An ant infestation in your home is a problem that can quickly get out of hand. Complete removal of the hundreds or thousands of ants that make up a colony is something that many homeowners leave to a professional exterminator. However, it is possible that you can handle this problem on your own if you know a few common ant control techniques. Here are a few tips that can help you prevent and remove ant infestations in your home.
Remove Food Sources in Your Home
Ants first find their way into your home in search of food. Ants are attracted to both sugar and greasy foods. When a foraging ant finds a source of food for the colony in your home, it will leave a pheromone trail between the food source and the colony.
To prevent ants from being attracted to your home in the first place, you should do as much as you can to keep potential food sources out of the reach of ants. Keep your counters and tabletops clean and free of crumbs and food stains. Never leave unwashed dishes in the sink overnight, and remember to close cookie jars, loaves of bread, and other foods that sit outside of your fridge.
Locate and Block Entry Points
By the time you notice ants inside your home, it is likely that the colony has already set up camp to make several expeditions to their food source. Depending on the type of ants that you have, the colony may be located outside with ants entering through cracks and other unknown entry points. Alternatively, the colony may be located inside your home behind walls, kitchen cabinets, or inside window sills.
While you cannot see the pheromone trail that ants leave for their colony, you can follow the ants to get an idea of where the colony may be. You are likely to see several worker ants that are going back and forth from a food source to their colony in an almost straight line.
Follow this line to a crack in a wall, window sill, or other entry point, and then caulk the entry point or spray an ant repellent to prevent ants from following the pheromone trail. You may also want to spray the entirety of the ants' path with ant repellent or clean the surfaces that the ants touched with vinegar and water to further disperse the pheromone trail.
By using these tips, you can eliminate small ant infestations by discouraging them from foraging for food in your home. For large infestations, it can be difficult to locate all of the ants' possible entry points, so your best option is often to hire a pest control company like Ram Pest Management, LLC.
After living with a pest problem in our home for years, I kind of figured the bugs were there to stay. I had tried just about every kind of at-home treatment that I could think of, but nothing was working. It was frustrating, but I knew that there had to be something that could help. After failing for what seemed like the millionth time, I finally decided to work with a professional exterminator. The expert was incredibly proficient and knowledgeable about pest problems, and remarkably, he removed all of the pests from our house that day. This blog is all about working with a pro to eliminate pest problems.