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Old 05-27-2010, 07:38 AM   #1
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1976 25' Tradewind
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Bats in the belfry...or rather, Ants in the A/C

Still kinda new to camping in general (2nd season), so I don't know how common this is and I would love some feedback, solutions, etc. I'm on my second trip of this season, turned on the AC 2 nights ago and 2 live ants (big'ns, carpenter?) came shooting out of the vent - I actually thought it was kinda funny at the time, because it scared the living daylights outta me... but temps reached mid-90's yesterday while I was at work and when I returned to the CG, I found ants swarming/covering the interior AC vent cover, presumably escaping the heat outside. When I started killing their brethren, the survivors/escapees quickly retreated back into the AC shroud, so I'm assuming there's some sort of a nest up there.
I don't want to remove the interior cover and be showered with live ants, but I don't really want to spray chemicals up into my AC either, so I've decided to wait until I get home and take off the exterior cover to find and fix the problem.
Has this happened to anyone else? Any ideas what I can expect to find when I get up there (Are these ants gonna be living off the carcass of some recently deceased critter?)? Any solutions and/or methods to prevent this from happening again (I don't THINK I dropped any crumbs inside the AC)?
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Old 05-27-2010, 08:42 AM   #2
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Johne,
We had big black carpenter ants around or water heater last year in our '87, but never up in the AC unit. We had a spell of really wet weather and I think the colony was looking for a warm dry spot and the water heater fit the bill. When I discovered them they had already started moving some of their eggs and larvae under the water heater. I just used Raid ant killer to kill them and then the shop vac to get rid of the carcasses. I now treat the ground around the perimeter of the trailer with an insecticide.

Hopefully you won't find a carpenter and colony in full swing under your AC shroud. I think the only way to eradicate them would be to spray the innards of the AC unit with and insecticide. I would also want to drop the cover on the inside of the trail for an inspection and remove any carcasses. You don't want a colony getting in-between the outer and inner walls.
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Old 05-27-2010, 08:54 AM   #3
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you can try putting some bait traps up on the roof by the ac. it may take a few days. if the activity level drops you'll have an easier time when you drop the inside cover :-) i'd also lay out a drop cloth with boric acid powder in it to slow the dropees.
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