Long skinny black bugs in house - Earwigs

7 Long Skinny Black Bugs In House [One Looks Scary]

Bugs come in different shapes and sizes. And not all of them are round or oval.

Some bugs are skinny and long. At times, you’ll confuse them with worms, but they are not.

In this guide, you’ll find seven long skinny black bugs in house that make a sudden appearance in your home.

You’ll learn why they sneak inside your home and how.

Plus, you’ll get to know hacks to get rid of these long black bugs and stop them from entering your home.

And a lot more. 

Keep reading.

Earwigs – The Scary Looking Long Skinny Black Bug In House

Long skinny black bugs in house - Earwigs

The bug that you’re about to find outlooks scary and aggressive. This bug has strong pincers at the end of its abdomen.

Those pincers trick many people into thinking of them as a scorpion.

We’re talking about earwigs. Earwigs are thin, long, and many of them are blackish. 

What are earwigs?

Earwigs are insects that belong to the family Order Dermaptera. And they’re garden bugs.

Earwigs are ⅝ inches in length. They’ve got a thin, long, and flat body. 

Earwigs are not pitch black. The precise color of earwigs is reddish or reddish-black. But on looking at them from the top, earwigs appear as a thin long black bug.

On their head, there’s a visible pair of antennae. And the chewing mouthparts of earwigs are also pretty visible.

Earwigs have a forceps-like protrusion at the rear of their abdomen. These are known as pincers. Earwigs use the pincers for self-defense.

Male earwigs are more extended and stouter than female earwigs. The pincers of male earwigs are strong and have more gaps between them than the pincers of female earwigs.

In your yard or garden, earwigs hunt small insects or feed on plant matter.

Earwigs will eat the leaves of many vegetable and flower plants. They also eat seedlings.

Earwigs’ activities in your garden are at their peak from June to October. 

If earwigs are in your garden, you’ll find holes in plants that may give you an impression that slugs and cutworms are eating on your plants.

In your yard or garden, earwigs will hide underneath thick leaves, rocks, mulches, firewoods, and in the foliage. They’re moisture-loving bugs, so they stick around in damp places.

But why do earwigs enter your home?

This long skinny black bug enters homes when the weather outside becomes too extreme for it to deal with.

It means when the temperature outside becomes too cold, too hot, or too wet, earwigs will enter your home.

To escape the extreme weather outdoors, earwigs will enter your home to find temperate places to live, hide, and escape the harsh weather outdoors.

As they’re moisture-seeking bugs, earwigs will head out to places that are damp in your home.

That’s why it’s pretty common to find earwigs in places like the bathroom, kitchen, laundry room, and basement. 

Earwigs are nocturnal bugs. They hide during the day.

Inside your home, earwigs will hide in the tiny gaps and cracks of the damp areas of your home. 

They’ll come out at night looking to hunt other tiny bugs that are hiding inside your house.

So, how do earwigs enter your home?

When the temperature outdoors drops or peaks up, earwigs start to move close to your home, looking for temperate places to live.

Lack of wetness outdoors is also one of the reasons for this behavior of earwigs.

Earwigs enter homes through the gaps and cracks on your home’s walls, doors, windows, and foundation. 

They’ll also enter homes through crawl spaces and vents in the attic.

Surprisingly, you can also introduce earwigs into your home!

How? Introducing plants that have earwigs hiding in them is one of the ways that you can bring earwigs home.

Also, when you move in blocks of firewood from your yard, any cardboard boxes that were lying outside, you can bring earwigs hiding in them into your home.

Lights coming out of your home also attract earwigs. So, they can enter your home attracted by the light.

The most common months when earwigs enter your home are the summer and winter months. 

So, from June to August, and starting from October till late spring, earwigs can sneak inside your home.

Do Earwigs Bite Humans?

Do earwigs bite

Earwigs don’t bite humans. But if you try to handle them or poke them in the wrong way, they’ll insert their pincers into your skin.

The best part is that even if they do, it’s pretty harmless. It’s because earwigs don’t carry any venom, and their pincers don’t penetrate your skin.

If an earwig bites you, then there’s nothing to worry about. A rub of an antiseptic lotion on the bitten area is enough. 

