5 Natural & Effective Ways to Instantly Kill Ants
Here is a quick summary of ways you can get rid of all ants including: fire ants, black ants, carpenter ants, and sugar ants.
- Sprinkle cayenne pepper near the source of the ants.
- Spray lemon water solution where you are seeing the ants.
- Spray vinegar solution where you commonly come across ants.
- Try spraying dish soap solution near the ant source.
- Use food-grade Diatomaceous Earth, which is safe for kids and pets.
Methods of Getting Rid of Ants
Ants can be a great nuisance inside and outside of the home. It is best to take action as soon as you start seeing the first ants appear in or around your home. Here are five methods you may want to try out before your resort to calling the professionals.
1. Kill ants with food-grade Diatomaceous Earth
This is something you probably haven’t heard of. Diatomaceous Earth is a white powder that isn’t dangerous to pets and small children. Diatomaceous earth consists of the fossilized remains of marine phytoplankton (crazy what people can come up with these days). The powder works by sticking to the exoskeleton of the ants and causing them to dry out. The diatomaceous earth can also cut up the exoskeleton of the ants. Although this powder sounds extremely scientific, it is readily available and can be easily purchased online.
2. Liquid Ant Baits
Liquid ant bait is an effective and cheap form of ant killer. We especially like the TERRO Liquid Ant Bait. These baits are designed to attract most foraging household ants. Once the liquid bait is consumed by the ants, the active ingredient will slowly affect their digestive system and kill them. The bait is designed this way in order to kill off other ants you don’t see. Click here to learn more about the TERRO Liquid Ant bait.
3. Use lemon water to drive ants away
Lemon water is another effective home remedy used to get rid of ants. Mix some lemon juice with water and spray the mixture at the area affected by the ant invasion. You may have to spray the area a few times a day to ensure the effectiveness of this particular natural method.
4. Use vinegar to block ant’s path
Have some unused vinegar left in the kitchen? Vinegar tends to work well for all sorts of pest problems. Fortunately, it is really effective for getting rid of ants. Like what you would do with the lemon juice, mix some vinegar with water and spray the resulting mixture around the ant’s trail. The strong scent of the vinegar will repel the ants. Keep in mind, however, that you would also smell the vinegar so only use this particular method if you aren’t troubled by the smell.
5. Dish soap is harmful for ants
Dish soaps and dish detergents are harmful to ants because a lot of the chemicals they contain can break down protective layers of the ant’s exoskeleton. This could eventually cause dehydration for the ants. With this method, you will mix some dish soap with water and spray the resulting solution at the entry points of the ant path.
6. Cayenne pepper for ant defense
Ants hate cayenne pepper. Black pepper will work just as well too. There are a few ways you can use cayenne pepper to get rid of ants. First, if you are able to locate the source of ant infestation problem, sprinkle some pepper around that area and if possible, create a wall that will stop the ants from accessing your household. An alternative solution is to mix some pepper with water and spray the resulting solution at the ants. The pepper won’t kill the ants but it sure will deter them from returning.
Here is an infographic that summarizes steps you can take home to get rid of ants.
Preventing Ant Infestations
The best natural remedy to killing all types of ants would be to simply prevent them from coming in the first place. Like any pests, ants are attracted to certain things and behaviors. If you don’t engage in the following things then you can be sure of reducing the possibility of an ant infestation by a large percentage.
Keep sugary food out of open space
Ants unsurprisingly are attracted to sugar and all sorts of sugary food. Hence, you should never leave them out in open space. Otherwise, you can expect a friendly hello from the ants the next morning. Also note that ants are more attracted to sticky, sugary solutions than sugar itself. You might even consider using this knowledge to your advantage by creating a sugar trap. For example, you could create some sweetened jelly that contains boric acid and use that to kill the ants at home. Boric acid can be considered toxic to a certain degree so avoid using this method if you have children or pets at home.
Keep your kitchen sink clean
Another important tip is to keep your kitchen sink clean of dirty dishes. I am guilty of this myself but I would usually stack up a lot of dirty dishes and bowls for a week before giving them a clean. Doing this, however, would increase the chances of an ant infestation so try and clean your dishes the moment you are done with them. You don’t want any food leftovers to attract the ants.
Take out the trash every day
Make sure you are taking out the trash every day. For any pests, trash can be seen as a flashing welcome sign so keep your home as clean as possible by removing anything that has the remote chance of attracting pests like ants.
Keep moisture away
Keep your home dry. Make sure places like your bathroom and kitchen are clear of puddles. This tip is especially important if you are living in a low-humidity area. Like any other living organism, ants need water and they will try and stay close to any source of water.
Common Types of Ants
When you are dealing with an infestation, it also helps to know what type of ant you are dealing with. Although they may all look the same, there are actually a wide variety of ants that exist on this planet. The common types that households deal with are: pavement ants, carpenter ants, fire ants, and odorous house ants. Here is a brief description for each type.
Carpenter ants are one of the largest types you will ever come across when it comes to ant species. Adult carpenter ants can measure from around 6 to 12 mm in length. A mature colony of carpenter ants can contain thousands of ants so you definitely want to sort them out before they become an even greater problem. Carpenter ants can be red or black in color.
Pavement ants are smaller than carpenter ants. Typical pavements can measure from around 2.5 to 3 mm in length. Pavement ants aren’t only attracted to sugary food. You may also find them feeding on food like meat, seeds, and greasy food. Pavement ants have brown or black bodies.
The fire ants are probably the last types of ants you would want to deal with at home. As their name implies, fire ants have red bodies. They measure around 1.6 to 5 mm in length. The sting from fire ants can be painful so you definitely want to avoid touching them.
Odorous house ants
Odorous ants are pretty small. They are around 2.4 to 3.3 mm in length. Like the pavement ants, odorous ants have brown or black bodies. Odorous ants prefer sweet items.