Since ants can live in most places: gardens, decking, balconies, patios, amongst shrubs and plants, and even in cracks and holes in the wall or the foundations of your house. They are always close by, if not already inside your home. Since they live in large colonies, if you spot one ant it’s likely you have many more nearby.
But when you do suddenly spot an ant, why does it always seem like they appear from nowhere? Without warning and any sign of causes, you may face yourself with an overwhelming amount of ants invading your home.
There are many reasons why ants might suddenly appear in your house. One common reason is that the ants are seeking food. If you have a lot of food lying around or if your food pantry is not properly sealed, ants will be able to easily find and invade your home. Another reason why ants might show up in your house is if there is a leak somewhere. If there is a water leak, ants will be able to detect the moisture and will swarm to the area. Finally, ants might enter your house if there is an opening somewhere in your home’s exterior. If you have a hole in your window screen or if you have cracks in your foundation, ants will be able to come in through those points. This is especially true of carpenter ants, which usually enter homes from the foundations.
Why Do Ants Enter Your Home?
There are a few main reasons why ants might enter your home:
- The ants are seeking food.
- The ants are seeking water.
- The ants are seeking shelter.
- The ants are invading in order to establish a new colony.
What particular causes could lead to the ants entering your home? The following are a few points that explain why ants attacking your property:
If there has been recent soil or building excavation near your property. The colony of ants present in that soil is likely to become agitated as a result of the damage to their habitat.
They try to find a new path for refuge, and in order to feel comfortable, they enter the grounds of your home.
Bad Storage of Food
If you haven’t been properly storing your food, there’s a good risk that ants will invade your home, particularly in the kitchen and can even make their way in to your dishwasher or electrical appliances.
Bread crumbs on the kitchen floor, tea spilled near the nightstand, a piece of spaghetti lying near the corner, or even the toffee wrapper can all be attractive to ants.
Due to a lack of thorough cleaning after a spill of food items such as honey, syrup, or other liquids, surfaces tend to become greasy over time. Ants are not fussy creatures and will eat almost anything that is sweet or protein rich.
If you haven’t been able to seal your garbage can properly, ants can easily invade your home. If the garbage is especially oily or greasy, the scent will be much stronger and more likely to attract these pests.
Make sure to check your trash can as it can be attracting ants to your home.
Garbage consisting of leftover food items can easily attract ants.
Gaps In Your Walls
An exterior crack or hole can easily offer a free entrance for these crawling monsters to enter your home.
Even a minor hole in your house’s door or windows can provide enough access for ants to pass for food and water. Ants can also climb walls so may even find their way in to your bedroom on a 1st floor, where a lush carpet could be waiting for them to make a new nest.
If you leave your cat or dog food bowl outside or if you don’t clean it up properly, ants will be able to invade your home and feed off of the food present.
This is especially true for pet food that is high in protein as it’s a key nutrient that ants look for when scavenging for food.
Thick Shrubs Near Your House
Overgrown bushes and plants invading your home’s premises can serve as a bridge for ants to infiltrate your home via trees and plant branches and leaves.
Make sure to trim that extra growth of plants every now and then.
Changes in Weather
Weather is a known cause of ant infestations more than any other factor. On a particularly hot day, ants might be forced to travel in search of water and may end up nearby your home.
When the weather suddenly changes (especially if it becomes cloudy or cold), these insects tend to change their direction and seek shelter like they would during wintertime.
Failure of Ant Treatment
Many ants survive and return to their colonies after being sprayed with a specific ant-killing spray.
Surprisingly, the queen ant can detect the chemical’s scent and initiates a process known as colony budding. As a result, ants divide themselves into more colonies and invade places, becoming more cautious.
As a result, the next time you find ants invading your home, make sure to clean both the interior and exteriors thoroughly.
Signs That Ants Have Infested Your Home
As you look for evidence that will help you confirm the presence of ant colonies in your home, there are a few signs that can be found.
If you find these pests inside the house, it is likely they’ll be crawling around food cups or surfaces near your kitchen and dining areas.
You should also check other places like plants where sugar might be leaking, as ants love sweet substances.
If you see small black particles on the floor, it’s likely that these are ant feces. If you’re finding dead ants around your property, this is also an indicator of an infestation.
