Ants problem in wood frame building

Discussion in 'Pest Control' started by mikeholmsfan, May 31, 2010.

  1. May 31, 2010 #1

    mikeholmsfan

    mikeholmsfan

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    We live in a wood frame building on main floor. We have ants and maybe even more serious problem. Can someone advise on how serious it may be and what should we do?
    I noticed ants first summer when we moved in and used a store bought ant killer. That did not completely exterminate them and we have seen a residue that is like a saw dust coming out of the wall under the base board. Finally I got concerned and removed the baseboard. And there were ants. There is some soil below a wood stud wall, probably brought in by ants. The soil smells like a manure kinda musty. We have used same ant poison again, and the ants nearly disappeared into the wall cavity. I can still see some of them crawling under the wood. What concerns me is:
    1. we still do have ants, so should we call a professional? They are dark color. Could they be a carpenter ants?
    2. Soil under the wood stud concerns me, so does the moisture and smell. Could there be a mold problem and should we call a professional?

    We leave in a strata building and our unit is on top of concrete parkade. How should I aproach problems such as pests, possible moisture and mold, and cleanup of the same in a strata building?
    Could this affect our health?

    I would appreciate if someone can advise.
     
  2. May 31, 2010 #2

    oldognewtrick

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    Welcome to House Repair Talk, sorry to hear about you problem.

    Do these ants seem to be around at a certain time of year? Describe the body of the ant and about how big it is. Do you see a cluster of discarded wings?
     
  3. May 31, 2010 #3

    mikeholmsfan

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    The ants are small in size and dark in color. I did not see a cluster of discarded wings, just a saw dust like residue on the floor. After being disturbed, they have disappeared into the wall. I did not see a queen or any ants with wings. They may have been there all time, and if there is a nest, it must be deeper in the wall. They are not so interested to visit into the house. I only saw them when I removed a baseboard and started digging into the hole, but otherwise, they do not come out of the wall. A few of them gathered out on sugar, but did not seam very eagar.
     
    Last edited: May 31, 2010
  4. May 31, 2010 #4

    mikeholmsfan

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    I think they have come in through a hole in a membrane. How did the soil get in? What should I do?
     
    Last edited: May 31, 2010
  5. Jun 2, 2010 #5

    mikeholmsfan

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    So I can leave them inside of the wall, and hope they are not carpenter ants. The problem is resolved for now, I guess. Thanks for listening, I mean reading. Old dog/new tricks, any comments? Thanks
     
  6. Jan 10, 2011 #6

    joecaption

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    Ant Identity Chart
    Any form of Boric Acid also called boron will kill them without any dangerest poisons.
    Lowes, Home Depot Wal-Mart, most Hardware stores all sell a product called Roach Away, it's 95% boron. Simply spread it around and when they walk thought it and get it on there legs they lap it off and die from dehydration.
    If you Google Boric Acid you will see it's used for 100's of things from treating rotted wood, bug control, fire proofing ECT.
    #1 though is to find out how there getting in. They need moisture so if there's any dripping outside faucets, siding is not at least 6" off the finished grade, mulch is pilled up againt the house holding in water there going to hang around.
    http://www.watchall.com/ant_identity.html
     
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2011
  7. Feb 4, 2011 #7

    frozenstar

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    Having troubles with ants as well on our garage. Will try out some of the tips here.
     
  8. Feb 8, 2011 #8

    designer-fixit

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    the first thing you should do is open up a few wall and call a pest control company to determine what other pest you may have festering within your farming. i highly suggest that you get your home tented to stop whatever is there now and to prevent anything from returning in the future. it will also kill any eggs and larva that you cant see just from looking with the naked eye. also any wood that you may need to replace maybe you should check the code bok to see if you could possibly use pressure treated wood. good luck
     
  9. Feb 8, 2011 #9

    joecaption

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    First you have to ID the type of ants you have in order to know how to treat them.

    Ant Identification Resources
    Tenting a whole house is only done if you have Formosan Termites, not for ants.
    In most cases all you will need is boron in one form or another, powder, Terro paste form ECT. It's carried back to the nest and once the queen eats it the nest is dead.
    Just spraying a few worker ants will do nothing to kill the colony, the queen spits out hundreds of workers a day and if some die she just makes more.
    Not sure why the other poster would suggest using pressure treated wood, if you used pressure treated wall studs the sheetrock screws would rust off within a year. Pressure treat wood needs ACQ approved fastners.
     
  10. Feb 14, 2011 #10

    frozenstar

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    Hi Joe, does that Ant Identification Resources applies to everyone? I can't find the type of ants that I see here in our garage. They are reddish with a lighter shade turning to orange/yellowish and bites pretty hard that it causes itch or sometimes swelling. I don't know how to eliminate them in our backyard and garage.
     
  11. Apr 19, 2011 #11

    CMHbob

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    Thanks Joe. Your advice just saved me hundreds of dollars in pest control services in the future. Ants need warmth and moisture to survive. Convincing them to move on is difficult once they get a nest established, especially if it is inside a wall. My pest service charges $100-$150 to spray with no guarantee that the ants will not return. Usually one treatment is good, but I'd rather try your solution first to save money.
     

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