Ants are hard to manage; once they get in they don’t want to leave. Fortunately there are family, pet, and environmentally friendly ways to keep these pests from invading your home, and to keep your family happy and healthy.
One of the best ways to protect your home from ants is to caulk all the windows, doors, and cracks. This method is budget friendly and is great if you have kids or pets. There are no fumes or poisons so you don’t have to leave your home to protect it. The two types of caulking are silicone and acrylic. Silicone is very durable, temperature, and weather resistant so it’s great to use outside to seal off cracks and keep ants out. It will completely cure in 24 hours, but is tack free after 30 minutes. Acrylic caulking has latex and does well with most indoor paints. It cures in three days, but is dry enough to paint after two hours.
2. Coffee Grounds
While most people love the smell of coffee, ants hate it. The grounds throw off their sense of smell and when they can’t find food they starve. Sprinkle your used coffee grounds around the perimeter of your house. If you can find the spot where the ants are getting in make sure to put your coffee grounds there as well. This is a very environmentally friendly way to drive away your ants, but can take several weeks to starve the ants out.
3. Dish Soap
While doing the dishes is a regular chore, the dish soap you use helps to keep Scout Ants out of your kitchen. Don’t leave any dirty dishes in the sink and close your dishwasher all the way. Ants don’t like the smell of disinfectants and dish soap keeps them from smelling their favorites like honey and jam. Putting soapy water on baseboards, cabinets, and anthills will drive them away in a few days and keep future ants from settling down in your residence.
4. Find a Dependable Exterminator
Get a pest inspection and look into the environmentally friendly options Orkin offers. Exterminators can target specific types of pests like winged ants, red ants, and carpenter ants. Find an expert and ask about the ways they can help protect your home and are safe for your family and the environment. Catching ant or any other infestations early and seeking professional help is the quickest way to get your problem under control. Then you can set up regular inspections to keep pests away.
5. Spices and Herbs
Put up a defensive barrier against ants and make your home smell amazing all at the same time. Collect your favorite spices and herbs like cinnamon, bay leaves, pepper, and citric oil. This is the best preventive method to keep away ants. Make sure you don’t have any ants inside the house before you spice it up or you’ll just trap them inside. Sprinkle your spices around doors, windows, and baseboards. The lines don’t need to be more than a quarter of an inch thick, but they must be in an unbroken line. These barriers will terrify ants and keep them out of your house.
6. Grits or Corn Meal
Buy some instant grits, corn meal, or instant cream of wheat and sprinkle in a circle around ant hills and wherever your ants are coming in. They can’t digest the granules and the process is very similar to feeding rice to birds. The pieces swell inside the ants’ stomach and kills them instantly, even if they don’t ingest the grains, the worker ants will bring them to their queen and when she dies they will relocate. It’s a guaranteed way to get rid of ants without spending much money or using hazardous poisons.
While flowerpots won’t help inside the house they will take care of the mounds in your yard. Place a flowerpot upside down over the ant hill and pour boiling water in the draining holes on the bottom of the pot. This will burn them out and drown them. There is virtually no clean up, but wear oven mitts to protect your hands against the hot water, long pants and closed-toed shoes to protect your legs and feet, and pour slowly so you to keep water from splattering.
Ant invasions are scary, frustrating, and dangerous, but there is hope and safety in just a few simple methods. Try these tips to rid your home of ants in an environmentally safe way and keep you, your family, and your pets protected against pests.