You may experience a slight pinch when an earwig bites you. But it’s not painful, and you won’t get any type of rashes or skin infections like dermatitis.

Earwigs also don’t carry any significant threat to your plants in your yard or garden. They don’t cause any harm to big flower or vegetable plants apart from chewing on their leaves a bit.

But for seedlings, earwigs are a severe threat.

Do Earwigs Cause Any Damage To Your Home?

Earwigs look menacing. But they’re actually harmless. It doesn’t cause any damage to your home.

Earwigs don’t carry any infestation risk. It means that they can’t breed inside your home. 

And secondly, which is essential, is that your home isn’t an ideal habitat for earwigs.

Many of them don’t survive for long.

Earwigs tend to leave homes when the weather outdoors becomes suitable for them.

Silverfish – Small Thin Black Bug In House

Tiny Long think black bug in house - silverfish

Another moisture-seeking bug that is thin, long, skinny, but tiny enters your home is the silverfish.

Silverfish look like small shrimps. Their shape is tear-dropped, which means that it’s broader at the top and tapers down at the bottom. 

A mature adult silverfish grows up to 0.5 – 1 inch in length.

Silverfish come in three colors – silver, gray, and blackish. Silverfish are not pitch black.

But given the fact that they hide in muddy moist, and damp places can make them look a bit blacker than they are.

Silverfish also have scales on their abdomen that give it an appearance of a fish or shrimp.

That’s how they get their name as silverfish, silver in color, and fish-like scaly abdomen.

There are three appendages at the rear end of the abdomen of the silverfish. One of the appendages runs straight from the abdomen.

And the other two appendages extend out to the left and right. You’d also notice a pair of antennae at its head spreading out in opposite directions.

If silverfish lose their appendages and antennae, they can grow them back in a matter of a few weeks.

Where Do Silverfish Live?

Silverfish are outdoor bugs in general, but they can live equally well if they’re indoors.

Outdoors, silverfish have the same habitat as the earwigs have.

Silverfish will live in damp places underneath the rocks, woodpiles, mulch beds, and foliage.

Silverfish are nocturnal bugs. They’ll stay hidden and inactive in their hiding places during the day.

How And Why Silverfish Enter Homes?

Silverfish - Small thin black bug in house

Silverfish are moisture-seeking bugs. They’ve got the same reasons to enter homes as the earwigs have. 

When the weather outdoors becomes too dry, then they’ll look out for cooler and damper places to live. 

That’s when they sneak inside your homes.

Inside your home, silverfish will lookout for damp places. So, your bathroom and basements are their prime real estate to begin a new life.

Silverfish will enter homes through the cracks on the walls, windows, and doors.

You can also bring them in by bringing in plant pots, newspaper piles, or pieces of wood from the outside.

Outdoors silverfish eat plant matter and dead insects. But they don’t cause any damage to the plants in your yard or garden.

Whereas indoors, silverfish have a varied diet.

Do Silverfish Cause Any Damage Inside Your Home?

The eating habits of silverfish can cause some damage inside your home.

Inside your home, silverfish will feed on things high on starch and cellulose. So, silverfish will eat fabric, pages of books, and wood.

But they don’t cause massive damage to these things. You’ll observe tiny holes, mostly on paper and fabric, when silverfish feed on them.

To the wood, silverfish cause no to very minimal damage.

Indoors, silverfish can also eat sugar, silk, cotton, stored cereals and grains, dry meat, and other dead insects and silverfish.

Silverfish can also eat on the adhesive that binds wallpapers, books, drapes and curtains, and furniture coverings.

Inside your home, silverfish can breed. When their numbers increase, they soon become a nuisance inside your home.

So, it’s always a good idea to prevent them from entering your home and get rid of them.

Do Silverfish Bite Humans?

No, silverfish don’t bite humans. Their mouth is too weak to penetrate your skin. 

Silverfish also don’t carry any diseases.

Click Beetle – The Elongated Black Thin Beetle Inside Homes

Click Beetle - Long thin beetle in home

Have you ever heard of wireworms? Wireworms are agricultural pests. 

