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Ants are nature’s friends as they dig up the soil and soften it up to ensure proper aeration, thus making it more fertile. But they can be a nuisance if they take shelter inside your home. While you may not notice or care about an ant or two living in your house, it gets frustrating to see thousands of ants roaming in the house.
It’s understandable to be angry and go on a killing spree when ants bite yours for no reason. And what about your favorite lava cake that the ants spoilt by feasting upon them.
Your primary focus at this point is just to get rid of all the ants in your home for once and for all. No matter how much you kill them, they just seem to keep multiplying in numbers. But we’ve listed here more than 21 practical ways to get rid of ants in your home that would require little effort.
Before implying these methods, you must know that you should apply these remedies right at the point of the infestation of ants. Since ants move in trails, follow these ant trails to reach the ant mound and use the antidote right at the core of the problem.
21 Natural and Effective Ways to get rid of ants
Peppermints are natural insect repellants that additionally fill the air around your home with freshness. While you might struggle to find a human who hates the smell of peppermint, you will be amazed to know that ants hate it. You can either plant peppermint in your home or spray peppermint essential oil to get rid of those irritating ants.
Place pots of peppermint on different corners and edges of your home to create a barrier that repels ants. Pour a few drops of peppermint essential oil on a cotton ball and wipe the corners in the cupboards as well as suspected areas. You can also start your day with some fresh mint juice because of its various health benefits, so it’s a win-win situation!
2. Diatomaceous Earth
Diatomaceous earth is a silica product that contains fossils of an aquatic organism called a diatom. It’s a natural irritant and can kill bugs as well as ants by drying them out. Diatomaceous earth fills their skeletons with oils and is a deadly poison for the ants as well as many other bugs.
It’s a foolproof plan to use this product, and you can easily find food grade diatomaceous earth online as well as in stores around you. While it is not toxic to humans, it can irritate the skin, so you should try to protect your skin while spraying it. Find ant trails and spray it right in their homes to wipe them all off in a jiffy!
It’s a common anecdote that you can draw an ant barrier with chalk, and they won’t cross it. While you may have ignored the old saying, this one has some weight behind it.
Your great grandfather may not be as superstitious as you thought of them! Chalk powder can break down the scent markers or pheromones that the ants use as a map. A chalk barrier can effectively make them forget their way back to your house.
4. White Vinegar
Using substances like white vinegar is like playing with the ant’s senses. A vinegar solution not only destroys the ant’s pheromones but also destroys their sense of smell. It won’t actually kill the ants but just ward them off, so you won’t feel cruel too.
Just spray some diluted vinegar mixture on the ant trail or the infestation area. The ants will instantly lose their direction after smelling vinegar. Spray the solution daily on cupboards, doors, or other susceptible areas as the vinegar is quite volatile and disappears soon.
5. Citrus oil
While vinegar does an adequate job in misleading the ants away from your home, it has a strong odor that might be as frustrating as the ants itself. If you have a disliking of the vinegar’s smell, you can use lemon essential oils and citrus oils to do the same job.
Dilute lemon juice with a lit of water and spray it on susceptible areas to disorient the ants from their path. If the ants have accumulated in large numbers and you found the infestation area, you can rub a sliced lemon on the affected areas to get rid of the ants.
6. Tea Tree Oil
Apart from imparting richness to your hair, you might be surprised to know that tea tree oil can kill ants. The strong scent of tea tree oil repels ants effectively. Mix around 5 to 10 drops of tea tree oil with 2 cups of water and pour it in a spray bottle.
Spray the solution on susceptible areas and whenever you see ants around you. Tea tree oil has a strong scent and might be unbearable to some people. If that is the case with you, you can mix it with peppermint oil and water in the spray.
Just like other essential oils, tea tree oil can also be harmful to animals, so you should keep it away from pets. You can easily buy tea tree oil from your nearby departmental store or order it online.
This is one way where you won’t need to buy anything from the store to repel ants. You can use a thing as common as pepper to shoo away ants away from your home.
If you have smelt pepper ever, you would know it’s a strong irritant to human beings, but what if we tell you that pepper irritates ants as much as us?
You can use black pepper powder to get rid of ants. It is an entirely natural remedy, and you can spray it around baseboards as well as behind doors and appliances to stop the infestation of ants.
8. Corn Flour
You may have used corn starch in Chinese recipes as well as to make fritters crispy so far, but now you can use cornflour to get rid of irritating ants in the household. You can use this technique if the ants have become extremely damaging.
While it’s a good source of food, it’s quite hard to digest for ants, and they will eventually die after eating it. This method won’t kill the ants straightaway but is an effective method if you can wait for some time.
It’s a cheap and ecofriendly method to kill ants. Just sprinkle around the suspected areas, and you can also sprinkle it along the ant trail. It will prove to be an effective and long term solution to the ant problem.
9. Glass cleaner and Liquid detergent
Your glass cleaner and dish wash soap can not only kill the germs on the glass and dishes but also deter ants away from your home. (Check out dish soap uses)
Mix the two liquids along with some water and spray it along the baseboard, cupboard, and other ant infestation areas. Its scent will eliminate the scented pheromone and mislead the ant away from your home.
Leave the liquid from the sprayed area after some time to leave away a light scent that will be effective enough to deter ants. It’s not a method proven by science but somewhat effective based on anecdotes and user experience.
10. Hand Soap
If you don’t want to waste your glass cleaner and don’t have other remedies suggested so far, you can use this basic necessity to get rid of ants at home.
Apply some hand soap over the point of entry of ants as well as ant trails. It will eliminate the scent of ant pheromones effectively freeing your house of harmful ants.
Ants can’t communicate with each other without pheromone, and they are most likely to find new homes around them.
