Pest Away Tips

8 Effective Ways to Control Ant Infestations with Borax

Ants may look small and harmless, but they can be a real nuisance when they invade our homes. No one wants to see ants crawling around their kitchen, living room, or bedroom.

Fortunately, there are several ways to control ant infestations using safe and effective methods. In this article, we’ll discuss how borax can kill ants, how to identify and bait different ant species, and safety measures to follow while using borax for ant control.

Borax for Ant Control

Borax, also known as sodium borate, is a compound of boron that is widely used in cleaning products, insecticides, and even as a laundry detergent booster. But did you know that borax can also be used to control ants?

Borax ant baits are a popular home remedy for controlling ant infestations. Borax powder can be mixed with sugar, honey, or peanut butter to create a homemade ant bait that ants will readily consume.

Alternatively, you can use store-bought borax liquid ant killer to eliminate ants.

Effectiveness of Borax to Kill Ants

Borax is an effective ant killer because it works slowly, allowing the worker ants to take the bait back to the colony and share it with the rest of the ants. The borax in the bait disrupts the ant’s digestive system, leading to dehydration and death.

This slow-acting approach can be more effective than killing ants on contact with liquid insecticides because it targets the entire ant colony, including the queen. However, you may need to be patient with the process, as it may take a few days to a few weeks to see a noticeable reduction in ant activity.

How Borax Kills Ants

Ant baiting with borax works by exploiting the way ants communicate and feed within their colony. Ants leave behind chemical trails that help them locate their food source and guide the other ants to it.

When an ant finds the borax bait, it takes a small amount back to the colony and shares it with the others. As more ants eat the bait, the borax starts to accumulate in their digestive system.

Eventually, the ants become dehydrated, leading to their demise. Since worker ants share their food with the rest of the colony, the slow-acting borax bait can wipe out the entire nest.

Safety Measures for Using Borax

While borax is generally safe for humans and pets, it can be irritating if it comes in contact with your eyes, skin, or lungs. It’s important to follow safety guidelines when using borax for ant control.

Wear gloves and eye protection when handling borax powder or liquid baits. Keep borax baits out of reach of children and pets.

If you have a serious ant infestation or are unsure about how to use borax safely, consult with a pest control professional.

Borax for Carpenter Ants

Carpenter ants are a common household pest that can cause significant damage to wood structures if left unchecked. Borax baits can be effective in controlling carpenter ants, along with using liquid insecticides to target the carpenter ant nest directly.

Be sure to place borax baits near carpenter ant activity areas, such as around windows, doors, or near wood structures.

Commercial Borax Ant Killers

If you prefer to use a commercial ant killer product, look for ones that contain borax as the active ingredient. There are several options available in the market, such as Terro Ant Killer, Amdro Ant Block, and Raid Ant Baits.

Follow the instructions carefully and apply the product in areas where ants are seen entering your home.

Identification and Baiting of Ant Species

Different ant species have different food preferences and behaviors, making identification an important first step in ant control. Here are some tips on how to identify and bait common ant species.

Importance of Identifying Ant Species

Knowing the ant species is important because it can help you determine their food preferences, nesting habits, and behavior. Different ant species may require different control methods, so it’s important to identify them correctly.

Some common ant species include sugar ants, grease ants, carpenter ants, and fire ants.

Types of Ant Attractants

Ant baits typically use sugary or greasy substances to attract ants. Sugar ants, also known as odorous house ants, are attracted to sweet baits, such as sugar, honey, or maple syrup.

Grease ants are attracted to high-fat or protein foods, such as peanut butter, bacon grease, or pet food. Liquid baits can be used to target ant trails, while solid baits can be placed in ant shelters or near areas of high ant activity.

Bait Containers

To make an effective ant bait, you’ll need a container to hold the bait and prevent it from drying out. You can use jar lids, plastic caps, or cotton balls to hold the bait.

Make sure the container is shallow enough for ants to easily access the bait.

Bait Placement

To attract ants to your bait, you need to place it in areas where they are most active. Look for ant trails, which are lines of ants moving back and forth between their nest and food source.

