Damn ANTS!! Nothing works!

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Billbill84

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hi all. So 3 months ago, as we had weather warm up outside, I found ants all over my kitchen counter. I spent 2 hrs vacuuming them up, cleaning kitchen etc. I put out a Terro gel trap on counter and they returned to feast after about an hour or so. Left trap there for a few weeks and didn't see a single ant for a 2 months this time outside though. Put 2 Terro gel traps next to area and checked area week later and no ants. About 2 weeks go by and ants are in my foyer at the front door INSIDE now! I did find a small any pile on the corner of house in landscaping bed so I checked the Terro trap placed there last week and they didn't eat any of the gel!!! I sprayed around the perimeter of house with some of that Ortho crap, as I've been doing once a week since the kitchen invasion a few months back. How the hell can I get rid of these jerks?!?!
 

Fireguy5674

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I see there have been 20 views but no replies. Probably because there is no simple answer, I believe even the pest control people have no good answers. We have found a product called Tempo, which you buy as a concentrate and mix, kills them very effectively. You might try spraying around the foundation with that. It is also effective against spiders and other bugs as well. It seems that because of the rainy year here they are worse than normal. Hopefully someone with better news or a better plan will come along.
 

Angie

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Put dish washing liquid in their places. They don't cross dish washing liquid.
 

Flyover

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We use a combination of keeping the house as clean as possible (given that we have two young kids, this only means "reasonably clean"), ant traps, and then if we see any ants we spray (Raid Ant Killer) the ever-loving bejeezus out of them and any little hole we think they might have come from.

It still doesn't work perfectly, and we get ants somewhat consistently all throughout the warmer seasons despite all these efforts.

Beyond that I don't fret. It's the insects' world, we're just living in it. Scientists estimate the global ant population at between 10 quadrillion and well over 1 quintillion (that's a 1 followed by 18 zeroes).
 

Billbill84

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Thanks everyone for the responses. I've always been a clean freak and keptna razor sharp house, then a slob woman came along and then 3 little rascals. Owell I guess I'll just figure out if there's any way to use the ants to my advantage lol
 

havasu

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Lots of recipes, including leaving a perimeter of diatomaceous earth, which they won't cross. I myself wait for a holiday sale, then pick up 10-15 gallons of "Home Defense" poison, then spraying about a gallon per month in a wide pattern at the exterior base of the house. Also, don't forget to clip any branches that touch the eaves or roof of the house, since they use the branches as highways looking for sweet goodies and/or water.
 

Billbill84

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Lots of recipes, including leaving a perimeter of diatomaceous earth, which they won't cross. I myself wait for a holiday sale, then pick up 10-15 gallons of "Home Defense" poison, then spraying about a gallon per month in a wide pattern at the exterior base of the house. Also, don't forget to clip any branches that touch the eaves or roof of the house, since they use the branches as highways looking for sweet goodies and/or water.
Thanks I'll try the diatomaceous earth stuff tomorrow! We'll see what happens
 

MrMiz

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so here is my 2 cents. I had ants in my pantry. I put out traps and put down stuff to kill them and all it did was "manage" the population. From what I understand ants create a trail that other ants follow, and if you interrupt that trail with things like vinegar or stronger they follow a different trail, but they are still crawling in all directions creating new trails. So ever year after "treating" them the would eventually come back. So the real "trick" for me was finding their nest. In my case and I think in most peoples cases the nest isn't even remotely close to where you're seeing the ants. In the end of my efforts I found out that the ants were traveling over 25 feet to get to my pantry where they were collecting food and taking it back to the nest +25' away. So here is the process I took and maybe you can find a faster or better way from my efforts to get to the end where I have no ants any more.
Knowing that "treating" them was only population management I decided to seal my pantry. I bought a box of clean caulk and seal not only every location I could find them but I sealed ALL gaps. I sealed the baseboard to the floor. I sealed around the shelving that interrupted the baseboard. I sealed IN and OUT of outlets and light fixtures. I had and laundry lines in the pantry from a remodel and I sealed inside and out of that. Then I sealed the outside walls I could get to around the pantry. At this point the ants could no longer get into the pantry any other way then the door. This stopped them from getting into the pantry but withing a day I noticed about 3 feet away from the pantry, in the sunroom. I suddenly had a collection of ants at the base boards there. This was the moment I realized that where I was seeing the ants and killing them had ABSOLUTELY nothing to do with where they were coming from and the hunt was on. I tracked them all around the baseboards in the sun room back to a door in the sunroom that, I though, they were getting in through. So I sealed, and treated that area thinking I had found the problem.... but no, the day after doing the door I found them on the opposite corner of the sunroom. Which after a decent amount of watching them there most of them seemed to be coming in and out of that corner. So I went outside only to find the tiniest of cracks in the concrete slab on grade foundation of my sunroom right where my exterior stucco met the concrete and sure enough they were funneling in that crack like nobodies business. I dug down about a foot around that crack and sealed anything that looked like it might be a way in I even sealed the entire length of that exterior wall where the stucco and concrete meet. Problem solved... right.... nope. I was sure that I had solved the problem and weeks went by with no ants INSIDE the house. Then one day while working out side I noticed the ants where crawling all over the exterior of the house... presumably looking for another entry point. BUT this lead me back to a colony/nest inside/under a flowering plant that had been at the house since I purchased it. Every year I seen the plant and there where no ants on it, but after I had sealed up their major food supply suddenly the plant was covered in ants. The whole plant was moving with them. I dug it up and it was honestly the biggest collection of ants I have ever seen in my life. It creeped me out so much that I poured a concrete pad at that side of the house big enough to put a large hot tub on and continued the concrete 4' away from the house all the way around to the other side. I did have to relocate a decent amount of landscaping, but I haven't had anything other than the occasional "regular" amount of normal ants crawling on the exterior of my house, and I haven't had any inside for over 2 years.

