Does Vinegar Kill Ants? | Effective Ant Control Guide

Written by Thomas Matthews

Ants can be incredibly annoying, especially when they start invading your house. You might have to use some dangerous chemicals to solve the problem. No wonder, why plenty of people are trying to figure out if there is a safe way to kill ants.

In contrast to pesticides and insecticides, vinegar does not effectively kill ants. However, it can repel them from your home. Ants can’t stand strong smells and vinegar also eliminates pheromone trails that they produce to communicate. Without pheromone trails, ants won’t be able to come back to your house.

How exactly does vinegar work? What types of vinegar can be used to get rid of ants? Keep on reading to find answers to these questions and also learn a few cool homemade ant killer recipes that include vinegar. Let’s begin!

Will Vinegar Kill Ants?

Actually, vinegar doesn’t kill ants. Vinegar’s chemical make-up is insufficient to poison ants. While homeowners can attempt to drown the ants in vinegar, doing so with water merely has the same result.

The carpenter ants’ pheromone trails and communication networks are disrupted by this common household substance, which is also very effective at blocking ant pheromones and confusing ants. It serves as a reliable ant repellent to keep carpenter ants at bay, but insecticides should still be used if necessary.

Can Vinegar Kill Fire Ants?

You can mix equal parts of vinegar, baking soda, and water. Pour the solution straight into the fire ant’s nest or spray directly over them. This mixture will not kill them, but they will run away and find a different area to infest. Vinegar is not really a good solution for fire ants, there are other methods that work a lot better.

Is It Possible to Kill Flying Ants With Vinegar?

Once again, whatever vinegar-based home remedy you are going to choose, it won’t actually kill the flying ants, but it will help you to keep them away from your house.

Find the areas where the flying ants tend to spend most of their time and wipe the surfaces with a solution that contains vinegar (or use a spray). It is always a good idea to try and find the actual nest and to get rid of it as well.

How Does Vinegar Kill Ants?

Vinegar does not kill ants and that might be one of the main reasons why a lot of people choose to use this solution to get rid of the insects. You don’t have to worry about the fact that you are hurting a living being. Moreover, vinegar is safe to use around your family and pets, so that’s a huge bonus as well.

How Does Vinegar Kill Ants

The strong smell of vinegar is what will cause the ants to leave your house or stay away from it in the first place. Whenever an ant crawls somewhere, it leaves a trail that other members of the colony can follow and find food sources.

Vinegar interferes with these pheromones and the insects will simply get lost. Of course, the ants will choose to leave an area that smells of vinegar as well.

Do Ants Like Vinegar or Does it Repels Them?

Ants hate vinegar. These insects don’t like strong smells in general. That’s why home remedies such as garlic, some essential oils, and lavender, for example, can help keep ants away as well.

Will Vinegar Repel Ants Long-Term?

As a scent-based repellent, vinegar is not intended to keep ants away permanently. When you discover an ant path or a means to keep ants away from trouble spots until the problem’s core cause is addressed, it works fantastically as an immediate repair.

Vinegar can be used for as long as you like. Ants won’t suddenly develop a tolerance to the smell and will still stay away from locations that smell like vinegar. However, making repeated applications might get tiresome.

How Long Does Vinegar Keep Ants Away?

At first, the smell of vinegar might be unbearable for some people. But the great news is that ants can still smell the substance, even after it dries.

It is important to note that vinegar is not a long-term solution, but it will certainly do the job if you wipe the surfaces or spray the mixture around the house a few times per week.

Types of Vinegar for Ant Control

Types of Vinegar for Ant Control

The truth is that vinegar is one of the best products that you can use to repel ants. Amazing, right? Of course, if there is a severe infestation, you might have to combine this home remedy with other solutions. But, in a lot of cases, a vinegar-based mixture will do the job.

One of the main bonuses is that you wouldn’t have to leave the house yourself when you apply it as is the case with poisonous chemicals.

There are quite a few different types of vinegar. Some solutions will be “stronger” than others. Take your time to find the option that will work best for you. Do bear in mind that any type of vinegar that has an acidity level higher than 10% is just too strong to be used in your house.

Does Apple Cider Vinegar Kill Ants?

Apple cider vinegar will not kill the ants, but it can certainly help you deal with the problem. Simply mix equal parts of water and vinegar in a spray bottle. Spray the solution anywhere you notice ants (our main aim here is to get rid of the ant trails).

Of course, you can spray the mixture on the actual insects as well. To go the extra mile, use the solution around the window sills and baseboards, and also on some of the surfaces in your kitchen.

