Does Boiling Water Kill Weeds? Tips on Using a Hot Water Weed Killer

Applying boiling water on weeds is one of the most cost-effective and environmentally friendly methods you can use to keep weeds at bay. Boiling water to kill weeds not only prevents toxic herbicides from entering the soil but can also kill down to the tap root. This can help permanently kill invasive weeds and help with long-term weed control.

While the process of applying a hot water treatment on weeds is straightforward, proper application is essential for both your safety and receiving the best results.

Continue reading below to learn how to apply boiling water to weeds.

Does boiling water kill weeds?

How to Apply Boiling Water to Weeds

Killing weeds with boiling water is a simple process and only requires a few items. You can follow the steps below.

  1. Start by boiling a large pot or kettle of water on a stove burner or outside burner. The size of the weeded area should help you determine how much water you’ll need.
  2. Once the water is steaming hot and brought to a boil, use oven mitts to carefully transfer the water to the weeded area.
  3. Slowly pour the boiling water on the weeds on your lawn, driveway cracks, or garden paths carefully avoiding any other desirable plants in the area.
  4. Repeat the above steps as necessary.

As you can see, there’s not much to it. With that being said, consider these additional tips for the best weed control results.

Additional Tips When Using Boiling Water on Weeds

Here are some additional tips to follow when you pour boiling water on weeds.

Wear Pants, Long Sleeves, and Closed-Toed Shoes

It’s important to remember how dangerous boiling hot water can be if it comes in contact with your skin. We don’t recommend pouring hot water on weeds in shorts and flip flops as you could easily injure yourself. Wear pants, long sleeves, and closed-toed shoes to make sure you don’t accidentally splash any water on yourself.

A Tea Kettle is Easier to Pour than a Pot

Boiling water is one of the best natural options, but it will also kill any plants it comes into contact with, so a tea kettle can be easier to pour if you have desirable plants in the area you want to preserve. An electronic tea kettle can be a great option if you have an electrical outlet outside near the weeded area.

Be Careful Transferring the Boiling Water

The boiling water will begin to cool as soon as you take it off the burner, so it’s important to transfer it to the weeded area as quickly as possible. With that being said, be incredibly careful when moving the boiling water as it can easily splash or spill.

You could consider using an outside propane burner to boil the water near the area of weeds you plan to eliminate for optimal safety.

Cut the Weeds Down First

In order to easily reach deep taproots, consider cutting the weeds down a bit, especially if they are growing in large clumps. This will allow more heated water to be used on the roots themselves, giving you a better chance at permanent results.

Remember to properly dispose of any weeds you cut down to make sure they don’t grow back.

How Long Does it Take Boiling Water to Kill Weeds?

Unfortunately using boiling water to kill weeds can be fairly time-consuming, especially if you have a lot of deep-rooted weeds to deal with. The heat from the water can generally kill the weeds in just a few treatments, but you’ll most likely be limited by the amount of water you can apply during each application.

You might want to consider other measures if you have an entire lawn full of weeds.

Does Boiling Water Kill Weeds Permanently?

Killing weeds with boiling water can be used as a permanent solution, especially after a few applications. Other than the environmental benefits, hot water can quickly travel deep into the soil, which can help eliminate major taproots. This is incredibly important to ensure permanent eradication when battling invasive broadleaf weeds like white clover and dandelions.

Boiling Hot Water on Weed Seeds

It can be difficult to see weed seeds in soil, so applying scalding water can be an effective natural option if you don’t want to use pre-emergent weed killers or other toxic herbicides. Simply boil water until it is piping hot, and pour it on the area with seeds, avoiding contact with any valuable plants or desirable lawn grass around. Be sure to cover any area where you think weed seeds might be as you want to limit weed growth as much as possible.

Boiling Water as a Weed Killer

Boiling water is a great option if you’re looking for cost-effective weed killer that doesn’t add harmful chemicals to the soil. It’s important to safely apply boiling water to weeds with appropriate attire and using a method that makes sense for your specific weed situation. You’ll also want to remember that while boiling water can kill weeds permanently, several applications will be necessary in order to see optimal results and limit weed growth.

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