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6 Effective Home Remedies for Ants (Using Products Found in Every Home)

Ant nest in a yard.

Move to the mountains, and you’ll find ants. Move to the desert, you’ll find ants. Move to the beach, say hello to your neighbor – the Ants. No matter what you do, ants have a way of finding you. It’s an issue, but you don’t need to call an exterminator just yet.

Home remedies for ants work well, and I’m going to show you how to make a homemade ant killer that will obliterate those pests in their tracks (or their nest, hopefully).

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What to Do Initially (Before Making a Ant Killer)

Initially, it’s important to take a few steps to speed up the ant annihilation – and keep them at bay in the future.

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Why are ants in your home to begin with?

The majority of ants don’t care for your flat screen or your choice in décor. Ants would rather be outside, but humans – including you – have a tendency to attract ants with all of the food you leave behind.

I get it. You’re busy, so you leave dishes in the sink until the morning.

Ants are hungry, so they’ll come and start eating any scraps you leave behind. Even crumbs on the floor will be a meal for the entire nest. A few tips I recommend following immediately are:

  1. Find the Ant Trails: Ants need to come into your home somehow. Trails will show you where the ants are coming from and traversing. Clusters of ants marching away to find the food you left behind is where the trail is located. Map out this trail, so you can place the bait here – or plug up holes where they’re entering.
  2. Mop Hard Floors: Sticky floors are a haven for ants. Mop the floor and sweep it, too, in an attempt to pick up and crumbs or wash away any sugars that may be attracting the ants to your home.
  3. Vacuum: Carpet fibers will attract crumbs and cause them to get stuck in the carpet’s fibers. Ants will enter these fibers and pull out these crumbs.
  4. Clean All Surfaces: Countertops and tables must be cleaned to remove more crumbs and any old spills that still exist.
  5. Remove Dishes and Garbage: Any garbage needs to be removed quickly, and be sure to wash all dirty dishes. Keep food in the refrigerator or in packages where ants can’t get to it.

In short, clean your home and keep it clean. All home remedies for ants start with cleaning away anything that is attracting ants to the home. If you can clean up all of the food debris, ants will slowly start to leave you alone – a sigh of relief.

So, How to Make Ant Killer at Home? 6 Home Remedies for Ants that Actually Work

The cleaning and precautionary measures have all been taken care of at this point. It’s now time to start killing the ants – and I don’t mean marching through them trying to step on every last one.

I’ve tried it hundreds of times, and stepping on ants only kills a handful, while others continue to invade the space.

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Home remedies will allow you to get rid of ants and do so with products that are in most people’s homes:

1. Lemon JuiceClose up of a bowl of lemon juice on white background.

Lemons have a way of interrupting an ant’s sensing or tracking abilities. Spray pure lemon juice on the trail or opening where the ants are finding their way into the home. The acidity and smell will work as a repellent to keep ants away.

2. Cinnamon

A strong spice. Cinnamon works wonders for keeping ants away. Sprinkle ground cinnamon where the ants are invading for best results.  Cinnamon oil,  and cinnamon plus cloves are both highly recommended ant deterrents.

3. Borax and Sugar Mixture

The true homemade ant killer. Borax can be found in most hardware and grocery stores, and an online retailer will also sell borax. It’s important to keep this mixture out of reach of children and pets.

Start by:

  • Placing borax in a bowl
  • Placing sugar in a bowl
  • Add some water

And all that’s left to do is mix the mixture up. Place the mixture in the path of the ants if possible. This is a slow process that takes weeks to remedy the problem, but the ants will take the bait back to the nest where it will cause dire consequences to the queen and the remaining ants.

Caution: Keep this mixture out of reach of children and pets.

4. Boiling Water and Soap

If you know where the ant’s nest is located (or the ant mound), you can really kill them quickly and easily without the weeks in between. Start boiling a pot of water and add dish soap into the water, too.

Once the water begins to boil, take it off of the stove (use a mitt).

Walk over to the ant mound and pour the water carefully on the mound, making sure not to splash and burn yourself in the process. This is quite possibly the most effective way to kill an ant nest.

5. Powdered Sugar and Baking Soda

Place baking soda and powdered sugar into a can, Tupperware or in any container that has a lid. Mix it up well. Once mixed, take off the lid and place the mixture in one of the entry locations discussed previously.

Ants will pick up the mixture, and a violent reaction occurs in their body over time.

Think of an internal volcano erupting. This is the best way to describe what’s happening inside of the ants at this time. After a few days, the mixture will start to cause a rapid decline in the ant population and hopefully, will spread back to the any colony.

6. Coffee Grounds

The final home remedy for ants is something that most people have in their cupboard – coffee. Now don’t go wasting fresh grounds (that would be blasphemy). Place old grounds (dried, ideally) into the cracks where the ants start coming into the home.

Coffee grounds work as a natural ant repellant, and they work extremely well.

You can even try placing the grounds around the entire perimeter of the home for long-lasting results.