Does Vinegar Repel And Kill Ants?

This article discusses vinegar as a potential ant repellent and killer.

Asides from the painful bites inflicted by some ant species, these insects are also known to cause damage to structures, appliances, and equipment. Ants are also known to spread diseases too.

This is why their presence needs to be addressed.

Using Apple Cider Vinegar For Ant Control

Now, ant control methods differ as there are lots of ways to get rid of them.

We’ll be finding out if vinegar does repel and kill ants. If you’re planning on using vinegar for your ant problems, you might want to hold off a bit until you go through this article.

Here, we give definitive answers to the questions asked.

Why Am I Seeing Ants Around my Home?

When ants come around, they come in search of food. These tiny creatures are also attracted to moisture. Food sources include trash cans, sugar, crumbs, pet food, and so on.

More importantly, you’re seeing ants because there are openings through which these ants find ready access.

Such openings include cracks and gaps among others. Ants usually use or follow the scent trails left by other ants. Such scent trails lead them to food sources.

This is where we consider the efficacy of vinegar as an ant repellent and exterminator.

Will it give you such results?

Will Vinegar Repel And Kill Ants?

Back to the focus of our discussion, it’s normal to ask this type of question because vinegar seems to be a versatile product. It’s used for cooking, baking, cleaning, laundry, and so on.

Does vinegar attract ant species? No.

So, will it repel ants? You’ll have success repelling ants if you apply vinegar the right way.

However, what you won’t get is its ability to kill ants. In other words, vinegar has no exterminating effect on ants.

Here, you’ll have to settle for its repellent effect as that’s good enough.

How Vinegar Repels Ants

If you’ve used vinegar before, you’ll notice its pungent smell which is a result of the acetic acid contained in it. Now, such a smell comes in handy for ant control.

Recall we mentioned earlier that ants follow scent trails to get to food sources which most times are indoors.

By interfering with such scent trails, wiping off countertops, sinks, and dining areas with vinegar solution eliminates such scent trails. In other words, vinegar helps distort pheromones used in communication by ants due to its strong smell.

With vinegar applied such pheromone scents are masked.

With no compass (scent trail) to guide ants to food sources, there’s no point in making the journey. As such, they retreat. However, the effects of vinegar are short-lived.

You’ll need to develop the habit of using vinegar as part of your cleaning solutions.

This way, your home always has the strong scent of vinegar. When handled this way, you tend to get fewer encounters with ants.

  • It’s Best to Repel Ants While Focusing on the Causes of their Presence

It’s not enough to use vinegar while ignoring the causes of their presence. Hygiene is an important part of the control methods used to keep ants at bay.

As such, food spills, crumbs and leftovers should be cleaned and properly disposed of. This way, you get to contain ant activity.

Also, consider storing food in sealed containers, and dispose of trash more regularly. Your trash can has to be cleaned too. With continued usage, trashcans eventually get laden with grease and dirt among other filth.

This gives out a stench.

Ants will readily target such areas in search of food. Have your trashcan cleaned regularly and have it properly sealed at all times. This limits the attraction of ants to such areas.

Also, consider doing the dishes before going to bed and wiping off mopping kitchen floors each night. Of course, vinegar should be used for cleaning. This should include the food preparation area.

This way, you’re not only making your home ant-proof, but you’re also keeping other pests like roaches out.

  • Vinegar Won’t Kill Ants

If you had high hopes of exterminating ants using vinegar, we’re sorry to disappoint you, but it won’t. Ants will only be repelled by the pungent scent of vinegar. Ordinarily, the repellent effects of vinegar on ants should suffice.

This is because you don’t want to have these creatures roaming around your home.

  • Sustained Usage of Vinegar Helps

When vinegar is used for cleaning, its scent hangs in the air, thus creating an invisible barrier to ants and other pest insects alike.

To maintain such an effect, you’ll need to use it often for cleaning.

Thankfully, this doesn’t take much effort as you only need to pour some vinegar to mopping water or use it to dust surfaces.

Is Vinegar Harmful in Any Way?

It’s normal to be worried about the safety of your family and pets.

With vinegar, you have nothing to fear. This is a completely safe and natural product and used as a food additive, for laundry, cleaning, and even for pet care just to name a few.

There is no way such a widely used product poses harm to users. However, the exception will apply to a few who might be reactive to vinegar on contact.

Otherwise, there are no risks at all associated with vinegar as an ant repellent.

How to Use Vinegar as an Ant Repellent

If you’ve noticed ant presence in your home and want to fight back, all you need to do is make a mixture of equal parts white vinegar and water.

With such a mixture, you should target hard surfaces for cleaning including your floors.

Asides from mopping floors with the vinegar solution, target countertops for cleaning including the dining area, kitchen floors, sinks, and cookers.

How long does vinegar keep ants away? A while based on the surface material and humidity. Even when such surfaces dry up, the smell of vinegar remains.

Identify Holes and Cracks on Walls and Have Them Sealed

When ants get into a home, they do so through openings or cracks on walls or foundations. It will be great to follow their trail whenever you come across them.

By identifying their entry spot, have such areas sealed up. With this action, you’re taking preventive action while treating an existing problem using vinegar.


The use of vinegar on ants won’t do much in killing them. However, it can be used for repelling them.

The pheromones secreted by ants are a form of communication. This helps map out food sources or areas for other ants. You only need to disrupt or mask such pheromone secretions.

To repel or mask pheromone secretions, you only need to apply vinegar appropriately. This is achieved by mixing an equal part with water in a spray bottle.

Sensitive areas of your home should be sprayed with this. Your kitchen, dining area, and store are places you must target. By spraying, you are masking their secretions. This, in turn, keeps them out.

This should be repeated whenever you notice an upsurge in ant activity.

The repellent effect of vinegar will suffice in keeping your home ant-free. We’ve seen that vinegar won’t kill ants.

However, that’s not to say vinegar isn’t effective for ant control.

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