Posted by April Barker on 20:54:56 5/19/2009 from 220.127.116.11:
I live in the heartland of carpenter ants, Bellingham, WA. We moved in here March of 2008 and in April of 2008 had huge ants flying all over the house. Of course called my inspector (all this prior to finding your webpage)freeked out asking for the name of a good exterminator. He said that was a waste of my money and I obviously had a mousture problem he didnt find. He suggested diggin out the part of the house (undern) that was sitting on soil (1920's portion of house) and see what we find. Well we dugg 18" of 650sqt and found some old problems. But no activity. We replaced moisture issues and sistered some beems that looked pretty damaged and then crossed our fingers over the winter hoping we found the answer to the problem. I saw a few ants over the winter and in feb2009 started to see several more ants outside. I have kids, dogs, chickens and a husban I don't want to loose so I saught out all kinds of info while looking for all the wet spots in the house. I came across a lot of ph.d studies that suggested diatomacious earth. DE and me have become very good friends. However, April 2009 I started taking off gutters and finally found a problem. Needless to say, still ignorant of your website, I was completely unarmed. Ripped off the fascia board, saw a whole in a moist board, stuck my screw driver in there and half the truss fell off and ants poured out. It seemed like thousands. Of course I have a metal roof and am the second owner so the roofing company has turned their nose up to me and wont waranty the roof. I got a guy to come out and do as much damage repair/rot removal he could w/o taking the entire roof off. Most of the nest of removed but there was one tunnel still leading back past the bird board into the roof truss. He sprayed something in there, fixed leak issue, sistered and caulked. Well after my chapter I have 2 questions (which my husband will tell you means I have at least 4).
All of those ants dropped down under piles and piles of rocks we ahve landscaping the side of the house. the rocks are at least 6 inches below the fascia board at the bottom of house by foundation. Spread DE for days (assuming that everytime it gets wet it is inactive to the ants? this true), spent time removing rocks and spreading more DE everytime I found where the ants are hidding. Now, June 2009 I see at least 20 ants a day outside and have been seeing 5-10 ants inside. So me and my best friend, DE have been dusting daily any cracks I see the ants going into. Today I found your website... and started laughing so hard I had tears. Can this be true. I, a 150lb woman, have been scared out of my gourd that these ants are terrorising my house outside in. AND NOW I LEARN THIS IS NORMAL. Well thank you for your site and time you have taken. The money you have saved so many could probably go toward getting us out of our nation's debt. So, my questions. There is a seal plateish metall allong the outside of all of the fascia boards that then have gutters on them. I have a 40 ft 2000sq ft house. Would it behoove me to hire someone to take all that off and check for moisture issue (since I cant see the condition of the fascia underneith)? Also, the DE treatment I do when I find a path for the ants....is that a waste of time and money? Uh, I also dust around my house and the sill plates weekly..
Oh yes, and lastly I have a 5ft butcher block form the late 1800s have have been nursing back to health sanding and drying. Oh course the ants took to that like crazy. The can get inbetween the tounge and groove pretty easy. I have been dusting that w/ DE too but nervous to bring it into the house. What should I spray it with? I will be eating off it someday.
THank you in advance for your response!
The DE Queen self proclaimed,
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