Got ants in your
pants house? No need to invest in a chemical-laden spray to clear them out. This DIY spray works wonders, and you probably already have all of the ingredients!
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It was a warm spring morning, and my 1 year old and I were playing on the floor of the living room when I saw a little sugar ant scurry by. I figured he came in when my husband left for work, so I crushed him and went back to playing.
Then I saw another one.
And another one.
And a whole colony was suddenly overtaking my home. (Sometimes I have a flair for the dramatic.)
Sure, sugar ants are harmless, but we still don’t want them in our houses, right?
Figuring that they were probably trying to find some food, I grabbed my cleaning spray and a rag and wiped the area where I’d seen them running around, killing as many ants as I could in the process.
But as I got closer to the front door, I saw them gathered around the bottom. That’s where they were coming in! Just cleaning the floor wouldn’t help; I was going to have to do something to block their entrance.
I live in a very small town (population 642), so running to the store to get ant spray isn’t an easy trip. Plus, store-bought ant and bug sprays contain chemicals that I don’t want myself or my family exposed to.
First things first
I had a few sugar ants coming into my house, not a full blown infestation. If your house is being over-run by ants or other bugs, you may need to seek help from an exterminator. However, be sure to ask about the chemicals in their treatments!
How to make your own ant spray
If you’re an essential oil lover like I am, I’m sure you already have all of the ingredients that you’ll need for this DIY ant spray.
What you’ll need:
- Glass spray bottle (2 oz.)
- Witch hazel
- Tea tree essential oil
- Peppermint essential oil
- Citrus essential oil of your choice (I recommend lemon or orange)
- Clove essential oil (optional but recommended)
- Add the following amounts of each essential oil to your spray bottle: 15 drops of tea tree oil, 15 drops of peppermint oil, 8 drops of the citrus oil you chose, and 2 drops of clove oil.
- Next, add a splash of witch hazel to your spray bottle. This will help the oils disperse into the water and spray with more potency.
- Fill your spray bottle to the top with water.
- Spray every few hours or as ants appear.
This spray was incredibly easy to make (I did it with a baby on my hip) and it cleared up our ant problem within 24 hours. Best of all, we didn’t have to bring any unwanted chemicals into our home. That’s an all-around win in my book!
Other things that may help
If you can find out where the ants are coming from, you can get rid of them more quickly. I noticed that there was a large ant bed right beside our front porch, and that’s why they were coming in our front door.
To get rid of this ant bed, I filled a bowl with hot water and a few squirts of dish soap, and dumped the mixture on the ant bed. For extra killing power, I also sprinkled some baking soda on the ant bed. Within 12 hours, most of the ants were either dead or had moved on to build another colony.
Soapy water and baking soda have also worked to get rid of ants in our house in the past. Sprinkling some baking soda in the doorway will deter ants from coming in. Additionally, spraying soapy water (2:1 water to soap ratio) on the ants will suffocate and kill them.
Though ants in a house aren’t usually harmful, they are a nuisance. Thankfully, DIY remedies like the ones outlined in this post are effective and safe for your family!
How do you get rid of ants in your house without using chemicals? Anything that HASN’T worked for you? Leave me a comment and tell me!
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