Apple cider vinegar will help keep the ants away from the place where you applied it and it’s considered to be a “stronger” option in comparison to white vinegar.

Does White Vinegar Kill Ants?

Does White Vinegar Kill Ants

As we previously said, vinegar does not kill ants it only repels them. White vinegar works well on carpets, while on the other hand, it is not recommended to use apple cider vinegar on fabrics. However, both work well on linoleum floors and tiles, for example.

This type of vinegar comes from grains or corn. It is a “lighter” version when it comes to battling ants, but it’s surely effective. Spray the mixture over any suspicious surfaces.

How to Get Rid of Ants with Vinegar? | Instructions

Vinegar is an amazing household item that will help you get rid of ants. You might be wondering, why not kill the insects manually? Well, simply stepping on them is not enough as every single ant leaves a “trail” behind it. The trail is made out of pheromones that the other ants follow (that’s exactly why we always see ants moving one by one in an organized line).

Vinegar is the exact thing that will help you to get rid of that trail. Moreover, ants just can’t stand its strong smell. So, even the ones that are left will try to leave your house as soon as possible.

How to make the vinegar work its magic? You can mix it with water and use the solution to wipe the surfaces. Or you can create a vinegar ant spray based on our guide. You will find the step-by-step instructions in the following section below.

Vinegar Ant Spray | DIY Guide

Vinegar Ant Spray

Making a vinegar ant spray is very simple and the best part is that you might already have all the necessary ingredients in your kitchen. By the way, don’t forget to check out some other homemade ant killers with vinegar that we will be mentioning a little bit later in the article.

To get rid of ants, you can use either apple cider vinegar or white vinegar. A lot of people prefer the latter as it is colorless.

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You can use the homemade white vinegar spray practically on any surface (even carpets). For your very own vinegar ant spray you will need the following ingredients:

  • A spray bottle
  • Water
  • Vinegar

Mix equal parts of vinegar and water and pour it into the bottle. After that, simply spray the areas where you have seen the ants in order to get rid of their trails.

You can also spray the mixture over some cracks, around the kitchen sink and windows (just in case).

Homemade Ant Killers with Vinegar

Vinegar and Dish Soap for Ant Control

A spray mix with dish soap can also erase the ants’ trails. The only downside of this spray is that it can sometimes be sticky.

Baking Soda and Vinegar Ant Killer

Baking Soda and Vinegar Ant Killer

Baking soda is another non-toxic way that will help you to get rid of these insects. You can literally just sprinkle the soda around cracks and windows and the ants will avoid it.

However, if you mix baking soda with sugar, the insects might consume this bait and then take it to their colony. During this process, the soda will kill the ants (unlike vinegar that simply ‘scares’ the ants away from your house).

Boric Acid and Vinegar to Kill Ants

Boric acid works great only against certain ant types. To kill these insects, you will have to mix 1 teaspoon of boric acid with one cup of food that is attractive to ants (ants especially love sugar).

In case ants are not attracted to the bait, add a little less than one teaspoon of boric acid.

Vinegar and Borax for Ants

Borax is a mineral that can interfere with the digestive system of ants and kill them. To attract these insects to the bait, you will have to mix borax with some type of food source that your specific type of ant is attracted to.

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Vinegar and Lemon Juice for Ants

The acidic lemon juice masks the ants’ trails, just like vinegar. You wouldn’t even need to mix the juice with water. Squeeze it directly into the cracks or the spray bottle.

Vinegar and Orange Peel for Ants

If your ant problem is not severe, then get some orange peels and soak them in vinegar and leave that mixture in the place where you have seen lots of ants for 2 weeks. After that, pour the vinegar into the spray bottle and apply it over the ant trails.

Vinegar and Tea Tree Oil for Ants

Another spray option. Mix 5-10 drops of tea tree oil with two cups of water. By the way, you can also saturate cotton balls with this mixture and leave them around the places that are infested.

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Peppermint Vinegar Ant Spray

Peppermint oil will make your house smell good and help you get rid of the ants. Mix 15 drops of this oil, around 7 drops of lemon oil, and water in a spray bottle. You can easily use this solution even in areas where you prepare your food.

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Now you know that vinegar is a great solution that will help you keep ants away from your house. The vinegar-based spray is extremely easy to make and you can use it on a weekly or even daily basis. For more pest control guides keep following our site!

List of Sources

Got Ants? Eliminate them with IPM, Pennsylvania State University

Integrated Pest Management: Ants, University of California

A Review of “Organic” and Other Alternative Methods for Fire Ant Control, Department of Entomology, College Station, Texas

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