Check your garden and basement if you have a dirt floor. An ant nest is difficult to detect since it appears to be nothing more than a pile of soil.
Look for fallen wings from flying ants on the floor and sills near windows and doors. This is a lesser-known symptom of an ant infestation, but it’s a beneficial one since you will be able to easily identify which kind of ant has infested your home. Dead ants around the area where you find wings could also be a cause of more ants appearing because they can be attracted to the scent of the dead ants.
Have Carpenter Ants Infested Your Home?
Have you ever been irritated by your furniture being infected with little holes due to ants? If that’s the case, you’ve probably had your fair share of carpenter ant encounters in your home.
If you pay attention, you will hear ant scratching sounds emanating from your home’s wooden walls and furniture on several occasions.
If you detect sawdust under your wooden furniture, as well as tiny holes in it, you can be sure that carpenter ants have drilled into it, deposited eggs, and totally infested it.
Reasons Why Carpenter Ants Suddenly Appear Out Of Nowhere
Carpenter Ants Coming Out Of Hibernation
Many people are surprised when they see carpenter ants entering their house in the early spring. Although it may seem somewhat odd, these pests are simply coming out of hibernation after spending most of winter inside their nests.
As you might know, warmer temperatures tend to make them more active and make them seek food. These insects are also attracted to the smell of fresh wood, which is always present during this season.
They Are Attracted To Your Home Exterior
Carpenter ants are also known to be attracted to the exterior of your home. They prefer wooden areas that are moist and damaged as these offer them an easy way inside.
Many carpenter ants are usually found near wooden surfaces of your property, especially if they are close to a tree or plant.
Attracted by its scent, these little insects might want to find an appropriate place to create a colony.
Unintentionally Bringing Carpenter Ants In Your Home
It’s not uncommon to accidentally introduce carpenter ants in your home. For example, if you’re moving or remodeling your house and there is an infestation in the wood you’re working with, the ants might come along.
Another way these pests might get into your home is by hitching a ride on firewood that you bring inside.
What Are Carpenter Ants?
Ants come in a variety of shapes and sizes and can be found all over the world—Acrobat ants, Asian needle ants, crazy ants, field ants, carpenter ants, etc.
On the other hand, carpenter ants are considered to be one of the most common invaders of your homes. They come in a variety of sizes and colors.
As spring approaches, most carpenter ants are likely to swarm over to your house or any adjacent structure. These ants are drawn to moist structures, particularly dampened woods, and may often rummage inside your home for food.
What Do Carpenter Ants Look Like?
Carpenter ants vary in different sizes and colors, but some of the most prominent ones are very large, around ¼ to ½ inches in size. They are generally blackish in appearance and have a reputation for causing harm to wood.
They also come in red, brown, tan, and yellow as well. One of the traits of carpenter ants is that they do not create mold or lumps in the soil.
Winged carpenter ants are also common and can be clearly differentiated due to their relatively big antennae, waist, and wings.
Do Carpenter Ants Bite?
Carpenter ants lack stingers, but they will bite if picked up. They have strong, pointed mandibles that are used to dig through wood.
Their bites are not dangerous but can be painful, and they will often swarm if disturbed.
They can puncture your skin and prick you because of their strong mandibles. The itch, redness, swelling, and agony that their bite can produce can make you feel restless for a while. However, carpenter ants are non-venomous and do not transmit diseases to humans.
Signs That Carpenter Ants Have Invaded Your Home
There are a few signs that you can look out for if you think carpenter ants have invaded your home. Some of these signs include:
Tiny Holes In Wooden Surfaces And Structures
If you see tiny holes in the wooden pieces and structures of your home, it’s a clear indication that carpenter ants are present. Carpenter ants will bore through these areas to create their nests.
Beware that these holes could also be a sign of the presence of other pests too such as termites or carpenter bees.
Sawdust Near Wooden Surfaces
Carpenter ants are known to tunnel through wood, which generates sawdust. The size of the colony will determine how much sawdust is produced.
Carpenter ant holes are easy to recognize because of the sawdust they produce, which is smaller than pieces of sawdust you may be used to seeing after using a drill or saw. These insects use sawdust to construct their nests, which is why you may find it near wooden surfaces.
The ants drill into the wood and deposit their eggs. After the egg has hatched, the larva will remain inside the wood. The larvae will be fed by the worker ants.
