Ants Seek Kitchens and Homes in Heat

The National Pest Management Association provides quick and easy tips to keep ants out

FAIRFAX, Va. (July 19, 2017) – People aren’t the only ones with a sweet tooth — ants have them, too, and that’s one of the many reasons they love to invade kitchens. Aside from hunger, these little pests also find their way indoors, especially in the heat, for a consistent water supply. And while they may be small, they give homeowners big headaches, ranking as the No. 1 nuisance pest in the U.S., according to the National Pest Management Association (NPMA).

“Although most ants don’t pose a public health threat, they can contaminate cooking ingredients and food, so diligent prevention is necessary,” said Cindy Mannes, vice president of public affairs for NPMA. “Because ants are attracted to leftover food crumbs and spills, one of the best ways to prevent infestations is to maintain a clean kitchen.”

Mannes suggests that homeowners store cooking ingredients in airtight containers and wipe up countertops immediately following food consumption. They should frequently clean floors and rinse dishes after use instead of leaving them to pile up in the sink. It’s also important to avoid leaving bowls of overripe fruit or pet food out for too long. And, taking the trash out regularly can further help maintain a clean kitchen.

Given their need for moisture, ants are also inclined to infest bathrooms. It’s key to fix any leaky pipes or faucets, as well as seal cracks and crevices around the home that serve as points of entry to keep ants away. However, if homeowners do suspect an ant infestation, experts advise seeking professional pest control services as the best course of action.

“Ants live in large colonies, so when homeowners spot a few of them, there are likely hundreds or thousands more nearby, which can be unsettling,” Mannes said. “Those who try to remedy the problem themselves and fail are only allowing the colony to grow larger with time. Working with a pest control professional to help eliminate the problem quickly is a better idea.” 

For more information on ants and other pests, visit

The NPMA, a non-profit organization with more than 7,000 members, was established in 1933 to support the pest management industry's commitment to the protection of public health, food and property. For more information, visit