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Everyday Cheapskate: 10 Ways to Get Rid of Ants Using Ordinary Stuff In Your Pantry

Mary Hunt on

Knowing how to get rid of ants around the house is important. But it's also fun to learn just how fascinating these creatures are. They're industrious and super smart, as far as insects go. Some ants can support up to 50 times their own weight while upside-down on glass. Ants are found almost everywhere on Earth. The largest ant colony ever found was over 3,750 miles wide. And you think you've got problems?

All fun facts aside, it's necessary for us to know how to control any kind of pest invasion in our homes for both health and safety reasons. If you suspect you have a serious ant infestation, consider calling a pest control professional. However, most ant problems-especially those teeny tiny "sugar" ants (a common name that many people use to describe any small ant that is attracted to sweets)-are generally annoying and a problem you can solve quickly with ordinary items you may have on hand around in the house and garage.

Think of what follows as a buffet of methods to get rid of ants in your home, on your property, and perhaps even in the garage. Choose the solution that meets your immediate need using items you have.


To get rid of ants, start by mopping the floor at least once a day. Mopping and vacuuming help to remove the ants' pheromone trails. Cleaning and mopping will also rid your home of the food and crumbs that attract the ants.



If you have ants or other bugs around the house, pour a 50-50 mixture of Blue Dawn dish soap and water into an empty spray bottle, and keep it handy. When you see the insects, spray them with the mixture. The soap actually breaks down their exoskeletons, and they die almost immediately. It's a cheap and easy cleanup.


This is my personal favorite way to get rid of ants because it is natural, quick and sure. Diatomaceous earth is nontoxic and harmless for pets and kids. Important: Make sure you are using food-grade diatomaceous earth, NOT swimming pool DE, which has been chemically altered and will be completely ineffective to kill ants and other bugs.

Sprinkle the food-grade DE outside around the perimeter of your home. You can also safely sprinkle it inside where you see the ants -- along baseboards especially. Do not wet the DE or it will not work. If it should get wet, reapply with new, dry food-grade DE.


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