Car Advice

How to get rid of ants in your car

Have you ever opened your car door, or climbed into your car and seen ants crawling all over it? Here’s how to get rid of ants in your car.

YESTERDAY I collected a press car for road testing. I drove it home and didn’t notice a thing wrong with it. The car was spotlessly clean inside and out and I mean it was so clean you didn’t need to worry about the 5sec rule…

But, this morning when I opened the passenger door to start taking some photos, the door seal resembled an ant super highway. My photos aren’t doing it any justice. The ants are everywhere; there even seems to be some eggs… But they’re not inside the car proper, which is great news.

how to get rid of ants in your car

So, what am I to do?

The car is already clean inside and out, but if you’ve got ants in your car then it’s usually because there’s a food source, whether that’s a chocolate wrapper, an empty drink can in a cup holder, or a smear of something sugary somewhere. But I’ve had a good look around and can’t see anything, and there’s certainly nothing visible where the ants are now.

But, if you’ve got ants and you’ve got this sort of stuff laying around inside your car, then you’ll need to, obviously, remove anything from the car that would attract ants and then clean it inside and out, and I mean properly clean it inside and out. You’ll need to vacuum and then wipe down on all the surfaces with an automotive surface cleaner, or even ammonia-free window cleaner will do the trick with a microfibre cloth.

Once you’ve cleaned out the car and wiped down the surfaces, then you can look at making up a solution to chase the ants out of your car. It’s simple. Grab a spray bottle and put a teaspoonful of an essential oil into it, like Lavender or Peppermint, then add a squirt or two of dishwashing detergent and top it up with about two cups of water. Give it a good shake and then spray the area where the ants are.

Once you’ve done this it’s likely the ants will scurry away and hide wherever they’ve made their home. This means you’ll need to keep checking and cleaning and spraying the area where they are/reappear.


Isaac Bober

Isaac Bober

Isaac Bober was born in the shadow of Mount Panorama in Bathurst and, so, it was inevitable he’d fall into work as a motoring writer. He began his motoring career in 2000 reviewing commercial vehicles, before becoming editor of Caravan & Motorhome magazine. He then moved to MOTOR Magazine before going freelance and contributing to Overlander 4WD, 4×4 Australia, TopGear Australia, Men’s Health, Men’s Fitness, The Australian, CARSguide, and many more.