The sight of ants scurrying around your kitchen is never attractive. But ants in your home are more than just an eye sore! While they may seem harmless, they carry bacteria that contaminate food, and some species can significantly damage wooden structures too!
Once an infestation occurs, it can be hard to get rid of, which makes learning how to get rid of ants crucial. Our expert interior designers in Chennai list the most effective methods.
Identifying an ant infestation
In India, ants are year round. In summer, they go looking for sources of food and water, which leads them to your kitchen, pantry, or bathroom. Heavy rains on the other hand, can flood ant nests, forcing them to seek shelter in places that are safer and drier, like your home.
Look out for ants particularly during peak summer or torrential monsoon to catch wind of an infestation early. Make sure to check for carpenter ants that eat through wood too. Signs include rustling noises from walls, and piles of wood shavings lying around.
Getting rid of ants effectively
The key to eliminating ants is to use strong scents. Ants are easily overwhelmed by this and it helps mask the scent of the trails that guide them. But if you have kids or pets, you’ll want to avoid harmful chemicals. Here’s how to get rid of ants without using any toxic repellants:
Soak cotton balls in lemongrass, lavender, eucalyptus, peppermint, or tea tree oil to place in and around the problem areas, or wipe along the ant trail to remove the scent they follow.
Alternatively, you can mix a concoction of water, and lemongrass, cedarwood, and neem oil in equal parts to spray in the affected areas. This works astonishingly well to eliminate even large infestations!
Sprinkle lemon juice or grated lemon rinds near entry points like window sills and doors, and along ant trails. Other citrus fruits like grapefruit and orange work too.
Herbs and spices
Place cinnamon sticks doused in a few drops of cinnamon essential oil to send ants packing back to where they came from. If the ant trails cover a lot of distance, you could try sprinkling cinnamon powder along their path instead. Lining shelves with turmeric mixed with black pepper also works like a charm since ants can’t stand the heat of these spices.
Once you’ve gotten rid of the ants, it’s important to take the right measures to prevent the ants from finding another way back in!
- Seal all gaps, holes or cracks around windows, doors and other outlets
- Wipe surfaces with a white vinegar and water spray frequently
- Regularly take out the trash
- Clean up crumbs and spills right away
- Avoid leaving dishes to stack in the sink
- Store foods outside the fridge only in airtight containers
- Rinse your pet’s food bowls regularly
You can also try your hand at a fun DIY project making your own potpourri. Simply throw together some dried petals, herbs like clove or cinnamon, or some citrus rinds with your favourite essential oils, and voilá! You will have a wonderful room freshener that you’ll love and ants will hate!
If you’re moving into a new home, planning an inspection with the best interior designers in Chennai can also help prevent insect infestations right from the start. Call us today to know more!