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The approach of summer assures us an invasion of ants.

Small and red or big and black, they will find a way in to your home.

Outside, they can be a benefit to aerating the soil and composting dead vegetation. But if they are bringing up all the sand from beneath your concrete, you must take action to stop them.

The best thing to do with “slab-on-grade” concrete such as driveways and patios is to seal the control joints so the ants cannot surface between the gaps and cracks. Power washing these cracks, then filling them to within a quarter-inch of the top with sand preps the cracks for application of what people commonly call “liquid-caulk” – what the Industry knows as Sikaflex. Caulk the cracks by applying Sikaflex over the sand and letting it flow into the joint. This high-memory product will survive the effects of weather and pesky ants!

Inside the house, ants are simply a pest looking for food. Those tiny red ants we often see are easily disposed of inside the home using bait stations with boric acid mixed with a “sweetener” such as peanut butter or corn syrup. Such baits should be placed where the ants have been observed and always out of the reach of pets and children!

Red ants often enter the home through gaps and cracks around the foundation, as well as doors and pipe and cable penetrations in the walls. Seal these and you may keep them out. Semi-annual application of a pesticide around the outside of the foundation will help. Keeping a tidy kitchen and eliminating access to food scraps can also keep them away.

The big, black, ants are a different story. They are called Carpenter Ants because of their affinity for nesting in wood. They can severely damage the wood frame of your home and oftentimes require the services of a professional pest control company if they are nesting in the home’s structure. Typical baits for Carpenter Ants are designed to attract worker ants that will carry the pesticide back to the nest where it will be consumed by others, including the queen. These baits are usually either a granular or a gel and often have a borate as the active ingredient.

When these “Home Remedies” fail, look to the for a Professional.

Listen to the The Inside Outside Guys on Talk Radio 1270!


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