3 Steps to Getting Rid of Ants in San Diego Bathroom Plumbing
Nothing like turning around in the shower to find yourself face to face with a stream of ants pouring through a tiny groove in the bathroom tile. Must be summer in San Diego!
Because this disturbing experience occurs in the bathroom, San Diego residents often call a plumber before a pest control company. The good news is that San Diego plumbing professionals like Perry Plumbing DO know a few tricks of the trade when it comes to ants in the bathroom. With spring upon us and summer coming up, the ants once again will be out scouting for water and the delicious decaying debris in your pipes. We thought maybe we could save you this unpleasant surprise (and hassle) with a few plumbing-related, ant-defeating tips.
Hit the Showers
Nothing like the smell of hot, wet wood in the morning…to an ant that is. Water leaking into the wood under and around your tub and sink raises an aroma like fresh baked bread to an ant.
The first step in sealing ants out of your shower is to examine it for cracks in the caulking, between tiles and around the tub rim. Get the shower nice and dry and seal gaps so that water doesn’t leak into the wood behind and under the shower. Apply caulk to every hole and smooth it over with a gloved finger. Let it dry for 24 hours before using the shower.
Wet wood isn’t the only scent that attracts ants to showers. Some species feed on skin cells and bits of hair, which amazingly, they can smell from far away. That gray/brown ring in your shower pan or the bathtub lures ants. Scrub showers regularly with a cleanser and brush. Once a week, pull up the stopper and remove accumulated hair.
Avoid Creating an Ant Buffet in Your Bathroom Sinks
Ants in the summer are looking for food and water. Decaying food, dirt and hair built up in the sink make a tasty meal for some species of ants. Think, too, that while you may try to keep all food downstairs, children and other family members sometimes dispose of juice, coffee and more in the upstairs bathroom sinks. Over time, residues create a festering smorgasbord irresistible to ants.
If ants are pouring through your bathroom drain and you want to jump on the problem this minute, one homemade method involves pouring ½ cup of baking soda down the drain followed by ½ cup of white vinegar. This will loosen food and grease residue. Let these natural agents bubble up for 10 minutes before rinsing it all with hot water.
While home remedies like this can provide a temporary fix, getting a professional drain cleaning is the best way to ease your mind about clearing the bathroom pipes. At Perry Plumbing, we have several methods for cleaning drains safely. Our high water pressure hydro jetting blasts out blockages and debris and our BIO-CLEAN, green drain cleaners made of naturally occurring enzymes and bacteria eat their way through pipeline residue, leaving it squeaky clean, with all gunk digested naturally and washed away.
Determining the Type of Ant Can Reveal How to Stop It
Sometimes even the cleanest bathrooms still have ants. In this case, your next move is to determine the type of ant. If you have carpenter ants, your problem could be bigger than the ants leaving their nest in the ground to forage for water. In San Diego, carpenter ants nest in wet wood. Therefore, the presence of carpenter ants could indicate that a tub, sink or shower is not draining properly. In this case, a professional San Diego plumbing company can test for moisture in the drywall, repair leaking valves and drains to keep the wood and other home materials dry and unappealing to carpenter ants looking for a home.
While there are 700 different species of ants in San Diego, the Argentine ant dominates. Unlike the carpenter ant, the Argentine ant probably isn’t coming into your home to nest there. It’s most likely after water. If your bathroom is a soggy mess once the family is through, putting some mopping up duties into place could help, as could running the bathroom fan. Still, you will probably need the help of professional pest control. Smaller than carpenter ants, Argentine ants can resist chemicals that wipe out other species instantly, so it’s important to identify just which ant you’re dealing with.
Perry Plumbing Helps Keep Your Bathroom Clean, Dry & Ant-Free!
Contrary to the common myth, San Diego was not built on top of an ant hill, even though sometimes it seems that way. Keeping your bathroom clean, dry and free of leaks will up the odds that the ants WON’T come marching in this summer.
If you could use the drain cleaning that makes your ant headaches disappear, don’t hesitate to call us at 619-472-2112. We’re currently offering great San Diego plumbing discounts and specials you can use to fix bathroom leaks or get professional level drain cleaning. Interested in getting great plumbing tips you can use to increase the value of your home and stave off plumbing emergencies? Follow us on Facebook!