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HUGE ant problem

Posted by coolmama (My Page) on
Fri, Mar 23, 07 at 4:44

The apartment we are staying in now has major ant problems. In the summer,outside,they can be seen in lines in every crack of the sidewalk,all over porches,and going up and down brick walls.
Inside...we had a nest in our bath tub! They were coming out of a hole in the faucet.The maintanince man kept telling me there was no ant I took pictures of them.Then he had to replace the entire shower wall and faucet.
The kitchen...they are in cabinets.I cant leave ANY food out at all or will wake up to ants all over everything.I have to put all opened food like cereal in my frig.
I have called about 5 times now to complain.They send out a terminex guy who is a complete JERK. Last time he told me he wont spray outside,only inside.He didnt do anything and left.
I have spent tons of my own money on ant spray,ant baits,and those spikes that go in the ground.All a wasted effort because there are so many of them they'd have to treat the entire apartment complex to get rid of them.
So here's my question~is this legal? At what point is this acceptable to? And what can I do about it?
We are seriously considering moving in a few months because of this.I'm kind of angry cuz we have been with the same apartment company 6 years.WE moved from their other complex which didnt have an ant problem to this one.Obviously they knew it had an ant problem and didnt care to tell us.

Any suggestions?

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: HUGE ant problem

I can sympathize with you!!! We moved from a house that we rented before we moved here due to a huge ant problem!! Hubby and I decided to sell our home and rent as we are never home and need someone to do upkeep. We rented a small house with yard maintenance included and the place was a walking ant mine. Oh my gosh, it is like they were EVERYWHERE! There would be streams of them crawling all over the inside seam of my frontloader was so gross. I kept all our food in storage tubs because they were in EVERY cabinet! Everywhere you looked there were ants. We spent 2 months trying to get rid of them. The owner of the house was very, very helpful though. He spent hundreds on trying to get rid of them.

We used a company called swat pest, don't know if they are local. They came out and actually collected some of them to determine the speicies..............they were slab ants. Ants that swarm cracks in the slabs deep under homes. They said they were the most stubborn of all ants. We ended up leaving over it. I just couldn't take it. I could never have anyone over!!! It was disgusting. I was also afraid of all the chemicals we had to try and use.

The owner of the home let us out of the lease and gave us back all our money.

One trick you can use, is calling the health dept!!! There is a complex in our area that had this problem and they actually ran a story on the local news about how bad it was and how the management did nothing for the tenants. Make some noise, or leave, that is no way to live.

Have you had them the entire 6 years??

Hang tight, it is an awful problem and I sure feel for you!!

RE: HUGE ant problem

We have been with the same company 6 years,not the same apartment.We switched to this apartment last December because it had a patio and our other one didnt.The other one didnt have an ant problem as it is down the street from here.This entire complex though here is riddled with them.

I never thought of calling the health department.My question is,how bad does it have to be before they make them fix it? It is pretty awful though.
Just the other day I was on the computer (which is in the bedroom) and I left a cup of hot chocolate on the desk. The next day there was a trail of ants all over the cup and the desk and in a line under the desk.I was so grossed out! I never leave food out,but I was so tired I just forgot about the cup.
I'm not certain,but I think they are sugar ants.They seem to go for whatever is sweet and sticky,nothing else.Once they even got all over a bottle of liquid Tylenol that was cherry flavored!
All the other neighbors seem like they've accepted the problem.Even though they know it's bad.I have a feeling it has been like this for years.

RE: HUGE ant problem

My house has had an ant problem every since I bought it. If you go to the garden side of this site you can read lots of remedies. Some are folklore and junk ideas, and some are real science. Different things work for different ants though too.

The thing you need to know first, is what type of ant you have. I wasted a lot of money on bait at first not knowing that carpenter ants do not take bait.

I tried the Diazinon around the house to stop them and it did nothing. Everyone else raves about its effectivness.

I tried using Diatomaceous Earth and it did help with the little brown sugar ants in the kitchen but the big black carpenter ants just walk right through it. I even poured it into the holes in trees where I knew the carpenter ants were nesting and the next few days I saw them balling it up and pushing it out of their entrance holes, dropping it on the ground. Ha.

