Alexandria Property Owners Complete Guide To Carpenter Ants

ants eating off of a plate

Though ants are small, they can be fierce! Carpenter ants may not be at the top of your list of “worst pests,” but they should be on your radar if you’re a homeowner in Alexandria, VA. These ants can cause significant property damage, and you must learn how to keep your home safe from these unwanted intruders.

What Is This Ant?

It can be difficult to tell ants apart if you’re not a pest expert. Any ant in your home can be a nuisance, but some, like carpenter ants, are more problematic than others. Here are some ways to figure out whether you need to worry about that ant in the kitchen. Carpenter ants can be black, red, or some combination of both. They tend to be larger than other house-invading ants and can grow to be about 5/8 of an inch long.

Carpenter Ants In Your Alexandria Home

Carpenter ants get their name from their nests, which they build inside of wood. Often, carpenter ants will build nests and a network of tunnels behind your walls, damaging the structural integrity of your building.

They don’t eat wood, though, so you’re likely to see carpenter ants around the kitchen or bathroom looking for food. You may only see one or two at a time, but even a single carpenter ant in your kitchen should be cause for concern.
Not only do carpenter ants damage the wood of your home, but they can also contaminate your food and cooking surfaces. If you suspect you have carpenter ants, reach out to the professionals who can stop them more quickly before they cause any more damage to your Alexandria home.

Protecting Your Alexandria Home From Carpenter Ants

Before carpenter ants get into your house, there are a few preventative measures you can take that will make your home less attractive and less accessible to carpenter ants.

  • Fix the holes and cracks in the exterior of your home. Carpenter ants will often look for a way inside, and large holes and cracks will be an open invitation. Keep your home safer by making sure there are no inviting entry points.
  • Fix damaged wood. If you have wood that has been damaged by weather, mold, or just time, you should look into making repairs. Damaged wood is more attractive to carpenter ants since it tends to be softer and easier for them to get into.
  • Fix moisture issues both inside and outside of your home. Moisture also softens wood and attracts carpenter ants and other unwanted pests. Fix leaks, use dehumidifiers, and check for water buildup in and around your home.
  • Fix your food storage. Keep all food and trash in airtight containers made of hard plastic or glass. Hungry carpenter ants can’t chew through these. 
  • Clean up food messes. Promptly wipe down countertops and sweep up floors after meals or snacks. Be sure to clean pet dishes regularly as well.

Carpenter Ant Elimination

If you know or suspect that carpenter ants are living in your home, don’t wait or try to take care of them alone. The longer you wait to eliminate these ants, the more damage they can cause.

Matar Termite & Pest Control has years of experience dealing with carpenter ants and other pests in Alexandria. We know how important it is to stop these pests before they cause irreversible damage. When carpenter ants get into your home, call Matar Termite & Pest Control for effective, long-term solutions to your pest problems.