Ants are one of the most common insects found in homes. Ants enter homes looking for food, water and shelter. Trying to get rid of ants can be extremely frustrating. Understanding ant behavior is the first step in trying to control this nuisance in your home.
There are numerous different species of ants. Many live in shallow nests in the ground. Therefore, rain can be devastating to ants. They will seek shelter in houses to avoid flooding and in search of food and water. Ants that find a path into your home leave a scent trail that enables them to return to the nest when conditions have improved. Likewise, drought can send ants in your house in search of food and water.
When you see an ant, resist the urge to kill it. Instead watch it. Because ants are social insects, there won’t usually be just one ant. Try to determine where the ants are entering your house. Possibilities include electrical receptacles, behind baseboards or along water pipes. On the exterior, check the foundation of your home and follow worker ants to their nest. Be patient. Ultimately, finding and destroying the nest is the most effective way to keep ants out of your home.
Spraying the ants you find in your house won’t help in the long run. There are many more ants in the nest to take their place. Likewise, spraying inside your house is not usually effective at controlling ants. They will simply avoid these areas.
When you have located a nest, apply an insecticide. In addition, apply the insecticide to any suspected entry points into your home such as around foundation vents, crawl space doors, cracks in the foundation or brick any opening to the house. Ants will also march underneath siding. Some species of ants nest in moist, damaged wood where a water leak exists. Other species prefer wall voids or insulation panels. This is why inspection of ant pathways is so important.
Follow these guidelines to help with the management of ants in your house:
If you are too frustrated, don’t hesitate to call in the professionals. Make sure you protect yourself, your children and pets when using insecticides.
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If you have questions about your home’s foundation or foundation repairs, contact Atlantic Foundation and Repair at 919-855-0855.