They destroy plants of wheat, oats, rice, and other cereals. 

Wireworms are not unknown worms to you if you’ve got a vegetable garden in your home. 

Wireworms damage tomato, bean, onions, carrot, and many other vegetable plants.

Wireworms are yellowish-white worms that destroy crops and vegetable seedlings, and plants.

But you must be wondering, why are we talking about wireworms?

Well, wireworms are the larvae of click beetles.

Wireworms - larvae of click beetle

Click beetles are long, flat, and thin beetles. They’re dark brown or black.

The adult click beetles grow up to 1.5 inches in length. 

When the adults get on their backs, which they don’t often do, and if they do, it happens accidentally, they make a clicking sound.

This clicking sound comes from the snapping of their back. Click beetles make this sound when they try to get back to their normal position.

You can come across both click beetles and their larvae if you grow vegetables.

Some click beetles can fly. And they get inside your home during the summer.

Electrical lights attract click beetles. 

Attracted by the lights, click beetles enter homes during the summer months.

The Webspinners

Long skinny black bugs in house - Webspinners

Webspinners, also known as footspinners, are long black bugs that dwell underneath tree barks, wooden blocks, foliage, and rocks in damp places.

They weed on organic wastes like rotting leaves, moss, and algae.

The webspinner is black or dark brown and grows up to 9 mm in length. The male webspinner has wings, and they’re attracted to light.

That causes them to get inside your home by following the light from your home.

The female webspinners are wingless. They spend most of their time in their hiding places outdoors. 

The female webspinners spin silk tunnels in their hiding place. 

Those tunnels are a defense mechanism against predators, a place to lay eggs, and a haven for the larvae to grow.

The male webspinners become active after the rains, especially in summer. That’s when most of these long skinny black bugs enter homes.

The male webspinners will hide in places like the bathroom and kitchen. They hide during the day. 

But during the evening hours, when you turn on the lights, these bugs venture out from their hiding places.

But webspinners are harmless bugs. You cannot categorize them as pests because they don’t breed inside your home, and they don’t cause any damage either.

Webspinners don’t bite. They also don’t do any damage to your home. 

However, their sudden appearance takes many people aback. Some people think they’ve come across a giant earwig because male webspinners look like them.

But webspinners don’t have pincers like the earwigs. Also, webspinners’ heads are circular, distinguishing them from the earwigs.

Getting rid of webspinners in your home is no big deal. A scoop with your broom is enough.

You can also use a vacuum cleaner on the webspinners to remove them from the floor. 

But keep in mind that these long bugs are fast runners. And they’re one of the few bugs that can also run backward. 

The webspinners are not a common bug across the US. They’re common in Texas, California, Utah, and Arizona. 

Their sightings in the rest of the US are pretty rare.

Thunder Bugs Or Black Tube-Tailed Thrips

Thunder bugs

The black tube-tailed thrips, also known as thunder bugs or thunder flies, are skinny and long plant pests active during summer.

These thrips are common in agricultural lands where they infest crops. But they make a move towards the urban areas in the mid-summer.

Like other thrips species, the thunder bugs are damaging plant pests. In your yard or garden, they’ll feed on the sap of ornamental plants.

Thunder bugs are long, skinny, and black and grow up to 2 mm in size. They’re slender and have elongated wings that shield their entire abdomen. 

The wings are longer than their bodies. The wings’ size makes them appear longer than their actual size.

Thunder bugs have a tubular projection from their abdomen, which is unique about this bug that other thrips species don’t have. 

Thunder bugs use that tubular projection to create holes in plants and suck out the sap.

Bright colors attract thunder bugs. So, they target bright flowers too.

Most bugs that light attracts are attracted to bright colors. And that’s one of the reasons why they enter homes. 

Thunder bugs will fly inside your home through open doors and windows by following the light source from your home. 

Once inside, these bugs don’t move out. 

Thunder bugs have become a nuisance in many homes in the summer months with the increase in thunderstorms and rising temperatures.

They’ll enter homes in droves.

Vacuuming is the best option to eliminate these bugs. Do not use insecticide sprays on these bugs because you don’t need to. 