Scratching Sound Coming Out Of Wooden Structures And Walls
Carpenter ants produce a scratching sound as they dig through the surface of your home. They create tunnels and bore through various wooden structures such as walls, doors, windowsills, roofs, etc.
If you hear this kind of noise coming out of your wooden structures or walls, it might be time to call in professional help to prevent any further damage.
What Can You Do If Carpenter Ants Have Infested Your Home?
If you have determined that carpenter ants have infested your home, there are a few things you can do to get rid of them:
Look For The Nest And Destroy It: The best way to get rid of carpenter ants is to find their nest and destroy it. If you can locate the area where these ants are nesting, you need to spray pesticide over the entire location.
Carpenter ant nests typically include several deep holes in wood that allow these insects to rest. If you are not careful, it can be easy to miss the nests. Use a flashlight to make sure you get the job done.
If there are other carpenter ants in your home, these could actually be workers that are searching for food. You might have brought some of them into your house unknowingly when you were outside or they may have entered through a crack in the door or window.
Use Baits: If you are not able to find the nests, you can use baits to kill the carpenter ants. Place these baits near where you have seen the ants and wait for them to take it back to the nest. The entire colony will eventually be killed.
Call a professional: This is probably the best option if you want to get rid of the carpenter ants for good because a professional will know where to look and what methods to use.
How To Deter Ants From Invading Your Home
If you have encountered stubborn ant colonies in your house, and have tried many methods to get rid of them, or if they just happen to appear again. Then be rest assured because the following tricks can help you make your house ant-free in no time:
- Spot Their Hangouts: The fundamental source of a problem should be investigated in order to eliminate it. Make a list of all the sites where you frequently observe ants. Once you’ve figured out where they hang out, you can spray the area or clean it with a strong disinfectant.
- Remove Standing Water: Carpenter ants are drawn to moist wood and furniture. Make sure to inspect your property for any leaky pipes or standing water. To control the moisture element in your home, especially in the basement and attic, you can use a high-quality humidifier.
- Remove Leftovers: The most common sources of ant infestations in your home are leftover food or spilled food. Always check your kitchen counter and the floors for any food or dirt remnants throughout the house.
- Check Your Pets: Unknowingly, your pets can be one of the causes of ants invasion in your home. Check on your pets and clean them frequently since food residue in their mouths and paws may easily cause dirt to accumulate in and around your home.
- Block Access Points: Examine every nook and corner of your house. Even the slightest of apertures can serve as a passageway for ants. Once you’ve found an opening, make sure to repair it.
- Use Ants Bait: Bait and traps are some of the common and effective methods of eradicating ants. You can use various ant sprays and anti-ant medicines in and around your house. Bleaching agents, ammonia, and a diverse range of soaps are used to clean ant-infected areas. Make sure to get the best quality products to have the best effect.
- Homemade Deterents: Try out some simple but effective home accessible solutions such as baking soda sprinkled around the area, essential oils spraying or even a little vinegar to see if it does the trick.
- Hire an Expert: Many times, no matter how hard we try, we are unable to complete a task until an expert arrives on the scene. Similarly, if the ant infestation has gotten out of hand, engage an expert who can use his experience and knowledge to eradicate them properly.
Why Do Ants Suddenly Disappear?
Recent findings have claimed that pesticides are not the only reason why ants disappear. The weather plays a significant role in the case of an ant invasion of your house. You must have noticed that sometimes you intend to grab an ant spray to get rid of the ants, but the day before you plan to do so, there isn’t a single ant in eyesight.
Ants disappear from your home, particularly as winter approaches. This is because ants hibernate throughout the winter months to avoid the cold and come out only at the start of the warmer days of spring.
Many times, ants will vanish once you’ve completed a thorough house repair. When you tidy your house and yard, especially when tree stumps are removed, a majority of ants flee the area.
Ants are one of the most vexing creatures you’ll ever come across. Unknowingly, you may be contributing to the ant infestation in your home. Ants are persistent, and eliminating them may be tough because they reside in colonies.
One or two ants may be able to survive and re-establish their swarm. You may quickly rid your property of ants if you understand their characteristics and tracks.
By following the mentioned steps and methods, you will in no time get your house free of any ant infestation.