Ortho “Total Kill”, and Spectracide “Wasp and Hornet” Spray Reviews

img 1910 225x300 Ortho “Total Kill”, and Spectracide “Wasp and Hornet” Spray Reviews

Wasps and Hornets can serve a purpose in the garden, but when their nests appear in doorways, play areas, and vehicle crevices, a fast acting chemical spray to eliminate the nesting insects is a must-have! Big box stores offer a wide selection of pesticide products designed to eliminate the nesting habits of Wasps and Hornets, killing the insects on the nest, and repelling any other insects from nesting in the area once the product has dried. Over the course of the summer I purchased several bottles of each of the following products at varying times and locations, and here are my findings with these popular brands.

Ortho Total Kill brand of Wasp and Hornet Spray is a foaming formula that shoots 20 feet, and claims to kill on contact.  After using this product myself on both Wasps and Hornets, this product not only failed to kill the insects, but it failed to repel them from their nesting site. Both Wasps and Hornets climbed out of their nests through the foam, and continued to hover around the nest making further contact with the nest potentially hazardous to me.  One empty can later, there was no impact at all on the nesting site, and three hours later all the insects were sitting right back where they started. My business used several cans over the course of many months, purchased at different times

Spectracide Wasp and Hornet Killer boasts a foaming formula that kills on contact, and shoots a 27 foot Jet Spray to keep you at a safe distance while destroying the nest.  I used this product on Wasps, Hornets and Ground Bees, and found that it not only had zero impact on the insects, but the insects were able to sit in the foam unharmed and clean off their antennas.  The foam coats the nests generously, and does cause the insect’s momentary confusion as they find themselves encased in it, but when the foam recedes the insects fly out of it, hover in the area of the nest, and provide you with no safe way to remove the nest without being stung. One empty can later, the Wasps, Hornets and Bees were returning to the nests and waiting for the foam to dry so they could return to their business as usual.

Both products feature an ineffective formula in 2009 on both Wasps and Hornets.  Not only are these products a waste of money, and an ineffective deterrent to the insects they profess to kill, but they cause you to spray up to a full can of chemicals around you home’s exterior that could be more harmful to you or your pets than the insects.

I advise customers to avoid these products this year, and choose instead a stronger product that will kill the insects in a more potent formula that will require less spray overall.  When dealing with stinging insects, especially for those who are allergic to them, a potent formula is worth its weight in gold.  Try Raid Wasp and Hornet Spray as an alternative.

About Amy


  1. walter h kelly says:

    this does not work like the can says does not kill on contact
    i would not pay 6.97 for this again or tell any one to buy it it stinks
    thank you
    walter h kelly
    14 rosemary la
    killingworth ct 06419

  2. Sally says:

    I agree. I have used ALL three of the products mentioned on this page, and absolutely NONE of them work. I suspect the hornets have developed an immunity to the chemicals used in these products, and now they are completely useless. I have no idea how to get rid of the hornets now…

  3. Amy says:


    I’m sorry you’ve had the same experience as I have. At times it’s hard to tell if the product itself needs improvement, or if the big box stores and corner hardware shops are simply stocking products that have expired, or lost potency somehow. I’ll keep and eye on both of these products. I’d love to have favorable reviews one day for them since they are so widely sold.

  4. Corey says:

    None of these products work very well. This article seems like an advertisment for raid and not a accurate article. Ive used many cans of the raid at different times of the day and season and its worthless. And since they are pretty much all useless the best to buy is the spectracide cause it shoots farther

  5. Laura says:

    I just had success with the Ortho Wasp and Hornet Killer. I sprayed a large nest last night and this morning the deck is covered with dead wasps and there’s only 1 live one and it’s not doing too well. My only concern is clean-up. According to the can, people and pets can be in the area once the stuff is dry. What happens if it re-wets? Rain? Will that area become toxic again? I’ve decided to use detergent and very little water with paper towels to scrub the area that may have spray on it. I don’t want to wash the stuff into the soil, hence very little water. And I never use a pesticide in my garden but these were black aggressive wasps 2 feet from the back door and 6 feet from our barbecue area. I’m wondering if the your wasps are a variety that this product doesn’t work on. Also, I emptied the entire can in one go so the nest was saturated and dripping foam. I do know that the product loses potency over time and if stored at high temperatures. Maybe I just got a fresh can.

  6. Jayden says:

    Ignore the negative reviews about Ortho’s Total Kill. I sprayed like 20% of a can on a yellow-jacket nest the size of a softball and it worked like a nerve gas; tons of dead insects everywhere in a matter of seconds! “Amy” and some of the other people writing these reviews probably have terrible aim (yes, you have to actually HIT the nest/insects for it to work). Not only did it solve my yellow-jacket problem, but it works on hobo spiders too.

    p.s. You’re clearly just trying to promote Raid. Ortho works like a charm; just use short controlled bursts and make sure you’re accurate. Remember, accuracy is always better than range.

  7. Maria says:

    Will Ortho Insect Killer kill a wasp nest underground? It worked excellent on 2 big red ant colonies, as I do not see even 1. Thise varmints we’re taking over our backyard. I had to constantly follow our 2 dogs, and brush them off our furbabies before they went back into the house. I’m just scared to do it. I do know however it needs to be done at night. Just wondering before I try it😳, if this pesticide will actually work. I know they have a wasp and hornet Ortho pesticide. But before buying it I’m just curious. Curiosity killed the cat, but satisfaction brought it back lol. Thanks.

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