carpenter ant on rock

How & Why Ants Get Into Western Massachusetts Homes

There is a common misunderstanding that the reason you see ants inside your home is that they have created a nest inside. But this isn't always the case. In fact, it is rarely the case. When you see ants in your kitchen and pantry, it is likely that those ants have a nest outside of your home. The reason you see so many ants inside your home isn't because there is a nest in your walls, it is because one worker ant found a food source and told all the other ants in its colony where to find it. One by one, the ants on the outside started coming into your home the same way the first ant did. This is important to understand. Why? Because it shows how important it is to seal entry points and exclude ants from your Massachusetts home.

How Ants Get In

Most ants need to find a hole to enter your home. There is only one type of ant that can create its own entry points; they're called carpenter ants. Not only can carpenter ants chew holes through wood to enter your home, but they are one of only a few ants that will create nests in your walls. If you see large black ants, or dark red and black ants, be aware that they are likely to be carpenter ants. That means you may not stop those workers from coming in by sealing entry points because they could be coming from a nest that is already established inside your Massachusetts home. The following tips can only deter carpenter ants, and other ant species, that have an exterior nest.

  • Ants get in through foundation cracks. Do a detailed inspection of your basement and use a foundation repair kit to seal any cracks you find, no matter how small.

  • Ants get in through rotting wood. Inspect the exterior of your home and also the wood in your basement or cellar, and replace or repair any wood that is damaged. If you don't have the finances to do that right now, see if you can fill holes in by using a caulking gun and a high-quality silicone caulk.

  • Ants get in through gaps in weather stripping and damaged door sweeps.

  • Inspect your exterior doors for light that is coming in from the outside. If you can see light, it is likely that there is a hole an ant can use to get into your home.

  • Replace or repair weatherstripping and door sweeps.

  • Ants get in through gaps around door and window frames. Over time, gaps can develop. Use a caulking gun to seal these gaps.

  • Ants get in through damaged screens. Make sure all your screens are in good working condition.

  • Ants get in through gaps between screen frames and the frames around windows and doors. Patch these to keep ants out.

  • Ants get in through unprotected exhaust vents and weep holes. Cover these.

  • Trim bushes and vegetation away from your exterior walls to make it more difficult for ants to get to higher entry points.

Why Ants Get In

Ants don't know that your home has food. That means they don't really have any motivation to get into your home. They come in by accident. You can reduce accidental entry by reducing the population of ants near your home. This will work with the exclusion tips above to resist ants.

  • Reduce moisture around your home. Most ant species are attracted to moisture.

  • A key way to reduce perimeter moisture is to clean your gutters and make sure they are in good repair.

  • Remove unnecessary vegetation in your landscaping to reduce moisture and allow for better plant health.

  • Keep bagged trash in clean and sealed receptacles. The scent of garbage can attract ants from a great distance.

  • Move bird feeders away from your exterior. Some ant species eat seeds.

  • Rake leaves away from your exterior to remove moist habitats and food options.

  • Move stacked wood away from your exterior walls to remove organic habitation and food options.

It is also important to remove interior attractants that can cause one ant to mobilize hundreds and inspire them to come inside. Keep things as clean as possible to stop this from happening.

Don't Go It Alone

Remember that the team at American Pest Solutions is always here to help you with all of your pest control needs. We offer ongoing pest control service plans that include the reduction and management of ant populations. There is no better way to prevent ants from going in and out of your home. Reach out to us today to schedule service or to get answers to any of your questions.

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