To some, seeing ants isn’t a big deal. However, carpenter ants differ from your standard small ants that may invade your kitchen. Carpenter ants are larger and they could be making your home their home – and trust us, that is something you do not want.
Unlike normal ants that are a simpler nuisance, carpenter ants tend to burrow into damp wood to make their nests. While they do not eat wood like termites, their intricate burrows in damp wood can affect the integrity of a structure. This means if you have damp beams in your walls due to even light water damage, carpenter ants may have already moved in.
In order to remove carpenter ants, you may need to cut out the drywall in the area where you found them most congregated and noticed the most buildup of the sawdust-like residue they leave behind. From within, the nest will need to be removed and spray the ants so they do not move elsewhere. As they could just relocate their nest, this is why it’s best for a pest control expert to get the job done. However, in order to prevent carpenter ants from returning you may need to take extra steps (which your pest control expert can answer questions on!).
The best way to protect the structure of your house and prevent carpenter ants from coming back is to address the water issue. Carpenter ants always nest close to damp areas. This means that you need to address whatever is causing the wood in that area to get wet. It could be a leaky gutter just outside that is letting water drip close to your house, or it could be even just a slightly leaky pipe behind the drywall.
By fixing whatever is causing the moisture and allowing the wood to dry, it will help prevent carpenter ants from returning. However, just because you discovered one damp area doesn’t mean there aren’t others you do not know about. Often, when people find carpenter ants in their house, they find what is called a “satellite” nest. This means it is an offshoot of the main nest; one where a queen is not present. What you want to do is to keep the main nest as far from your home as possible to keep satellite nests away. This could mean keeping firewood piles away from the house, removing debris from the yard, and taking out any other rotting wood or structures that carpenter ants could call home. If you live in a heavily wooded area, you may want to invest in regular spraying by a pest control expert to make sure your home is defended.
If you have a carpenter ant problem and need help, contact us today.