How to Get Rid of Ants
How To Get Rid Of Ants
We all have seen those pesky little critters crawling around your kitchen counters, across your driveway, or on the floor of your restroom. They can be anywhere. All homeowners wonder how to get rid of ants. It seems like you solve the problem and before you know it, they have found another way in. You clean thoroughly, even hire a pest control specialist, but they always return. So how do you get rid of ants when they don’t go away?
Let’s first determine what we are dealing with.
Signs of Ant Infestation
The first telltale sign to an ant infestation is the visual appearance of ants. You will notice a few at the start; these are usually scouts that are in search of an area to feed. Once a good report is given to the nest, ants will make their way into an area, this time in much larger numbers. At this point, your first question will be how to get rid of the ants? The treatment will depend on the type of ant that you are being pestered by.
There are many things to look for. Much like you and me, ants need a source of water. So, you will primarily find them in areas near an ample water supply. Within the home, look for tiny wood shavings within cabinets under the kitchen or bathroom sinks. Ants will tunnel their way through wood, especially where the sides meet, in their search for food. Their job is easier if the wood is softer and fungus laden. Unfortunately, this can also serve as a warning sign of a moisture issue in or around your home.
Ants also look for cracks and unsealed doors and windows. Look for debris that they have made through their tunneling process, and for other disturbances that don’t look normal. Also, look for ant trails. And do not discount a stray ant. Where there is one, there will be more.
Most ants will build their nests outdoors. However, some like carpenter ants will have a smaller nest within the walls of a structure. Just like indoors, they need to be near a source of water. These can include areas such as birdbaths, pools, sheds, and gardens. They especially like soaked areas like under mulch, woodpiles, and under rocks.
Once you know the type of ant, then you will be able to determine how to get rid of ants. And stomping a few here and there does not deter them. In fact, some species will react to an ant smasher; defending their nest that leaves a painful result. To help you prevent a sting or bite, let’s help you identify the tiny critters that are taking over your home.
Carpenter ants vary from 1/2” to 5/8” long. Black is the most common color. However, they can be a combination of black and red, red, or brown. They have six legs and long antennae. Their name reveals their nesting habits. They build within wood, preferably in areas where moisture builds – wood that has been soaked, and possibly fungus laden.
Carpenter ant’s main source of food is insect honeydew, plant and fruit juices, insects and other arthropods. Indoor food consists of sweets, eggs, meat, cakes, and grease. Workers will travel up to 300 feet from the nest. Most ant activity occurs throughout the night, but that does not rule out seeing them during the day. A Carpenter Ant does have a powerful bite and can be painful. It also secretes formic acid that causes a burning sensation. However, it is not life-threatening.
Pavement ants are about 1/16” to 1/8” long. They are dark brown to blackish in color. They have six legs and long antennae. Their name too gives an inclination as to their preferred habitat. They live within ground-level masonry walls, cracks in the pavement, under stones, and generally close to buildings.
Pavement ant’s main source of food is pretty much anything they can find: insects, seeds, honeydew, honey, bread, meats, nuts, and cheese. They travel up to 30 feet from their habitats in search of these foods, as well as water.
While Pavement Ants do not pose health risks, they can contaminate the food that they
come in contact with.
Sugar ants will vary in size. They are an all-encompassing title for many species of ant. They are 1/16” to 1/8” long. The three primary types are: Odorous House Ants, Pharaoh, and even Pavement Ants can be considered Sugar Ants. For the sake of simplicity, the main information covered here will be on the Odorous House Ant, as they are the most common “Sugar Ant”.
Sugar Ants are dark brown to black in color. They also have six legs, but their antennae are not as long as other types of ants. They live primarily around moisture sources; within walls near a hot water heater, around fixture leaks, as well as within wood damaged by termites. They are known to relocate their nest due to weather conditions frequently.
Sugar Ant’s main source of food is honeydew, but anything sweet they are attracted to.
With the odorous house ant, just as their name implies, when they are crushed/stepped on,
they give off a foul odor.
Sugar Ants bite sharply. Some of the species expel an acidic secretion that burns a bit. It
is not life-threatening, but should be taken into consideration when you see them.
Black Ants are also called “Tiny Black Ants”. As implied, they are very small in size, around 1/16” long. They are typically black but can be a brownish-black. They have six legs and short antennae. Little black ants are common in wooded areas. They build their nests under rocks, in rotting logs, and under piles of lumber. Nests are located indoors within woodwork, wall voids, and decaying wood.
A Black Ant’s primary source of food is meat, fruits and vegetables. They will also eat grease and oils. Some feed on materials such as cornmeal and sweets. When outdoors, they feed on insects and honeydew. Black Ants have a stinger. However, due to their size, the stinger does not puncture the skin.
Fire Ants are one of the most dreaded types of ant. That and they are a decent size, 1/8”- 3/8” long. Adding to the fear is that they are a bright red to brownish red in color. Their nests tend to be larger and more recognizable than other common ants. They are built up, like a mound, that can be two to four feet in length. They are primarily found outdoors but can make their way inside through holes, like with an HVAC systems.
The Fire Ant will eat insects, earthworms, ticks, spiders, honeydew, and other sweets.