Instead, use yellow sticky bug traps. The bright yellow color of the baits attracts these bugs. 

And on landing on the strap, they’ll get stuck on it. 

Thunder bugs can bite. And their bite can cause some itchy discomfort too. 

But they don’t draw your blood or pass on any bacteria. It’s their way of figuring out if the thing they landed on is edible or not. 


Millipede - Basement Bugs With Lots Of Legs

Millipedes are one of those bugs that have lots of legs

They’re thin, long, slender, black, have a shiny body, and can grow up to 1.5 inches in size.

Millipedes prefer moist conditions to live. So, they’ll hide in damp organic debris and underneath rocks over wet soil. 

Millipedes enter homes when the weather outdoors becomes too unfavorable for them. 

Excessive rains, heat, and cold make these harmless bugs look for a milder place to hide. That’s the time when they move inside their homes.

Inside your home, millipedes will prefer hide in damp and dark areas. That makes it the cracks, nooks, and corners in your bathroom and basement the go to places for them to hide.

The truth is that the human home isn’t their ideal habitat. When the weather outdoors becomes favorable, millipedes move out.

Millipedes are harmless bugs. They don’t bite, and they don’t cause any damage to your home either.

However, millipedes can release toxins if you poke them or try to handle them. 

Bigger millipedes can spray those toxins as far as 30 inches. These toxins don’t intensely harm humans.

But in sensitive people, it can trigger allergic reactions. 

Secretion of these toxins is their defensive mechanism to keep away predators. These toxins also emit a discomforting stench which can be hard to eliminate.

Millipedes also roll themselves when you poke them. That’s also a defensive posture to protect their tender undersides.

Using scents like peppermint is the best way to stop millipedes from entering your home. 

The best way to remove them from your home is by using a vacuum cleaner. 

Rove Beetles

Rove Beetle

An outdoor beetle species, which looks and behaves like the devil’s coach horse beetle, is the rove beetle.

These beetles are black, 0.75 inches in length, black, long, and skinny.

Outdoors, the rove beetles live in moist leaf litter underneath wooden blocks and places like compost piles.

Rove beetles are slow crawlers. And they feed on the larvae and eggs of garden pests.

That makes them beneficial insects. 

However, the rove beetles aren’t active with the arrival of the spring when most garden pests and insects breed and lay their eggs.

That makes their impact relatively less.

Rove beetles look like earwigs too. And if you poke them, they’ll raise their abdomen like a scorpion. 

But you can quickly tell they’re not scorpions by noticing the missing mandible in the front. 

Rove beetles are accidental intruders inside the home. 

They’ll wander along and sneak inside homes through the thin gaps and cracks on the walls, window sills, and doors.

Rove beetles are harmless to humans and pets. And they don’t bite.

And unlike other bugs, rove beetles don’t enter homes in large numbers. 

So, if you see any rove beetle inside your home, which is unlikely, take a broom and whoosh them off the surface. 

How To Get Rid Of Long Thin Black Bugs In Homes?

It’s a pretty easy task. 

Here are the seven steps to stop these long skinny bugs from entering your home. 

There are also tips on how to get rid of them –

Step#1 – Seal The Gaps To Stop The Bugs From Sneaking Inside Your Home

These skinny bugs will exploit the gaps and cracks on the walls, doors, and windows to sneak inside your home during the summer and winter months. 

Seal those gaps with a strong sealant. You can use silicon-based gel. They’re strong, last for at least a decade, and earwigs and other bugs and insects can’t chew through it.

If there are practical vents and openings around your home, use a window shield with fine mesh to cover those openings.

That’ll stop the earwigs, silverfish, and click beetles from crawling in from these places, mainly when the light attracts them.

It’ll also prevent bugs like centipedes and arachnids like spiders that try to get inside your home when the temperature outdoors becomes too extreme for them.

Using weather strippings on the doors and windows also fills the gaps that prevent the bugs from exploiting those gaps to sneak inside your house.

Step#2 – Seal The Gaps Inside Your Home To Stop The Thin Bugs From Hiding

This is a step to prevent the thin long black bugs from hiding inside your home. 

