Carpenter Ants in ceiling


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Old 09-20-07, 02:21 PM
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Carpenter Ants in ceiling

We can see a trail of carpenter ants going up the side of our house and entering the house through a spot in the aluminum fascia. We called in a professional exterminator and he said he could spray around the perimeter of the house but it would be a waste of money because it wouldn't kill the nest and obviously there is a nest inside. He said we'd have to call in a roofer and rip up the roof to get at the nest. I also spoke to the owner of a store that sells pest control supplies and she agreed with the exterminator that the nest had to be directly dealt with and that baits wouldn't work in this situation, but could end up chasing the ants to another spot in the house.

It is a flat roof with insulation in it. The wood up there is relatively new (four years) because we had the roof raised and all rebuilt, but when they did the roof they didn't seal it properly and we were seeing water come in. (we hadn't done the interior ceiling yet.) The contracter skipped out on us and we couldn't get another company to touch what appeared to be a new roof, so my husband sealed the edges with proper roof caulking and it appeared that the leaks were solved so we finished the interior ceiling.

Now we are heartsick about having to rip up the roof to get at this nest. We're also not sure whether there is any moisture up there or if this is just a satellite nest that doesn't need moisture.

I would like to rip down part of the (nice new) ceiling in the kitchen to see if we can deal with the nest from inside and that way also see if the insulation is wet and if we indeed need a new roof.

I see most people say when you're using bait that it's best to do it when they are most active, but seeing as we're not relying on bait being taken back to the nest but dealing directly with the nest itself, I thought it would be best if the nest is NOT active. So maybe we should wait until it's even a bit colder.

We could take down the insulation and see what's going on. Physically remove any nest, then spray or dust with powder?

Does anyone have any suggestions about this mess?
Thank you in advance, and sorry for such a long post. I'm desperate.
rh
 
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Old 09-21-07, 02:54 PM
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You are going to have to find the nest or nests. How you go about it is up to you and where you think they are. It sounds like looking for them through the ceiling will be less expensive. You should find this helpful in making your decision as to how to proceed.
http://entowww.tamu.edu/extension/bulletins/l-1783.html
http://www.ipmofalaska.com/antcontrol.html

Good luck!
Newt
 
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Old 09-22-07, 08:54 AM
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Thanks, Newt.
I guess we'll go through the ceiling.
Luck is certainly what we'll need!

notsohandygirl
 
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Old 09-22-07, 09:44 AM
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Just a caveat. We were renovating our home, both inside and outside. When some rotten siding was removed over the porch by the carpenters (there were 4 standing there) carpenter ants came running out in droves! All 4 men jumped off the porch screaming like small boys being chased by monsters!! So, have a spray can on the ready as you take the ceiling apart.

Newt
 
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Old 09-23-07, 08:54 AM
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Ha, yes I dread actually finding thousands of them and we'll have something ready for sure. That's why I thought it might be better to wait until they're dormant. At least that way they won't come charging out at us... I hope.

After reading the link you suggested, I wished that Rocco did not live in Alaska and was still working in the pest control service. His attitude and approach is exactly what I was hoping to find somewhere here, but alas he apparently is a special breed. We live in Toronto, a big city with many, many professional pest control services. I have done a lot of research on carpenter ants and everywhere it says that the most crucial thing is to find the nest. Every single one of the people we called said they would NOT look for a nest.

Most of them said the same thing: we come and spray the perimeter of the house and then we spray the baseboards inside. All of them were in the $400 to $500 range. All these companies talk about a free estimate, so I expected someone would come out and see our situation and talk about a particular way to deal with it, but it turns out the free estimate is only the person on the phone listening to your situation and then telling you "we'll spray the perimeter and the baseboards $500." One company said they'd come and spray the outside only and that was for $300 so, out of desperation, we had them come. That was the guy who then said he wouldn't waste our money and that we really needed to have the roof taken off to get at the nest.

So it was very frustrating that there was no one talking about listening in the wall cavities with a stethoscope, or anyone saying that they drill holes and blow in dust or use baits. All the same useless thing: spray the perimeter... So now we're stuck doing it ourselves. This is one do-it-yourself project that I'd prefer not to do!
 
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Old 06-03-10, 06:20 PM
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Looking for help with same ant problem

Hello, I am also in the Toronto area and I'm having the same problem. I see ants going up the side of the house and entering through a spot just under the vinyl fascia. I have a room that has been added that has a vaulted ceiling, so it opened right up. There is a beam that runs across the top and I have seen ants come and going under it. I have called PCO and they're going to come out but they only talked about spraying the perimeter outside and baseboards. That's not going to help if there's a nest up in the ceiling part. Were you able to find someone to help you solve your problem?
HELP!
 

Last edited by the_tow_guy; 06-04-10 at 04:16 AM. Reason: Not necessary to quote entire original post.
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Old 07-01-10, 10:30 AM
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PAbugman - Nice to have an expert in the forum. I hope you stick around.

Is this stuff any good as a prevention treatment?
 
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Old 07-06-10, 06:00 PM
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Originally Posted by Wayne Mitchell View Post
PAbugman - Nice to have an expert in the forum. I hope you stick around.

Is this stuff any good as a prevention treatment?
Thanks, Wayne: I can't find my original reply; I'm new at forums and I suspect that I used too many trade/brand names and my reply got yanked. But the answer would be yes. The one chemical may be coming off patent soon-pending defensive lawsuits by BASF. If/when it does, availability to general public will be in the future. Learn the active ingredient and watch for it under different trade name. Could be several years yet, though.
I'm enjoying this forum and advice giving, although we are in our busy season, I will be checking in. Thanks again for the kind words.
 
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Old 07-07-10, 07:14 PM
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Bugs

We live in the bug capital of the world. Florida. You can't go in the woods at night, the sound is deafening. I'm not kidding! Anyway, we fight termites all the time, not much different from your pests. There are plenty of poisons you can buy and put on the perimeter yourself, you mix them with water and flood the place around the house, hopefully where the ants walk. The nest area is a different story. I get those foggers, you can fog the attic, or do what I do, cut the cap so it doesn't stay locked on, and aim it and spray it like a gun, it kills everything, wear a respirator. It is nasty stuff. But it will kill your ants, and uncles.
 
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Old 07-23-10, 10:02 AM
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Re the carpenter ants. Even if they enter around the roof I would think a legit pest contractor can spray the exterior and under each sink drill a small hole and spray in chemicals. Plus the contractor can treat a few other suspect areas. I had a problem once and this was done and within 24 hours I did not see another ant inside the home for years.
 
 

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