About a week ago we were invaded by Carpenter ants. They were crawling in
heavy numbers in my home office, so I tried the only thing I had on hand,
ant spray. It killed the ants I could see, but they quickly found other
ways into the house (no big surprise there).
So, I made a trip to the store and picked up some Raid ant baits and put
them around the house. These have "dual" bait types and were the only
indoor baits that even mentioned carpenter ants. But, there hasn't been a
single ant that even went near the things.
So, another trip to the store and I found some baits called "Grants Ant
Control System". These had 10 little stakes you put outside. I put them
outside yesterday along some of the more obvious ant trails. At first the
ants seemed to love them and were climbing all over each other to get to
the bait. But today, not a single ant near any of the baits, despite
significant numbers of ants all around the house. It appears they have
"learned" that these baits are toxic and won't go near them now.
I would prefer to avoid hiring an exterminator, but I've exhausted the
options available at the local home centers. I've seen other ant baits
online that claim to be more effective, but I'm hesitant to shell out
another $30 for one more thing that doesn't work.
It seems most ant poisons, sprays, baits, dusts, etc. are not real
effective for carpenter ants (and often say so on the packages).
I saw a recommendation for "Combat Ant Gel" which was supposedly available
from Home Depot, but our local store only carried Combat "Roach" gel which
said nothing about ants.
Can anyone recommend good do-it-yourself solutions for eliminating
On Tue 14 Jun 2005 01:06:41p, HerHusband wrote in alt.home.repair:
Sometimes it just pays to call the pros. You've already spent money on
several "solutions" that haven't been totally effective.
In a previous house in the second year we lived there, we had a huge
invasion of carpenter ants. The house was in the woods, so we knew that
more would be coming.
We paid a flat rate for a one-time permanent eradication of the ants. When
we moved from there six years later, we had still ever seen another
carpenter ant. It was well worth the money.
You really don't want to mess with carpenter ants anymore than you
Wayne Boatwright տլ
Oh, yeah? If so, I'll find it a pita. I'm still working on the 20-lb
bag for such critters I had. But, would figure--they'll get rid of
anything useful, it seems. :(
Hopefully my applicator license will be sufficient if it isn't a total
There was a movie in the 70s, where this one guy blew up an ant mound,
and the ants got pissed and took over the world.
Knowing this, what I did was to build a huge ant costume, about 30 foot
tall. Whenever I see an ant, I get in the costume, and under cover of
darkness go to an anthill near my house. When the sun comes up, I stand
over the mound, twitch my antennai, and scream: I AM THE KING OF THE
ANTS, AND SOON WE WILL CONTROL THE PLANET! I ASK MY ANT BROTHERS AND
SISTERS TO KILL ANY OF THEIR FAMILY WHO DARES SPEAK AGAINST THE KING OR
THE PLAN!!!!!!! And also, could you stay out of my house while the plan
is being formulated? Cause it's kinda secret, and really important, and
if any other ants see it, the plan might get spoiled.
Havn't had an ant in my house in years.
I had a contract with a bug-control company last year to take care of
carpenter ants. Their service "kind of worked". They sprayed around the
house foundation to disencourage carpenter ants from getting into the
house, and I trimmed back the brush and tree branches away from my
house. But they still found a way to get in (they even found a way
through the inside of a downsprount to climb into the house -- believe
it or not).
I am not sure why they seemed to be able to always able to get through.
They might have found a break in the defense line like the downsprout
mentioned above. Or the chemical sprayed on the house foundation might
have washed away by rain prematurely (I don't have auto-sprinkling
system near the house foundation though; but two sides of the house
foundation is not protected by overhanging roof line and rain water
potentially can get to those area). Anyway, they still could get inside
After almost a year of on-and-off carpenter ants intrusions and
spraying repeatedly, finally we had a major outbreak. This time
spraying the house foundation didn't help a thing. I decide to read up
on this in internet, and knew that we need to put bait gel inside the
house to get rid of carpenter ants that are already nesting inside the
house in addition to spraying around the house foundation (given that I
don't know the exact location of their nest inside the house). We
mentioned about this to the "bug people" and asked them to put bait gel
in our house. They agreed to do this and this finally got the problem
under the control.
