Ants, they are one of my least favorites pests! Why? Because I am plagued by them each and every year. I know it is Spring because I see ants converging around the front of my house. It’s like they are building numbers to initiate a full-on assault of my home. But, it is not just a home that ants are attracted to. Your car can also be a target! Want to know how to get rid of sugar ants in your car? Let’s take a look at the 5 steps you should take immediately.

Sugar ants are attracted to any area where they can get what they need, which is food, and water. Your car may offer this, which is what makes your car a viable target!

What you will learn in this post:

  1. Why sugar ants are attracted to your car.
  2. How to get rid of sugar ants in your car.
  3. Frequently asked questions.

How To Get Rid Of Sugar Ants In Your Car In 5 Steps

Why Are Sugar Ants Attracted To My Car?

If you want to know how to get rid of sugar ants in your car, then you first need to understand why they are attracted to it in the first place! Let’s take a look…

Drink Cartons/Cans

This is very common, and I must admit, it is something that I have in my car nearly all of the time!

Ants are attracted to pretty much anything with sugar in, and most drinks these days have a small amount of sugar in, and that is enough to attract sugar ants to your car.

Even if the drinks do not have sugar in, they still need a water supply.


If you have spilled any drinks in your car that has not been cleaned up correctly, this will attract sugar ants to your car.

Ants spend a lot of time marching around trying to find a food or water source. If they find a spillage in your car, they will let other ants know. Before you know it, you will have a line of ants marching into your car.


If you have any trash in your car, then you will be attracting sugar ants.

It goes without saying, you should ensure your car is clean at all times if you have an issue with sugar ant infestations!


Food is the number 1 thing that attracts ants to your home, car, or anywhere else that you have food that is easily accessible to ants!

Clean away any food sources, or store them correctly to reduce the chances of getting sugar ants in your car.


Water is another thing that attracts ants to your car.

When a car is stationary for long periods of time, it can accumulate water, especially under the hood. This water will attract ants in their droves!

Also – you should check for any leaks and fix them.

How To Get Rid Of Sugar Ants In Your Car In 5 Steps

How To Get Rid Of Sugar Ants In Your Car Infographic

1. Spray The Ants

Let’s get those ants sprayed! You have a few choices here, such as:

I have used antibacterial spray with a lot of success in the past. I always give them a quick blast of a spray because it disables their movement and cleans the chemical trail they have used to let other ants know that they have found food or water.

2. Get Rid Of Trash

The next step is to get rid of all trash in your car. Cans, bottles, food, and even empty food wrappers. Put everything in a bag, and throw it in the trash!

As I mentioned above, ants are attracted to food and water. By removing food and water sources, you are greatly reducing the chances of getting ants in your car.

Basically, if you want to know how to get rid of sugar ants in your car, then this is the most important thing you can do to stop them from coming back.

3. Remove Water/Fix Leaks

The next step is for you to remove any water, and fix any leaks. Pop your hood and check for standing water. Check your entire car for areas where water is accumulating. If you find any, then clear it away!

Also, if you have identified any leaks in your car, now is the time to fix those. Not only does it stop water accumulating, but is also removes an entry point for the ants!

4. Hoover

Now that you have sprayed the ants (which has either killed them or reduced their ability to walk), and cleaned the trash away it is now time to hoover them all up.

Ensure that you cover all areas of the inside of your car, and also cover other areas where you have noticed any activity, such as under the hood, or in the trunk.

Basically, you should hoover everywhere in your car!

5. Use Traps/Ant Deterrent

OK, so you have killed the ants, cleared the trash away, and hoovered all the ants up. There should be no more ants in your car. The question now is, how do you stop ants from getting back into your car? The answer is by using ant repellents.

Use lemon spray, or vinegar spray to repel the ants away from getting back in your car. You can also set some ant traps up in your trunk for any that do get in.

Frequently Asked Questions


Why are ants attracted to my car?

Any are attracted to anything that offers them one of two things: Water, and food. If you have no water pools, and no food in your car then they will not be attracted to it in the first place. You may get one or two ants in your car, checking to see if food or water exist, but if they don’t find anything, they won’t let the other ants know.

How do you get ants out of car seats?

First, you should spray your car seats with some pesticide (read the label to make sure it can be applied to whatever material your car seats are made of). After spraying, leave for 30 minutes, and hoover the car seat to get rid of the dead ants. You can also use natural repellents such as peppermint oil, lemon juice, or white vinegar.

Can I spray insecticides in my car?

You should always read the label of whichever pesticide you are using. Many pesticides can be applied to materials but you should always check the label. There are other natural options if you are looking to understand how to get rid of sugar ants in your car, such as peppermint, and other essential oils.


If you want to know how to get rid of sugar ants in your car, then you should follow the 5 steps here in this post.

Ants are attracted to 2 things in life, food, and water. By removing both of these, you are greatly reducing the chances of having an ant infestation in your car.

Ants do have the ability to cause health issues, so it is best that you get rid of them ASAP.

Good luck!

About the Author

Pest Pro

Since 2008, I have become far too obsessed with DIY methods to get rid of pests! From cockroaches, woodlouse, ants, and other crawling pests, to flying pests such as mosquitos, I have searched far and wide for the best ways to combat these critters.

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