Get Rid of Ants in Your Home
Edited by Ian Gabriel T. Tolledo, Anonymous, Lynn, Robbi and 1 other
Have you ever been bitten by an ant while you're sleeping? Have you ever experienced not being able to eat your sweet treats because some ants managed to get at them first? If you have these problems, along with hundreds of other ant-related dilemmas in your home, then it's time for some serious ant-busting action! Don't worry, you won't even need a pest control expert to repel and exterminate ants. You just need to follow the steps here (all are home-tested). You heard that right, and there are other conventional tricks you can use to get rid of these pesky insects. Now let's get going!
- 1 Identify the Ant (Optional)
- 2 Ant Busting Techniques
- 3 Hardcore Ant Killing
- 4 Quick and Easy Ant Repellent Tricks
- 5 Tips, Tricks and Warning
- 6 Comments
Identify the Ant (Optional)
This is a good start in eradicating ants - by first identifying their type. You should do this to find their nesting habits and have a general idea where they might be living. Some ants nest outdoors, so you might notice that no matter how you kill them inside you house, more just keep coming. Take a photo of the ant and send it to a local university extension service, or just upload it on the internet and ask vast number of web users to look it up for you. The information you get can determine the type of ant you're dealing with, and its nesting grounds as well. This way you will better understand its species and better ways of getting rid of it.
Ant Busting Techniques
Clean you House
Cleaning your house is undoubtedly the first defense against potential onslaught of ants. Always sweep food crumbs, take out the garbage regularly and wipe up any spills you see. Never leave any dirty dishes sitting around the kitchen. Stated here are the ants' food sources. You can also use vinegar mixed with water as a spray for bowls of pet food to keep ants from coming and infesting them.
Spray Entry Points
If you just recently got rid of ants from your home, or if you want to take precautions so none can enter, then this step is for you. Caulk and seal holes, then spray them with insecticide around Windows and doors. Remember to use an insecticide containing bifenthrin, permethrin, or deltamethrin. Spray at least a four-inch wide band on the entry points, or just enough to wet the surface. The spray leaves an invisible film that repels ants after drying so they won't reenter you house. However, remember that these steps only deter outside ants and won't do any good for ants that are already inside, and it can actually interfere if you're using ant baits.
Try Spraying a Barrier
If ants still flock to your house despite your attempts at spraying entry points, simply spray a 12-inch wide band of insecticide on your siding and foundation. Only use an outdoor insecticide that says barrier treatment on its label.
Remove Their Trails
Seeing one ant means that there is a whole colony, so you're bound to see other scuttling up and around the walls and floors of your house. This is because ants leave a particular scented trail that other ants can follow. Mopping ad sweeping will do little to eliminate its scent; instead use a spray made from one part vinegar and one part water wherever you encounter ants and groups thereof. The strong odor will erase their scent and leave them bewildered, thus eliminating their threat. This also stops outdoor nesting ants that have entered your house from foraging food. (Most ants do not necessarily nest inside the house.) However, vinegar and water cannot completely stop ants already nesting indoors, and instead you can kill them with ant baits. (See next step.)
Destroy Their Colonies
If you ever see an ant, stop your impulse to step it, because for every ant you see, there are probably hundreds more thriving underground. Those few ants you see are scouts, whose role is to search for food to scavenge and bring back to the colony. Utilize this scout to destroy the entire ant colony. How?
- 1First take notice of their habits in areas you've previously encountered them.Ants changes tastes during the year; they prefer protein in the spring and fatty/oily foods and sweets in the summer.Advertisement
- 2Once you know the type of food the ants like, buy and set out the ant bait geared to their taste.Look on the packages for words such as "controls both grease and sweet eating ants". You should expect to see hundreds of ants after you set out the bait; this is a good thing as it means that more ants are taking the toxic bait back to their colony, where they naturally share it with the rest of the ants, including their queen, and ultimately kill them. Expect that there are thousands of ants living in their nest.Advertisement
- 3Liquid baits works best for sweet-loving ants, although most ants prefer solid baits.Replace the bait containers if you still have ants after two weeks. If this doesn't work, you will just have to hunt down that nest.