Fire Ants can and will sting. They are highly aggressive and defensive. A disturbed
nest will often result in several painful stings. These will usually swell and leave a
pustule. Extra caution is warranted for those who have an allergy to insect stings.
How To Get Rid Of Ants
Now that we have a pretty good grip on the type of ants homeowners must deal with, let’s really get into how to get rid of ants.
1. Determine The Type Of Ant
How to get rid of ants in the house. After you have witnessed your infestation issue, and determined the type of ant, the task of how to get rid of ants begins. The first thing to do is to get rid of their source of food. You do not have to throw away everything, but to err on the side of caution, if you even have the slightest bit of doubt if ants got into a food product, it would be best to chuck the item. It is not worth getting sick over or discovering much later that you had left them behind in the cereal box, only to discover another infestation later on.
2. Clean Area
Next, you must thoroughly clean the infected area. Ants follow trails left behind by other ants. A diligent cleaning eliminates these trails.
3. Use A Non-Toxic Ant Killer
Then follow up with a safe, natural ant killer. The fear of pesticides often leads people to use ant traps. Ant traps, like Terro ™ ant bait can help you get rid of the wandering ant that is attracted to the trap, but they will not solve the root issue. You need a more effective solution; a safe and proven method.
Dr. Killigan’s Six Feet Under ™ is a non-toxic ant killer, using natural oils. It is harmless to humans and pets, all while finding the ants and Killing Them Softly®. Follow the instructions and spray in areas where you have seen ants present, around the areas where their nests exist, and along the areas that you have cleaned. Then, repeat as necessary.
How To Get Rid Of Ants Around The Yard.
Clean up is crucial to getting rid of ants. The biggest problem is that it is outdoors. It’s an ant’s natural habitat. Unless the ant is disturbing your way of life, or your kids or pets, it is always best to leave them alone. But to aid you in keeping them away from the area close to your home, cleanliness is the best natural ant killer.
You can pretty much follow the same instructions as for indoors. Clean the affected area and
treat areas that you can. While not traditionally an outdoor remedy, especially around gardens,
Six Feet Under will work in Killing Them Softly®.
DIY Solutions to Get Rid of Ants
Google is the main source that most people turn to when looking for a natural ant killer. They may search online for: “How to get rid of ants” and find all kinds of home remedies for ants from a borax ant killer to essential oils. While home remedies can be handy and are fairly easy to concoct, they may not always work in the way you desire. It is always beneficial to take a look at a proven method.
Dr. Killigan’s, Inc. ™ has been helping with unwanted guests using 100% non-toxic ingredients.
They endeavor to bring “classy” back to your home. This is done through visually and
aromatically appealing design of the product: no more harsh chemical smell or unsightly canister
ant killers. The best part of Dr. Killigan’s, Inc. ™ products is their guarantee. If you are not
completely satisfied, they offer a 100%money-back guarantee.
How to Prevent Future Infestations
Now that you have gotten rid of your less than welcome neighbors, you can once again enjoy the comforts of your home. You can sit out on your porch without the fear of something taking a nibble out of your foot or leg.
However, it must be understood that ants can and will try to make it back to your home even if you have gotten rid of their nests. Ants are in constant movement. They are used to relocating their nests, and they multiply just as easily. Two small, measly ants can become a 20,000 colony in a brief amount of time. So, your mind must refocus from “How to get rid of ants” to “How to prevent ants”. This will make a great deal of difference in the long run.
The best solution to an ant debacle is not to give ants the reason to visit your home. A few examples would be: 1. Keeping foods that attract ant activity in sealed, closed, and airtight containers. 2. Cleaning up spills in a timely manner. 3. Do not let the dishes to sit in the sink for long periods of time (remember the primary thing ants are attracted to is a water source, the sink is ideal.) And speaking of sinks, it is ideal to make sure you do not have leaks or standing water in and around your home.4. Patch up any cracks or holes that you may find, seal up areas around piping, and be mindful of unseen issues like leaks in walls or under the sinks.
Keep areas dry that should be dry. Firewood piles, stones, or even bricks can create moisture pockets that attract ants. Keep these items from touching the ground when possible. Keep trash cans clean and sealed. This habit also helps with wasps and other flying menaces.
Ant prevention is all about proper home maintenance. Routinely inspect areas around your home. Look for leaking pipes and fixtures. Treat areas where you have seen ants in the past using a non-toxic spray like Dr. Killigan’s Six Feet Under.
There are a wide variety of products on the market for how to get rid of ants. You can buy an ant spray that will do the job, but if you have pets or are sensitive to the harsh chemicals, then you are no better off. The traditional borax ant killers, although they are marketed as safe, they can still cause harm if they are handled inappropriately or within the wrong mixture. The online DYI mixtures are an easy option, but they do not always work. You need a reliable and safe method of getting rid of ants.
Dr. Killigan’s Six Feet Under ™ insect spray is an essential-oil based remedy on how to get rid of ants. It also works on roaches, spiders, bedbugs, and more. Just as Dr. Killigan’s team of professionals has proven since 2015, they continue to raise the bar when it comes to Killing Them Softly®. They make products that are safe for the environment, you, your children, and pets. Six Feet Under ™ is one of their latest solutions to help return sanity and peace to your home!