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    Get rid of ants in your house

    How to prevent and stop infestations

    Alex | Oneflare

    What causes an ant infestation?

    The most common reason why you see ants in your house is that you have a food source for them. Ants can survive on tiny crumbs in your kitchen as well as the food your kids and pets leave behind. You might have an infestation on your hands due to the moisture that the bugs need. Not only are they attracted to your pet’s water dish, but ants can also pull moisture from wet or damp wood. While garden and green ants are common in Australia, you may see other types, including:

    •  Blackhouse ants
    •  Sugar ants
    •  Pavement ants
    •  White-footed house ants
    •  Fire ants

    How to get rid of ants naturally

    Create ant bait

    The best way to get rid of ants might be with homemade ant bait. Combine equal parts borax and sugar before sprinkling the mixture around your home. The sweet smell of the sugar attracts the ants, but the borax kills them. You should keep borax ant bait away from pets and children as it is not safe for them to consume. 

    Use sprays to deter ants

    When you look at how to get rid of ants in the house, you can learn how to deter them and make them avoid your house. Natural sprays are easy to make and use. Peppermint is available in an essential oil form and only requires a few drops of oil mixed with water and pour into a spray bottle. If you have distilled white vinegar on hand, use one part of the vinegar to two parts water and use it in a spray bottle. You can also try pepper. Both black pepper and spicy peppers work when mixed with water or vinegar. Apply the solution around your home, making sure to focus on the areas where you saw ants. 

    How to get rid of ants in the kitchen

    Immediately clean up food scraps

    As any food scraps will attract Australian ants, it’s important to try to clean them up as soon as possible. You should also empty the trash into the outside bin regularly.

    Food scraps are a common cause of attracting ants / Source: Shutterstock

    Use sealed containers

    Another great tip on how to stop ants is to use sealed containers. Ants have a keen sense of smell and can smell food in containers that are not air-tight. Sealed containers made from glass or plastic block out food odours and prevent ants from getting to that food.

    Leave out strong-smelling herbs

    Finding a natural ant repellent is as easy as looking at the herbs in your garden. Strong-smelling herbs make your home smell nice at the same time that they repel ants. Rosemary and lavender are two of the best herbs to use. You can also try thyme and peppermint. If you have cats, consider planting some catnip. It repels ants as it grows and becomes a fun treat when you dry it.

    Spray vinegar inside your bin

    One of the top home remedies for ants is vinegar. Both apple cider and distilled white vinegar work equally well when sprayed in your bins. Bins are a buffet for ants, especially if you don’t rinse the bin or clean it every week. They can survive on the smallest of food scraps clinging to the bin and any crumbs that get outside. Simply spray the vinegar inside the bin and let it sit. The strong odour of the vinegar will repel the ants.

    Rinse pet food bowls

    Learning how to keep ants away from your home will require that you clean up after your pets, too. Instead of leaving food sitting out all day, get your pets on a schedule where you feed them at set times throughout the day. After they finish eating, throw away any of the food that they left behind and rinse out their bowls. You should also keep dry food stored in sealed containers.

    How to get rid of ants outside

    Boiling water

    Boiling water is one of the easiest ways to get rid of ants naturally outside. Ants live inside nests that look like small hills in your yard. Once you find a nest, you can get rid of the ants with plain boiling water. The easiest way to do this is boiling a kettle and pouring it directly on the nest. Not only will the water kill the ants in the nest, but it will remove the scent trail that surviving ants use to get between the nest and your home.


    Another easy DIY ant killer that you can try outside is plain vinegar. Check your lawn and garden for anthills before grabbing a bottle of vinegar. It’s usually easier to apply the vinegar with a spray bottle than straight from the bottle. Spray enough vinegar on the anthill that you saturate the surface. Though you can use equal parts water and vinegar, straight vinegar is much stronger and gets the job done faster. The smell of the vinegar turns off the ants and causes them to seek a new home. If you find that one application of vinegar fails to kill the ants or make them leave, try using multiple applications.

    Contact local pest control experts

    Lawn ant killer

    While chemical lawn ant killers aren’t safe to use around pets, they will eliminate your ant problem and usually work with only one application. Depending on the product that you buy, you may want to wear goggles and other gear to stay safe while using the substance. Liquid killers are easy to use and work on both the ants inside your home and any anthills that you see outside. You can also use bait products that infect ants that eat the bait. They carry the bait back to the nests and kill the other ants.

    How to hire a pest control expert

    Out of control infestation

    If you’re tired of searching the web for tips on how to get rid of ants and want to take care of the problem as soon as possible, now might be the time to hire a pest control expert. Experts will spend some time in your house to find out why you have ants and the severity of the problem. They also let you know about the best remedies and how much each one costs.

    Licensing and qualifications

    Whether you want a pet safe ant killer or need to eliminate anthills outside, make sure that the pest control expert you hire has the right licensing and qualifications. Australian pest control experts need to take courses in the field and any special areas where they want to work. They also need a pest control license, which usually requires that they apply for one and show their qualifications. 

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