When you find ants in your home, what should you do about them? Should you clean the ants up and focus on sealing the entry point in your exterior or use products to get rid of the ants? Does pest control get rid of ants? Yes, pest control can get rid of ants in your Tucson home, but it depends on what products are used and how they're applied. Using inappropriate materials can make you sick, and misapplying appropriate materials can accidentally make your problem worse. Join us as we look at a few subjects regarding ant control that can benefit every Tucson resident. We'll look at how to identify common types of ants, outline the problems ants pose to people, show how to make it harder for ants to get into your home, and explain what to do about ants that have already invaded. We'll break down what works and what doesn't so that you can zero in on the best pest control for ants. Does that sound like a plan? Great! Let's dig in.
How To Identify Common Types Of Ants
Though there are a surprising number of ant species in Arizona, there are only a few common types of ants to consider. That will make this part easy. Let's quickly break them down into groups based on how they behave.
Germ Spreaders: All ants spread germs. They climb into your garbage and crawl around in stored food or on sensitive surfaces. You don't need to identify these ants because they all do it.
Home Wreckers: Carpenter ants can damage the wood inside your home. They do this by excavating tunnels within studs and support beams. You can identify these ants by their size. They are the largest ants that infest Tucson homes. Worker carpenter ants range from ¼ to ⅝ of an inch in length. If you find these ants, we recommend contacting us for carpenter ant control in Tucson.
Stingers: Fire ants deliver annoying stings. We call these fire ant bites. If you feel a burning sensation and look down to see tiny red ants on you, you have a fire ant problem. If anyone in your home is allergic to fire ant venom, contact Conquistador Pest & Termite for fire ant control service near you.
Winged Ants: All ants produce winged ants. If you see winged ants in your home, you should know that they are a warning sign of a current infestation. Those winged ants are telling you something else. They're letting you know that your problem is about to get worse. Winged ants have one job, and that job is to create new nests.
Ants That Turn Lights Off: Does that sound strange? Unfortunately, it is true. Some ants get into power boxes and outlets. In these areas, they can cause things to short out. When they do, the lights may not come on when you flick the switch.
Cloggers: Some ants produce colony numbers that are startling. When they appear in your yard, they can swarm together and look like blobs on your driveway. These ants can get into automobiles and electronics. When they do, they can cause malfunctions.
Now that you know a bit about some of the unique types of ants we have in Tucson, let's go a bit further. It is important to understand how the problems we've listed so far can turn into even bigger problems.
Why Ants In The House Can Be So Problematic
When ants start spreading germs, damaging the wood of your home, stinging you, causing your lights to go out, or clogging engines, people take action. But the actions Tucson residents take can cause more problems than they fix. Ant control is rarely straightforward.
- Bait is a common solution for ants, but bait can cause budding to occur when misapplied. Budding is a process by which one ant nest splits into two or more.
- Many ant control products are topical. They only eliminate ants on contact and do nothing to address the colonies that are deep in the ground or inside walls. Attacking the symptom rather than the source will allow ants to continue to reproduce and cause more trouble as they make more nests and increase their populations.
- Ant traps can capture ants but will not target the colony. Traps are only useful for tracking ant activity. They don't arrest an ant problem. Using them as a control solution will allow ant problems to persist and grow.
- Any control solution used on the inside of your home can fail to address an ant problem if you don't also apply measures to keep outdoor ants from getting inside. A licensed professional uses a mixture of indoor and outdoor ant control to get results.
- When exterior products are used to control ants, there are ways they can fail to achieve the desired results, such as rainwater diluting the materials. They may also cause unexpected results, such as a dog lapping up water from a puddle and getting sick from inappropriate ant control products.
Ant control is unexpectedly tricky and potentially harmful. When we are asked about what is the best way for homeowners to keep ants out, we recommend natural solutions. These methods do not present any risk to health or property. Let's look at these methods as they relate to the reasons why and how ants get into Tucson homes.
Why And How Ants Find Their Way Into Our Homes
If you follow an ant on its long journey from the edge of your property to the food packages on your pantry shelves, you can learn many ways to deter them. Let's quickly take the journey together. Here is a step-by-step guide to why and how ants find their way into your home.
- Ants find a food source in your yard. When weeds take over, ant problems are likely to follow. Ants eat nectar and plant sap. When insects take over, ant problems are right behind. Certain ants have a preference for protein and will eat insects, both alive and dead. Weed control and insect control in your yard can resist ant encroachment.
- Ants find food sources near your home. They may get into your trash, eat insects in your landscaping, dine on honeydew produced by aphids, collect bird seed under feeders, or find some other food option. Trash management, yard work, landscaping trimming, and gutter cleaning all work together to reduce the conditions that attract pest ants to your home.
- Ants get into your home because they can. They can't help but explore tiny gaps and other entry points. You can create physical barriers by replacing damaged weatherstripping, installing door sweeps, repairing screens, patching foundation cracks, filling in gaps around plumbing, and doing other home repairs.
- Ants often use plants to access gaps around windows. While an ant can crawl up the side of your home, it is far more likely to use a plant as a bridge to get to higher entry points. Trimming plants away from your exterior can stop ants from entering your home through gaps around windows.
- Ants recruit an army when they find food. If you notice one little ant crawling around in your home now and again, you should know that it has the ability to bring an army indoors. When it finds food, it lays down a pheromone trail that other ants can follow. One by one other ants enter your home and do the same. Before you know it, you have thousands of ants crawling around.
- Some ants can create indoor nests. If ants get into your home and find an environment that is appealing, they may create a satellite nest within the voids of your home. The way to prevent this is exclusion work and sanitation, which we already mentioned, or you could contact a licensed pest management professional and get a year-round pest control service plan.
You have many options to deter pest ants from entering your home. Is it the best way? Yes, we believe it is the best way for homeowners to keep ants out. But it isn't the most effective way to maintain an ant-free home. Let's look at how home pest control in Tucson provides the best protection and why you should have a professional apply pest control.
The Best Way To Get Rid Of Ants In Your Home For Good
Ants pose many dangers, and it is best to apply effective ant control to address ant problems. A licensed pest professional uses a range of trusted products and field-tested methods to comprehensively arrest ant activity indoors. Not only will you get the results you want, but your technician will follow strict safety protocols.
Once your home is ant-free, your pest professional can keep it that way. We apply layers of protection to the exterior of your home.
- We treat your lawn to reduce the pests that ants eat and to target ant colonies.
- We can also provide weed control for added removal of ant food sources.
- We apply granular treatments in key areas to further reduce exterior pests that provide a food source for ants.
- We routinely apply a liquid treatment to your exterior to keep ants out of your home. When workers can go in and out, they can recruit an army.
Would you like to learn more about how we can keep ants out of your Tucson home? We're here to answer your questions. Reach out to us anytime. The service team at Conquistador Pest & Termite looks forward to serving you!