As they hide in the thin gaps and cracks in the damp places, you must seal any gaps or openings in the kitchen, bathroom, laundry room, and basement.

Check out for any fissures on the walls, plumbing areas, and floors. 

If you find any, seal them. 

Step#3 – Fix The Water Leakages To Reduce Dampness

Now fixing water leakages both inside your home and outdoors is a practical preventive step to stop moisture-seeking bugs like earwigs and silverfish.

As you know by now, earwigs love damp places. 

Overwatering your yard or garden and water leakages make it moist and damp.

That makes it a perfect home for earwigs and silverfish. So, stop doing it if you’re doing it often.

Fix water leakages in your yard, and fill in the water holes if there are any.

Inside your home, do the same.

Fix any plumbing issues. Check out your basement, kitchen, and bathroom for any possible water leakages.

If there’s a dampness problem in your home’s foundation, address it and fix it.

Water leakages inside your home make your home damp. That makes your home attractive to bugs, especially in the summer.

No wonder that in the summer months, the sightings of earwigs and silverfish at home are at their peak.

Step#4 – Keep Your Yard And Garden Clean To Deny Hiding Places To The Bugs

Maintaining cleanliness in your yard or garden significantly reduces the chances of bug invasion of any type inside your home.

Many types of bugs hide, live, and thrive in your yard or garden. 

Besides earwigs and silverfish, invasive and home-damaging pests like roaches, ants, and termites also come from outdoors.

So, you must maintain cleanliness in your yard and take measures to keep it bug-free.

On top of it, keep in mind that controlling moisture and wetness in your yard or garden is the most critical thing.

Also, do not let foliage and organic debris pile up in your yard, keep firewood dry, do not let bushes overgrow, and keep the trash bins empty and clean.

These little measures go a long way to stop bugs of all types from taking refuge in your home.

Mulch beds are also one of the hiding places for termites, ants, and earwigs. 

Keeping it dry and bug-free by spraying a mixture of vinegar and water will control the bugs gathering under the mulch bed.

Step#5 – Use The Right Insecticide Outdoors

Though we’re not fans of making our readers use insecticide spray by themselves, you might have to use one in some situations.

Using the right insecticide spray is the key here.

Use Permethrin, Deltamethrin, Acetamiprid, and Carbaryl-based insecticide sprays in your yard or garden.

Spray them alongside your home’s foundation. That’ll deter earwigs and other bugs from crawling inside your home.

Permethrin-based insecticide sprays are effective against silverfish too. 

Do not forget to remove the dead silverfish, earwigs, and click beetles. Not doing it will attract ants and roaches.

It’d be best if you dispose of the dead bugs outside of your property.

Caution: Read the instructions on the label or consult an expert before handling the insecticide spray by yourself. Also, wear appropriate protective clothing.

Step#6 – Use The Vacuum Cleaner On These Skinny Long Bugs

We don’t recommend using insecticide sprays in your home because of your children’s, your’s, and your pet’s safety.

On top of that, as per the University of Michigan, while earwigs are indoors, insecticide sprays are not effective on them.

Some essential oils do work great in repelling earwigs.

You don’t need to crush an earwig if you see it inside your home. 

First, because it’s harmless, and second, it’ll emit a foul smell by crushing it.

That foul smell will not only irritate you, but also it can attract other bugs like spiders and ants.

The best thing that you can do is use the vacuum cleaner on these skinny black bugs. 

It’ll get straight into the dirtbag of your vacuum cleaner. Dispose of the vacuum cleaner bag far from your home and property. 

It’ll reduce the chances of earwigs chewing through the dust bag and re-entering your home.


Three long skinny black bugs are pretty common in homes. These are earwigs, silverfish, and click beetles.

In this guide, you’ve found out when, how, and why these thin black bugs sneak inside your home.

The main reason these thin bugs enter homes is to look for an alternate place to hide when the weather outdoors becomes unbearable for them.

You’ve also learned the seven steps to get rid of these bugs and to stop them from invading your home. 

Other bugs that enter homes for the same reasons are centipedes, millipedes, and spiders

But they come in different sizes, and they’re not typically thin.