That's my story. To summarize it track them ... track them... track them some more and then create a barrier to prevent OR a barrier that will give you maximum visibility to their entry.
I'm sure most people would hate this but If I ever built my own house I would completely surround it with 4' of concrete just to keep the "stuff" at bay.
Hope that helps
 
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Billbill84

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so here is my 2 cents. I had ants in my pantry. I put out traps and put down stuff to kill them and all it did was "manage" the population. From what I understand ants create a trail that other ants follow, and if you interrupt that trail with things like vinegar or stronger they follow a different trail, but they are still crawling in all directions creating new trails. So ever year after "treating" them the would eventually come back. So the real "trick" for me was finding their nest. In my case and I think in most peoples cases the nest isn't even remotely close to where you're seeing the ants. In the end of my efforts I found out that the ants were traveling over 25 feet to get to my pantry where they were collecting food and taking it back to the nest +25' away. So here is the process I took and maybe you can find a faster or better way from my efforts to get to the end where I have no ants any more.
Knowing that "treating" them was only population management I decided to seal my pantry. I bought a box of clean caulk and seal not only every location I could find them but I sealed ALL gaps. I sealed the baseboard to the floor. I sealed around the shelving that interrupted the baseboard. I sealed IN and OUT of outlets and light fixtures. I had and laundry lines in the pantry from a remodel and I sealed inside and out of that. Then I sealed the outside walls I could get to around the pantry. At this point the ants could no longer get into the pantry any other way then the door. This stopped them from getting into the pantry but withing a day I noticed about 3 feet away from the pantry, in the sunroom. I suddenly had a collection of ants at the base boards there. This was the moment I realized that where I was seeing the ants and killing them had ABSOLUTELY nothing to do with where they were coming from and the hunt was on. I tracked them all around the baseboards in the sun room back to a door in the sunroom that, I though, they were getting in through. So I sealed, and treated that area thinking I had found the problem.... but no, the day after doing the door I found them on the opposite corner of the sunroom. Which after a decent amount of watching them there most of them seemed to be coming in and out of that corner. So I went outside only to find the tiniest of cracks in the concrete slab on grade foundation of my sunroom right where my exterior stucco met the concrete and sure enough they were funneling in that crack like nobodies business. I dug down about a foot around that crack and sealed anything that looked like it might be a way in I even sealed the entire length of that exterior wall where the stucco and concrete meet. Problem solved... right.... nope. I was sure that I had solved the problem and weeks went by with no ants INSIDE the house. Then one day while working out side I noticed the ants where crawling all over the exterior of the house... presumably looking for another entry point. BUT this lead me back to a colony/nest inside/under a flowering plant that had been at the house since I purchased it. Every year I seen the plant and there where no ants on it, but after I had sealed up their major food supply suddenly the plant was covered in ants. The whole plant was moving with them. I dug it up and it was honestly the biggest collection of ants I have ever seen in my life. It creeped me out so much that I poured a concrete pad at that side of the house big enough to put a large hot tub on and continued the concrete 4' away from the house all the way around to the other side. I did have to relocate a decent amount of landscaping, but I haven't had anything other than the occasional "regular" amount of normal ants crawling on the exterior of my house, and I haven't had any inside for over 2 years.

That's my story. To summarize it track them ... track them... track them some more and then create a barrier to prevent OR a barrier that will give you maximum visibility to their entry.
I'm sure most people would hate this but If I ever built my own house I would completely surround it with 4' of concrete just to keep the "stuff" at bay.
Hope that helps
Wow interesting story thanks for sharing. I'll keep tracking them maybe thEy will lead me to that queen bitch and i can have a one on one with her
 

MrMiz

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Wow interesting story thanks for sharing. I'll keep tracking them maybe thEy will lead me to that queen bitch and i can have a one on one with her
Good luck! I feel your pain all too well.
 

havasu

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Or, a bit of Coca Cola, not sugar free, mixed with borax powder, mix into a paste, place in small lids of containers and set it around the house. They will carry the solution to the nest and it will kill them all.
Note, do not use if you have animals that will lick the solution.
 
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havasu

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Oops, sugary, like very sugar'ish.
 

thebuilder20

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LOL What an interesting thread. Thought I'd only get ant solutions but no—I got much, much more. :D:D:D
 

tamjones71

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A few years ago we had ants in our home! I called an exterminator who baited the house. That was the worst mistake. The ants only got worse. I then had them in every room of the house! I swear they were coming in in waves. My house is not dirty. The funny thing is that one of the only places they didn’t go was the pantry. They were even in my attic and crawl space. I looked on Angie’s List in our area to try and find the best pest control place around and called them. The lady told me that some people, like herself, live in an area where there is just a tremendous amount of ants and you have to learn how to keep them out of your house. I finally got rid of them but it took a lot of effort. I researched and found things that ants hate. Cinnamon and baby powder worked especially well. It will look stupid for a while but put it wherever you see them. If you don’t want to smell cinnamon everywhere use the baby powder. DONT PUT TERRO OR ANY BAIT IN YOUR HOUSE. Put it outside. The granules work or they have stakes with terro in them. I also use Ortho Home Defense to keep them out. I spray around the house every couple of months and sometimes inside if I start seeing them. Another thing I use which I swear has worked tremendously well are electronic ant repellers. You can find them on amazon. Good luck!
 
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