Written by Conor Harrison, Lone Star Outdoor News. Photo by ThermaCell.
We had a family gathering at our home in Dallas last weekend.
With the torrential rains and muggy conditions, the mosquitoes were out in force, as they are most spring evenings in Texas.
We had doused ourselves in Deep Woods Off the night before, but that proved only marginally effective in keeping the little bloodsuckers away. Plus, it left the kids greasy and smelling like, well, Deep Woods Off.
So I pulled out the ThermaCell Patio Lantern, which promises a 15×15-foot zone of mosquito-free enjoyment.
Ha! Not in Texas.
We put in the butane cartridge and placed the small pad on top. Within minutes, a small wisp of smoke was rising.
There was a solid southeast breeze blowing steady at about 10 mph and gusting higher as a storm blew in. The three people sitting downwind of the lantern noticed a slight difference in the number of mosquitoes, but the remaining bugs seemed to just circle the table and dine on the three people sitting upwind of the lantern. Within 15 minutes, the kids and wives had had enough and headed indoors with red welts rising from multiple bites.
My brother-in-law and myself spent another 45 minutes swatting bugs from our legs before we also gave up and headed indoors.
This patio lantern got great reviews on ThermaCell’s website (16 out of 17 were positive). However, that number drops when other websites reviewed the product. The lantern we used retails for about $25.
Maybe this lantern works in places that don’t have hoards of mosquitoes, but in Texas, it just didn’t cut the mustard.
UPDATE: A company representative contacted LSON and stated ThermaCell’s “function is inhibited by wind. Thermacell products are area repellents and therefore the repellent permeates the air surrounding the unit. They are a great alternative for those who do not want to use a spray or lotion and have been found highly effective in tests conducted by the US Department of Defense.”