How To Get Rid Of Sugar Ants In Your Bedroom

One of the telltale signs of springtime is the beautiful yet annoying migration of ants. While the parade looks elegant and orderly, no one finds it appealing when the marching insects find their way into your home in search of water and food.

How To Get Rid Of Sugar Ants In Your Bedroom

Sugar Ant [/ˈʃʊɡə ant/] noun
Like a normal ant… but sweet.

Frankly, sugar ants – the most resilient ants we find around – are not harmful to humans but are generally difficult to control. The most irritating part of this invasion might be when these creatures find their way into your bed. Obviously, no one will appreciate getting crawled over all night long. But, it doesn’t have to get this bad before you do something about it.

Here are some of the simplest but highly effective steps you can take to help you deal with these creatures. From eliminating these critters and preventing them from coming back, here are both natural and chemical solutions to this menace.

What are Sugar Ants?

These are black ants native to the Australian region, although several variants can be found almost anywhere globally. Usually, two species of sugar ants are most distinguishable through their color bands. One of which is the pharaoh ants with yellow or light brown color bands and the other, pavement ants with black or reddish-brown color bands. Aside from the color, there aren’t any other known differences between these two species as they are mostly attracted to the same substances and pheromones.

Generally, sugar ants, as their names imply, are attracted to sugary things, mostly food crumbs and scraps. Besides sugary foods, sugar ants are also attracted to protein, fatty foods, and plant pollen. Aside from migration routes, it is common to find ant trails between their colonies and food sources. As you know, that is only beautiful when the trail doesn’t lead back to your kitchen.

Where Do Sugar Ants Come From?

Often, sugar ants form sensory trails into your home. Compared to other insects, sugar ants have five times more sensory receptors and can easily pick up pheromones through any openings or cracks in your walls. The dramatic part about how this works is this; all you need for an ant invasion is just enough space for one sugar ant to wiggle into your home. Once one ant finds a food source, it creates a trail for other ants in its colony to follow.

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How to Eliminate Sugar Ants

The simplest way to deal with an ant invasion is to follow the trail till you find the entry point. Once you identify this point, you can then decide on whether to use a chemical or natural technique to solve the problem. In any case, you should know that either method works perfectly. Your consideration should be based on which one is best suited for your schedule and lifestyle.

How to Deal with Sugar Ants’ Nests

The easiest way to deal with a full-blown invasion is to deal with sugar ants’ nests as soon as you find them. The best way to identify ants’ nests is to look out for mini volcanoes in the soil around your home. Once you find them, dump a cup of bleach down the hole and hose it down for about five to ten minutes.

Natural Methods of Dealing with Sugar Ants

If you would rather stay away from chemicals or have pets and children in your home, this could be a better option. Try out some of these natural home solutions for dealing with sugar ants.

Eliminate the Sugar Ant Trail with a Vinegar Solution

Since you already knew ants find their way into your home through a pheromone trail, you can easily disrupt their invasion by eliminating the trail. Mix one-part water with one-part vinegar and pour the resulting solution into a spray bottle. This mixture contains concentrated acetic acid, which is highly effective in disrupting the scent trail left behind by your first intruder.
To maximize this solution’s action, spray along ant trails and baseboards in the morning and late afternoon, targeting the time when these pesky creatures are most active.

Spread around used coffee grounds inside your home

It is very rare for you to find ants around ground coffee. This is because the smell and acidity burn them. Spread some used coffee grounds around areas you want to prevent ants from invading, especially entrances to your kitchen and damp, dark places like the basement and attic.

Lay Down Bay Leaves or Hang Garlic and Cloves

Bay leaves, garlic, and cloves have a strong smell that might help prevent sugar ants from invading your home. Spread whole cloves around your baseboard, hang garlic on strings, and put some bay leaves around pet bowls and under the countertops to stop ant invasion.

Concoct a homemade insect repellent

Asides from spraying chemical repellents, you can mix a homemade insect repellent. Prepare one-part water with a few drops of lavender, eucalyptus, sage, and peppermint essential oils. Spray the solution on platforms in your kitchen, around shelves, window sills, and baseboards. If you use this method, remember to sweep the dead ants away as soon as possible. Otherwise, you will create a new trail for other ants to follow.

Install a homemade ant trap

Prepare a syrup of honey and crushed corn on a plate and set around entry points of ants. The ants will get attracted to the smell of the syrup and get stuck in it. Once the ants get stuck, in a little while, most of them will die. Clean out the plate and dispose of the trash far away from your home.

Use organic commercial products

If you cannot prepare homemade ant repellants, you can instead purchase organic commercial products. There are a number of them available for sale. One of which is Orange Guard, which uses orange peel as a base for making a solution to repel ants. Other products mostly use non-toxic compounds and plant extracts to disrupt ant trails and discourage their migration into your home.

Sprinkle Diatomaceous Earth Around

Diatomaceous earth is made from crushed marine phytoplankton. While it has no adverse effects on humans and pets, it kills ants from the inside out. You can spread the white powder around trails, windowsills, or other entry points that you find in your home. Leave it on and clean after one month.

Chemical Methods of Dealing with Sugar Ants

Chemical solutions are very effective in dealing with pesky ants. This is mostly because these solutions were explicitly engineered to destroy these ants. Nonetheless, you should pay close attention to the instructions provided by the manufacturer. Additionally, ensure you keep these chemical solutions away from pets and children.

