Cheap & Easy Homemade Ant Spray

4 Materials
3 Minutes

One of the most viewed chemistry tips post on Chemistry Cachet is this homemade weed killer (link in blog post below). Readers love how effective and easy it is to make. I have also used it to kill bugs! It works amazing to kill ants especially.

Over the last few months, I have modified it up a little to be an amazing and easy homemade ant spray!

The reasons I changed it up is to make it a little better for killing ants on any surface without leaving as much of a residue. Although this homemade weed killer is fantastic for killing bugs outside, it can leave a little salt residue behind in the home.

Remember! This for ANTS! For the weed killer, Click blog post link (at the bottom of this post it says check out our website with the word GO you click on) and we have it linked in article numerous times. We keep having readers asking why we don't share the weed killer, we have!!! Just click the blog post at the bottom.


2 cups of vinegar, distilled

2 cups of water

3 tablespoon blue Dawn dishwashing liquid

3 tablespoons table salt

Spray Bottle (For the best spray bottle options, please click blog link below)

NOTE::::I've had people saying they've used this for weeds. This is NOT our weed killer. It has completely different ratios with addition of water for the chemistry of it. Please read the FAQs on our website to see the difference between this and weed killer!!!!!! People keep asking for the weed killer recipe, please read the blog post. We've linked weed killer 4 or 5 times for you. Also, this is not really for other bugs. You're welcome to try it, but this is specifically for ants.


Mix ingredients together, add to a spray bottle.

Shake well before spraying each time.

I use blue Dawn for all my solutions on Chemistry Cachet because it has worked better for me. You can use any dishwashing liquid you have on hand, but I prefer Dawn

**You might be wondering why we use so many of the same ingredients for is all about the RATIOS and the Chemistry!! You can stock up on cheap ingredients like this and create hundreds of solutions, like the ones in our book and on our website.


Saturate the area the ants are crawling. They die in a few seconds. Make sure to spray the entire pathway they have used too.

Allow the ants to die, then wipe the area off with a paper towel! The lingering vinegar and dish soap scent deters them from coming back to this area too. Make sure to wipe surface to prevent any possible residue.

FOR FIRE ANTS: it will kill the ones around the home. For outdoor fire ants or mounds, you might need to use a lot more of this solution.

Chemistry Tips on Homemade Ant Spray

I know readers love understanding the reasons we use certain items in our solutions, so let’s discuss the chemistry behind this ant spray.

Vinegar & Dawn Dish Soap

Why do we use acetic acid and a surfactant like Dawn dish soap? Click post below!

Why Salt??

Salt has an interesting chemistry, but it also enhances the acidity. By adding salt, you increase the effectiveness of this solution.

Without water, salt won’t dissolve well. Like I mentioned above, our homemade weed killer doesn’t contain water, so the salt doesn’t dissolve completely. This is perfect for sticking on weeds and killing them. For an ant spray, you don’t necessarily need the salt pieces, just the salt water.



Readers have already been using this solution an LOVING it! Make sure to click the blog link below for all the questions we've been asked. If you have a questions, make sure to read the blog link first!

Suggested materials:

  • Table Salt  (Grocery Store)
  • Vinegar  (Grocery Store)
  • Dawn Dishwashing Liquid  (Grocery Store)
See all materials

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Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!


Have a question about this project?

3 of 429 questions
  • Christine
    on Jul 14, 2019

    Do you have any good solution/idea for rabbits? They’re eating everything!

  • Cathy
    on Aug 9, 2019

    Could this be used on Dogs for fleas?

  • Judy Burns
    6 days ago

    I have a bad problem with very tiny ants. There are hundreds of them. Someone told me to use Cinnimon. I did and the ants were gone. Now they're back. They are all over my counter any used dishes not washed everywhere. It's hard to cook. I can't figure out where they're coming from. My apt is old no modern anything. How can I find their home where they are coming from. Thank you so much. I'm getting very anxious. I'm 76 yrs and I'm losing to baby ants.

    • Luna
      30 minutes ago

      You could try boric acid (some recipes mention borax instead, but apparently the acid is safer and works better). Either mix half and half with powdered sugar or heat a bit of water and add granulated sugar and boric acid until you have a sort of syrup. The ants will take this to their mound and it'll kill even the queen. It may take some time, though, to get rid of the entire colony.

      Make sure you have sugar ants. I didn't think this recipe worked because mine completely ignored it. Turns out there are sugar and protein/fat ants and mine are of the second variety, it finally worked when I mixed the boric acid with cat food.

Join the conversation

2 of 511 comments
  • Dixie Lee
    on Jun 15, 2019

    Wasp problems - this isn't chemistry but it works.

    I raised birds for years in an outdoor aviary and had horrible problems with wasps. This is the best, safest wasp repellant there is.

    Get a brown paper lunch bag and fill with plastic grocery bags. Scrunch top and tie closed (I use jute). Leave long tail from knots to hang from bush, tree or whatever. Wasps think it's hornets and will stay far away as long as they can see it.

  • Sherry Pell
    on Jul 2, 2019

    yes of coarse, we have some big fat black ants in georgia

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