Every homeowner knows the pain of seeing a group of ants scurry across your kitchen floor. While they aren’t detrimental to your health or home, they sure are annoying. In this blog, we’ll detail tips and tricks to keep your home ant-free.
Identifying Points of Entry
The average ant is about .02 millimeters meaning their small bodies can sneak into your house through the tiniest opening. Ants commonly crawl into your home through cracks in the floor, walls, trimming, windows, and doors. By sealing off the entry points, you prevent ants from gaining access to your home.
Back to the Source
The best way to deal with ants is to find the location of their nest. The nest is where the colony works, eats, and lives. Ants are attracted to food, especially food that is sweet or high in fat; the main reason they come into your house is to take food back to their nest. If you leave some crumbs on your floor, it will attract ants, and you can follow them to see where they bring it back to.
The Collapse of the Colony
When you find the nest, it’s important to destroy it directly and in a way that won’t make the colony disperse and rebuild. For example, if you find the nest outside, it is not helpful to spray the nest with a repellent; the colony will disperse and rebuild otherwise. It ends up being a waste of your time and money because if the colony reforms, the ants can find their way back into your home. A great solution to finding a nest outside is either spraying it with non-repellent or taking a boiling pot of water and pouring it over the nest. The hot water will collapse the colony and kill off the ants.
If you find a nest inside, do not use a spray as that can decrease your indoor air quality and cause harm to you, your family, and your pet’s health. A better solution is to use something harmful to the small ants but not harmful to you. Bay leaves emit an extremely unpleasant odor to ants and will deter them from coming out of their nest. While they are inside, you can lay either boric acid powder or food-grade diatomaceous earth, which works to dehydrate the ants.
Even after removing the nest, you may still find some ants hanging around your home. You can lay out more boric acid powder and diatomaceous earth, which can help take care of the remaining ants. Or, a very simple DIY solution to remove the rest of the ants from your home is to spray them with a small amount of soapy water. The spray should render the ants immobile, and they will be easy to wipe away with a paper towel.
The best way to keep ants from returning to your home is to practice preventative measures. The following are some great ways to prevent ants from returning:
- Tight lids - on both your open food and trash can, a tight lid can prevent ants from being able to sense where food is and getting to it.
- Standing water - from your sink to pet’s water dish to spills standing water, is an open invitation for ants and other insects to come get a drink. Cleaning up spills right away and draining your sink will help prevent ants from being attracted to your kitchen.
- Regular upkeep - it’s important to check back and make sure your windows, doors, and other entry points are sealed. To make sure your appliances aren’t leaking and crumbs aren’t being left out, attracting ants.
Calling In The Experts
While keeping this all in mind, sometimes DIY pest control methods serve as temporary solutions. While they can be a cheaper and quicker alternative, they might not get to the root of the problem, and the pest might return. Which, in turn, ends up costing you more time and money to try and solve the problem again. Calling a team of expert pest control specialists can help eliminate the problem at the source and ensure you’re well equipped with solutions should the problem happen again.
For all of your pest controls and questions contact Accel Pest & Termite Control at (757) 384-1302! Our team of experts is well equipped to help eliminate any pest issue you’re having.