When it comes to removing ants from your home, you could choose countless solutions. Unfortunately, many of the ant treatments that you can find in a store, especially pesticides, contain harmful chemicals to which you may not want to expose to your home or family. While pesticides are certainly effective, a variety of all-natural ant-killing solutions can do the job, including essential oils.
Essential oils have skyrocketed in popularity in recent years, and in addition to their ability to alleviate certain health conditions, these oils can also be an effective way to permanently rid your home of ants. Consider this advice for choosing an essential oil for killing ants so you can prevent infestations from occurring.
Do Ants Respond to Essential Oils?
If you’ve been thinking about using essential oils in your home to get rid of ants, then it’s smart to learn why these oils are an effective ant treatment.
The reason that essential oils can help keep ants away from homes is because of their scent. Most essential oils have a very strong fragrance, and while this may be pleasant to humans, ants are turned off by pungent smells since they interfere with the pheromones ants use for coordination.
By spreading essential oils around your home, you will mask the ant pheromone trails, making it nearly impossible for them to lead other ants to your property.
Which Essential Oils to Use
Now that you know how essential oils can efficiently keep ants out of your home, you need to learn which oils are most effective when it comes to ant control. While several types of essential oils can be used as an insecticide, some are more adept at killing ants than others.
One of the best essential oils to use in pest control is cedarwood. Studies have shown that when placed between ants and a food source, cedarwood keeps the ants from moving toward the food. Cedarwood is even effective against very aggressive ant species, such as fire ants.
If you’re more interested in killing ants than preventing them from coming into your home, you should consider using patchouli essential oil. This oil has the ability to turn away a variety of common ant species and has also been shown to have a high mortality rate for these aggravating creatures.
Other essential oils that you can use to get rid of ants include peppermint, vetiver, and orange.
Making a Spray
If you want to make an essential oil-based spray that you can use to kill the ants in your home, a few basic ingredients will be needed. To make your ant spray, you will need 10 drops of tea tree oil, 15 drops of peppermint oil, a quarter cup of water, three drops of orange oil, and a quarter cup of vodka. You will also need a spray bottle.
Take all of your ingredients and mix them together in a large bowl. Vodka is necessary because it is a solvent that makes it easier to mix the three different types of essential oils together. Once you’ve thoroughly mixed all your ingredients, pour them into your spray bottle. If you don’t plan to use your spray immediately, you should store it somewhere dry and cool.
The best way to use this essential oil ant spray is to apply it in every area in your home that’s affected by ants. You need to take special care to spray small cracks and crevices where you’ve noticed ants entering and exiting your home. While this spray is non-toxic, you should be sure you aren’t spraying it on your furniture or near your food.
Using Peppermint Oil
Mixing a spray with multiple essential oils is the best way to use these oils on ants. However, if you don’t have all the ingredients necessary to make the spray, you can still get rid of ants with essential oils.
If you have a supply of peppermint essential oil, for example, you can use this oil around your house to defend yourself against an ant infestation. Take your peppermint oil and add some to a standard cotton swab. Then use the swab to wipe the oil along your baseboards and other areas where ants can commonly be found. The reason to apply the oil with a cotton swab is to make sure you don’t use too much.
You can use tea tree oil in a similar manner to peppermint oil. In fact, you can add tea tree oil to a cotton swab and place the swab in your cabinet to keep ants away from your food.
Clove Essential Oil
Clove essential oil is another great oil to use for ant control. Like all essential oils, clove oil can interfere with the pheromone trails that ants employ to coordinate their movements. This type of oil is also very effective at killing ants, meaning it serves two purposes.
Clove oil is one of the stronger essential oils, so you should probably dilute it with another oil before using it in your home.
Other All-Natural Solutions
If you want an all-natural option for removing ants from your home but don’t have any essential oils, there are several other items you could use — all of which should be effective.
For example, making a spray out of vinegar and water can be an effective way to remove ants. A spray made of white vinegar works to prevent ants, and an apple vinegar spray will kill these insects.
Cinnamon is another common household item that can be used to prevent ant infestations. Simply sprinkle your cinnamon where you have noticed the most ant movement, and you’ll be able to interfere with the ant scent trails, causing them to leave your home.
You could also use food grade diatomaceous earth to kill ants. This is a common garden product that is very effective at killing ants.
Use Essential Oils to Kill Ants
Essential oils can be used for a wide array of purposes, including killing the ants that have infested your home. Making a mixture out of essential oils and then spraying it around your home should help you stay pest-free. However, if you think your infestation is too severe for essential oils, you can get help from an ant control expert.