Borax for Carpenter Ants | How to Kill Carpenter Ants With Borax

Learn how to use a pack of Borax for Carpenter Ants and say goodbye to these bothersome wood-chewing menaces!

Are you tired of battling those pesky carpenter ants with no luck? Don’t fret and fight back with an affordable and eco-friendly solution—borax! This versatile, natural powdery substance has been a secret weapon of homeowners for decades. Let’s find out how to use Borax for Carpenter Ants below.

Find out how to get rid of sugar ants here

What Are Carpenter Ants?

Borax for Carpenter Ants1

Carpenter ants are 1/4-1/2 inches long and are black in appearance. Opposite to the termites, they don’t eat wood but chew it to create tunnels and nests. They make their nests in the damp wooden structures found around sinks, bathtubs, poorly sealed windows/ door frames, and roof leaks. Furthermore, damp wood logs are also a good place for their nests.

What Attracts Carpenter Ants in a Home?

Carpenter ants are attracted to homes due to the below reasons:

  • Moisture: Carpenter ants prefer damp or moist environments. Leaky pipes, poor ventilation, clogged gutters, and damaged roofing are ideal conditions for them. They are often drawn to areas with water-damaged wood for excavation.
  • Food sources: Like many insects, carpenter ants are drawn towards maple syrup, juices, sugar, honey, meat, dead insects, and decayed fruits.
  • Wood: Carpenter ants love to chew wood. That’s why piles of firewood, tree stumps, and dead trees near your home are their favorite destination. Not to mention, house wooden structure is also not safe from these annoying creatures.

By addressing these attractants, you can easily prevent the infestation of carpenter ants in the first place.

Are Carpenter Ants Bad?

Among the various ant species, carpenter ants are the most notorious ones. They cause havoc on wooden items. Like other wood-destroying pests, carpenter ants jeopardize the integrity of the structures they inhabit. They mostly attract to wet or damaged wood materials. Carpenter ants attack windows, doorframes, and crawlspaces underneath roofs, chimneys, sinks, and jacuzzis. If left untreated, these wood-damaging creatures can do irreparable damage to the house.

Signs of Carpenter Ants InfestationBorax for Carpenter Ants2

Spotting the below signs in and around the house indicates the presence of a carpenter ants infestation.

  • Heaps of sawdust below the baseboards, door jams, window sills, and any other rotting wooden structure.
  • Rustling sounds come from hollow doors, walls, or inside the wooden parts of the building.
  • Winged carpenter ants popping out from the walls, ceilings, cracks, and holes.
  • Long trails of large black and red ants in your lawn or yard.
  • Presence of shed wings near the baseboard, window sills, and ventilators.

Borax for Carpenter Ants

Borax is a white powdery substance popular for its astounding cleaning power. This miraculous product kills roaches, mites, spiders, algae, molds, and fungi. But Does Borax Kill Carpenter Ants? You will feel a sigh of relief by learning the fact that borax eliminates carpenter ants too. However, this versatile powdery substance is effective only when the ants ingest it.

How to Kill Carpenter Ants With Borax?Borax for carpenter ants 3

As borax doesn’t entice carpenter ants alone, add something sweet to complete the bait, like, maple syrup, sugar, or peanut butter. The maple syrup in this bait allures the ants, and the borax will kill them. Check out the below borax recipe to kill carpenter ants.


  • 1/2 Cup of Maple Syrup
  • 2 Tablespoons of Borax
  • 1 Cup of Lukewarm Water
  • Cotton Balls
  • A Bowl
  • Spoon
  • Mason Jar with Lid


  1. Add maple syrup, borax, and lukewarm water to the bowl and mix them well.
  2. Next, soak a few cotton balls in this mixture for a few seconds.
  3. Put the cotton balls near carpenter ants’ trails, entryways, and potential hangouts.
  4. After consuming the poisonous bait, carpenter ants will die within 1-2 days.
  5. Repeat this method until you see no signs of ants infestation.

If you have pets and children, then follow the below method instead:

  • Grab a mason jar and poke a few tiny holes in its lid.
  • Put the soaked cotton balls inside the jar, secure it with the lid, and place it near the carpenter ants trail.
  • This method protects your kids and pets from the accidental ingestion of borax.

How Does Borax Kill Carpenter Ants?

Borax is a desiccant, meaning it dehydrates the ant’s body and disrupts the stomach following its ingestion. When carpenter ants eat the borax, it causes havoc to their digestive system and body, leading to a slow death.

How Long Does Borax Take to Kill Ants?

Borax for carpenter ants 4
Shutterstock/Anukool Manoton

The all-natural borax powder takes 1-2 days to kill carpenter ants. In the meantime, ants help you to eliminate the colony by bringing the bait to their nest. But make sure to reuse the borax ant killer bait at least twice a week.

Borax for Carpenter Ants: Precautions To Consider

Do follow these safety precautions properly to avoid any mishaps while practicing the above hack.

  • Before dealing with borax, put on a face mask and hand gloves first.
  • Guide your pets, kids, and elderly to maintain a distance from the treated area.
  • After using the borax bait, don’t forget to wash your hands thoroughly.
  • In case of severe carpenter ants infestation, please seek the advice of an expert professional.
  • If you have any health-related issues, avoid this ant-killing hack.

How to Prevent Carpenter Ants?How to Prevent Ants?

After eliminating the infamous carpenter ants from your home, it’s necessary to prevent them before they ever find a way into your home. Below are some prevention tips that will help you out.

  • Repair damaged spigots or leaky hoses.
  • Fix any leaks in the plumbing, roofing, or gutters to reduce moisture and prevent wood decay.
  • As carpenter ants prefer to attack rotting wood, consider using dehumidifiers in the basement, crawl spaces, and attics.
  • Repair any holes, cracks, and other potential entryways with silicone caulk to inhibit their entrance.
  • Store the firewood and other wood material at least 20 feet away from the foundation walls.
  • Install window screens, and door sweeps to block their entrance.
  • Store food in airtight sealed containers in the kitchen.
  • Regularly empty and clean garbage cans, both indoors and outdoors.
  • Wipe your kitchen counters regularly to remove food crumbs.
  • Avoid leaving pet food out for extended periods. Clean the pet food bowl regularly.

When to Call a Professional?

It’s possible to handle minor carpenter ant issues on your own. But sometimes, calling a professional pest exterminator is the best course of action. Consider reaching out to an expert in the following cases:

  • If you’ve tried DIY methods, but the carpenter ants keep coming back, it’s time to hire a professional.
  • Borax is an ideal product against mild to moderate carpenter ants infestation. But if you’re facing a severe one, calling a pest control expert is recommended.
  • Carpenter ants wreak havoc on wooden structures. If you suspect that the infestation has led to structural damage, avoid the borax and call a pest exterminator.

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