How To Get Rid of Carpenter Ants For Good

15 April 2024

How to Get Rid of Carpenter Ants For Good

Carpenter ants. Just the name sends shivers down the spine of any homeowner in Ontario. These industrious insects might seem harmless, but their tunnelling habits can wreak havoc on your property’s structural integrity. If you suspect you have a carpenter ant infestation, don’t panic! This comprehensive guide will equip you with the knowledge and strategies to effectively get rid of carpenter ants in your Ontario home.

Identifying Carpenter Ants in Ontario

The first step to getting rid of carpenter ants is proper identification. Carpenter ants are typically larger than other household ants in Ontario, measuring between 6mm and 13mm in length. They have a black or reddish-brown body with a distinct “pinched-in” waist. Unlike other ant species that favour sweets, carpenter ants are attracted to wood, specifically moist or decaying wood. Look for these signs to confirm a carpenter ant infestation:

  • Frass: Fine sawdust piles near entry points or around damaged wood indicate carpenter ant activity.
  • Sighting Workers: Spotting live carpenter ants, especially near windows, doors, or around wooden structures, is a clear sign of an infestation.
  • Rustling Sounds: Carpenter ants are known to create rustling noises within walls as they tunnel through wood.

Understanding Carpenter Ant Behaviour in Ontario’s Climate

Carpenter ants in Ontario exhibit seasonal behaviour influenced by the province’s fluctuating climate. During the warm summer months, they become more active, foraging for food and establishing new nests. Moist environments are particularly attractive to them, so basements, crawlspaces, and areas prone to water leaks become prime targets. As winter approaches, carpenter ant activity tends to decrease. However, they don’t completely hibernate. Instead, they move deeper within the wood structure to seek warmth and moisture, making them even trickier to detect and eliminate.

Eliminating Carpenter Ants: A Two-Pronged Approach

Getting rid of carpenter ants requires a two-pronged approach: eliminating the existing colony and preventing future infestations. Here’s a detailed breakdown of each step:

1. Eradicating the Existing Colony
  • Locate the Nest: This is crucial for effective control. Look for signs of frass piles, particularly around attics, basements, crawlspaces, and areas with exposed wood. Carpenter ants may also exploit gaps around chimneys, pipes, and utility lines to enter your home.
  • Targeted Treatment: Once you’ve located the nest, consider using baits specifically formulated for carpenter ants. These baits contain slow-acting insecticides that worker ants carry back to the nest, ultimately eliminating the queen and the entire colony.
  • Professional Help: For large infestations or if the nest is difficult to access, consider contacting a licensed pest control professional in Ontario. They have access to stronger insecticides and advanced techniques to eliminate the colony effectively.
2. Preventing Future Carpenter Ant Infestations
  • Moisture Control: Carpenter ants are drawn to moist environments. Address any leaks or moisture problems in your basement, crawlspaces, and around the foundation of your home. Ensure proper ventilation in these areas to prevent moisture build-up.
  • Seal Entry Points: Carpenter ants are skilled at finding tiny entry points. Seal cracks around windows, doors, foundations, and utility lines with a caulk appropriate for the surface. Regularly inspect these areas for new openings and seal them promptly.
  • Eliminate Attractants: Store food in airtight containers, clean up crumbs and spills immediately, and address any overflowing garbage cans. Eliminate potential food sources outside your home by keeping woodpiles at least a meter away from the foundation.
  • Trim Vegetation: Keep tree branches and shrubs away from your home’s exterior. This eliminates potential ant highways and reduces moisture build-up near your foundation.

Additional Tips for Getting Rid of Carpenter Ants in Ontario

  • Diatomaceous Earth: Consider using diatomaceous earth, a natural powder, around entry points. This powder dehydrates insects and can be effective in deterring carpenter ants. However, it loses effectiveness when wet and should be reapplied regularly.
  • Professional Inspection: If you suspect a significant carpenter ant infestation, don’t hesitate to call a professional pest control company in Ontario. They have the expertise and resources to locate hidden nests, eliminate the colony effectively, and recommend preventative measures to stop future infestations.

Living Carpenter Ant-Free in Ontario

By following these steps and remaining vigilant, you can successfully get rid of carpenter ants in your home!


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