Those small, black ants that you see on almost every sidewalk are pavement ants. Ubiquitous in Salt Lake County and Utah County, they seem fine when they’re outside. Unfortunately, they can infest your home and cause expensive damage.


Understanding the appearance and behavior of pavement ants will help you identify them. And identification is the first step towards extermination!

Luckily for homeowners, pavement ants are monomorphic, which means that males and females look the same. If you’ve seen one, you’ve seen them all.

Worried you have a pavement ant infestation? Here are some simple ways to identify pavement ants.

  • Worker pavement ants (the ants that you see traveling outside the colony) are small. They are usually only 3mm or 0.1 inches long.
  • They are usually dark brown or black in color.
  • Like many ants, they usually form trails when traveling from their colony to their food source.
  • Pavement ants can sting and bite. Although they don’t pose a major threat to humans, their bite can still cause some minor swelling and redness.
  • They eat anything from insects to cheese, which means even small crumbs or food scraps could attract them.
  • Queen pavement ants can live for up to 10 years.
  • They prefer to live under rocks or near concrete or a sidewalk (thus the name pavement ants). Homeowners commonly notice them close to or under patios.


Ants are abundant everywhere in Utah, and pavement ants are one of the most common species around. These ants are attracted to a wide variety of food sources. If you see an ant in your yard or notice an unwelcome visitor in your home, chances are it’s a pavement ant.

One of the reasons that pavement ants are so ubiquitous is because they are well-adapted to urban environments.

As their name suggests, pavement ants can nest under sidewalks and they are also commonly found under the foundations of buildings and patios. Once a scout has found its way into a building through a tiny crack or opening, they leave chemical scent trails that other pavement ants can follow to a food source.

A “food source” can be anything from another insect to something sweet, so you could potentially find a trail of busy pavement ants almost anywhere in your home.


Pavement ants have a sting, but it’s too weak to be dangerous to humans. They are a real nuisance if they infest your home, however. Just a few ants can quickly contaminate food and surfaces and leave trails for thousands more ants to follow.

Pavement ants can cause damage outside the home, too. If they have nested under slabs, driveways or other surfaces, the ground underneath might become compromised. This can eventually cause sagging, movement, or collapse. They also leave unattractive piles of earth by their nests.


Unfortunately, you generally won’t realize you have an issue with pavement ants until they’re already inside.There are some things you can do to try and prevent tiny pavement ants from entering your home so that you never have to deal with a large infestation. Following these tips may dissuade pavement ants from making your kitchen their next target.

  • Clean up spilled food and keep countertops clean so there aren’t any obvious food sources for scouting pavement ants to find.
  • If you do see a few stray ants, thoroughly clean the areas they were in to get rid of any scent trails they might have left.
  • Keep food, including pet food, in sealed containers.
  • Seal up any obvious cracks or gaps leading into your home.
  • If you have fruit trees, avoid leaving fruit to rot on the ground. Rotting fruit attracts insects.

If you’ve already noticed pavement ants in your home, don’t panic. There are many natural methods you can try for getting rid of pavement ants. These include:

  • Making a mixture of powdered sugar and baking sugar to kill the ants.
  • Using peppermint or cloves as a natural repellent.
  • Putting coffee grounds around your yard to deter nest building.
  • Pouring boiling water into the nest.

If you have a serious pavement ant infestation, ant baits may also be effective.

Professional Help For Pavement Ants

At the end of the day, the best way to remove pavement ants is to call a professional pest control company like H2 Pest Control. Professional treatments are thorough and effective in a way that DIY solutions aren’t.

At H2 Pest Control, we serve homes all across Salt Lake County and Utah County. We can identify and solve your pavement ant problems. Give us a call today!