When it comes to maintaining a clean and pest-free home, ants can be a major annoyance. They can be found crawling around your kitchen, bathroom, and even your bedroom. While there are many products out there that can help control ant infestations, some of them contain harmful chemicals that may not be safe for your family and pets. Fortunately, there is a simple solution: homemade ant traps. With just a few basic ingredients, you can make your own ant traps that are effective, safe, and affordable.
Ingredients for Homemade Ant Traps
The first step in making your own ant traps is to gather the necessary ingredients. The good news is that you probably already have most of these items in your home.
Borax is a naturally occurring mineral that is commonly used as a cleaning agent. It is also an effective ant killer. Borax works by interfering with the ants’ digestive systems, causing them to starve to death. You can find borax at most grocery stores or online.
Sugar is used in the ant trap to attract the ants. Ants are attracted to sweet substances, so adding sugar to your trap will help lure them in.
Water is used to dissolve the borax and sugar and create a liquid that the ants can easily consume.
You will need containers to hold your ant traps. Small plastic containers with lids, such as yogurt cups or baby food jars, work well.
Steps to Make Homemade Ant Traps
Now that you have your ingredients, it’s time to make your ant traps. The process is quick and easy, and you can make multiple traps to place around your home.
Step 1: Mix the Ingredients
In a small bowl, mix together 1 part borax, 3 parts sugar, and 3 parts water. Stir until the ingredients are well combined.
Step 2: Fill Your Containers
Pour the mixture into your small containers. Be sure to leave enough space at the top for the ants to crawl in and out. You can punch holes in the lids to make it easier for the ants to access the trap.
Step 3: Place the Traps
Place the traps in areas where you have seen ants. Be sure to keep them out of reach of children and pets. It may take a few days for the ants to find the traps, but once they do, the borax will take effect and begin to kill them.
Other DIY Ant Control Methods
In addition to homemade ant traps, there are other DIY methods you can use to control ant infestations in your home.
Vinegar is a natural ant repellent. Mix equal parts vinegar and water in a spray bottle and spray it around areas where you have seen ants. You can also use vinegar to clean surfaces in your home to deter ants from coming back.
Cinnamon is another natural ant repellent. Sprinkle cinnamon powder around areas where you have seen ants. You can also make a cinnamon spray by boiling cinnamon sticks in water and spraying the mixture around your home.
3. Diatomaceous Earth
Diatomaceous earth is a natural substance that is made from the fossilized remains of tiny sea creatures. It is safe to use around pets and children and is an effective ant control method. Sprinkle diatomaceous earth around areas where you have seen ants. The sharp edges of the diatomaceous earth will cut through the ants’ exoskeleton and cause them to dehydrate and die.
Preventing Ant Infestations
While homemade ant traps and other DIY methods can help control ant infestations, the best method is prevention. Here are some tips to keep ants out of your home:
1. Keep Your Home Clean
Ants are attracted to food spills and crumbs, so keeping your home clean is important. Wipe down surfaces regularly and sweep or vacuum floors to remove any crumbs or spills.
2. Store Food Properly
Store food in airtight containers to prevent ants from getting in. This includes pet food, which can also attract ants.
3. Seal Cracks and Openings
Ants can enter your home through even the smallest cracks and openings. Check your home for any gaps around doors and windows and seal them with caulk or weather stripping.
4. Remove Standing Water
Ants are attracted to standing water, so be sure to fix any leaks and remove any sources of standing water around your home.
Here are some of the most commonly asked questions about making homemade ant traps:
- Can I use anything other than borax in my ant trap?
- How long does it take for the ants to die?
- Are homemade ant traps safe to use around pets?
Borax is the most effective ingredient for killing ants, but you can also try using baking soda or diatomaceous earth.
It may take a few days for the ants to find the traps, but once they do, they will usually die within 24-48 hours.
While borax can be toxic to pets if ingested in large amounts, the amount used in ant traps is usually not enough to cause harm. However, it is still important to keep the traps out of reach of pets.
With a few simple ingredients and some basic household items, you can easily make your own ant traps that are effective and safe. By taking steps to prevent ant infestations in the first place, you can keep your home free of these pesky pests.
Natranix. (2021, June 16). Natural Ant Control: 10 Ways to Get Rid of Ants Without Chemicals. Natranix. https://natranix.com/natural-ant-control/
The Spruce. (2021, July 2). Learn How to Make Your Own Ant Traps. The Spruce. https://www.thespruce.com/diy-ant-traps-1388148
Borax. (n.d.). Pest Control: Borax Ant Killer. Borax. https://www.borax.com/pest-control/borax-ant-killer