Hunt the Ant's Nest
If ants cannot be terminated with conventional baits, the next step is getting rid of their nests manually. If it's carpenter ants you're dealing with, then it's important for you to wipe them out ASAP, as this type of ant can do critical structural damage to your house.
- 1Nest hunting requires a lot of patience, time and some detective work.Ants typically prefer damp areas - this could be flooring and framing that is soft and spongy due to roof leaks and plumbing.
- 2Begin by looking for areas which have potential water damages.Bathrooms, attics and exterior walls are prime candidates for this task. Simply cut small holes in water-damaged walls to track nests. Don't worry about the holes, as you will be repairing them afterward anyway.
- 3After you locate the nest, spray it liberally with an insecticide that contains permethrin, bifenthrin or deltamethrin - just look at the label.Remember to fix water leaks and replace any damaged wood. If it comes to the point where you can't find the nest, hire an exterminator. Yes it can be expensive, but they know what to do and can remove those antsy woes of yours in no time.
Hardcore Ant Killing
Destroy Exterior Nests
If you frequently encounter ants in the same area on your siding, that's probably where the ants' nest is. Locate holes in the siding where ants crawl in and out. The holes can often be located between bricks, where the mortar has fallen out, under the lap siding or in cracks. Once you pinpoint the nest, or even the vicinity of the nest, spray the area liberally with an insecticide containing the bifenthrin chemical.
Anthills can be an eyesore in our yards, and ants can ruin outside dining with friends and families. If you only have problems with ants in a certain areas, say along the sidewalk, just spot-treat the area with a generic outdoor insecticide. Liquid or granules work fine as well. For a larger-scale ant problem, utilize a lawn and garden insect killer which contains bifenthrin as its active ingredient. The spray can also kill other insects. (Remember to read the label for a list.)
You have to first mow the grass, then spray your lawn with an insecticide. Spray only in the early morning or late afternoon because these are the times most ants are active. Treat the lawn again if the ants are still building mounds after six weeks' time. The insecticide can work for up to six weeks. You won't be able to kill all ants in your yard, but spraying it will kill most of them and stop mounds from reforming.
Destroy Safe Havens
Take steps to ensure ants you repelled from your house won't come back any time soon. Always trim shrubs, back bushes, and trees the brushes against your siding and roof as these provides bridges for ants to reach your home. Refrain from stacking firewood right next to your house as ants likes to retreat in this environment. Maintain a healthy lawn to discourage ants. Spray a mound with insecticide ASAP when you see one and plant grass on patches, as this can be a prime candidate for new anthills.
Quick and Easy Ant Repellent Tricks
- 1Adhesive Tape.If you're having a problem keeping ants away from your precious cookie jar or other sweets, simply surround it with an adhesive tape with its sticky side up.
- 2Basters.Sprinkle boric acid along crevices and cracks using a baster. Caution: Boric acid is toxic to humans and pets.
- 3Chalk.Chalk is a good way to repel ants; simply draw a line around entry points or a treat you want barricaded. The calcium carbonate in the chalk naturally repels ants. You can also scatter powdered chalk in your garden to repel not just ants, but also slugs.
- 4Flour.Flour repels ants too! Simply sprinkle a line of flour on any material you want to protect from these pesky insects.
- 5Lemons and oranges also makes a perfect ant repellent; simply squeeze them into any crevice you see where ants like to crawl.
- 6Plastic containers.Place them under the feet of your table and fill them with water. Trivia: Ants don't swim.
- 7Salt.Use salt to discourage ants from entering your home; sprinkle it around entry points and places where you suspect ants thrive.
- 8Talcum powder.Sprinkle this nice smelling powder around your house's foundation to make an effective ant repellent.Advertisement
Tips, Tricks and Warning
- Ant poisons are also toxic to humans and pets. Remember to read the instructions and completely and follow them carefully.
- If you have problems with any of these steps, ask a question for more help, or post in the comments section below.
Categories : Home Repair
Recent edits by: Robbi, Lynn, Anonymous