How to Get Rid of Ants from your Laptops
Ants are hilarious creatures. They do unexpected things like living in the sewers and nesting within electronics like TVs, home theaters, and even laptops.
But unlike in the sewers where you can leave them, your laptop is no place for ants. If you leave them be, these ants can cause more damage than you even know of.
However, getting rid of ants from your laptops is a piece of cake. So, pay attention and learn what you must from this article, okay?
Can Ants Destroy Laptops?
The short answer to this is yes.
But damaging your laptop won’t be their original agenda. Because unlike wood and other plant materials like leaves and stems, most ants do not consider the wiring and capacitors in laptops as food.
Although out there, there are two rare species of ants called the Asian super ants and the Electric ants that can eat through electrical wires. In fact, they eat the cables until they cause fire sparks.
However, as said earlier, these species of ants are quite rare. So, we’ll focus on the more common ants whose main reason for entering laptops and other appliances is to nest.
Often, these ants squish themselves into your laptops through the air vents. Sometimes, they even enter via the USB ports, the charging points, and other loopholes that your laptops can’t do without.
By doing so, these ants (if they come in en masse) may block the vital relay paths in your charging ports and USB ports. This, of course, will cause some parts of your laptops to malfunction.
If the ants come in through the air vents, they may clog the fans and cause them to stop spinning. Likewise, they may even get trapped by the tiny gaps between the capacitors. And whenever you turn on your laptop, the unlucky ants get electrocuted.
When that happens, your laptop will overheat. As we all know, overheating can crash your laptop’s motherboard, fry the hard disk, cause data loss, and a lot of other things.
Can Ants Live in Your Laptop?
The thing is; ants love to stay anywhere there’s warmth. This allows them to breed and raise the next-generation ants.
Luckily for these ants, our laptops are warm on the inside. In fact, it even has a nice ventilation system that works just fine for the ants. So, whenever they get the chance, the ants choose to live there.
However, ants can’t live inside your laptops for long. Because as time passes, the heat in the laptop may become unbearable. As a result, some ants would die off. The others that survive would escape on their own.
But before then, your laptop might have suffered significant damage. So, it’s best you eliminate your laptop ants (aka crazy ants) as soon as you notice them.
Why Do Ants Enter Your Laptop?
There are several things that can attract ants to your laptop. Let’s look at some of them below:
1. Food Spills
One of the major goals of ants in life is to find food.
Often, the ants that infest your laptops love anything sugary like the soda, biscuit, or chocolate that you eat while working on your laptop. At other times, it may even be the oil stains from the food we eat or crumbs from the food itself.
All these bring ants near the laptops. If the food stain is on the screen or the keyboard, the ants take a step further to colonize the laptop. Because to them, the scent of the food crumbs and stains means that your laptop is a rich source of food.
2. Laptop Heat.
While working, the processor of our laptops produces heat. This heat cools down to a residual warm level after you’re down working with those heat-generating apps. Sometimes, this heat could even arise just a short while after shutting down.
Coupled with the food crumbs, this heat makes ants (the crazy ants) consider your laptop as a good place to nest.
The crazy ants would move in a random pattern towards the laptop. That’s one.
Then again, those ants prefer to hop into the laptops via the charging ports, the CPU vents, and other vents in the laptops. As they pass through the CPU vent, the blade of the CPU cooling fan might cut some ants.
Once that happens, the pheromone (the signal chemical) in those ants will gush out. And this attracts other ants to the laptop.
How Do You Know Ants Have Infested Your Laptop?
There has been no scientific evidence to identify an ant infestation within laptops. However, two things can serve as good markers.
The first marker comes when you notice several live ants near your laptop. That should hint to you that these ants are there because of the food crumbs and food stains on the laptop or rather because of the pheromones from other dead ants.
Second, you can also check for frass (ant or termite poops) and sawdust near your laptop. This is another common sign of ant infestation.
- READ MORE: Different Types of Ants That Bite.
How to Get Rid of Ants from Laptops
- Clean the laptop; both interior and exterior.
Start by wiping your laptop screen and keyboards with a clean and moist cloth. This will help remove any food stains and crumbs that are between the keys and on the screen.
To make the exterior cleaner easier and more effective, you can use electronic wipes. These wipes can help break down the laptop stains and allow easy removal within a few swipes. So, clean everywhere on the laptop exterior with an electronic wipe.
Afterward, you can then open up your laptop and clean the inside. To do this, remove the laptop battery and unscrew the bolt near the panel underside.
If ants are there, you will see them running for their dear life the moment you open the laptop. You can leave it open for about 30 minutes and then come back to wipe it. However, some people recommend vacuums.
But vacuuming close to the capacitors can damage the laptop. So, even if you used it, make sure you raise up the vacuum about two inches away from the laptop.
- Make the Ants Feel Unsafe by Using Water Molt.
Now, mind you; water can damage your laptop. So, you will have to be very careful while using this method.
To use it, you need an enormous bowl that can fit your laptop such that no matter the amount of water you pour, your laptop will not be submerged. Fill the bowl with water and place another material that will act as an island located a few inches away from your laptop.
You can then use a rule to bridge the gap between the island and the laptop. This will serve as the only exit point for the ants. So, when they move out in their usual manner, they will realize that the laptop has been isolated.
When that happens, they feel threatened and hurriedly leave via the bridge to the island. Once they get there, you can kill off the ants with a good insecticide.
If this explanation is quite unclear, you can watch the video on how to make a water molt here.
- Wrap Your Laptop in a plastic bag.
Another way to get rid of ants from your laptop is to wrap the ants in a plastic bag. You can then seal the bag with an electronic seal to suck out all the air in the laptop.
Once that happens, the ants inside the laptop will scurry out into the bag and suffocate till death. However, the eggs may remain. So, even after the plastic wrapping, you may need to clean your laptop as described above.
- Use ant baits.
You can also kill the ants by making baits and placing them near your laptop. One of the most effective ant baits out there is made of sugar and boric acid.
The sugar attracts the ants, and the boric acid kills them.
- Avoid Eating Near the Laptop.
It is one thing to rid your laptop of ants. It is another thing to prevent them from coming back.
Earlier, we told you that food crumbs and food stains are the main reasons ants get near your laptops.
So, to prevent them, you need to stop eating near your laptop. Your work desk is not your dining table. So, head to the dining table when it’s time to eat. Then, you can come back to eat once you’re done. Simple, right?
Is There a Way to Get Rid of Ants from Laptops Without Opening?
Yes, there is. To get rid of your laptop ants without opening it, you can simply turn off the laptop and seal it in a plastic bag for several hours or days.
This will help deprive the ants of the air they need to survive. And you can even accelerate the process by using an electric bag sealer to suck out all the air.
In most cases, the ants will try to leave the laptop interior and die inside the plastic bag. However, many people believe that heavy infestation may later require that you open up your laptop.
In fact, the eggs on the laptop will remain if you don’t later open up the laptop. Because at some point, the eggs will hatch and restart the colony.
Another way to kill the ants without opening the laptop is to run powerful apps. These apps make laptops overheat. This heat will kill the ants lurking inside the laptop.
- READ MORE: How To Get Rid Of Ant Hills.
In this article, we pointed out that food stains, food crumbs, and laptop heat are the main reasons ants get close to laptops.
You can get rid of these ants by cleaning both in and out of the laptop with electronic wipes. You can also seal the laptop in a plastic bag and lure out the ants using a water molt. Everything else you need is inside this article.