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6 Ways to Get Rid of Ants

Ant in the house.

Table of Contents

Ants might be small and harmless but their strength lies in the numbers and ant infestation is not to be taken lightly. They are always looking for food sources, water, and shelter so your home might be the perfect place to build colonies.

While we can say with certainty that ants are common, resourceful, and persistent there are a few ways to get rid of ants for good.

So, if you are ready to learn all the tips and tricks that will leave your home bug-free and you want to find a solution for controlling ants, keep on reading as we dive into the topic.

Getting rid of ants.

What Attracts Ants to Your Home?

Ants like other pests such as roaches, silverfish, or even bed bugs are always looking for the best place to create colonies. Ants live in groups and have a very keen sense of smell that allows them to communicate and even “spread the word” about food and water sources.

Once ants discover some commodities in your home they will signal the other ants to follow their trail and lead them to the source. This is one of the reasons why you can see a lot of ants going in one direction.

Ants are attracted to:

  • Food 
  • Just like any other living organism, ants need food to survive, but they are not picky at all. Evolution made it possible for them to thrive on any food source but they prefer sweet items and sugar.

    Just a single drop of honey or a sprinkle of sugar is more than enough to attract many ants that will try to carry the food leftovers into their nest. They usually don’t eat or drink on the spot but rather share the food with other ants in the colony.

    So, leftovers, dishes, and even a few crumbs on the table can lure in many hungry ants.

  • Water 
  • While some pests drink water on occasion and rely on water sources, ants like to carry water back to their homes and store it. This means they can find your home attractive simply because you have a leaking pipe, water collecting in the bathroom, or even pet bowls that have enough water in them.

    As they are not picky and they need a lot of nutrients to feed the colony ant workers are very determined pests.

  • Shelter
  • Even though ants are so small they can hide practically anywhere they prefer warm and sheltered places. That’s why they like to explore homes and find spots that are close to food and water and big enough for the colony.

    It’s also one of the reasons why they build nests in the ground near your home and drop in occasionally for food supplies.

    Ants on watermelon in the kitchen.

    How to Get Rid of Ants in the House?

    Now that we are familiar with the ants in the house you might be wondering about the best ways of controlling ants and what kills them fast. We have a couple of solutions lined up, but keep in mind that persistence is the key to success when dealing with pests.

    It’s always better to prevent pest infestation with a tidy and clean home, regular repairs, and screen doors. But even when you have ant infestation here is how to get rid of them:

    Use DIY Solutions

    You can use a natural ant repellent such as citrus fruit, white vinegar, essential oils, or cinnamon to get rid of ants from the kitchen and the entire house. These are safe and cheap solutions that rely on the ant’s keen sense of smell.

    The DIY solutions for ants will not kill them but they can serve as the first line of defense that will make your home less attractive to pests.

    Keep in mind that the remedies we mentioned need monitoring and constant re-application to be efficient, so you might want to keep on reading if you need more permanent solutions for an infestation.

    Set Up Ant Traps

    Ant traps are one of the easiest solutions to kill ants in your home and even garden. 

    They are designed to attract the ants and keep them in the trap, while some also contain poison that makes the entire process even faster and more efficient.

    Traps are usually placed along the walls or in places where you notice a lot of ants crawling around. They are also great for monitoring the infestation as you can assess the severity by the number of captured ants in the trap.

    DE powder duster.

    Sprinkle Diatomaceous Earth Powder

    Diatomaceous Earth Powder or DE powder is a natural solution for many pests including ants, silverfish, roaches, and bed bugs. This powder is not going to kill any pests instantly but it’s going to dry out the protective layer of the skeleton and dehydrate the bugs to death.

    Because it’s a fine powder it’s a good idea to use the DE powder dusters that have a large container and a long nozzle. This way you can reach all the areas where pests usually hide and sprinkle the DE powder without making a mess.

    DE powder can be used with traps and baits, and it’s perfectly safe for your family members and pets.

    Use Ant Sprays

    Ant sprays can help you kill ants instantly, so they come in handy when you need a quick solution. 

    However, make sure to choose eco-friendly solutions that don’t have additional fumes and harmful chemicals. The spray will kill all the ants immediately but it’s not a long-term solution for ending the infestation.

    It’s always a good idea to focus your attention on to complete elimination of ants from your home and additionally pay attention to possible attractants you might have. The leftover food, clutter, and water will lure in more ants even if you deal with the current infestation.

    Use Ant Baits

    Ant baits come in various shapes and sizes with the idea to attract the ants and trick them into carrying the poison into their nests. The baits don’t kill the ants instantly but rather eliminate all the ants in the colony with delayed effect.

    You should place the ant baits near the nest or colony or where you notice a lot of ants going through.

    The working ants will think it’s food and carry the poison into the nest. That’s one of the best ways to kill multiple ants with just one bait. It’s also a good idea to leave some traps and bait even when there are just a few ants left to ensure re-infestation doesn’t occur.

    Call Professionals

    If you can’t manage the ant infestation on your own it’s a good idea to rely on professional exterminator teams in your area. They have all the right tools, methods, and experience needed to resolve any pest problem fast and efficiently.

    While ants are not dangerous to humans and are not associated with any diseases they can be quite disruptive and unpleasant to see in your home. That’s why you need pest control for ants and other insects that might be in your home.

    Picture of an ant in home.

    How to Get Rid of Ants Outside

    Once you eliminate all the ants from your home you might want to consider getting rid of ants outside. They often build colonies and nests in your backyard and visit the home often to get food and water, so eliminating them from outside is important too.

    Here are a few tips and tricks to get rid of ants in the backyard:

    Use Yard Treatment or Granules

    With specialized outside granules, you can eliminate all the ants from your yard. 

    It’s working similarly to ant bait you can use in your home and kills the ants that consume it. It’s one of the most efficient ways of dealing with entire colonies of ants from your yard, just be careful no kids or pets come in contact with it.

    Pour Boiling Water

    Boiling water is an instant and cheap solution if you want to get rid of ants fast. On the other hand, it’s not permanent and can damage the plants that you accidentally water. So, you can pour some boiling water and kill ants instantly, but it’s not a permanent solution. 

    Use Barrier Sprays

    Barrier sprays, powders, and chalks can prevent re-infestation and kill any ants that come in contact with it. It’s also effective on many other pests that might crawl around so you should try to use this long-acting pest prevention.

    So, What Kills Ants?

    Ants might be small and look harmless but they are resilient and thrive under any circumstances. This makes them one of the hardest pests to get rid of, but it’s not impossible. With the right tools, traps, and baits you can easily and quickly resolve the ant infestation. Follow our detailed guide and you will have a bug-free home in no time.

    However, it’s always a good idea to consult with professionals and let them manage severe pest infestations. 

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