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Not effectively, no. Sure, some of the pesky ants will fall victim to the unpleasantly fatal  experience that is being sucked into the vacuum cleaner. However, majority will come out alive due to their extremely light body weight that protects them from being hurt. Ants are surprisingly strong both physically and structurally. 

Luckily, we do have a few ways that your trusty vacuum cleaner can be used to rid your home of ants.  

Read my article about Roomba Models

Vacuuming Ants

The best part of using the vacuum cleaner to clean up a mess of ants is that the process is quick and easy. If your ants are in a line or in a certain area, the vacuum cleaner makes quick work of sucking them all up. 

Simply sucking them up isn’t the end of the job, though. Next you need to properly dispose of the vacuum bag in a way that the ants won’t find their way back into your home. This means that you should take the bag far away from your home before throwing it in the trash. 

Read: Roomba Alternatives to consider

If your vacuum cleaner is a bagless model the disposal process is even easier, only requiring the dumping of the canister into a garbage bag and not having an extra vacuum bag – which can be expensive!- on hand. 

Once the ants are in the garbage bag, you’ll need to do one more thing; add some diatomaceous earth into the bag. Then, shake, seal, and dispose of the bag (preferably in a sealed trash can or dumpster).

Diatomaceous earth is a great anti-ant product to use because it is significantly less damaging to the earth and atmosphere than ant sprays or insecticides. Another great reason to use diatomaceous earth is that it is highly flammable and therefore, shouldn’t be used in or around vacuums. 

Warning: Never introduce any killers or sprays and vacuums. Doing so can be extremely harmful to not only your vacuum cleaner , but to yourself and anyone in the immediate area, too. This also means that you should avoid vacuuming areas that have been sprayed with any kind of chemical. 

Best Vacuum For Ants and Other Pests

The Washington State Department of Ecology did this study. In our opinion, the best kind of vacuum cleaner for dealing with ants and other unwelcome pests has to be the handy old shop vac. Particularly, the Shop-Vac 5-Gallon 4.5 Peak HP Stainless Steel Wet Dry Vacuum. If your home doesn’t have a shop vac, you should consider getting one – especially if you have an ant problem. 

This kind of vacuum cleaner is durable and great for cleaning up a variety of messes. Some can even be used to clean up water, such as the one just mentioned. The best part? The fact that shop vacs offer these great qualities at a fraction of the price of traditional vacuums. 

Additionally, shop vacs are a lot less likely to actually harm the ants that they suck up, which can be a major plus if you’re concerned about slaughtering thousands of innocent ants. 

Getting to The Root Problem

If you’ve gotten to the point of having to ask is a vacuum cleaner can kill ants then I think it’s safe to assume that you probably have an obvious ant problem. Although a vacuum seems like a quick solution, it’s not the best option for long term relief. 

On one hand, we could rehash information from other sites that suggest that you use Borax, vinegar, or any number of other substances to kill ants, however, the truth is that if you want to keep ants away for good you’ll eventually need to use an insecticide. 

So far, the best insecticide we’ve come across  is Advion Ant Gel Insecticide, which can be purchased here. If you need proof of how good this stuff works, you’ll be keen to learn that many experts use it. 

In general, gel is the best medium to use to keep ants away, as it affects the entire colony. After a while of exposure, the ants will die and you either won’t see them or you will and they will be dead. Then, you can suck them up with the vacuum. 

An Alternative Removal Method 

If you don’t believe me when I talk about ants not necessarily being killed by vacuums, and you’re still searching for a quick and easy removal method that won’t kill them, you have another option.

The Sokos Humane Insects and Bug Catcher Vacuum is designed to trap but not kill ants. It collects the ants using a gentle suction, depositing them into a canister that can be emptied outside. It can also be used for spiders and other pests. 

Benefits of Vacuuming Ants 

Quick and easy

Vacuuming ants, or anything up for that matter, is just about the easiest way to get rid of a mess. This being said, it’s incredibly convenient and quick to do. 

No special equipment

Vacuuming ants up requires only one tool: a vacuum cleaner , which is particularly great because most modern households have at least one vacuum. Whether it be a shop vac or a stand up vacuum, you probably have one lying around. Using this method means that there’s no need to run out and buy any special equipment – unless, of course, you’re intending to kill the ants. In which case, you’d need something like diatomaceous earth, as well. 

Eco-friendly

Using a vacuum to remove ants doesn’t require the use of any chemicals. Thanks to this, it serves as an eco-friendly ant solution that you don’t have to feel bad about. The only environmental impact it has on the world is the minute amount of electricity that’s needed to power the vacuum of choice. 

Affordable

Using your vacuum as a DIY get-rid-of-ants-quick solution is a fantastic way to save yourself some cash. If your ant problem is relatively small, using the vacuum can do just as much as hiring a professional could. However, if your ant problem is substantial, a professional might still be the way to go. 

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