How To Get Rid Of Ants In Your Kittitas County Home And Keep Them Out

Ants come in many shapes and sizes. So does ant pest control. There are many pitfalls to addressing an ant infestation in your home, and DIY ant control often falls short for a lack of knowledge. Let's look at some common ants in our area, how to tell that you have an infestation, why ineffective ant control is problematic, and how to apply effective measures to get rid of ants. Need help with your ant control or want to speak directly to a professional? We're happy to help you. Our service team loves sharing their knowledge and helping people find answers. We also provide industry-leading ant pest control in Kittitas County. Call us for assistance.

How To Tell If You Have An Ant Infestation

Step one in any pest control plan is to locate and identify the pest if possible. Along with locating pests, it is also important to evaluate any evidence found and determine the extent of the control problem. We'll touch on both of these here.

Seeing Ants: If you see ants in your home, you know you have an ant infestation. You don't need any warning signs. But you should check to see what kind of ants you have, particularly whether or not you have black carpenter ants in your home. These ants commonly infest homes, and finding more than one or two in your home is a sure sign that you have an indoor nest. Black carpenter ants are the largest ants that invade homes in Kittitas County. Workers are between ¼ and ⅝ of an inch in length, depending on the species.

Warning Signs: When ants aren't crawling on your counters, floors, and trash receptacles in disturbing numbers, it doesn't mean you don't have an infestation. They can hide from view or come out only at night to feed. There are a few ways to tell that your home has a nest.

  • Carpenter ants produce frass, which is a mixture of insect parts, droppings, and sawdust. You'll find this material in many places, but often near the floor.
  • Carpenter ants create kickout holes. They use these tiny holes to push frass from their tunnels. A kickout hole looks like a hole created by a finishing nail.
  • Carpenter ants also create larger holes when they breach tunnel walls. Look into any deteriorated wood holes and look for trenching. These ants stack their tunnels on top of each other.
  • Other ants don't create frass, but you may see soil in areas where a nest is hidden in the wall. Some species bring soil indoors to help them create a suitable environment for nesting.
  • All ants create winged reproductives. These winged ants shed their wings after the mating process. If you find tiny wings scattered about, you may have an ant infestation. It is also possible that you have a termite infestation. Inspect the wings.
  • Termite wings are uniform in size. Ant wings vary in size.

Once you know you have an ant infestation, and you have an idea where the ants are likely nesting in your walls, you'll have to do some work to get rid of them and keep them out. It isn't easy work, so it is helpful to know why you should roll your sleeves up and take on this tough problem—or hire someone to do it for you.

The Problems An Ant Infestation Can Create In Your Home

Let's start with those carpenter ants. Carpenter ants prefer to tunnel in rotting wood but are known to move from rotting wood to sound structural timbers. Over time, the risk of serious damage increases. But wood damage isn't the only problem ants present. Ants climb in unsanitary environments and pick up microorganisms associated with human illness. When ants leave dirty environments and start getting into your stored food or climbing on your counters, it is a recipe for illness. Stomach illnesses vary in strength, and some are potentially dangerous.  Some ants are considered a greater disease threat because they spread pathogens. For example, pharaoh ants will do more than give you a fever, stomach ache, vomiting, and diarrhea. You could get strep throat or some other painful illness.

Along with property damage and diseases, ants can impact your life in other, sometimes mysterious, ways. If the light stops working in your kitchen, you might have ants in your wall outlets or switches. If the power goes out in your home, you may have ants in your power box. Some ants chew on wiring shielding.

Most of the time, ants are just a nuisance. Some are a stinky nuisance. Odorous house ants, for instance, create a rotten coconut smell when crushed. No matter what kind of ants you have, you'll want effective ant control solutions to address them.

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