How to Get Rid of Ants
Ants become most active during the warm summer months. As they commence their search for a reliable food source, an ant colony could very well settle in or around your home. They are attracted to the plentiful supply of food and water available, and when a colony becomes established that creates ongoing frustration throughout the house.
This step-by-step guide will help you deal with an ant infestation in your home, hopefully saving you a lot of trouble in the long run. See the full ‘How to Get Rid of Ants’ infographic here.
Step 1: Figure out what kind of ants are invading
The species of ant that’s infesting your home will make a big difference to the way you deal with them.
Common black ants are easier to handle – mainly because they are easier to find than other species. On the other hand, carpenter ants – who typically make their home in moist or damaged timber – are trickyer to pin down.
Step 2: Cut off the ant trail
Ants will use a pheromone trail to forge paths into and around your home. If you simply kill a few ants in your home, others from the nest will follow the pheromones left behind and pick up where their brethren left off. To cut off access, you need to remove any trace of the pheromone trail.
One way to do this is to use a sponge dipped in hot soapy water and wipe away the ants in the trail. Keep at it until the current trail is disrupted, then use vinegar on the entry point and along the trail to fully scrub the scent trail from your home. Do this a few times a day to deter ants as much as possible.
Step 3: Keep your house immaculate
Ants are attracted to the food and water in your home so the best way to eliminate ants is to take this option away from them. Aim to keep your home as clean as possible; clean up spillages and crumbs immediately, don’t leave unfinished drinks in the open and keep sugar and sweets tightly sealed in jars or zip-lock bags.
This includes any jam or honey jars with preserve left on the outside or bottom of the jars.
Step 4: Bait and poison
When a house ant finds a food source they will snag a chunk and take it right back to the nest. Other ants who pick up that ant’s trail may also find the same food source, taking it back along the returning trail – which reinforces the route and entices other ants.
If the ants have found a healthy food source, then the infestation will grow. However, if that food source was intentionally placed as bait, then the ants are unknowingly returning with a deadly chunk of food which will affect a large section of the colony.
Step 5: Hunt the nest
For carpenter ants, finding the nest is essential. Boring into wooden structures, these ants can cause structural damage to your home, and killing off ants you find walking around your kitchen won’t have much of an effect on the overall colony. Instead, you need to find the nest and either destroy the ants inside or seal off access into your home.
Sometimes the nest will be outside but close to your home – in an old log or tree stump, for example.
Step 6: Compromise the nest
If you find out where the carpenter ants are coming from, you should be able to deal with them at the source.
Do this by applying food grade Diatomaceous Earth (D.E), which dehydrates and kills off ants. Regularly inject this into the nest area and the ants should die off. For pest control purposes, it’s important to choose food grade D.E, not any other kind.
Step 7: Call in the pest experts
Trying to control – or eradicate – an ant infestation isn’t always easy. Sometimes, no matter how hard you try, the ants just keep on coming. It might be that the colony keeps relocating before it can be stamped out, or it may be too large to control from the outset. If you’ve tried to get rid of ants from your home but you’re still having trouble, it’s probably time to call in the pest control experts.
Professional pest control technicians will be able to locate, identify and control ant infestations no matter the species or quantity. They’ll also be able to offer advice on how best to keep ants from adopting your home as their own.
ClearFirst Pest Control perform effective, prompt and discreet ant removal and insect control services for homes and businesses. We offer a free callout and quotation service, and our specialist technicians work efficiently to locate and remove your infestation without any disruption to you or your home. To discuss your ant problem with us, simply contact us today.