Do Ant Killers Kill Spiders? Ant Insecticides and How They Can Kill Spiders

Ant killers are insecticides that mainly focus on getting rid of ants. These can range from DIY natural sprays to commercial products that bait and kill them. But what happens if you don’t have anything else in the house? Can you use them against other pests like spiders? Do ant killers kill spiders?

To answer those questions, we’ve analyzed the active ingredients of the most common ant insecticides out there. Here’s our take on how these insecticides can be effective against spiders.

Do Ant Killers Kill Spiders? Ant Insecticides and How They Can Kill Spiders

Ant killers have ingredients that can affect spiders.

Commercial Ant Sprays

For obvious reasons, companies like Terro and Raid don’t reveal their exact formulas in producing their ant sprays. However, they do highlight the most important ingredients that make their products effective.                 

According to their website, Terro’s ant spray contains Prallethrin, Esfenvalerate and N-Octyl bicycloheptene dicarboximide. Meanwhile, Raid’s product includes doses of Imiprothrin and Cypermethrin. With direct contact, these ingredients can instantly kill ants.


But do they work against spiders?

Interestingly, all the substances we’ve mentioned above are versions of pyrethoids. These are organic compounds that come from chrysanthemum flowers, and they’re very similar to permethrin and pyrethrins.

According to a 2001 toxicological profile on pyrethrins and pyrethroids, pyrethoids do, in fact, work on spiders, as a killer and as a repellent. But you need to douse the spider with more of the spray since it’s a lot bigger than ants.

Remember to read a spray’s description bar. Look for the names of the compounds that we mentioned earlier. That way, you can kill both spiders and ants in your house.

Ant Baits

The two types of ant baits, the liquid and the gel type, both work the same way. They lure ants in with their smell and taste. The ants eat the baits and pass the active ingredients to the other members of the nest. But shortly after, they all die from the substances infused into the liquid or gel. These substances can either be Cyhalothrin, Fipronil or Borax or Sodium Tetraborate Decahydrate.  


But do they work against spiders? 

All the active ingredients above are known pesticides that can kill many types of insects. However, when it comes to spiders, just hoping for the baits to lure them in won’t do you any good.

Ant baits rely on their victims to eat the gel or liquid presented in front of them. And since spiders are mostly carnivores that prefer to catch live food, there’s very little chance that they’d be attracted to the baits.

So the best way for you to use ant baits would be to douse the spiders with the liquid or gel. Make sure that the spiders come into direct contact with as much of the baits as possible. That’s for the active ingredients to infiltrate their bodies.

Vinegar Sprays

An ant’s tiny body is very easy to kill. Spraying it with vinegar is enough to wipe it out. So there are lot of homeowners who arm themselves with white vinegar sprays to get rid of them.


But do they work against spiders? 

A spider is a lot tougher than an ant, so vinegar won’t be able to kill it. The acetic acid in white or apple cider vinegar isn’t enough to stop an arachnid’s bodily functions, not unless it’s drowning in it.

However, the condiment’s powerful pungent smell does have the ability to repel those arachnids. So regularly spraying vinegar into spider infested regions in the house can keep them away.

To learn more about how vinegar affects spiders, head on to our post here.

Essential Oil Sprays

The last item in our list makes use of essential oils. Mixing lavender or peppermint oil into water is said to kill ants as well as repel them.


But do they work against spiders?

Just like vinegar, essential oils can’t kill spiders. They can only ward them off. So if you’re looking for DIY essential oil remedies for spiders, you’ll only get repellents instead of killers.

So that’s it for answering the ever-important question Do ant killers kill spiders? Lucky for us, there are a lot of generalized pesticides out in the market today, so you won’t have to go through the trouble of guessing if they work against non-insect pests like spiders. And if you do get stuck with only an ant killer at home, remember to pay close attention to its ingredients. It may be useful against spiders.

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