DE is the thing to use if you have pets, as it is not a poison. It does not work if it gets wet, so it won't work for the red ants around the sink if you have those. You can use DE outside but you have to reapply it after every rainfall. There is arguement over its use, that it is not recommended to use it in your garden or on your lawn because DE kills everything beneficial - earthworms, butterflies, bumblebees, and you will uspset the eco balance. DE does not breakdown either. You can sprinkle it all over your basement floor and it will be effective FOREVER.

Ant colonies can cover a half mile. The queen may not be near your home. The carpenter ants in my neighborhod hollow out the trees that line the street and then one big storm and the whole tree crashes on a house or parked car.

The thing that you have to do is kill the queen ant. Do not upset the ant colony, as the ants then will just carry the queen to a new location near you. So the folklore like taking a shovel and turning the anthill over or pouring boilding water down the anthill are wasting you time.

Spraying poison around will only kill the ants you see and more will be on the way the next day. Ants are tough. Don't blame your landlord. Ants do not live because the landlord was negligent. I do not think the health department gets involved in an ant problem, but that probably depend on where you live and how bored/busy they are. Be thankful that you are not dealing with the red stinging ants.

Check the archives on the garden side here. There are a lot of threads on ants and some of them have a hundred or more posts.

Good luck and let us know what worked for you.

RE: HUGE ant problem

I have no idea about the legality, but i can tell you how to deal with ants - Windex. Old fashioned, ammonianic, blue Windex. Spray that on all the live ants you see, and follow it back all along the ant trail to the point where the ants enter. You may have to do that repeatedly, but in my experience it never fails to discourage ants, and it kills them on contact. If only it worked on palmetto bugs, too.

RE: HUGE ant problem

It's my belief that your landlord/mgmt company needs to address this, it sounds rather extreme, and is probably a violation of health codes. coolmama, I don't know why, perhaps from a prior post, but I associate you with the state of CA? I did some googling, if you go to the page below, about halfway down, a tenant posted similar issues and was offered info on Calif Civil Code 1941.1 , and then given guidance as to what to do, what the landlord is and is not responsible for.

Here is a link that might be useful: The Berkeley Rent Board Mailbag Codes & Habitability

RE: HUGE ant problem


I can tell you that the health dept is right on the ants if they are "in" your cabinets and are not the old spring ant issue, but a severe, what they called invasion. Call them.

When we dealt with it, in our area at least, it is considered the Landlords/property managers issue, not yours. Also, just for fun, I looked online at our apt and it says right in their ad of what they offer that water/sewer/pest control/trash are all their expense. We have had 2 issues mice when they mow down the corn fields and water bugs in June. Our complex had professionals come out and treat the area and put out baits without even asking, so good Landlords would want the issue addressed! Best of luck, I know from the house we dealt with it in, windex, DE, Terro, boric acid, sprays, traps, baits, NOTHING made a dent in them. It is like they were immune to anything!!!! UGH, I shudder at the thought of them now............

Keep us posted!!!

RE: HUGE ant problem

Thanks for all the advice...husband and I are looking into moving.It's that bad.I have been places that had ants before,but never seen anything like this.This is YEARS and YEARS of not getting a hold on the problem because there are probably trillions of them on this property.
I live in Maryland,moonshadow ,LOL...I wish I lived in CA!
I'm still gonna try the health department thing too though~cuz I just dont see how this can be ok. I'm sitting on the computer in my bedroom,no food in sight,and I keep seeing an ant here and there.After I plugged up all the tiny holes along the wall with caulking and sprayed ant spray.

RE: HUGE ant problem

I had lots of sugar ants before (pretty gross when you fall asleep on the couch and when you wake up they are in your tea) and used Terro liquid ant killer. I was amazed at how well it worked.
It sounds like you have a larger problem, but it is worth a try and doesn't seem as caustic as some of those other chemicals. I tried to put it where I thought they were coming into the room.

Good luck!

Here is a link that might be useful: Terro Liquid Ant Killer

RE: HUGE ant problem

I too am having a invasion of ants.. They have made their nest in the roof, (how to you fight this) due to all the rain we had for a week. The landlord has a horrible pest control only on Friday. The have come 3 times and only use ant bait, which doesn't work at all.
This place just received a huge fine from the health dept for not removing old mattresses that mold was developing on them.. Along with the ant problem..

RE: HUGE ant problem

Simple grocery store ant poison always works for me. I just make sure to put it somewhere where I dont eat or my food is. Usually on the ground near the trash can or wherever they are entering the house from. Best Wii Games For Adults

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