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 tablespoons 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 icon

**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!

Resources for this project:
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Alexis @ Chemistry Cachet
Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!
Frequently asked questions
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3 of 516 questions
  • Dor29695567 Dor29695567 on May 11, 2022

    Is there anything to keep lizards away from my house, I have tried just about everything on Google, nothing helps, I am afraid of them crossing in front of me, cannot leave my doors open or have to look every time I open my door, afraid of them getting into the house, please someone HELP

  • Tonjiastatsmann Tonjiastatsmann on Jun 18, 2022

    Want information about weed killer

  • Amy Amy on Aug 06, 2022

    How do I get rid of bees on my hummingbird feeders?

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5 of 623 comments
  • Sue Sue on Jan 08, 2022

    We had lots of problems with fire ants when living in the desert. Dry yellow corn meal sprinkled on their mound or trail will take care of them overnight. Works great and no chemicals.

    • See 1 previous
    • WyldSage WyldSage on Nov 19, 2022

      We use a combo of corn meal and a bit of borax. This works well, too.

  • Amy Amy on Mar 24, 2022

    Buy a box of Grits! It's AMAZING at killing ants. Do not water before using and wait at least 24 hours after. Open the box with a knife(you can wear gloves) sprinkle the Grits wherever you see any ants. The ants cannot pass gas, also they have to drink water after eating. The Grits swell and the are done.

    • Dor29695567 Dor29695567 on May 11, 2022

      Grits has never worked for me with ants, will try the yellow corn meal