In one word, Thermacell
This is going to sound like an advertisement, but we strongly believe in the product and you know that we tell it like it is. I'm also going to get into the details of how this product works. And some of you may have misconceptions that caused you not to buy the product, and I want to explain the research that I did.
We originally found out about the Thermacell product line in the summer of 2010. The mosquitoes at the KOA near Kingston, Ontario where we were staying for the summer were so bad that you couldn't sit outside. Even with repellent on, they would be harassing you. Someone recommended a Thermacell and the very next day we went out and bought one.
That evening, I followed the instructions and lit up the Thermacell, giving it the required 15 minutes to take effect. The mosquitoes had been thick, and I doubted anything would work. But without any repellent on, we were able to sit outside comfortably. I did receive one or two bites, but considering how bad they had been, I was sold that this product worked as advertised.
We left that Thermacell at Sturgeon Lake last year because we thought we were going to return there. So we bought a new one this spring. We have yet to use it though, because the problem hasn't been nearly as bad here as it was up there!
We wanted to have one on hand, just in case!
So, let me tell you how it works.
First of all, they call it a "Mosquito Repellent", and that's not quite true. It actually is a mosquito killer. Not that we have a problem with that, but some people do. The active ingredient is called Allethrin, and yes...it's a pesticide. Some people get all bent out of shape when they see that word along with warnings on the box that say Harmful if inhaled, do not breath vapours and Remove and wash contaminated clothing before reuse.
So I did some research.
Allethrin is a man made copy of a naturally occurring pesticide that is found in the chrysanthemum flower.
I found an article where they interviewed one of the founders of the product and he addresses the toxicity of the amount of Allethrin in the Thermacell. Rather than reprint the whole thing, I'll tell you the basics. Essentially the EPA forces them to put these warnings on the box regardless of the amount of chemical in the product. It turns out that you could use this product in an enclosed room for eight hours straight and still be 2,000 to 3,000 x less than the toxicity limit for humans!
The Thermacell comes with little pads, then when heated by a tiny butane cartridge release the Allethrin into the surrounding area.
Interestingly, we found products containing Allethrin approved for indoor use in South Africa. We used them a couple of times and they're very popular because they simply plug into a wall outlet in the room you're in.
I've done enough research to satisfy myself that the product is harmless. If you feel otherwise, then go ahead and slather yourself with DEET...as if that's better!
When you buy a Thermacell (there are different varieties) they come with three pads, and one butane cartridge. The pads last from three to four hours each, and the butane lasts for about 12 hours. Then, you need to buy refills. We have one on hand just in case...
You can buy standard refills such as the one in my hand, or bulk packs that contain more.
And yes, you can buy the different Thermacells through our Amazon Affiliate links.
And yes, some of them happen on be on sale. Although that's just a lucky coincidence. I didn't even know that until I had written the article!
If I was to buy another one, I would buy the lantern...
And here is the link to the refill kits, which also are on sale...
Happy Mosquito hunting!! I know for a fact that some of you already use the Thermacell. What do you think of the product, and what is your experience with it??