Three Things to Know About Ant Killers, Traps and Poisons Before You Buy

These are the ingredients to look for and how to use them properly.

Ants climbing up anthill
Stop ants in their tracks.Maksim Shutov, Unsplash

A parade of ants marching through your kitchen or all over your outdoor furniture is never a pleasant sight to look down on. But there are a couple things to know before you start spraying every surface with poison or setting up traps throughout your home. Here are the differences between each product, as well as information on how to use them.

Safer 51703 Diatomaceous Earth-Bed Bug Flea, Ant, Crawling Insect Killer 4 lb

Contains Silicon Dioxide

This powder’s active ingredient dehydrates creepy crawlers.Safer Brand

When looking at ant poisons, you might see “diatomaceous earth,” or D.E., appear on lots of labels. D.E. is a dry, crumbly powder made up of mostly silica, which fights pests by dehydrating them. However, the powder only works if it is dry, so if you have an ant problem close to the kitchen sink, you may need to sprinkle more on after it gets moist.

Ortho Home Defense Insect Killer for Indoor & Perimeter2 - with Comfort Wand, Long-Lasting Control, Kills Ants, Cockroaches, Spiders, Fleas & Ticks, Non-Staining, Odor Free, 1.1 gal.

Build a Barrier

Kick pests before they enter your house.Ortho

If ants are a frequent nuisance in your home, look for a spray to seal in cracks around doors, windows and the perimeter of your house. Simply shake well and spray from about a foot away from the affected area. Most formulas are also okay for pets and people to be around immediately after they dry.

TERRO T300B Liquid Ant Bait Ant Killer, 12 bait stations

Specific Targets

The sweet juice inside attracts and destroys swarms.Terro

Ant baits contain Borax, which attracts ants. When the ants step into the bait, they bring back Borax to their entire colony, effectively sweeping their whole nest from your home. Just be warned that you will probably see a lot more ants coming out—that just means they’re drawn to the sweet liquid inside the bait, and the stuff is working.