If you have noticed several ants around your home, you will want to do whatever necessary to remove them for sanitary purposes and so they do not cause destruction to your home's structure. Ants can be bothersome pests if they are left to multiply, making it important to tackle an elimination plan quickly. While hiring a pest control service is best because it ensures complete pest removal, there are also a few ways you can remove and deter ants from your home on your own. Here are a few tips to try to keep ants on the outside of your home.
Remove All Grime
Surfaces that are left dirty are an ant magnet, especially in the kitchen. Take time to wipe down all counter tops after every meal preparation session so there are no remnants of food scraps left behind for ants to enjoy. Ants leave a scent as they walk through an area where they believe other ants would find a food source. When other ants pick up the scent, they will follow the trail to the food. Use vinegar to clean surfaces naturally while masking any scents ants leave behind, which will keep them from finding food and from staying interested in your home.
Vacuum your floors regularly to keep crumbs at a minimum. Be sure to take up pet food dishes at night so ants do not have a free meal waiting for them when you are not around to monitor the area.
Treat From Outside
Take a look at the exterior of your home for areas where ants can slide into cracks and crevices. To keep them from getting in through these holes, plug them using caulk. Use caulk or weather-stripping around your doors and windows to keep ants on the outside of your home as well. To help keep ants off your home's exterior, place gravel around your home's perimeter. Having a foot or two of gravel as a barrier between the home and your lawn will thwart an ant intrusion as they tend to stay in grassy areas. If you have wood piles or old downed trees near your home, move them further away so ants are not in the proximity of your home.
Deter From Entering
There are several deterrents that will keep ants on the outside of your home. Sprinkle some salt or talc along the bottom of each of your doorways so ants on your porch or steps will stay there instead of darting into the house. Citrus oil, cinnamon and petroleum jelly are all items ants would rather avoid than have to walk upon. Splash, sprinkle, or spread these deterrents liberally along the exterior perimeters of your windows and doors to help keep ants from coming inside.