It can seem impossible to get rid of ants in your home or kitchen! But it doesn’t have to be – this article provides three step-by-step methods for ant-proofing your home to prevent them from becoming a problem.
Spills, food fragments, and dead houseplants put off most guests, but ants prefer a messy home. Give your house or flat a thorough scrub down to make it as unappealing as possible for them.
How to Get Rid of Ants in the Kitchen
The ants are likely to head straight for your kitchen, as they’re always looking for food sources. Here are a few easy steps to follow to keep your food safe from ants:
Don’t leave any food out – Food or crumbs on the table or countertop will invariably attract ants. Make sure all food is tightly sealed and stored inside the refrigerator or cupboards. Seal opened bags or boxes of food inside airtight plastic bags or containers as an extra precaution.
Wash all dishes immediately after eating – Dirty dishes are a big draw for ants, so wash and dry your dishes right away. And never leave dirty dishes overnight in the sink – you may wake up to find ants banqueting in the morning.
Wipe the outside of bottles, jars, and cartons – Even a small dribble of jam on the outside of a jar will attract ants. Make sure these containers are wiped clean with soapy water.
Create a ‘moat’ when storing some kinds of food – Particularly attractive food like honey jars can be stored inside a bowl of water. This ‘moat’ will prevent ants from reaching the food. Similarly, a dish of pet food can be set in a pan of water.
Regularly sweep, vacuum, and clean your kitchen – Try to do this daily if you have ants in the house. Even if there’s no food out, ants can pick up on the chemical trails left by other ants, so keep your kitchen surfaces hygienic with a cleaner like HANDY ANDY. Whatever product you use, follow the advice on the label to get the best results.
How to Get Rid of Ants in the Home: Preventing Entry
As the ants will be coming from outside, you’ll need to create barriers so they can’t come inside. Here are a number of ways to prevent ants from entering your home:
What’s most important to you when it comes to cleaning?
Caulk and seal off any cracks – Gaps in doorways and window frames are popular entrances for ants. Seal these off with caulk, putty, glue, or – as a temporary solution – petroleum jelly.
Sprinkle a line of talcum powder, baby powder, or chalk as a barrier – Spread this underneath doors, on windows, and along walls to ward off ants. You can also try cinnamon, citrus oil, bay leaves, laurel leaves, turmeric, or pepper.
Spray a white vinegar solution near entry points – Mix a solution of water and white vinegar, and spray this liberally over any area popular with ants.
Prune back any tree branches or shrubs near your windows and doorways – Ants often use overhanging vegetation to access a home, so leave a clear perimeter around the building.
How to Get Rid of Ants: Removing Existing Ants
So what do you do when there’s already a stream of ants parading through your house? The steps below give some simple tips on how to eliminate the problem of ants in your home.
Repel the ants – Rub raw garlic cloves over all the areas ants could enter through. Ants don’t like garlic, so this will create an effective barrier and deter them from entering your home. Coffee granules can also work as a natural repellent.
Spray the ants with dishwashing detergent and water — Whenever you see the ants, spray them, leave for 5 minutes, and wipe up. This natural solution is a safe option to use if you have children or pets in the house. Remember to always wipe your surfaces clean with a multi-purpose cleaner like HANDY ANDY after removing ants, just follow the instructions on the label.
Getting rid of ants isn’t an easy task, but by following our step-by-step guide, you’ll be able to keep your home ant-proof and hopefully ant-free in the future! And if you find your home invaded by other pesky insects like flies, check out this article on how to get rid of flies.