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Carpenter Ants Are Nothing But Trouble

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Some people are eternal optimists. They go through life seeing every glass as half-full. While this is certainly an admirable quality, and we all love people who think every cloud has a silver lining, in the case of carpenter ants, it is best to understand that the glass is definitely half-empty.

The optimist would say that carpenter ants are natural predators to many insects that homeowners consider to be pests and that they can play a role in helping to reduce those pests. They might even point out that carpenter ants even prey on termites, which are known to eat homes from the inside out. But this perspective falls short in two ways. First, carpenter ants are horrible at pest control. Having these wood chewing ants inside your home to stop termites is like importing an insect to reduce crop pests, only to find out that the imported bug is also a pest in its own way--which has actually happened several times here in the United States. Second, it isn't accurate to say that termites are more destructive than carpenter ants. Under the right conditions, carpenter ants can be just as destructive to a home.

When it comes to fighting pests inside your home, it is best to leave your pest control to humans. Those carpenter ants are going to be nothing but trouble. Here are a few ways you can expect carpenter ants to create problems for you, and why.

Softwood Damage

The most obvious problem carpenter ants pose is their ability to create tunnels and galleries in softwood. This is usually an area of your home that has water damage. When they chew in these areas, floors can sink, walls can bulge, and ceilings can dip. It will lead to doors and windows that open and close freely--or not opening at all. Eventually, the structure will warp and it can cost a lot to repair.

Hardwood Damage

Carpenter ants have been found chewing on hardwood in homes. There wood chewing activity can lead to holes, raised tunnels, and even areas of splintered wood. When there is a combination of hardwood and moisture issues it can be even worse.

Furniture Damage

While most furniture is not going to be in danger of being destroyed by carpenter ants, these ants can do some damage. Where they can cause the most trouble is large pieces of wooden furniture outside your home, especially if that furniture is in a moist area.

Damaged Stairs

When carpenter ants chew tunnels and galleries in exterior staircases you may have more to deal with than repair costs. A weak stair can lead to an accident. And a banister that gives way can lead to injury.

Carpenter Ant Prevention

  • Keep exterior woodpiles 20 feet from your home and elevated.

  • Keep leaves raked away from your foundation wall.

  • If you bring firewood into your home, be sure to burn it within 48 hours.

  • Fix any issues around your home that are causing moisture problems: gutters that are broken or obstructed, areas of excessive shade, leaky hoses or spigots, areas of ground that collect water, or objects near your walls that collect water and spill over.

  • Keep bushes trimmed back from your walls.

  • Trim branches that touch your exterior walls.

  • Do an inspection of your perimeter and seal cracks, gaps, and holes in your foundation walls and exterior walls.

  • Look closely around windows, pipes, and electrical wire conduit.

  • Move construction materials away from your walls and elevate them.

  • Replace structural wood that has been damaged by water.

  • Remove stumps from your property, especially if they are within 20 feet of your home.

If you're seeing carpenter ants inside your home, and you're in our Illinois service area, contact Quik-Kill Pest Eliminators for an effective resolution to your carpenter ant problem. Our professional pest control technicians will conduct a detailed inspection to identify nesting areas on your property and advise you on treatment options.

When carpenter ants get in, they're nothing but trouble. Get them out with industry-leading pest control from the experts here at Quik-Kill Pest Eliminators. Contact us to set up an inspection. We're standing by to assist you.   

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