Carpenter Ants


Treatment for carpenter ants involves several steps. The first is to make sure that there is a positive identification. Although they vary in size, the fact is that the vast majority of the big, black ants we see in our homes are carpenter ants.

Our technician will try to determine if the carpenter ants have a nest in your home or if they are foraging from a nearby nest. We will interview you and do a preliminary inspection to help make this determination and what the appropriate steps are to eliminate your carpenter ant problem.

If we believe we know where the carpenter ant nest is, we will do our best to treat it directly with an insecticide dust or aerosol. This is often easier to say than to do, but don’t worry, even if we are unable to score a direct hit on the nest; we will absolutely resolve your carpenter ant problem. In every case, we will treat the exterior of your home to protect it from carpenter ants that might be coming from the outside. In addition to exterior treatment, we may perform some treatment indoors in areas where ants have been seen or those areas that are historically susceptible, such as near doors, plumbing fixtures or where there is evidence of moisture. In modern pest management the idea is to use the least amount of insecticide necessary to perform the job effectively.

A one-time carpenter ant service is warrantied for 90 days after date of service. The following year, if you have another treatment, this also comes with a 90 day warranty which can be extended another 90 days. Or, if you find that you have the need for pest elimination services for bees or mice, etc. at other times of year, your carpenter ant service can be the initial service of a Braman MultiPest Plan.

If you believe you have carpenter ants, contact Braman immediately.

Carpenter Ants Overview

Carpenter ants are a social insect meaning that they live in colonies of up to 5000 members where each ant has a defined role. Workers excavate wood to create nesting sites, defend the colony from intruders and forage for food to feed all members of the colony; queens lay eggs and winged male reproductive leave the colony to propagate the species.

Although black is the most common color, carpenter ants can vary from black, red and black, solid red or even brown in color. Workers range from ⅛–½ inch long, although most will be close to ¼ inch. Reproductive males and queens will be about ¾ inch long.

Where are they found?

Although carpenter ants can and do infest homes, it is not unusual for foraging carpenter ants that are nesting outdoors to enter homes seeking food. In many cases, carpenter ants will establish themselves in a home when their current nesting location, such as a wood pile or dead tree, has been disturbed or removed. There are many ways they may enter your home, including through attic vents, foundations, cracks, electric wires, pipes and telephone lines.

Another common reason these ants will infest a home occurs when a colony grows in size and creates a satellite colony. In either of these scenarios, ants will enter the home through cracks and gaps in the foundation, holes around water and utility pipe work or by crossing overgrown tree limbs that are in direct contact with the structure.

What makes them harmful?

In some areas of the country, carpenter ants do more damage to structures than termites. Unlike termites, carpenter ants don’t actually eat wood; they excavate it to create galleries for nesting, usually targeting wood whose structural integrity has been compromised by moisture problems, fungus and the like.

H/T Tim Walsh via YouTube

Top 5 Signs Carpenter Ants may be present in a home:

  1. The presence of medium to large black ants in your home in springtime.
  2. Piles of sawdust that reappear after being removed.
  3. Faint unexplained rustling noises from inside of walls or woodwork.
  4. Numerous large winged carpenter ants inside your home.
  5. Wood beams that sound hollow when tapped.