There are many places ants can show up inside your Auburn home. You might find them in your pantry, crawling around on food packages. You might find them in your kitchen, covering your trash bin. You might find them crawling on your living room couch. No matter how they show up inside your home, they are never a welcome sight. But how do ants get in? You might be puzzled if you have worked hard to seal every possible entry point. Here's what you should know about ants.

ants drinking water
ants on wood

Ants Are Small

Most ants are between ⅛ and 1/16 of an inch long. It isn't easy to keep them out of your home. They can slip through a gap in the weatherstripping around your doors. They can sneak in through a gap around your window frames. They can even crawl up inside an exterior light fixture and find a way inside. Their size is their advantage. Your secret weapon is a caulking gun. You can use a caulking gun to seal gaps and cracks. You can also use it to fill in holes created by mice, rats, and wood-destroying insects. This is a good first step if you want an ant-free house.

Some Ants Make Their Own Entry Points

There is a group of ants that damage the wood of man-made structures. They're called carpenter ants. It is likely that they got this name because, like a carpenter, they create sawdust—only the material created by carpenter ants isn't just sawdust. It also contains feces and insect parts. We call this material frass. When carpenter ants come near to your home, they will look for rotting wood. If they find it, they can tunnel into the rotted wood and create a nest inside. The tunnels they make can be used by other ants. So, if you're scratching your head, wondering how ants got into your house, this might be the answer.

Ants Can Be Carried In

Ants love woodpiles and they climb around on plants. If you bring a board into your home from your yard, you could bring some ants in with it. If you bring flower pots in from outside, you could bring ants in. This isn't too much cause for concern. These are worker ants. They won't create a colony inside your home. The ants you need to watch out for are winged ants.

What Happens When Winged Ants Get Inside

Winged ants are female and male reproductives. They leave the nest with one goal; to create more nests. If winged ants find a way into your home, they could establish a colony inside your wall voids. The good news is that most ant species don't want to live in your home with you. They have nests outside, and they send workers into your home, sometimes by the hundreds, to get food for their colony.

How To Keep Ants Out

There are a few things you can do to reduce ants around your home and make it more difficult for ants to get into your home. It takes a lot of hard work, but if you're up for the challenge, you can stop ant problems. It begins inside your home.

Interior Ant Management

  • Keep your home clean to remove ant food sources.

  • Keep your trash bin clean, and keep your lid down.

  • Clean spills immediately.

  • Consider keeping pantry foods in sealed containers.

  • Put pet food down only during mealtimes.

  • Fix leaky faucets and seal gaps around pipes.

  • Consider only eating in your kitchen and dining room.

If you have kids, do routine inspections for food items dropped in strange places such as behind the couch or under a bed.

Exterior Ant Management

  • Reduce moisture around your home.

  • Keep exterior trash in sealed receptacles.

  • Clean your trash receptacles if they develop an odor.

  • Seal any gap, crack, or hole you find.

  • Rake up leaves around your home.

  • Remove sticks, wood, and other debris.

  • Remove unnecessary plants and weeds from your landscaping.

If all of this sounds like too much work, there is another option. At Prewett Pest Control, we offer year-round pest control in Auburn, AL. We can help you get control of over 30 common pests, including ants. If you've had enough of ants, and you're ready to live the ant-free life, reach out to us. We're here to help!


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