What to Do About Flying Ants in Your Home

Flying ants, also known as alates, can be a nuisance when they find their way inside your home. As annoying as they are, getting rid of flying ants requires patience and persistence. Here are some tips on what to do if you have flying ants in your house.

Why Are There Flying Ants in My House?

Flying ants enter homes when they leave their nests to mate and establish new colonies. This usually happens on warm, humid days following rainfall in late spring and summer. Male and female reproductives emerge from their nests en masse to take part in mating flights. After mating, the males die and the females shed their wings to start new nests.

If a mating flight coincides with weather conditions that make flying difficult, the ants seek refuge in homes and other structures. Some common reasons flying ants end up indoors include:

  • Nest disruption from lawn mowing, digging, or heavy rain flooding
  • Attraction to lights at night
  • Warmth emanating from the home
  • Temporary shelter during storms

How to Get Rid of Flying Ants

Getting rid of flying ants requires diligence and repeating control methods. Here are some tips to help eliminate flying ants that find their way inside:

Seal Points of Entry

Ants don’t simply materialize inside your home. They gain access through cracks, crevices, gaps around windows, doors, utility penetrations, and more. Sealing these entry points is paramount for preventing further ant incursions:

  • Caulk around doors, windows, pipes, vents, outlets, and other openings
  • Weather strip around doors and windows if gaps are present
  • Repair or replace damaged screens on doors and windows
  • Use foam sealant on larger gaps and cracks

Be sure to focus on areas where you notice ants entering from. Also, seal around exterior lighting fixtures which attract flying ants at night.

Remove Food Sources

Flying ants aren’t interested in food inside the home. Their sole focus is mating and starting new colonies. However, eliminating food sources indoors and outside around the home’s perimeter helps make the interior less attractive to ants. Be sure to:

  • Clean up spills and crumbs immediately
  • Store food in sealed containers
  • Empty garbage frequently
  • Fix leaky faucets and pipes
  • Clean up pet food after pets finish eating
  • Keep counters and floors free of residue

Use Artificial Repellents

Certain strong scents deter ants from entering and lingering in your home. Placing artificial repellents near entry points and other areas where you see ants can encourage them to leave:

  • Citrus peels – Try orange, lemon, lime
  • Vinegar
  • Cayenne pepper
  • Cinnamon
  • Peppermint oil
  • Tea tree oil

Refresh repellents frequently for continued effectiveness. Coffee grounds and talcum powder also act as irritants to repel ants.

Apply Insecticidal Dust

Applying a light coating of insecticidal dust containing silica gel or diatomaceous earth can help control ants. This abrasive dust adheres to ants’ bodies and damages their outer layer or exoskeleton, causing dehydration. Focus application along:

  • Baseboards
  • Window sills
  • Door frames
  • Attics and crawl spaces
  • Around pipes and wires

Reapply after cleaning or if dust gets wet for ongoing control. Exercise caution and keep insecticidal dusts away from children and pets.

Use Ant Baits

Ant baits are an effective option for controlling flying ants indoors. Baits contain toxins mixed with food to attract ants which then take the bait back to the nest and feed it to others. This eliminates the colony’s queen and workers. Opt for baits labeled for flying ants containing hydramethylnon, fipronil, or borax. Place small bait stations:

  • Along foraging trails
  • In corners and crevices
  • Near moist areas like sinks
  • Where you notice ants entering

Monitor baits and replace as directed on the label to fully eliminate ants. It may take days or weeks to see results. Persistence is key.

Call a Pest Control Professional

For severe flying ant infestations, reach out to a qualified pest control professional. They have commercial-grade insecticides, bait formulas, and treatment methods to control heavy ant populations. They can also track down nest locations and treat them directly for maximum effectiveness. Professional treatment often offers longer-lasting flying ant control.

When to Worry About Flying Ants

In most cases, flying ants that find their way inside are merely a nuisance. But if you notice the following, be sure to take action right away:

  • Flying ants appear frequently and in large swarms repeatedly over weeks or months
  • Nests containing larvae are discovered inside voids or walls
  • Ants are emerging from electrical outlets or appliances
  • Evidence of structural damage from carpenter ants is present

Seeing flying ants occasionally, especially after rain or on humid nights, is normal. Ongoing or excessive ant presence could indicate a larger underlying issue that requires pest control intervention.

Flying Ant Prevention Tips

While it’s impossible to keep flying ants out entirely, you can help reduce their likelihood of getting inside:

  • Install screens on attic and crawl space vents
  • Keep tree branches and shrubbery trimmed away from the home
  • Ensure downspouts direct water away from the foundation
  • Change exterior lights to sodium vapor or yellow bulbs
  • Illuminate backyards and garden areas
  • Keep exterior trash and recycling bins tightly closed
  • Stack firewood off the ground and away from your home

With some diligence and preventative maintenance, you can minimize annoying flying ant incidents in your home. Pay attention to spots where ants enter and focus your control efforts there. Persistence and repeat treatments will help ensure flying ants looking to mate stay safely outside where they belong.

Frequently Asked Questions About Flying Ants

What to Do About Flying Ants in Your Home?

To get rid of flying ants inside, caulk cracks and crevices to eliminate entry points. Wipe away pheromone trails and use artificial repellents near entrances. Apply insecticidal dusts and use ant baits to kill foraging ants. Getting a pest professional may be required for severe infestations.

Why Do Flying Ants Come Into My House?

Flying ants enter homes when weather conditions disrupt mating flights, causing them to seek shelter. Warmth, light sources, and gaps around doors and windows also allow ants to get inside. Sealing these entry points is key for control.

What Attracts Flying Ants Into Your House?

Flying ants aren’t attracted to food indoors. They gain access incidentally through small openings when seeking refuge from rain, heat, and other elements interrupting outdoor mating activities. Light sources can also lure ants inside at night.

Are Flying Ants Dangerous?

While a nuisance, flying ants don’t sting or bite and aren’t dangerous. However, they can indicate a larger ant issue outside requiring pest control if they appear frequently and in large swarms inside your home. Carpenter ants can also cause structural damage.

How Do You Keep Flying Ants Out of Your House?

Seal cracks, repair damaged screens, caulk around windows/doors, trim vegetation, install vent covers, use sodium vapor lights, eliminate food sources, and keep a clean home. Diatomaceous earth and sealing entry points also helps deter flying ants from entering.


Flying ants indoors are a seasonal annoyance that requires diligence to control. Sealing entry points, artificial repellents, insecticidal dusts, ant baits, and calling a pest professional are the best ways to eliminate them from your home. With persistence in applying these methods where you see ants, you can send them the message that your house is not welcome for mating activities. Stay vigilant and act promptly when flying ants appear to help get rid of them and prevent future infestations.