Place ant bait

The idea behind ant bait is to create a Trojan horse kind of situation. Most ant baits contain boric acid or borax, which is very poisonous to ants. Once the ants carry the bait back to their colony and every other ant feeds on it, you’ve successfully eliminated them. Try Terro liquid ant baits, which are ant killers that are extremely effective against common household ants.

Clean your kitchen countertops using an all-purpose cleaner

All-purpose cleaners have a strong smell that breaks up the pheromones that form ant trails. Aside from cleaning up food crumbs and any other substance that might attract ants into your home, it also destroys the trail that might have been formed.

How to Keep Sugar Ants from Invading Your Residence

It is better if you have measures in place that prevent sugar ants from invading your home, rather than looking for solutions to kick them out. Although between March and September, you should pay more attention to these measures because sugar ants are more prevalent during these times.

1) Locate damp areas

Sugar ants are physically more attracted to dank and dark areas. So, your basement, attic, garbage disposal, kitchen sink are all hotspots for an ant colony. Pay extra attention to cleaning these areas and prevent moisture build-up. Pat your kitchen sink dry with paper towels every night before bed. If you put all of these in place, you just might be one step away from attracting sugar ants.

2) Regularly clean your sink

Be thorough when you are rinsing dirty dishes and drain the sink of any standing water. After the sink is cleared of all dishes, wipe down the sink in its entirety with a dry paper towel and make sure you haven’t left any residual food or moisture behind. A garbage disposal may also be a big draw for sugar ants.

To destroy their pheromones, pour a little bleach into the garbage disposal every few days – this should destroy any ant attractants.

3) Sweep your kitchen floor regularly

Knowing that ants are attracted to food crumbs and leftovers, clean your kitchen floor regularly. As much as you can, sweep the floors with a broom or brush to remove debris and tiny food crumbs that might attract sugar ants. Remember that one is all it takes for an ant trail to build into your kitchen

4) Take out the Trash Regularly

Garbage bags are another hotspot in your home that you need to pay close attention to. As much as you can, dispose of your garbage bag very frequently, as much as every two days. Also, use strong bags to prevent holes from forming. Holes in the bag will lead sugar ants straight to leftover foods.

5) Secure holes in entryways

Since sugar ants usually find their way into your house through cracks and holes in your walls, secure those crevices with caulk. Inspect your door and windows for any cracks and openings. If you find any, use an organic or chemical solution on the hole, then cover it up.

6) Place herbs in your kitchen

Herbs like garlic, ginger, mint, sage, and peppermint all have strong, pungent smells that will discourage sugar ants from entering your home. So hang them on strings around your doors and window. Place them around baseboards and shelves.

7) Use pesticide on your house’s exterior

As an extra layer of protection, use potent pesticides and chemicals on the foundation of your house. This works long-term in preventing sugar ants’ invasion.

8) Call a professional

If all of the previous fails, call a professional exterminator. They will get the ants out in no time.

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Top Rated and Recommended Ant Killers

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These are just the perfect bait to save your house from an ant invasion. Terro T300B liquid ant bait ant is made from liquid borax, which is consumed by the unsuspecting ants. The bait is designed to kill the worker ants within three to four days, providing enough time to feed the bait to the rest of the colony.

If you have these pesky creatures in large quantities, you can place more bait around the areas where these ants frequent the most every month. This way, you’d be sure you are eradicating them. Soon, your home will be completely ant-free.

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Set Alert for Product: Syngenta - TRTD11568 - Optigard Ant Bait Gel Box - 4 Tubes w/ Plunger - 30g each tube - $28.95
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Optigard Ant Gel Box is a smart way to knock out the ant colony invading your house. Made from Thiamethoxam, a potentially lethal substance for ants, the gel kills both the worker, queen, workers, and the small ants in just a few days, completely wiping out the entire colony.

The gel works on a wide range of ants. So, irrespective of which one you are out to eradicate, this ant bait will work on them and produce the best results. Apply them consistently over two months for complete elimination.

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Raid Max Double Control Ant baits are perfect for indoor use as it is child-resistant. You can use it for your kitchen, bedrooms, attics, living areas, bathrooms, and any other room colonized by ants. Like most ant baits, the reaction is delayed enough for the worker to feed the entire colony’s poisonous bait, resulting in mass destruction.

Different forms of this product also provide varying solutions to attack, prevent, or control a growing ant colony. The population reduction is expected within days, while the baits last for about three months. Since it is relatively affordable, you can have one at hand, just in case.

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Set Alert for Product: EcoRaider Ant Killer & Crawling Insect Killer (Citrus Scent) 16 OZ, Natural & Non-Toxic - $12.99
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Asides from actively killing ants within one minute of contact, EcoRaider Ant Killer and Crawling Insect Killer also break up the pheromone scent, thereby preventing re-entry for almost a month. It is child-proof and does not have any negative impacts on the skin and the immediate environment.

It is safe for indoor and outdoor usage and can be used in exterminating mice, lice, and other irritating pesky creatures. You might need to apply it more than once to get rid of a large colony, but you will clear them all out in no time

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Combat Ant Killing Gel provides a lasting solution to ant within three to five days. The package is sold with a syringe, which allows you to apply the gel into cracks and crevices. Additionally, it has no lingering odor. So, you are not left with the task of cleaning up after the deed is done.

All you need to do is to place the gel in areas of high ant activity. The ants themselves will take the gel into the colony where they all feed and die by the domino effect.

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