Carpenter Ant Control

Several carpenter ants foraging for food

Carpenter ants are very common wood-destroying insects in the Dayton area and throughout the Miami valley. They're large ants, ranging in size from 3/8 inch to 7/8 inch in length, and are predominantly black in color.

Like all ants, carpenter ants are obligate social insects. Their colonies can grow quite large and have a very orderly, structured social system. The ants you see foraging are workers who are looking for food. Workers also work behind the scenes in the nest itself, doing things like excavating galleries, raising the young and keeping the place tidy.

In nature, carpenter ants usually nest in dead trees or tree limbs. But they're pretty comfortable in other kinds of voids, including man-made ones like hollow fence posts. In homes, they're most often found in structural voids such as wall and ceiling voids, behind door and window trim, and inside roof soffits.

Carpenter Ant Damage

Carpenter ant damage to a piece of wood in a home.

It's important to mention that carpenter ants don't actually "eat" wood. They excavate it out to build nests in which they live and raise their young. You can tell a carpenter ant nest from a termite gallery because he inside of carpenter ant nests tend to be very smooth and there's no mud in them. They also often have "windows" through which the carpenter ants discard debris and the sawdust from the wood they excavate.

Another obvious difference is that you'll probably see the carpenter ants going into and out of a nest. This isn't true of termites, who travel in mud shelter tubes to protect themselves from light, air currents, and dehydration. You may also see frass, or sawdust, under a carpenter ants' nest.

Even though they don't actually "eat" wood, carpenter ants can cause major damage to your home. DIY carpenter ant control attempts usually don't work, and my complicate treatment by a professional. It's better to call a professional exterminator right away if you think you have carpenter ants.

Preventing Carpenter Ant Problems

There are a few things you can do to reduce the chances of your home becoming infested by carpenter ants:

Carpenter ants prefer wood that's already been water-damaged, so correcting moisture problems caused by faulty rain gutters, damaged shingles, or other structural defects can help discourage carpenter ants.

Cut back tree limbs that touch or overhang the house.

Correct bad grading problems that allow moisture to puddle around the foundation.

Store firewood as far from the house as practical.

Consider enrolling in one of our residential pest control programs so we can inspect and, if necessary, treat your home to prevent small carpenter ant problems from becoming big ones. A well-timed exterior treatment can dramatically reduce the chances of a carpenter ant problem that season.

Carpenter Ant Control

Carpenter ant problems are very different from each other, and there's no one "right" method to treat them. Our approach will depend on the particular problem, its location and severity, the time of the year, and even the recent weather conditions. Some of the methods we may use include:

The use of attractant baits, if the weather and time of year are such that the ants are taking baits. They can be pretty picky about that sometimes.

Treating exposed wood with borates. This is a slow, but long-lasting and environmentally friendly approach if the location of the nest lends itself to this method.

Precisely injecting desiccant dusts or insecticides directly into structural voids or wooden members, or behind the trim if that's where the nests are.

If there's a moisture problem (which there often is), then that should also be corrected to help prevent re-infestation, as well as mold, mildew, and damage from the water itself.

One thing we don't do is soak down your whole house with smelly insecticides in the hope that we happen to luck out and hit the nest. That sort of imprecise approach is amateurish, environmentally irresponsible, and almost always ineffective.

If you have a problem with carpenter ants, please contact us for a no-obligation inspection and consultation. We look forward to your call.


Jarrod's Corner

Concerns about termites?  Call today at 937-478-5776 for a free inspection. Here we are performing a chemical treatment. We also offer termite bait systems. 


--Posted by Jarrod Kelley on
Apr 28, 2019 05:53:39 pm.

Mosquito season is quickly approaching.  We offer ongoing service for season long protection, as well as one time service for special events like weddings, graduation parties, etc.  Call us today at 937-478-5776 to find out more!

Image result for mosquito stock

--Posted by Jarrod Kelley on
Mar 20, 2019 04:17:09 pm.

Are ants invading your home?  Let us help!  Call 937-478-5776 for a free no obligation quote over the phone!


Image result for ant stock photos

--Posted by Jarrod Kelley on
Mar 15, 2019 11:06:40 am.

Termites are veracious feeders that cause over $5 billion dollars in annual damage to your most important investment (your home!).

Termite season is upon us.  If you suspect a problem or are considering preventative termite treatment, call us today at 937-478-5776 for a free termite insoection!

--Posted by Jarrod Kelley on
Mar 13, 2019 04:21:03 pm.

Bed bug heat treatment.

--Posted by Jarrod Kelley on
Feb 27, 2019 01:31:23 pm.

Rodent season is upon us. If you suspect mice have invaded your home, give us a call today!  We work hard to keep your home pest free!

--Posted by Jarrod Kelley on
Jan 10, 2019 12:21:45 pm.

The Dayton area just ranked #34 in the nation for bed bugs. If you need help, call today for a free estimate. Here is a picture from a heat treatment today in Huber Heights.

--Posted by Jarrod Kelley on
Nov 02, 2018 11:12:28 am.

Here are some impressive mud tubes found at a home in Englewood. We treated this home with a combo chemical/bait treatment.

--Posted by Jarrod Kelley on
Oct 03, 2018 09:12:44 pm.

Check out today’s latest post from a termite treatment in Springfield!

--Posted by Jarrod Kelley on
Sep 20, 2018 08:58:53 pm.

We service the entire Miami Valley for all your pest control needs. Today, we were in Springfield helping a customer with bed bugs.

--Posted by Jarrod Kelley on
Sep 05, 2018 10:07:21 am.

Check out this video from a bed bug heat treatment done near downtown Dayton today.

--Posted by Jarrod Kelley on
Aug 29, 2018 11:08:23 am.

I’m often asked by my customers if our vehicles will have a big bug on the side of it when we arrive for a service call. This question always comes up when we are called for a bed bug problem. Take a look at the following link ...

--Posted by Jarrod Kelley on
Aug 24, 2018 03:24:44 pm.

Google+ Logo Google+Facebook Logo FacebookTwitter Bird Logo TwitterYelp Logo YelpYouTube logo YouTube

Read Unbiased Consumer Reviews Online at

Dayton Pest Control, LLC is a HomeAdvisor Service Award Winner
See why I provide Elite Service in Dayton
  Trusted Contractor Reviews of Dayton Pest Control, LLC   Dayton Pest Control, LLC - Best of HomeAdvisor