Are you constantly seeing ants trailing all over your kitchen or home?
Cockroaches may be capable of spreading 33 kinds of bacteria and other contaminants, but finding armies of ants all over can be just as irritating. While there are several options for do-it-yourself extermination, if you’ve had no luck dealing with ants on your own, or if you just want to make sure the job’s done right, you might want to hire commercial extermination services.
When it’s time to call out the ant control professionals, follow the instructions in this guide to make sure you get the most out of the extermination—and keep the ants away for good.
Commercial Ant Control
A professional ant exterminator will use a gel bait insecticide to control and eliminate populations of small ants in your home.
This gel bait doesn’t kill the ants immediately—instead, worker ants take the bait back to their nest, where they feed it to their queen and her young. This way, instead of just killing the ants you see, the entire nest of ants is destroyed.
This is the only way to permanently solve an ant problem, as killing worker ants on sight does nothing to prevent more from coming from the nest. If ants are sprayed and killed when found, the colony will simply send out more worker ants. Leaving bait for worker ants to take back to their nest prevents future populations from continuing to infest your home.
Preparing for Exterminators to Arrive
Before performing any service, a pest exterminator may give you a list of steps to take to ensure your home is ready to eliminate your pest problem (and keep the problem from reoccurring in the future).
The following are the steps most commonly recommended by exterminators. They should also be performed before using any ant control products you may purchase at the store.
- Wash all countertops, sweep or vacuum all floors, and clean up any food or drink spills that might have been forgotten around your house.
- Make sure you’re storing food with pest-proof containers, or in the refrigerator.
- Empty your trash regularly.
- Avoid leaving dirty dishes out for several hours—try to clean up quickly after meals.
- Never leave out pet food after your pet is finished eating.
- If you recycle containers used for holding food, make sure you rinse them thoroughly and keep them in a pest-proof container.
Finally, when the ant control services arrive, be prepared to show them exactly where you discover ants most often.
After Ant Control—Things to Remember
Remember, the gel baits ant exterminators use won’t kill the colony immediately, so you probably won’t notice any improvement overnight. This doesn’t mean it isn’t working. Be patient.
While the ants are busy taking the bait back to their nest, don’t do anything to kill them when you find them. This will ultimately diminish the effect of extermination. You should also try not to use any strong cleaners where the bait is left, as these can remove the scent trail ants leave behind to help them find the bait later.
Finally, if you repeatedly notice ants showing up somewhere where there isn’t any bait, you can move an unused bait station to this area.
Ants can be annoying, but they don’t have to be a problem forever. By following the steps in this article and using professional ant control services, you can be done with pesky ants for good.