You’re in the kitchen making a snack when you see an ant. Disturbed, you soon spot a long line of ants crawling across your kitchen counter. Here are our best tips on how to get rid of ants in your home. Ants aren’t so different from us in that they also need food, water, and shelter to live. Most of the time, they find everything that they need to survive in the outdoors. Sometimes, however, wet weather and cold temperatures can prompt them to consider moving into your home.
Unfortunately, once an ant colony determines that your house is an excellent place to live, they plan to stay. Since you certainly don’t want to share your indoor spaces with thousands of ants, you’ll have to take action. In short, you need to learn how to kill ants.
Now you know that you need to take action to eliminate the ants from your home. Read on for four steps that you can take today to get rid of ants in your house.
How To Get Rid of Ants in Your Home, in 4 Simple Steps
You need to act fast to show the ants that you won’t share your home with them. In general, quick and consistent action will take care of a minor infestation. Follow these simple four steps below to make your ant problem a thing of the past.
1. Identify the type of ant in your house.
Knowing the type of ant that you must defeat is vital to eliminating them as different ants respond to different treatments. Carpenter ants, for example, typically require an aggressive, professional response as they can damage the wooden structure of your house. Read this guide to ant identification.
2. Determine where the ants are coming into your home.
Fortunately, ants tend to move in a line, and you can usually follow their scent line to locate their entry point.
3. Place bait traps near the beginning of the ant trail.
The ants will eagerly take the bait back to their nest where they will feast on it until they are no more. You can also hurry up the ant extermination process by placing a bait trap at the ant entrance on the outside of your home.
4. Wash away the ant scent trail so you’re not Googling, “how to get rid of ants in your home” again
Spray vinegar along the ant trail and let it air dry. Diluted bleach is also an effective ant trail remover. You can also use a mixture of baking soda and water to scrub away the scent trail.
Typically, this four-step plan to eliminate ants from your home works when you have a minor ant infestation. Keep reading for three examples of times when you’ll need more potent ant extermination methods.
Example of When You Need Professional Ant Extermination
If you’re like many people, your first instinct is to try a DIY method to get rid of the ants infesting your home. We’re happy to tell you that your home methods are likely to work if you catch the ant invasion early-on and attack it aggressively. Still, there are times when we suggest that you call a professional as fast as possible.
1. Lots of ants
One terrific reason to call in the pros is if you notice a vast number of ants. Daily life is sometimes chaotic, and an ant invasion can go unnoticed until it’s pretty well-entrenched. Once the ants have had the chance to move into your home entirely, it’s much harder to eliminate them with home remedies.
2. You suspect that you have carpenter ants in your house
Another reason not to hesitate to hire a professional pest exterminator is if you suspect that you have carpenter ants in your house. Carpenter ants chew on your home’s wood which causes costly damage to the structure of your home. Read here for the scoop on carpenter ants.
Destroying a carpenter ant colony is a challenge. The nest is usually well hidden from view, and the worker ants rarely transport much bait back to the nest. Given the difficulties involved in effectively eliminating the ants, combined with the potential damage to your home, be safe and contact a professional pest control company for help.
3. You have devil ants (AKA fire ants)
A third, and extremely painful, reason to call in the pros is if your home is under siege by fire ants. As everyone in North Carolina knows, fire ant bites are no joke and even cause some people a severe allergic reaction. The only way to eliminate fire ants from your life is to kill the queen and destroy the mound. Contacting a professional service is a speedy way to win the war against a painful fire ant invasion.
All in all, ant extermination is sometimes better left to pest professionals. That said, let’s look at some ways that you can avoid having to ask us how to get rid of ants in your home.
Tips for Avoiding Ants in Your Home
Prevention is less painful than a cure. This old saying is certainly appropriate when it comes to ants. Your life will be less stressful if you can prevent an army of ants from marching into your home in the first place. Some of our best tips for keeping an ant-free home include:
- Super clean the areas where you prepare food and eat. Ants love food crumbs, so you will make your home less friendly if they can’t find food in it.
- Make a citrus spray and use it in areas where you’ve seen ants in the past. Citrus oil is poisonous to ants, and it’s a healthy way to keep ant intruders out of your kitchen. Read here for a DIY citrus spray recipe.
- Invest in pest-proof food containers and get in the habit of storing cereal boxes in the refrigerator.
- Sweep, mop, and vacuum floors regularly.
- Take the garbage outdoors.
- Don’t allow your pets to graze at an indoor food bowl.
We also recommend that you consider contracting with a high-quality pest control company for regular service. Routine pest control is a sure-fire way to keep all types of pests from taking over your home.
Lastly, North Carolina is a terrific place to live, but we sure deal with our share of ants. Our DIY tips for how to get rid of ants will help to minimize an ant situation. However, don’t hesitate to contact a professional pest technician to combat a heavy ant infestation or when carpenter ants have taken up residence in your home.
Onsite Environmental Pest Control is the go-to pest control company for homeowners in the Concord, NC area. Contact us today and discover how to get rid of ants permanently.
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