Now I have decided not to renew the contract for the following reasons:
1. Whatever they have done, I can do this myself by researching on
this issue and by mail ordering the right chemical through internet --
and for a lower cost (not counting the cost of my own labor).
2. I hate wasting time waiting at home for the bug people to come. We
are talking about doing this every month or every two months. And I
don't have that many hours of vacation days or personal days to spend
on waiting for bug people.
3. I needed to explicitly ask the bug people to give us the good
stuff; otherwise, they would just continue spraying the house
foundation regardless the fact that the carpenter ants were already
nesting inside the house. If I have to give them advice to do this the
right way, I really wonder why I hire them for. I am better off doing
this myself. Seem like the bait gel is relatively expensive as
comparing to the cost of the chemical being sprayed around the house
foundation, and I can see that people may not want to use the bait gel
if the house owner didn't ask for it. Obviously, I am not saying that
every bug people is like that, and I am sure that there are bug people
who give the right service to their customers. But dealing with one
company is bad enough for me, and I am not about to try my luck with
This year I will do the spraying, dusting, baiting by myself, and I
will see what happens.
Or, it just stopped working... I sprayed some areas indoors and out fairly
heavily when we first noticed the carpenter ants. It was just typical over-
the-count ant spray, but it "claimed" it protected for 12 months! Of
course, 3 days later, the ants were walking all over the areas I had
sprayed earlier. :)
Yep, that's the same experiences I've had for most anything I've hired out
for. So, I do everything myself unless I absolutely, positively, HAVE to
hire something out.
In any case, I've noticed a dramatic decrease in the number of ants around
our house the last couple of days. Originally they had been coming in
virtually every crack and crevice, I could hear them in the ceiling, and I
could see numerous trails of ants running in the yard, on the side of the
house, etc. I tried following the trail to the nest, but it went off into
the brush I couldn't track it further.
Anyway, I had sprayed around the house, including down in the crawlspace
with regular ant spray. Then I installed a package of "Grants" ant control
spikes near the areas I was seeing the ants. They went crazy with it the
first day, but afterwards seemed to ignore them.
In any case, it seems something is working, at least temporarily. The ant
trails are gone, and I've only seen a few random ants in the house. There
was still a fair number of ants crawling around on the front of the house,
but those too have been declining over the last couple of days.
So, I don't know if all the ant control stuff is working, or if the ants
simply moved on somewhere else. Either way, as long as they're not in our
house, I'm satisfied. If they flare up again, I'll probably order some of
the chemicals online and try those.
Ants are fascinating though. They had a trail that came from the brush in
the forest, into our storage shed, up through the rafters of the shed, back
down the opposite wall, along the ground to the house, up the house wall,
up to the peak of the gable end wall, back down the opposite side, and into
the house. Then another trail came down the opposite gable end wall, and
down to the ground again where they seemed to disperse. I don't know if
this was all a single line of ants, but they were certainly on a mission...
I don't have confidence on the chemical that we can buy from home
center like Home Depot. I tried two different chemicals from Home Depot
before to spray around the house foundation, and none worked. I will
mail order and try the chemical that professional is supposed to use
instead of getting it from home center.
Good to know that. May be you have done something right.
I'm still watching and waiting... I wish I could say the problem is solved,
but I'm still seeing a few random ants around the house each day (indoors
and out). Nothing real organized, but they still bug me... :)
I don't mind an ant or two every once in a while, but there's still a few
too many for my comfort level. So, I'm trying to be patient and see how
things progress before shelling out more money... So far, so good though.
Dear Mr. Chan,
Please try the Gardens Alive stuff and let us know how it works. This
field promotion to Product Tester Grade Five brings with it a promotion, a
26% raise, and increased posting privileges. Do you accept this assignment?
Your nation needs you.
Gardens Alive sells organic stuff to take care of carpenter ants. This
is probably good for some people. I have already purchased the
chemicals that professional use to take care of carpenter ants.
Therefore, I will not be buying the alternatives from Gardens Alive.
Hope someone else can try their products and see how things go.
Stormin Mormon wrote:
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