Treating for Carpenter Ants

Carpenter Ant Identification | Inspecting For Carpenter Ants | Treating For Carpenter Ants | Preventing Carpenter Ants ]

Baiting & Spraying
Once the locations that have been infested by Carpenter Ants are found, you will have to find a treatment that best fits your needs. There are several Carpenter Ant control products available because of the many types of areas that Carpenter Ants will infest.

Treating For Carpenter Ants

If you see the Carpenter Ants and some of the debris they left behind, but you can't directly access the nest, we recommend you use a combination of Carpenter Ant baits and an ant spray to get rid of the colony. Use the following products types to get rid of get rid of your ant problem.

  • A non-repellent ant spray insecticide to use around windows, doors, and baseboards.
  • Ant baits for use in cabinets, counters, near sinks and other places where you would not use sprays
Using a combination of these products will help get the Carpenter Ants under control faster than using just one of the products alone.

Indoor Carpenter Ant Bait

Treating Carpenter Ants

Baits should be placed in areas where Carpenter Ant activity has been seen. Do not put the bait in the middle of any ant trail or on to the ants, they will avoid the baits if you do this, making it not effective. Place the bait near activity, or next to the ant trails. To keep the ant bait fresh and off surfaces we recommend placing the bait in bait plate stations.

Some examples of places where the bait can be placed are:
  • Kitchen cabinets
  • Counter tops
  • Next to, behind, and under the stove / oven
  • Sinks or drains
  • Pipes, cords, and cables that come from the wall
  • Behind / under bathroom fixtures.
  • Medicine cabinet
  • Window frames and door frames
We advise checking the bait placements areas at least once a week and replace the bait as needed or the Carpenter Ants are gone.

Indoor Carpenter Ant Spray

Treating Carpenter Ants Spray

It is advised to use a non-repellent Carpenter Ant spray to supplement the use of the ant baits.
  • Sometimes the ants may be in a nesting cycle, or they may already have a food source and they will not pay attention to the baits.
  • Also, there are some places that you cannot use spray such as pantries and food cabinets or around food prep areas, so the ant bait would make more sense in those areas.
Spray the product directly into cracks and crevices, along baseboards, underneath appliances, around door frames, window frames, and in areas where cables, pipes, and wires enter into the home / structure and any other areas where Carpenter Ants have been entering.

Wall Treatment

Carpenter Ants Walls Baseboards

If the Carpenter Ant nest happens to be located in a wall void, you can open up the wall itself by cutting pieces of sheet rock/drywall, you can also drill holes through the sheet rock/drywall into where the infested areas are to apply product.


Foam products come with small flexible hoses and a nozzle to apply the product to the applicable areas. If the job is larger, you can use a non-repellent concentrate spray. Non-repellent foams do work a little bit slower than dusts do, but they will expand in the space to cover more area.


You will need a hand duster to apply the dust that is labeled for Carpenter Ants control to the void, or to the gallery, if the nest is located in a piece of wood. Dusts usually kill the ants somewhat faster than the foaming method will, drilling more holes might need to be done to open the wall more to make sure you are getting complete coverage in the treatment area.

Outside Preparation

Carpenter Ant Treatment Outside Preparation

If you see ants crawling around the outside of your home you should also consider treating the outside area to keep from getting an infestation inside. Same as when you are treating inside, you must remove or change the environment around your house which made the Carpenter Ants attracted to it. Cleaning up for Carpenter Ant control means changing or getting rid of the things that Carpenter Ants need to survive. They will require the following:

  • A food source
  • Water and moisture
  • A place to live/nest
Remove or limit the source of food, water, and shelter will help make your property less appealing to Carpenter Ants.

Cleaning up your yard:
  • Cut back trees and shrubs so that the branches won't touch your house to prevent ants from using them to avoid chemical products used.
  • Trim bushes and shrubs so that you can see under them to eliminate shady areas where ants would normally nest.
  • Rake mulch or other landscape material back about 6 inches from house to create a dry zone that ants will most likely avoid.
  • Turn mulch or other landscape material every couple of weeks or so to keep the water/moisture retention on the low side to prevent nest building.
  • Clean gutters as well as downspouts as insects, including Carpenter Ants are known to nest in these areas.
  • Cut your grass as needed to keep lawn growth low.
  • Eliminate grass clippings, leaf piles, and wood stacks to remove nesting locations.
  • Take away any ripe fruit from trees and fruit on the ground.
  • Keep outdoor trash barrels and dumpsters as far away from house as you can and make sure the lids are tight.
  • Wash out trash barrels and dumpsters with an ammonia when necessary.

Outdoor Ant Spray

Carpenter Ant Treatment Outdoor Spray

Carpenter Ants will nest in several different places outside so the treatment that is needed might be different. If you find Carpenter Ants on the exterior of your house, you can treat the perimeter to kill the colony.

We advise that you use a non-repellent spray such as Advion WDG Insecticide. Most ant sprays will only kill the ants that actually go over the surfaces that are treated. A small amount of the ant colony only will venture out to forage for food, so these sprays will not adequately control the colony. The downside of using other types of ant sprays is that they are sensitive to most insecticides and will attempted to avoid the area the spray is on.

The non-repellent products are not detectable by ants, as well as other insects so they will easily cross over the treated areas Once the ants come in contact the surface, the chemical will stick to their bodies and they will carry it back to the rest of the colony spreading the product around though social contact eventually killing off the colony.

You'll want to use a pump sprayer to apply the non-repellent spray. Mix the proper amount per the instructions with water. Usually most applications will need 1- to 2 gallons of finished product to do a home perimeter application. Apply the insecticide spray up the foundation, and then out onto the ground to create a barrier. It is also a good idea to apply the insecticide around window frames, door frames, areas where cables, pipes, wires, etc. enter the home, as well as any other place that noticeable ants have been crawling or trailing.

Non-repellent insecticides are designed to have a relatively slow kill time to make sure that the ants to spread the chemical throughout the colony. This might take several weeks to see results.

Outdoor Ant Bait

Carpenter Ant Bait Outdoor Granule

If Carpenter Ants are farther away from your home, or you do not want to spray, we advise using a Carpenter Ant bait granule product. Granules are able to be spread over wide areas, but the baits work better if put in small teaspoon sized piles near where the ant activity is located. Carpenter Ants will usually forage during night-time, so it is recommended that the bait be applied before sundown on an evening that no rain is expected. Carpenters Ants will forage and then they will pick up the granular bait and take it to the colony. After a few weeks time the colony will be killed.

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