Place the bait along the trail or near the nest opening. You can also use ant shelters, such as overturned flower pots or saucers, as bait stations.

Homemade Borax Ant Killer Recipes

If you prefer to make your own ant bait using borax, here are some simple recipes that you can try:

– Sugar-based liquid bait: Mix 1 cup of sugar, 1/2 cup of water, and 1 tablespoon of borax. Heat the mixture until the sugar dissolves, and then let it cool.

Soak cotton balls in the mixture and place them in ant shelters or near ant activity areas. – Sugar-based solid bait: Mix 1/4 cup of sugar, 1/4 cup of borax, and 1/4 cup of cornmeal.

Add enough water to form a paste, and then spoon the mixture into shallow containers. Place the containers near ant activity areas.

– Honey and borax bait: Mix equal parts of honey and borax, and then spoon the mixture into shallow containers. Place the containers near ant activity areas.

– Peanut butter and borax bait: Mix equal parts of peanut butter and borax, and then spoon the mixture into shallow containers. Place the containers near ant activity areas.


In summary, borax is a safe and effective method to control ants in your home. Ant baiting with borax can wipe out an entire ant colony, making it a more effective approach than simply killing ants on contact.

However, it’s important to follow safety measures when handling borax, and to correctly identify the ant species and its food preferences to maximize the effectiveness of ant baits. With patience and persistence, you can successfully control ant infestations using borax and other ant baiting methods.

3) Duration and Effectiveness of Borax Treatment

Controlling ant infestations requires a degree of patience and persistence, as it can take some time for borax to work its magic. The time required for borax to kill ants will depend on the level of infestation and how well the bait is placed.

For smaller ant infestations, you may notice a difference within a few days. However, for larger colonies, it may take up to a few weeks to see a noticeable reduction in ant activity.

It’s important to be vigilant and ensure that you continue to place fresh borax bait until the ant infestation has been completely eliminated.

Borax and Lawn Damage

While borax is generally safe for humans and pets, it can be toxic to plants if used in high concentrations. However, borax has been found to be an effective natural herbicide, and it can be used to control weeds in lawns and gardens.

When using borax as a herbicide, it’s important to dilute it properly and apply it sparingly to avoid damaging grass and plants.

Borax vs Boric Acid

Borax and boric acid (also known as hydrogen borate) are two different compounds that are often used interchangeably for insect control. While both borax and boric acid can be effective at killing ants, they have different properties and uses.

Borax is a common household product that can be used for cleaning, laundry, and insect control. Boric acid, on the other hand, is a more potent insecticide that is often used in commercial pest control products.

It’s important to follow the instructions carefully when using either borax or boric acid for ant control.

List of Ant Species that Borax can Kill

Borax can be effective at killing a wide range of ant species, including pavement ants, ghost ants, thief ants, fire ants, crazy ants, little black ants, Pharaoh ants, odorous house ants, acrobat ants, carpenter ants, and mound ants. By placing borax bait in areas where these ants are active, you can effectively control their populations and prevent them from causing damage to your home and yard.


Conclusion and Takeaways

In conclusion, borax is a safe, inexpensive, and effective way to control ant infestations in your home. By following safety guidelines and correctly identifying the ant species and their food preferences, you can maximize the effectiveness of borax ant baits.

Commercial borax ant killers can be a convenient option for those who prefer not to make their own baits, but homemade recipes using sugar-based liquid or solid baits, honey, or peanut butter can be just as effective. Borax can kill a wide range of ant species, but it’s important to be patient and persistent with the baiting process, as it may take some time for the colonies to be completely eliminated.

By incorporating borax into your approach to ant control, you can say goodbye to those pesky ants for good. In conclusion, borax is a versatile and effective natural remedy for controlling ant infestations in and around your home.

By using borax-based ant baits and taking the necessary safety precautions, you can safely and effectively control ant populations without resorting to toxic chemicals or harmful pesticides. Whether you choose to use a commercially available ant killer or make your own baits using borax, sugar, honey, or peanut butter, the slow-acting mechanism of borax ensures that it targets the entire colony and eliminates the problem at the source.

With borax, you can say goodbye to ants and hello to a pest-free home!

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