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How to Get Rid of Ants in a Bathroom

March 24, 2023

By Daniel Baldwin, BCE, CCFS, CP-FS

Ants don’t just make their homes in kitchens or patios. This post explains why you may find ants in a bathtub, sink, or shower and provides tips to get rid of ants in bathrooms.

Why are there ants in my bathroom? 

If you have ants in the bathroom, the pests have likely found something they need there. Water in the sink, tub, or shower can supply water. Toothpaste residue, drips from toiletries, shower mildew, and even dead skin cells or shed hairs can provide food for ants.

An ant infestation in a bathroom usually begins with just a few pests. These scouts can get into the bathroom through small gaps and cracks in your home’s structure, gaps around windows, and spaces around plumbing and electrical wiring. When they find food and water, ants give off pheromones to draw more workers from their colony, which can lead to a full-blown infestation.

ants on bathroom tiles

Why are ants coming out of my bathroom sink?

Ants don’t usually travel through plumbing, but you will often see ants in drains. If ants come out of the drain in your sink, they’re most likely eating debris caught in the plumbing. Even if the water is draining out of the sink, hair, toothpaste, and other waste could be hidden in the drain stem. A leaky faucet can also draw ants because it provides a steady water source.

What attracts ants into homes and bathrooms?

Ants want three main things: shelter, food, and water. Bathrooms in apartments and houses can provide all three. Water can leak from faucets, seep out around toilets, pool on shower floors, and linger along the edges of the sink. As explained above, bathrooms can provide many sources of nourishment for ants.

In addition, ants like to hide in dark, warm places. Bathrooms have many small hidden nooks and crannies to attract them, and baths are often warmer and damper than the rest of the home due to showering and bathing.

How to get rid of ants in a bathroom

To get rid of ants in a stand-up shower, bathtub, sink, or other bathroom areas, follow these tips.

woman doing chores in bathroom at home, cleaning sink and faucet with spray detergent.

Store toiletries properly

Cut off a potential food supply by keeping toiletries stored properly. Put the cap back on the toothpaste after use, and ensure that you tightly fasten the lids on all toiletries and cosmetics. Rather than a soap dish, use an enclosed holder with drainage holes to store bar soap. If you have pump bottles of hand soap or lotion near the sink, wipe off the tip of the dispenser spout after use.

Clean regularly

Rinse out your sink after every use and wipe down the vanity daily. Clean the bathtub and shower at least once per week. At least once a month, give the bathroom a deep cleaning, paying attention to trouble spots like the floors of showers and tubs and the space behind the toilet.

For floor care, sweep or vacuum daily, or every other day while you still have ants. Mop the floor once per week.

Secure the trash

Use a lid on your bathroom wastebasket. While you have an active infestation, take the trash out daily and secure bags tightly before disposal. Wipe out the inside of the garbage can once per week.

Deal with leaks promptly

Don’t ignore a dripping shower head or leaky sink faucet. Take care of leaks as soon as you notice them.

Keep things dry

After you shower, bathe, or use the sink, pat the surface dry with a hand towel. Use machine-washable bath mats to prevent puddles from forming on the floors and launder them regularly.

Practice drain care

Clean out the drains in your sink, tub, and shower periodically. If you notice water draining more slowly, consider hiring a plumber to investigate and clear the drain.

Fix seals and cracks

Gaps and cracks around the tile in a tub or shower could allow ants to get in. Apply fresh caulk or sealant as needed and replace broken tiles when you spot them.

Call the pros

Ants in a bathroom can be difficult to deal with on your own. A licensed pest control technician can locate all the infestation areas and spot potential entry points you might miss. They also have the knowledge and tools to treat ants in sinks, showers, and tubs.

How do I permanently get rid of ants in my bathroom?

It may not be possible to keep ants out of the bathroom permanently. Following the above steps can reduce the risk of finding large or small ants in a bathroom again. However, ants can be an ongoing problem. A professional pest control company can develop a preventative maintenance plan to help combat ants in your shower, sink, or tub.

Pest control services

Hawx Pest Control can help you deal with ants in a bathroom, no matter where they’re hiding. Our licensed pest control technicians will check the space for signs of infestations and then use state-of-the-art technologies, tools, and products to treat them. Our technicians can provide you with customized ant prevention tips and can recommend a maintenance schedule to help keep ants out in the future when needed.

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