Spices are a god’s gift to humanity, a chef’s delight and it’s no wonder why spices are one of the most expensive yet highest imported food items around the world.
Cinnamon is the tea lover’s favorite spice, and you would be glad to know that it can also repel ants away from your home. Cinnamon gives ants a slow death when they sniff and inhale the air around it.
You can use both ground cinnamon as well as cinnamon essential oils to get rid of ants at your home. Sprinkle some ground cinnamon along the ant trails and over their entry point to kill them instantly.
You can also mix some cinnamon essential oil along with water and spray it around the cupboards, doors, and along with the ant, the trail to kill those problematic little insects.
12. Kerosene Fuel
While our ancestors used kerosene fuel regularly to light up the gas flame and cook food, the introduction of LPG and electricity-based induction cookers have reduced the usage of kerosene in a long way. However, it’s still a capable fuel to repel ants in the house.
You can use kerosene fuel in a small spray bottle and spray it around the corners of your home and along the ant trails.
Keep in mind that kerosene is exceptionally volatile and inflammable, so you should use it with utmost care. While it would be highly effective in deterring ants from entering your home, misuse or improper handling can lead to dire consequences. Using it around fire may flame much more than just food, and you may become roasted meat within minutes. So, handle carefully!
13. Baking Soda
If baking soda had an alter ego, it would surely be called ant poison. Consumption of baking soda by an ant can cause its stomach to bloat and eventually lead to its death. You can easily find this mighty effective substance in your kitchen because of its array of uses other than killing ants.
Mix equal proportions of baking soda with sugar and add a bit of dry yeast to the mixture. Sprinkle it around the corners of the house, baseboards, cupboards, and other suspected areas.
The ants will be attracted to the smell of sugar and feed on it. They will ingest baking soda in the process, which will lead to their death.
14. Double-sided tape
If you have just cooked your favorite waffles or choco lava cake and want to keep it outside to air cool, it’s understandable that you would be worried about ants spoiling the dish.
The primary issue about ants is that they don’t just come in individually and taste a bite but carry out a full-fledged attack and ruin the whole dish. Double-sided tape can come in real handy in such cases.
Tape the area around the dish with double-sided tape and wait for ants to attack your hard-cooked dessert. As soon as they would try to cross the tape border, they would get stuck on the tape to never come out in the world again. Replace the tape with a new layer when it has assassinated enough of you little black and red enemies.
Do you need more reasons to justify your coffee addiction and the large store of coffee at your home? Well, you can now use coffee to kill ants, which is just another reason why coffee is the best stress reliever ever.
It will relieve you of the stress ants are causing along with calming your nerves after a long day at work. You can use both ground coffee as well as coffee water to get rid of ants in your home.
Pour some coffee water or ground coffee directly into an ant nest. Coffee expands the ants’ insides and kills them right at the place where they ate it.
16. Hot boiling water
Want to kill the ants’ empire right where they live completely? Some hot boiling water can do the trick for you. Boil water at around 212° Fahrenheit and pour it directly on an ant mound to completely eradicate an ant colony.
Doing this will not only keep your house free from ants for a long time but also provide you with the utmost satisfaction. This is your chance to take revenge on those poisonous ant bites you sustained without any mistake of yours.
It’s important to note that boiling hot water can also kill weed and grass. So you shouldn’t pour it directly in the lawn where grass or other plants are growing.
17. Cornmeal Deterrent
Have you noticed how ants accumulate around the hummingbird feeder? They start there and slowly enter your kitchen in search of more food. Kill or distract them right at the foundation on the hummingbird feeder.
Sprinkle some cornmeal around the base of the pole, tree, or post to deter the ants from climbing up to the feeder. The corneal.gets easily washed away in winds and rain, so you need to reapply every day.
18. DIY Ant Spray
Here is a DIY spray remedy that would not only kill ants but also act a refreshing room freshener. Use your vodka drink to some good use other than getting intoxicated with friends. Pour around two tablespoons of vodka, five drops of cinnamon essential oil, and 15 drops of peppermint essential oil along with 4 oz.
Water and pour it in a spray bottle. Shake well and spray wherever you notice ant trails in your home as well as in the yard. Use it as a natural room freshener and refresh your homies in the morning with it.
19. Borax Bait
Borax is poisonous to ants, but they know this fact and won’t ingest it intentionally. Be intelligent and bait ants by combining borax laundry booster and sugar in equal parts. Add several tablespoons of this mixture on a small plate and keep it in close reach to ants.
Ants aren’t as wicked as you and would surely come up in the greed of sugar. They will take the crystals of the mixture to their colony, and the whole group will die once they ingest borax. This trick also works against cockroaches.
20. Get rid of wood
Wood acts as an ardent magnet that attracts ants. The major reason behind the sudden attack of ants in your home may not be your sugary food, but the firewood you have stacked in your home. Avoid stacking up wood in your home unless you have to burn it in the night.
Rotting trees and limbs are also ideal homes for ants. Cut these off your yard to dissuade ants from making a shelter inside your home.
21. Cut off their food source
We get tired caring about our family, job, pet, car, and so many other things throughout the day. Step into an ant’s shoes, and you would be saved off many such stress issues, and there is only one thing ants care about – food. Eliminate the crux of the matter by cutting off the food source that’s attracting the ants into your home.
Seal containers tightly and avoid keeping sugary foods like honey, cake, etc. out in the open. Seal such foods in an airtight container or a plastic bag. Also, don’t forget to clean your kitchen appliances, discarded crumbs, garbage bin, stove, etc. as these places strongly attract ants.
Remove pet bowls as soon as your pet has finished eating as pet foods can also attract ants. Rinse all the stained dishes to deter ants from finding shelter and food inside your home.