Ants generally don't cause harm to people they don't carry disease, like some other pests an infestation can be a major nuisance. Ants can be extremely persistent creatures, seemingly coming from nowhere and can be difficult to entirely get rid of
DIY and professional pest removal options are available.
Reasons for ant infestation Ants typically invade your home for one reason: food. Most feed on sugary or greasy items.
Sugar ants also called odorous house ants are one of the most common ant invaders and among the first pests to show up in the spring. They’re about one-eighth of an inch or smaller and are attracted to food sources.
The common pavement ant, which is brown to black and about 1/10th of an inch long, will set up colonies near driveways or patios and then send out scouts to search for food in your home. They eat meat, grease, seeds, dead or live insects, and can sting and bite if disturbed.
Carpenter ants, which are black and up to half an inch long, look for protein rather than sugar, and will eat through wood to find nesting locations. Small piles of wood shavings called "frass" found under windows or door frames are signs of carpenter ants.
Moisture ants are larger about 4 to 4.5 mm long and are usually an indication of excessive water somewhere. Either can be a problem in bathrooms.
Knowing what type of ant you're dealing with can help you prevent or combat an infestation.
Keeping ants out The first step to prevent an ant infestation: clean house. If you see scout ants in your home, kill them immediately. Make sure you don't leave any food out and keep all kitchen surfaces clean.
If you continue to see ants, make sure you've closed off possible entry points, including sealing small cracks in your walls or under windows. Start by caulking potential entry points, such as window casings.
laying down barriers like salt or talc under doors to turn ants away, or apply scents such as vinegar, peppermint oil or cinnamon. Bear in mind, however, that anything you put down will also be of interest to pets and children, so be careful what you use. Start with soap and water. This will not only kill chemical trails, but any ants it touches. Add citrus to the water to increase its effectiveness.
Purchase pest sprays and baited ant traps from local grocery and hardware stores. These use a mixture of sugars and ant poison, such as boric acid to attract, trap and kill ants. Proceed with caution when using poison.
Bear in mind, too, that these traps won't work on protein-feeders like carpenter ants, since the sweetness won't interest them.
Trapping ants inside, you can also spray around the exterior of the home where the house meets the pavement or ground to prevent more ants from infiltrating, Eastside ants Exterminators in Woodinville, Washington.
Diatomaceous Earth in carpeted areas around the bathroom is a safe and natural way to kill ants because it’s a food source.
The Windex or vinegar is really a quick fix and not really that effective, but it will remove the immediate ants and wipe away their pheromone scent they use to follow trails cracks around the baseboards and the base of the toilet if the infestation is in the bathroom.
Hire a pest control professional Large-scale infestations require assistance from a pest control professional.
Pros address ant problems by locating the colony itself; typically this starts by laying bait traps, which contain poisoned food taken back to the nest. Once found, exterminators can use a variety of techniques including chemical sprays to totally eliminate the ants in your home.
In the case of carpenter ants, early detection is critical. Left unchecked, they can cause significant damage to your home. A pest control professional may need to drill small holes in your wall to make sure the entire colony has been eliminated, and will often book a follow-up visit to make sure problems don't recur.
Costs of ant removal The cost to remove ants yourself can be quite low. The price of a liquid ant killer or an ant trap runs between $5 and $10.
DIY treatments may be able to divert ants which have not established a colony, or deal with the scouts sent out to gather food. However, they aren't as effective at long-term removal or in addressing large-scale infestations.
Professional exterminators can charge between $400 and $1,000 to completely eliminate ants. A professional [ant control company] can apply what’s called a transfer insecticide, which is the most effective method for eliminating a sugar ant colony, Transfer insecticides are not available to the general public, but are very effective at getting rid of colonies inside a structure. Every ant that makes contact with it spreads it on to any other ant it makes contact with.