Baking soda does kill ants and can be a quick, inexpensive, and effective method of ant control. But how exactly does baking soda kill ants, and how can you use it to get rid of ants at home?
How and why does baking soda kill ants?
Baking soda kills ants when they ingest it and is thought to dry out their bodies from the inside. This happens very quickly, and ants will die within a few minutes of eating baking soda.
How to use baking soda to kill ants
The most effective way to take out an ant infestation is to target the whole colony rather than individual members. Fortunately, ants will do most of the work for you – as scavenging insects, they will seek out food and carry it back to their nest for others to eat. If you lace their food source with baking soda, you can kill the entire colony with minimal effort.
The easiest way to do this is to mix equal parts of baking soda and powdered sugar. Use a small receptacle (like the lid of a jar) to keep your powder contained and place in areas with lots of ant activity. For the best effect, try to locate the site of the colony’s nest and place your ant-killing powder here.
The sugar will attract the ants, who will gather up the powder and take it home with them for their colony-mates to feast on. Once they eat the powder, the ants will die in a matter of minutes.
Pros and cons of using baking soda to kill ants
There are plenty of benefits of using baking soda to kill ants. It is inexpensive, easy, and effective in killing large numbers of ants with minimal effort on your part.
Keep in mind!
Baking soda is also non-toxic to humans and most animals, so there are very few health risks involved in using this product at home.
The only potential drawback to using baking soda for ant control is that it can be harmful to some pets if ingested in large quantities, and may not be a suitable option for dog or cat owners.
Alternative natural ant control methods
If you don’t have any baking soda at home, there are plenty of other natural and effective home remedies to try.
Make a dish soap and water spray
Whipping up an ant-killing spray at home is quick and easy. All you’ll need is dish soap, water, and a spray bottle. Mix equal parts water and dish soap in the spray bottle, shake well to combine, and get to work spraying ants. This is a kill-on-contact method, so it will only kill the ants that are directly sprayed with the solution. You’ll need to use another method to target the ants and queen at the colony.
Make a white vinegar and water spray
A white vinegar and water concoction can also be used to effectively kill ants. Mix equal parts of both in a spray bottle and spritz it over any ants you see around your home. You can also use this spray to get rid of ant trails and on potential entry points to keep ants out of your house. If you don’t have white vinegar at home, you can use lemon juice instead.
Keep ants out with talcum powder
Ants will not cross trails of talcum powder, so this can be an effective way to keep them out of your house. Lay a line of the powder over entry points (such as under door frames and along window sills) to create a barrier that ants won’t cross.
Use a sugar borax paste
Borax is widely available and a highly effective tool for killing off ants. Mix one part borax with three parts white sugar and slowly add a little water, stirring as you do. When your mixture resembles a paste, place it inside jar lids and leave it in areas with high levels of ant activity.
The ants will carry the sweet paste back to their nest where other members of the colony and the queen will eat it.
Make a boric acid trap
Mix 1 tsp of boric acid with ¼ cup of corn syrup. Once the ingredients are properly combined, place a few drops of the solution onto waxed paper and leave it in places where you’ve seen ants roaming around. Keep replacing the drops as needed until all your ants are gone.
Kill ants with boiling water
If you’ve managed to locate an ant nest, you can try to kill all of them at once – including the queen. Pour boiling water into the opening of the mound to take out the colony and solve your ant problems.
Monitor your ants will yellow sticky paper
If you’re waging war on ants, it’s important to monitor the situation so you can know how well your attempts are working. Yellow sticky traps are an easy way to do this; simply place them in areas where you’ve seen a lot of ant activity and check them daily. When you notice fewer ants stuck to the traps, you’ll know that your control methods are effective.
Ants die when they eat baking soda because it dries them out when it reaches their stomachs. By mixing baking soda with powdered sugar, you can make a cheap, non-toxic, and effective DIY bait that unsuspecting ants will carry back to their nest. In this way, you can kill the entire colony of ants with very little effort.
Alternative natural home remedies for ant control include dish soap and water sprays, white vinegar, baby powder barriers, borax, sticky traps, and hot water.