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Does Vinegar Kill Ants?

by Heather Whitney about a month ago in how to
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Home Remedies To Control Ants

Do you want to use home remedies to eliminate ants? Can you use vinegar to get rid of ants? Does vinegar attract or repel them? Read more about how that works.

Ants are known to like sweet things. Many people would agree that vinegar is not sweet. More so, many people use it for various purposes – a solution to control the pest. However, it could be tough to control some pests with vinegar. Hence, it is important to ask, does vinegar kill ants?

How effectively does vinegar kill ants?

Vinegar has several uses in homes. People use it for cooking, as a replacement for hand sanitizers, laundry, or general cleaning of materials. It is a friend to many moms. However, there is a new use of vinegar by homeowners.

The use of kinds of vinegar has been proven to be a great remedy for ants. Does this imply that ants love vinegar? No, they do not. How does the vinegar work then? Its strong smell can ward ants off.

How to form vinegar solution?

There are different patterns people have employed to form their vinegar solution. The most consistent variant is to mix white vinegar with water. Then, one can put in a spray bottle to spread around where there may be ant infestations. Also, the solution can be a good preventive option for vinegar.

Another variant of using vinegar is to use only vinegar solution and not mix it with any amount of water. Using only vinegar solution will give a greater smell that will make the insects keep off. The more concentrated it is, the more efficient the vinegar solution would be.

Also, there may be a need to consistently spray the infested area again and again. The reason is that the smell of vinegar can disappear and ants may want to return to such places.

Why don’t ants like vinegar?

Ants do not like the powerful smell. It is not about vinegar alone but other stronger smells like garlic, essential oils, and lavender. Despite the adorable smell, this could be to humans, it is a disturbing one for ants.

Generally, ants are able to monitor their trails with pheromones. Pheromones are important chemical signs that ants use to communicate with themselves or to relate with their immediate family. The use of chemical signals is the reason ants appear coordinated in most cases.

Vinegar does not allow ants to be able to locate the trails as the smell of the vinegar masks the pheromones. The ant’s antenna fails them and, in a bid, to retrace their step, they go to another location.

Now, to the most important question – does vinegar kill ants?

Many people assume all over the internet that vinegar kills ants. This expression is not true as vinegar does not kill ants. All the vinegar does have been explained above and can be summarized as it alters the activity of ants such that they are forced to leave such areas. No doubt, vinegar cannot kill ants.

If at all one wants to kill ants, the best one can do is to drown the ants in the vinegar. One can even use water to successfully drown ants. Other than that, it is totally impossible because vinegar does not contain chemicals that can eliminate ants as pesticides do.

Vinegar reduces the activities of ants by repelling them. Nevertheless, it is a great remedy to stop ants from infesting important places in the house. It is an ideal option for the kitchen and areas where foods are stored.

Vinegar is a great option anytime if the plan is not to kill them. There are other options of remedies or insecticides one can consider to eliminate ants. Some of the options are;

  1. Silicon dioxide - this is the use of diatoms to absorb the essential nutrients of ants and kill them. one can easily purchase diatoms from stores or by online order.
  2. Liquid detergent and Glass cleaner – Mix liquid detergent and glass cleaner to prevent ants from coming into homes. Spray this on major areas like where the ants originate from or when are many in a place. Clean such areas after the deed are done.
  3. Pepper – pepper is irritating to humans and animals. Ants are not an exception. Put pepper on their trails and observe the effectiveness of pepper.
  4. Hand soap - hand soap is as effective as liquid detergent. It can wipe away pheromones such that there is no way for the ants to communicate.
  5. Tea tree oil – tea tree oil can kill or repel ants. Mix some drops of it in water and spray on ants. The strong smell can deter ants while a stronger concentration can kill them.
  • Other considerable home remedies are;
  • Boiling water
  • Oil of lemon eucalyptus (OLE)
  • Cornstarch
  • Essential oil of cinnamon leaf
  • Coffee grounds
  • Neem oil
  • Sodium tetraborate or Borax
  • Destroy where they originate from
  • Close the doors and windows
  • Remove attracting trees or vegetation
  • Use pesticides
  • Keep the house clean


Vinegar does not kill ants but they are effective repellants that keep ants away from home and its surrounding. However, if the plan is to kill the ants, you can consider other options of home remedies. Most of these options are easy to get in stores, or online. Nevertheless, vinegar is always a reliable option.

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Heather Whitney

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