Tips to Prevent Ants This Summer

Tips to prevent ants in the summer here in Virginia - Ehrlich Pest Control, formerly Connor'sNo one wants to deal with ants in the summertime. Unfortunately, they tend to overwhelm homes in Virginia this time of year. If you’ve had an ant infestation before, you know they can be downright frustrating. They tend to infest kitchens, bathrooms, and often can be seen crawling in trails along your floorboards. As the number one nuisance pest in the nation, it’s important to learn how to prevent ants this summer and all year long. The team at Ehrlich Pest Control, formerly Connor’s has years of experience getting rid of these pests and is here to share expert tips to prevent ants this summer.

Prevent Ants with These 5 Tips

No one wants ants inside their home. Ants can be ruthless and the infestations never-ending, making it important to know how to keep them out in the first place! To prevent ants, try the following tips:

  1. Keep a clean home. Sweep your floors regularly to get rid of crumbs. Ants are attracted to sugary food sources and a few crumbs will keep them coming back for more.
  2. Store away food. Avoid leaving food out uncovered. Keep food in airtight containers or store them safely in cupboards and fridges.
  3. Seal entry points. Ants can crawl through the tiniest of cracks. Inspect your property and use caulk to seal any gaps, holes, or potential entry ways.
  4. Get rid of excess moisture. Areas with standing water or leaks will attract ants quickly. Attend to broken pipes and clean up spills quickly.
  5. Trim back trees and vegetation. Plants close to your home can encourage ants to come in. Make sure tree branches, shrubs, and bushes are trimmed away from the perimeter!

What Types of Ants Are Common in the Summer?

There are more than 700 species living in the U.S., which is why it’s crucial to know which one you’re dealing with in order to properly get rid of them! An infestation from any of these can be a major pain to deal with, making it important to know what you’re coming up against. A few of the most common types of ants you’ll likely encounter in our area are odorous house ants, carpenter ants, fire ants, and pavement ants. For help identifying these pests, it’s best to get the help of a professional.

What to Do When You Can’t Prevent Ants

If the ants are flooding into your property despite your best efforts to keep them out, it’s best to contact a professional ant exterminator. At Ehrlich, we have the experience and resources needed to prevent ants not just in the summer, but all year long. To learn more, call our experts today!

Pros & Cons of DIY Pest Control

Mouse traps are a common DIY pest control method. Learn about the pros and cons of DIY pest control in VA from Ehrlich Pest Control, formerly Connor'sFrom using a vinegar spray for ants to store-bought pesticides for roaches, we’ve all dabbled in DIY pest control from time to time. When many homeowners spot a pest problem, they’ll head to their local hardware store and arm themselves with chemicals, sprays, baits, traps, and more. Some even look into all-natural remedies. But do these actually work? DIY pest control is a gamble, and–unfortunately–unreliable. When you want to get rid of a pest problem fast–or perhaps avoid them altogether–your best bet is to hire a professional pest control company.

The team at Ehrlich Pest Control, formerly Connor’s, outlines the pros and cons of DIY pest control in our latest blog post. Keep reading to learn more!

Does DIY Pest Control Work?

For some very small pest problems, perhaps a few ants in your windowsill or house spiders in your tub, DIY or store-bought pest control products may help. However, do-it-yourself pest control is not a long-term solution:

  • Some types of pests, including rodents, termites, bed bugs, and carpenter ants are more dangerous and destructive. Getting rid of these infestations will be a challenge for any novice.
  • Many store-bought products are filled with chemicals that can be dangerous for you, your family, and your pets. Reading the label doesn’t always guarantee the product will be applied safely.
  • At-home remedies rarely work in the long-term and do not prevent future infestations.
  • DIY or store-bought products don’t come with a guarantee or warranty as often as professional services, meaning you often have to buy more products.

Benefits of a Professional Exterminator

Hiring a professional pest control company may seem like a bigger commitment of your time and money, but the payoff is tenfold that of DIY methods. There are many benefits:

  1. An experienced exterminator has the knowledge and experience to tackle any current infestation you have. They are experts in the behaviors and habits of pests, making it easier for them to control any problems quickly and efficiently.
  2. With a focus on IPM practices, they can also work to prevent future problems. As often as possible, a professional will use environmentally-responsible products that are always applied safely and effectively with little invasion or disruption to your daily life.
  3. When you decide to have regular pest control services, your exterminator will work with you to develop a customized pest control plan suited to the unique needs of your home.

DIY vs. Professional: How to Choose

If you have a pest problem, you probably want to get rid of it ASAP. To do so, a professional pest control company is always the way to go over DIY pest control. Our team is committed to keeping our customers safe from pests by preventing them in the first place. To stay pest-free 365 days of the year, Ehrlich is here for you.

Differences Between Termites and Carpenter Ants

Carpenter ants are commonly mistaken for termites in Northern Virginia - Learn more from Ehrlich Pest Control, formerly Connor'sDid you know that termites and carpenter ants are commonly mistaken for each other? Although they are both wood-destroying insects, these pests are quite different from one another. Termite and carpenter ant swarmers are active around the same time of the year and, from afar, look quite similar. However, termites are infamously the most destructive pest in the nation, making them much more dangerous than their lookalikes.

To learn the differences between termites and carpenter ants, keep reading for expert tips from Ehrlich Pest Control, formerly Connor’s.

How are Termites Different From Carpenter Ants?

When comparing these two wood-destroying insects, one is much more dangerous than the other.

  • Carpenter Ants
    • Typically establish nests in wood that is already in decay, and later expand into sound wood, insulation, or wall voids.
    • Their damage is not usually visible. When it is, you can notice that the galleries they excavate appear to have been sanded.
    • For the most part, carpenter ants do not create the extensive damage termites do.
  • Termites
    • Usually make their way into a structure around basement windows, doorways, under siding, porches, or any structure in contact with the soil.
    • Established colonies can range from 60,000 to over a million workers and can consume nearly 5 grams of wood per day.
    • Termites are significantly more dangerous than the carpenter ant, as they can cause much more damage in a short period of time.

Winged Ants vs. Termites in Northern VA - Ehrlich Pest Control, formerly Connor's

Differences Between Termites and Carpenter Ants

In the swarmer stage, termites and carpenter ants look very alike. Carpenter ant swarmers are black in color with slightly red coloring at times. Their wings are translucent with a reddish brown hue. The biggest difference is that carpenter ants measure 1/2″–5/8″ with antennae bent at a 45-degree angle. This makes them the biggest ant species in the nation.

Termite swarmers are dark brown to black in color and measure 3/8″ long including the wings. Their wings are a translucent to slightly milky or smoky color, may overlap, and are typically as long as or slightly longer than the body. This is the easiest way to differentiate them from carpenter ants.

What to Do With Wood-Destroying Insects

If you think you are dealing with a wood-destroying insect infestation, it’s necessary to enlist the help of a professional termite pest control expert. At Ehrlich Pest Control, formerly Connor’s, our exterminators have the decades of experience required to provide effective carpenter ant or termite control.