How To Use Diatomaceous Earth For Ants – 5 Ways

Out of all the pests that enter a home during the spring and summer months, ants are the ones that I hate the most!


Because once they have found a food source, they tell all their buddies (using a chemical trail), and before you know it, there is a line of ants invading your home and food! I’ve looked at household items you can use to control ants in your home, such as lemon, vinegar, and other items.

In this post, we will look at how to use diatomaceous earth for ants.

Can it be used? How does it work? How long does it take? Let’s take a look.

What you will learn in this post:

  • How to use diatomaceous earth for ants – 5 confirmed ways
  • Is it safe to use?
  • How diatomaceous earth kills ants
  • How long do you have to wait for the diatomaceous to work on ants

How To Use Diatomaceous Earth For Ants

How To Use Diatomaceous Earth For Ants – 5 Confirmed Ways

Diatomaceous earth is one of the best natural pest killer options that you can have around your home. It doesn’t just work for ants; it works for most other pests too!

If you are regularly invaded by pests, then you should definitely have some Diatomaceous earth in your home ready to use against them.

How To Use Diatomaceous Earth For Ants Infographic

1. Sprinkle Directly On Ants

If you wake up and find a long line of ants marching to a food source or generally walking around looking for food or water, sprinkle diatomaceous earth directly onto the ants.

By sprinkling directly onto ants, you know that it will eventually kill the ants.

2. Add To Bait

The ants will be affected quicker by eating diatomaceous earth, but it is more of a challenge to get them to eat it!

Add diatomaceous to ant bait. Anything sweet! Not only will ants eat it, but they will also tread through it, which means it will work in 2 ways to kill them. They will also take it back to their nest by walking through it.

3. Sprinkle In Entry Points

If you have found some entry points that ants have used to get into your home, sprinkle the diatomaceous earth around that area.

If and when they use that entry point, they will tread into the diatomaceous earth, which will begin the killing process!

4. Spray It

Although diatomaceous earth doesn’t work when wet, it will work when it has dried out. For example, you can use a spray to ensure that it covers a large area of ants inside or outside your home.

This is especially useful if you have noticed many ants outside your home, ready to invade!

Diatomaceous Earth Spray To Kill Ants

  • 4 cups of water.
  • 1 tablespoon on DE.
  • 2-3 drops of soap.

Mix the ingredients and use them in a spray bottle.

5. Sprinkle Onto Anthill

If you have found an anthill near your home, you will want to get rid of it ASAP. You can sprinkle (a lot) of diatomaceous earth onto an anthill to help destroy it.

The process I follow is:

  • Sprinkle diatomaceous earth on the anthill
  • Wait 1 day
  • Pour boiling water onto the anthill

Will Diatomaceous Earth Kill Ants?

Yes – diatomaceous earth does kill ants! I’ve tested this, as have thousands of other folks.

Diatomaceous earth is incredible as a natural pest control product, I always have it on hand for pest control, and I recommend you too.

What Is Diatomaceous Earth?

Diatomaceous earth is a naturally occurring, soft white rock that can easily crumble.

It is excellent for pest control, but you can also use it for deodorant, soap, skincare, and lots more!

How Does Diatomaceous Earth Kill Ants?

The specks of dust are razor-sharp, which means they will easily penetrate an ant’s exoskeleton. Once it has penetrated the outer skin of the ant, it will dehydrate the ant, which results in them eventually dying.

How Fast Does Diatomaceous Earth Work On Ants?

The length of time it takes for diatomaceous earth to kill ants depends on how you have used it.

If you have scattered it on ants, it will work within 2-3 days. If the ants have ingested it, diatomaceous earth will take 12 and 24 hours. By scattering it around common entry points for ants, you will add at least 2 days to the time.

It is fair to say that diatomaceous earth isn’t the fastest way to kill ants, but it is one of the best natural methods.

Does Food-Grade Diatomaceous Earth Kill Ants?

If you want to know how to use diatomaceous earth for ants, you will need to know whether food-grade diatomaceous earth will do the trick.

Yes – food-grade diatomaceous earth is the only version I recommend you use for ant control.

Although it is not harmful to humans, I recommend wearing a face mask when using diatomaceous earth for ant control.


If you wanted to know how to use diatomaceous earth for ants, this post has given you 5 confirmed ways to use it!

While diatomaceous earth is a winner in natural ant control (as it is with many other pests), it is not something that I would rely on solely.

The issue for me is the time it takes for it to work. For that reason, I like to double up on the attack when getting rid of ants. For instance:

  • Anthills – Attack with diatomaceous earth and leave it for 1 day. Then I will pour boiling water onto them.
  • Ants in your home – I’ll scatter diatomaceous earth on ants and near the entry points. I’ll then use bleach to kill the ants and clean up the chemical trail. I may also use vinegar or lemon juice to clear the ants in my home.
  • Ants outside your home – I’ll scatter diatomaceous earth in the areas where I can see a large collection of ants. After a day, I will check to see if they are gone. If not, I will use boiling water.

Good luck!


About the author

DIY Pest Control Enthusiast Since 1996

After spending the entire night lying awake in a cockroach-infested hotel, I have driven myself to build knowledge on all things pest control. Since then, I've tested pest control techniques to see what works and what doesn't. Now, here I am giving you all the info I have learned!

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