If you see ants roaming around your house, you need to know how to get rid of ants quickly. Ants may be small, but they can cause a huge problem if you have an invasion. And while they are not harmful to our health, ants can cause potential damage to wood, wires or even structural damage.
Ant nests are usually found outside, but as the weather warms, ants move inside homes in search of food and water. The problem is that once you see one, you’re sure to find a whole army lurking, making them harder to banish.
First try to find the entry point where these little terrors come from to make access difficult. Check for cracks in the walls, holes in floorboards or any openings on the outside, and seal or treat with a natural repellent. This should make it more difficult for ants to enter your home. Also, don’t make your home more inviting by leaving food or crumbs around the house. By regular cleaning every room of your housethis minimizes the risk of pesky ants.
In the meantime, there are natural repellents that you can easily make from your kitchen. Plus, these are non-toxic, cheaper, and much safer to use around the house. So if you want to tackle minor horrors, here’s how to get rid of ant safety with these homemade products.
How to get rid of ants safely?
Use citrus fruits — Citrus fruits such as lemons, limes and oranges are great natural ant repellents. These are poisonous to certain types of fungi that ants like to feed on. Placing citrus peels or lemon juice around the house where ants are likely to get will keep them from coming back. Do you want to know more about the power of citrus, check out 9 things you didn’t know you could clean with a lemon and be amazed.
Spray white vinegar — Mix a 50:50 solution of white vinegar with water in a spray bottle. Spray your countertops, surfaces or other places where you have often seen ants. The strong smell of the vinegar should keep ants at bay and remove the odor trails they leave in the house. Plus, vinegar can do a lot more than repel ants; here it is what makes baking soda and vinegar so good at cleaning?† Note that there are also things you should never clean with white vinegar to avoid damage.
Mix glass cleaner and detergent — Mix glass cleaning spray with dishwashing liquid in a clean spray bottle. Spray directly on surfaces or areas where the ants congregate before wiping to leave only a light residue. Typically, ants leave a fragrant pheromone trail when they walk, causing other ants to follow. So just remove this smell to prevent ants from entering the house.
Put down talcum powder — A layer of talcum powder that ants can get through is another safe deterrent and will also break down ants’ pheromone trail. In addition, the powder is absorbed through their skin, clogging their airways and banishing them for good.
Use essential oils — Plant-derived oils such as peppermint, tea tree, eucalyptus, spearmint, and cinnamon oil give off strong scents to repel ants and insects. Put a few drops of your chosen essential oil on cotton balls. Then stick them in problem areas where you usually see ants. You can always replace them when the smell goes away.
Plus, essential oils are an inexpensive way to keep your home smelling fresh. Stay away from pets as essential oils can be harmful if ingested.
Sprinkle coffee grounds — If you’re a coffee drinker, don’t throw away your used coffee grounds. The smell of brewed coffee grounds is an effective remedy against ants and pests. Sprinkle some used coffee grounds on a disposable surface, such as small cardboard, and place in ant-prone areas. These can be used indoors or out and can also make a great soil nutrient from the minerals.
If you’ve tried all the homemade solutions without success, there are some commercial products available, such as EcoRaider Ant Killer & Crawling Insect Killer (Citrus Scent) 16 OZ, Natural & Non-Toxic ($10, Amazon (opens in new tab)) to help get rid of ants. However, if you have an infestation in your home, it’s worth hiring professional exterminators to inspect your home.
Other tips to prevent ants
- Store food properly in sealed containers or bags that are safe and undamaged
- Make sure to clean or wipe down kitchen surfaces and floors daily
- Never leave dirty dishes outside for a long time and wash them immediately after use
- Rinse the pet food bowls after feeding dogs or cats
- Discard old or fermenting foods immediately
You may also want to learn how to get rid of fruit flies quickly if you find one at home. Also find out the 10 things you didn’t know you could clean with baking soda and also Can I use malt vinegar to clean? – here is the best vinegar to clean with.