7 Incredibly Effective Home Remedies To Get Rid of Ants
If you search the web for home remedies to get rid of ants you will find plenty of articles and advice on the subject. But which home remedies work the best? Which are safest if you have children or pets? And which actually gets rid of ants at their source rather than just repel them? I will answer these questions and point you to the best ways to rid your RV, camper, or home of ants and also great ways to keep them away.
There are two main ways to deal with an ant problem. The first way is to kill the ants at their source and the second way is to repel the ants from your home, RV, or camper.
Home Remedies to Get Rid of Ants
1. Baking Soda and Powdered Sugar
Baking soda changes the acidity of the ant and over time will kill the ants. The powdered sugar draws the ants in so they ingest the baking soda.
How to Use: Mix one part baking soda and 1 part powdered sugar and place in shallow lids in areas where you think ants may be coming into your home.
2. Boric Acid, Sugar and Water
This method doesn’t kill the ants immediately but it kills the ants at their source. The reason for this is that the ants eat the borax and sugar mixture and also bring it back to the nest where other ants, and most importantly the queen ant, are poisoned. It is easy to use but obviously, you need to keep it away from your pets and children.
How to Use: Mix one part Boric Acid and one Part Granulated Sugar and just enough water to make a syrup. Spread the syrup onto pieces of paper and place the paper around the areas where you think ants are coming in. The ants eat the borax but also bring it back to the nest where the queen eats the borax and the whole colony will die in a couple of days.
3. Food Grade Diatomaceous Earth (Highly Recommended)
Just a small amount of Boric Acid can be fatal to children or pets so I prefer to recommend Food Grade Diatomaceous Earth (DE). NOTE – Diatomaceous Earth that is used for pool filters is extremely toxic so be sure not to use that! Food Grade Diatomaceous Earth (DE) is a white powder that is the fossilized remains of marine phytoplankton. When sprinkled on an insect with an exoskeleton, such as ants, bed bugs, or fleas, it dissolves their waxy coating and turns them to mush. This is by far the best way to destroy ants at their source and kill the queen ant too.
How to Use Diatomaceous Earth:
Mix with powdered sugar and sprinkle around places ants are likely to be around. This includes entry points, countertops, under cabinets, window sills, etc.
4. Dr. Bronner’s Liquid Soap – Peppermint Hemp
Like diatomaceous earth, soap dissolves the waxy coating on the outside of the ant.
How to Make Bronner’s Soap Spray
Combine 1 quart of water and 1/4 cup of Dr. Bronner’s Peppermint Hemp Soap in a spray bottle and spray around baseboards, entry points, and anywhere you have seen ants.
5. Essential Oils
When ants go out to find food they leave a pheromone trail from the food to the nest, which other ants can smell with their antenna. When an ant goes out and discovers food, it marks the path from the food to the nest using a pheromone trail. Other ants also smell with their antennae and follow the path. Certain botanical scents interfere with these scent trails. Below are some of the most effective oils:
- Peppermint Essential Oil
- Tea Tree Essential Oil
- Clove Essential Oil
- Lemon or Orange Essential Oil
How to Make Ant Away Spray
Pour the following ingredients into a spray bottle and spray around baseboards, entry points, and anywhere you have seen ants.
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/4 cup vodka
- 15 drops of peppermint essential oil
- 15 drops of tea tree essential oil
- 7 drops of citrus essential oil
Just like essential oils, the smell of vinegar repels ants and also masks their pheromone scent trails. It works best when used with another repellent, like citrus peels or essential oils. Plus vinegar is a natural cleaner.
How To Make Vinegar Spray
Add 1/4 cup white vinegar and 1/4 cup water to a spray bottle along with 30 drops of one of the essential oils listed above. Spray around baseboards, entry points, and anywhere you have seen ants.
7. Ultrasonic Non-Toxic Pest Repeller
Ok, it’s not a home remedy but people who use the ultrasound devices are often very happy with the results. And they are very kid and pet-friendly. I have used them myself and have had great results. An ultrasonic wave pest repeller emits high-frequency changeable ultrasounds and vibrations by rotation creating a harmful environment for insects like ants. Just plug the devices into wall sockets around your home to get complete coverage. I suggest using six or more devices in an average sized home.
For RV owners and homeowners who are looking for an inexpensive and natural remedy for ant removal, there are many options. The benefits of using food grade DE, vinegar, and other common household substances are clear. You can:
- Create a homemade ant repellant or ant killer without spending a lot of money on expensive pesticides
- Use all natural ingredients that are not harmful to the environment
- Keep your kids and pets safe from accidental ingestion of a toxic substance (please note: the remedy that suggests using borax could be harmful to children and pets)
Some of the best and most effective home remedies to get rid of ants can be found in your own kitchen. By following the steps listed above, you can effectively kill them at the source and disrupt their path into your home, RV, or camper.
RELATED READING: If you will be storing your RV for any amount of time check out our article 25 Essential Tips for Storing Your RV in Hot Weather to prevent other problems as well.
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