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i have damned ants in my car!!!

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Old 03-16-2011, 11:01 AM   #1
slicky rick
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Default i have damned ants in my car!!!

has anybody experienced this? its a nuisance. never ate in the car and car is clean. the ants are just there and i dont know where they came from? they are not really the big ants but small red ants. i see them congregating on the bug splatters on the windshield and i just see them walking all over. its not in the interior it usually is in the exterior, the doors, hood, around the door weather stripping. i just kill them when i see them but it seems like they just dont end? any advice?
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Old 03-16-2011, 11:09 AM   #2
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Coconut flavored wax again Rick??

Have you tried some ant killer powder sprinkled around the foundation of the garage?
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Old 03-16-2011, 11:38 AM   #3
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for interior, i would spray some kind of "safe" bug spray (organic/natural?) on sills, under seats, high up the foot wells (i.e. places where you wont ruin paint, visible carpet BUT also wont compromise electrical connections etc). for exterior, i would go with something more potent but only on underside of car, wheel wells, engine bay. ya figure they prob have to crawl over/thru these areas to get farther inside and up, right?

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Old 03-16-2011, 11:53 AM   #4
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They are in your car for a reason and that usually involves a food source or some protection from the weather. I can't remember exactly but I always thought red ants were more carrion eaters and bug splatters count as carrion. The, or specifically your, problem is that they leave a trail of pheremones that lead the rest of the colony to your car. One or a few ants identified your car as a place food or shelter could be found and told all of its sisters. And this colony probably isn't far from the car (it varies but most of the ants that you find in the U.S. don't range terribly far - and if they do, en masse, you'd certainly see them marching). Anyway, if it's food you need to remove the source and then clean the area (around your car) to remove the pheremone trail. Soapy water or a very diluted bleach solution should work. The ants in/on your car you can kill with a solution of dish soap and water. This will disrupt cellular, well, you likely don't care about why it works, it just does - but it is not a long term solution like a pesticide. This solution probably would strip the wax off your car though so it just depends on how desperate you are to get rid of the ants. You might want to really examine your car because perhaps you ran over something dead and there are the remnants on the undercarriage that are attracting the ants. Anyway, clean your car, wash the area and the problem will probably resolve in a little time.

Alternatively, if it is a shelter issue there isn't a whole lot you can do other than maybe park your car somewhere else for a while. (Ants will often migrate to drier places in the wet season - at least they do in California.)
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Old 03-16-2011, 12:09 PM   #5
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Wow. Hopefully not fire ants. Could be worse....my wife's grandmother once had a rat's nest in her engine compartment...gave her quite a scare one day!
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Old 03-16-2011, 12:17 PM   #6
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Do you have kids in the car?

Parked near an ant source at work?

I always have ant bait in my cupboard for the occasional appearance in my yard. Those work well and kill every single one within a day or two. They take the bait and share with others and then they all die at the source. Spraying just kills what you can see, and the survivors reproduce and come back.

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Old 03-16-2011, 01:09 PM   #7
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Yup - my wife's car gets this every spring. It should start here in NC any time now. Freekin swarms of them all over the car. They just love her car. Inside, outside, the tires, just everywhere. They are the little teeny tiny ones too. There are no kids, no food, no pets and they never are in any other car in the same garage. You never mentioned what car you had. In my house, they just LOVE the Prius (sorry guys) but they leave everything else alone. I've tried every kind of deterrent I can think of to no avail. I have just given up and I know they'll eventually get bored and find something else to swarm on.
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Old 03-16-2011, 01:11 PM   #8
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I think I remember reading that ants (maybe just fire ants) are attracted by ozone emitted from electrical sources. Fire ants can destroy electrical connections - just ask those in Texas that have had fire ant invasions in the outside home A/C compressors.
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Old 03-16-2011, 03:48 PM   #9
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better than ants in ur pants...

jk - good luck with the extermination
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Old 03-16-2011, 04:20 PM   #10
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Are they the ants that when squished smell...well, good? (Sweet)
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Old 03-16-2011, 06:54 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by yemenmocha View Post
Spraying just kills what you can see, and the survivors reproduce and come back.
Ants belong to the order Hymenoptera (social insects). Just the queen(s) mate and they only leave the nest to either move it or sometimes copulate with a drone depending on the species. All the workers are female and related - hence "social" insects that work together as a "superorganism"

Originally Posted by Craig - RennStore.com View Post
Are they the ants that when squished smell...well, good? (Sweet)
Do you mean **** ants? So named because when you squish them they release uric acid, ammonia or some similar product of deamination which, well, is a part of the urea cycle that generates urine in mammals.

Sorry, I don't know crap about cars but biology I'm a little better at.
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Old 03-16-2011, 07:15 PM   #12
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I don't know if this works or is just debate-fodder, but I've had those electronic silent plug-in anti-bug devices in my garage for years....and have yet to have any issues. We get ants (light stucco shows them on the outside of house), but not as often. In these parts the most aggressive are sweet eaters, and I have some stuff I put out when/if I see trails anywhere. Usually gets 'em good - they congregate, eat the goo, and carry back to nest/queen.

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Old 03-16-2011, 08:04 PM   #13
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i had ants in my car once. they go everywhere. i sprayed for weeks, doesn't work.
get a pest control firm to provide solution. this worked.
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Old 03-16-2011, 08:42 PM   #14
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what damage can little bugs do to our car anyways?
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Old 03-16-2011, 09:22 PM   #15
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As a farmer for longer than most of you have been alive I can tell you ants are very easy to control. The op needs to spray outside his garage and the inside along the walls...following the baseboards. You should use a professional insecticide such as Talstar liquid. I use this regularly and never have ants. In your 1 gallon sprayer goes 1tablespoon of Talstar and 1teaspoon dawn detergent. The soap makes the insecticide adhere to the walls, a sticker if you will. No ants will cross this barrier and those that come near die.

Inside the car is the difficult problem. Do not tent your car and set off a bomb. This will ruin your cars interior forever...oily insecticidal fumes in every nook and cranny...a disaster. A small amount of ant bait in the trunk and the spraying of your tires and wheel wells will help. It will take about 2 weeks to get them all and there after,if ants continue,spray every 30-45 days. Also,use a granular insecticide on the yard next to your garage...thats where they are coming from. Dont keep garbage in your garage. Good luck.
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