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How to Get Rid of an Ant Infestation

mom and daughter baking in kitchen

Despite being tiny creatures, ants have a habit of making themselves appear when they’re not welcome, like in our homes. But why do ants suddenly appear in our kitchens, living rooms, and bedrooms? There are several unexpected reasons why. Read on to learn more about why ants may appear in your home and how to get rid of ants in your home.

What Attracts Ants to Your Home?

Ants are attracted to your home for the same reason you are—it provides water, food, and shelter.

  • Food:
  • Water: Easy water sources, such as leaky pipes, can attract ants.
  • Shelter: Ants are especially active in the summer as periods of heavy rain can cause their colonies to flood, sending them in search of a dry new place to nest.

Ants have a sophisticated way of communicating with each other. If one ant discovers a crumb of food in your kitchen, it releases a trail of pheromones that attracts fellow ants to the food source. 

Signs of an Ant Infestation

There are a few telltale signs your home is now the home of an army of ants. Some signs are more obvious than others. 

Groups of Ants

One of the most obvious signs of an infestation is spotting a group of ants in one area. This means a single ant guided the other ants to a source of food or water. If you see a group of ants anywhere in your home, you need to take action right away.

Stray Ants

Seeing a bunch of stray ants is also a troubling sign. Stray ants are “scout ants,” and roam around to find other areas to infest. If you spot a stray ant in areas without food, water, or excess moisture, it usually points to a larger infestation elsewhere.

Noises in the Walls

A considerable infestation will create a soft rustling noise in the walls the colony infested. Knocking on your wall and hearing a hollow sound is another sign that points to a hiding ant colony.

Nearby Ant Nests

Spotting an ant nest outside your home is a big red flag. These nests usually take the form of small dirt mounds, so they’re easy to spot. Even though the nest is outside, your home is close enough to warrant the ants to invade. As soon as you spot a mound, take action before you end up spotting an ant in your house.

How to Get Rid of Ants in Your House

As soon as you spot ants in your home, it would be best if you started implementing preventative measures against them. Here are a few steps you can take to start removing an infestation.

Clean Up

If you see one ant, it likely left a trail for its colony. While you can’t see this trail, one way to prevent the colony from smelling the ant’s pheromones is to clean the area with vinegar. This prevents the colony from locating the ant, which can stop an invasion in its tracks.

Be sure to clean hard-to-reach areas, such as behind the fridge and oven. These areas notoriously harbor food in small crevices that are hard to reach for you, but not for ants. Staying on top of cleaning the nooks and crannies in your home will help prevent attracting ants.

Use Natural Deterrents

There are a few natural products that can help you get rid of ants in your home:

Mix about 10-15 drops of these natural oils with 2 cups of water and spray the mixture around the baseboards and windows of your home to prevent ants from getting in. You can also place saturate cotton balls anywhere where you’ve seen ants.

  • Peppermint oil
  • Tea tree oil
  • Lemon eucalyptus oil
  • Cinnamon leaf essential oil
  • Neem oil

Sprinkle these substances around baseboards and behind appliances to help keep ants at bay.

  • Black or red (cayenne) pepper
  • Coffee grounds
  • Diatomaceous earth

Remember to keep all of these substances out of reach of children and pets, as injecting these substances could make them sick.

​Remove Resources

Ants need water to live, so it’s essential to get rid of any excess moisture in your home. Pay attention to areas that may harbor standing water, such as plants, sinks, and garages. Ants are also attracted to humid areas. When bathing, remember to turn a fan on to help prevent a build-up of humidity.

Seal of Entry Points

Cover up any open spaces that lead outside. Ants are tiny, so they can fit into small cracks anywhere in your home. Use caulk to seal the cracks and crevices.

Since wood attracts carpenter ants, keep logs of wood away from your home, if possible. Scan your home for any wood decay and take care of any decay you see immediately.

Set Up Ant Traps

Hire a Professional

If your ant invasion gets out of control, it’s time to look into professional pest control companies to keep ants at bay regularly. Pest control services provide on-demand ant extermination when you need it most. You can choose between quarterly visits or a one-time visit.

Professional pest control services use eco-friendly products and certified technicians to get rid of nasty invasions quickly and safely. Plus, you can count on same-day service.

All It Takes Is One Ant

When you find yourself asking, “why do ants suddenly appear” after spotlessly cleaning your home, it’s time to take things to the next level.

An inspection is a quick and easy way to mitigate ant issues. So when you spot any signs of ant invasions, it’s best to take strong measures to get rid of them immediately.

Are ants already invading your home? Feel free to contact us today and to get a pest control quote or schedule a free inspection!