After you have done this, you should place it on the stable stand provide or you may wish to purchase a holder – click here to buy. It may be helpful to place a plate or metal tray underneath to catch the coil ash.

Please note – mosquito coils should be kept away from anything flammable when in use and should not be left to burn unattended.

Mosquito coils are recommended for outdoor use only.