Any Suggestions On How to Deter Ants Using More of A Natural Approach?

I have a small infestation of black ants that show up on a whim throughout my apartment. I need to find something safe to use for I have a small 2 year old who also resides here.

Does anyone have any ideas on what could be used?

Nowadays the fumes are horrible, ant traps are sticky and catches the eyes of young toddlers, at a loss..

I am looking forward to any suggestions that you have used or know of a good safety product.

Thank you ;)


10 answers

  1. Hello!

    I can relate to the frustration you are having with ants.
    I admit that on the outside of my home I use the toxic
    chemicals to spray a barrier along the concrete footing.
    I start my regular application late in the fall season
    or early in the spring and periodically thereafter till winter.

    But, on the inside of my home where grandkids will contact
    ant poisons, and places like kitchen counters where we
    cook and prepare food I stumbled upon a surprise ant deterrent.
    In desperation to eradicate what seems like thousands, I grabbed
    a bottle of Windex spray and gave the offenders a few shots.
    I noticed right away, that the ants stopped dead in their tracks.
    I was able to spray entire counter surfaces and wipe them away with paper towels. I'd spray the sliding window tracks and other areas with Windex and leave it pooled as a barrier.

    I suppose the repulsive ant repelling ingredient within the Windex
    would be the ammonia? Ants use their scent sensory ability to communicate
    with each other and find their way around dark environments.

    A spot of ant science...

    Ants, like all insects, don’t have lungs, breathing through tiny holes in their sides – spiracles – one pair per segment. These lead into a network of tiny tubes – tracheae – permeating their entire body.

    1. In response to TheTradesman


      I too have tried using those off and on, but never seemed to keep them from coming back LOL

      I do want to share this link that a member had provided in the MyKmart Community. I read through all of the techniques that were used and was amazed in how much information I had found.

      My hopes that you all are able to find some that work for you also.

      Also BlueCrewGuyInMA there was some great tips in using outside since you had them in the dry patches.

      Let me know if you try any of them and how they worked ;)

      Homemade, Natural Ways To Stop An Infestation

  2. You might want to look for some of the mint oil-based bug sprays. I've read that bay leaves also help, though you will want to get the good, whole leaves rather than the crumbs (you want as much of the essential oils as possible). And, I have no idea how much you'll need. :)

    1. In response to BlueCrewGuyInMA

      Great! Thank you! I will look into that further.

      I have not heard that one before, but at this moment I am desperate to give anything a try. Down right tired of waking up with the ants gone from one area and into another. I will also have to check to make sure cats will not eat them, my 7 month old eats everything that she can get her mouth on. So weird for a cat!

      I so appreciate the suggestion ;)

    2. In response to BlueCrewGuyInMA

      It's no big deal if your cat eats ants, trust me. If they're nasty ants, the cat will learn. Otherwise, consider it a dietary supplement. ;)

    3. In response to BlueCrewGuyInMA

      I should also mention, I strongly recommend figuring out where they're entering from, and closing it off with expanding crack filler. We also get ants, though. They come in through the weep holes in our windows, and danged if they don't come in EVERY SINGLE YEAR! Even if it's clean! They explore, leave their trail, and their buddies come in behind 'em whether there's food or not. Oh, and you might want to find where they live outside, if at all possible. The easiest way to find their central home is when mowing with a walk-behind mower. When you go over their home, hundreds of ants will come swarming out of the ground. If you can find where they're living, you can go to town on them there with various pesticidal products. You should have seen them last summer in our backyard, where there's a dry patch of ground. They'd come out in droves!

    4. In response to BlueCrewGuyInMA

      So far my kitten has not ate any as far as I can tell, but she is a great hunter and that is how we have been locating them if we visually do not see them on the counters or walls. I am sure they would be distasteful for they leave a smell behind once you kill them. Yuck!

      We have looked outside our apartment and do not see any ants so once the weather clears up we will go and look at the side of the apt, for we are on the end unit.

      Talked with Management yesterday to see if anyone on the bottom levels has had any issues, and she had so "no". I find this hard to believe for this is the 2nd unit we have lived in here and both has ant issues.

      The house that we had previously lived at had a worse issue and they were located under the house. Landlord continued to do nothing so we had bought stuff to put around the house outside, Helped a little, but not as much as I would have liked.

      Was that the only place you had found them? In dry patches? You would think that they would want to be less conspicuous LOL

      Its good to know that Oregon is not the only place with these issues. Dang things ;)

      • San Jose, CA

    What you want to do with ants is get the "scouts" before they have a chance of leaving a scented trail for all of their buddies to follow into the house.

    Food attracts the ants.

    Coolness on hot days and warmth on cold days brings the ants inside.

    If possible, blocking their place of entrance is highly desireable and findable by following the lines of ants in your home.

    I don't know why, but, 409 spray almost instantly kills the ants AND help to clean up any scent trail that following ants might try to use later.

    It may take several applications to discourage the ants and completely remove the scent trail.

    I don't know about "organic". But, 409 is a soap product and not a poison.

    We've got two dogs.

    1. Hi AdamO,

      I live in Oregon where the weather is very unpredictable, but no matter how clean the apartment is, they pop up everywhere. We just can't seem to locate where they are coming in at.

      We have been using the cloth disinfect cleaners on the walls, counters and even floors, and this does not seem to help. My daughter did spray some sort of Lysol cleaner and they disappeared for a day.

      EERRRGGG! It has got to be one of the worst and frustrating issues that I continue to deal with no matter where I live in this state.

      I appreciate the help ;)

        • San Jose, CA

      The 409 product almost instantly stops moving ants in their tracks.

      The cleaning aspect of the product also seems to confuse ants seeking to follow scent trails into the house.

      Check around your wall outlets. Ants can get through some pretty amazingly small spaces and a big'ol hole in the wall, covered by a plastic plate presents almost no problem for them to gain access into your home.

      Of course, you don't want to spray a liquid product directly into a 120 volt, open power source.

      Good luck.

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