Saturday, August 30, 2008

How To Get Rid of Carpenter Ants

Getting Rid Of Carpenter Ants
Knowing how to get rid of carpenter ants as a pest is a difficult thing to do. But can be done with a little patience and work. As we continue to grow as a society the more we build with wood. The more wood structures the greater the attraction  for many insects, and one of these insects is the carpenter ants.

This means we need to be observant to the insects that are attracted to wood Even though carpenter ants do not eat wood as a food source, it does mean they can do damage by pinching and chewing if left unattended.

The large black and sometimes red and black depending what part of the country they are in is known as the carpenter ant. Carpenter ants are one of the largest ants we have in the United States. Carpenter ants is one of the most unique ants of all ants. Knowing how to get rid of carpenter ants is to know their characteristics.

Characteristics include:
  • Scent trails which may be hundreds of feet in length
  • You can expect to see only a few ants on this trail at any given moment
  • The mostly move around in the latter part of the day and into the night. Chewing on wood structures and looking for voids for nesting.
  • They have unique ability to identify leaky, damp wood and voids. 
  • They are very sensitive and have the ability to avoid chemically treated areas and find new ways or entries into a structure.
 
Carpenter Ants become a problem when they forage into your home.  First you see one or two and then all of a sudden there are literately hundreds. When you spot one or two this is the time to start thinking about what kind of problem you might have.

The fact that you see them means there is a nest or a scent trail coming into your home or structure. Another thing to look for is what they call frass, (frass is droppings,) wings, body parts all piled together. You could also see winged carpenter ants.

The winged ants are known as swarmer's or reproductive’s, reproductive’s are the ones looking to leave the nest and start a new colony. The swarm time can be almost any time but usually around spring time. If you find these inside the home there is a good chance they are located inside the structure.

The more information you can gather the better chance you will be able to determine the method of treatment in knowing how to get rid of carpenter ants. The worst thing you can do is grab a bottle of raid and start spraying. The only time this will work is if you know where the nest is, then you can spray the nest.

Look around and see if you can follow a trail, or look under things old bricks outside, under the insulation, even in old stored papers, phone books, inside rubber hoses. When you find the nest you can treat the nest directly by spraying. With fire ants you can usually see the nest and it is easy to treat.

I think the first thing I would do is check and see if you have an exterminator or use an exterminating company.
Tips to Get Rid Of Carpenter Ants
  •  Remember most of the time carpenter ants come out in the late evening or dark. Use a flashlight, follow the trails.  They love to nest near moist wood, poorly sealed windows, leaking roof or eves.
  • Finding the hidden nests is the most difficult thing to do, so when you find it destroy it immediately. That is exactly what the exterminator will try and do. Drill a number of very small holes into the wall. Put boric acid into the holes or you can check with local DIY for an aerosol (recommended). Drill and treat at least three feet on either side of the suspected nest. Above and below window sills are likely places.
  •  Clean your floors, Cleanliness is not necessarily that important but won’t hurt, what is important is to thoroughly fix leaky faucets that adds fuel to rotting wood and remove any clutter that creates a nesting area for the ants.
  •  You can use a pesticide that will help place a barrier for the carpenter ants. Most pesticides are pretty safe to use, make sure to keep it out of reach of children and pets. Please keep all chemical out of reach of children and pets, and Pay close attention to the label.
  •  You can use carpenter ant bait, which is proven to kill the nest and even lasts all year long.
  •  My advise is, if you can afford it is to hire professional exterminator. They are good on knowing how to get rid of carpenter ants.
Knowing how to get rid of Carpenter ants or how to kill carpenter ants is one of the most difficult insects to control because they are very good at hiding their nest. And for that reason they can be hard to get rid of even for the exterminator. So know your ants.


 
 


5 comments:

Helene said...

Very informative blog post. This is important information for the homeowner.

Janet Ford said...

Thank you for this great information. I learned a lot!

Sagittarius said...

I've had that problem for years. Tried every pesticides and ant traps available, which all worked temporarily ie: a month or so, but never got rid of them. The only thing that worked is this. Made a bait with jar covers filled with a maple syrup and boric acid mix. An hour after I located them in a few spots on the floor, there were thousands of them that came out of the nest. Sprinkled some more boric acid along the paths they were coming from. Pretty nerve racking to see all these ants in the house, but you have to let them do their feeding and return to the nest. Within two days, gone... Not a single ant in 4 years. Works for Pharaoh Ants as well, which are the tiny sand colored ones. And no worries about pets or kids, unlike pesticides...

amroch said...

Ants are like nightmares for me. I just need to get rid of them and that too forever. Is that possible?

joshel said...

Yes and no Ameet, one you get rid of them you need to keep a barrier around the house. Barrier is a liquid chemical around eves and windows, use a granual around the out side. by keeping the barrier you can help prevent them from entering the home