We put Borax in the cracks about the kitchen to feed the ants. They carry it back to their nests, they cannot digest it and they die. We seem to go for 1 to 1 1/2 years without being bothered by them now.
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I had a bad infestation of ants a few years back. I live in an old house and they came up through the heater registers on the floor. I didn't want to use poison since I have a dog and was concerned he would sniff at it, lick it or otherwise ingest it. So I scoured the internet to find a non-toxic method to eradicate them. That 's when I came across the baby/talcum powder treatment. I poured a line about 1/4 inch think all the way around the heater registers. After killing and cleaning up the ones that were already in the house (4 hours with 2 people working to get rid of them) the ants were gone and never came back. I left the powder there for a week just so they wouldn't come back. My house was ant free for almost 6 years but they are back now, coming in through the wall sockets so I will try the vinegar or perhaps Windex as I've heard both are effective. Thanks to all who have posted!
Barbecue sauce (might just be the molasses). I foudd this out by accident. Leave a cap with Barbecue sauce in it. They seem to get stuck in it and probably loose thir scent when they walk in it. Then the others avoid the area. So, if you put it near where they enter the house it keeps them away. IT DOES TAKE A FEW DAYS TO TAKE EFFECT.
In a house we lived in a few years ago, our mail carrier used to give my children lollipops all the time. If one happened to get left outside (opened) I would see it another day - black with ants. Ants love lollipops!
So, since we always seemed to have a lot of them (lollipops) around, I used some to make ant traps one time when we had a bunch of ants come into the house.
I put an unwrapped lollipop in the middle of a lid. I put boric acid (found at the hardware store, usually used for roaches, though I have always used it for ants - I have had the same container of it for 25 years!!! ) all around the inside edge of the lid. So, ants had to walk through the boric acid to get to the lollipop. I would leave that alone for days. Ants would come and feed and leave with boric acid on their feet.
After a few days, I would stop seeing any ants. Be warned, at first it would seem the problem was worse, but it always got better and the ants would stop until the next spring and I would repeat the process (not always with lollipops, but always with the boric acid! )
I have heard of mixing coca cola with boric acid to accomplish the same thing. I just was more likely to have lollipops than coke around the house!
~Mama to Many~
Cinnamon will make ants leave. Sprinkle it on them and watch them run. it does not kill them but they will go away. I sprinkle wherever I see them and if possible where they are coming in from. No chemical smell and no bodies to clean up. it looks a little messy and they might find another way to get in but just sprinkle some more. sometimes I leave it for several days to make sure.
It works great and smells good too.
Cloves worked ok. The ants would lose their scent trail and get lost / head home. I used powdered cloves and that was very quick acting but only works for a few hours to a day max. However the ants returning wander around lost for a while and eventually find a way around it by going up a wall.. so then you need to keep applying it.
Diatomaceous Earth powder worked for removing ants from our kitchen. Ants usually find their way into our kitchen after a rain shower. In the past, we have tried Borax, peppermint oil, water barrier and glass cleaner to no avail. After sprinkling some D.E. around the floor by the refrigerator and around the sink and window sill, there have not been any ants spotted in over a couple weeks. I'm confident that is what finally worked. This is also safe to use around our dog and family. Take care to not inhale the fine powder as you disperse it.
I have read that if you sprinkle quick cooking grits on regular or fire ant hills, the workers will carry it home to feed their queen and eat one themselves, causing them to swell up and burst. Ants who died from this should not be harmful to any birds who eat them."
I rarely see this, but it works every time! On an ant nest, or across the ant's trail, simply apply lemon juice. The store concentrate seems to work as well, also. I have never had to apply lemon juice more than twice to eliminate large ant populations. A bonus is that this remedy has no toxic effects for your pets.
Vinegar didn't work when I tried it. Don't use on varnished wooden surfaces - it managed to strip off a bit of the varnish on one piece of furniture.