The war with the ants continues. I had to apply more sealant a few days ago but this time around, I went and purchased “tooling”. It’s essentially just a few pieces of soft plastic that you press and drag along the bead. The plastic is cut into the shape of the bead you want. It can be an angled straight bead or a curved one. Here’s an example of the tooling I’m talking about. The tool scrapes up any extra sealant and pushes sealant into the gap or joint as well. The key is to use just enough material to make a proper sized bead but not too much though, because you just wind up scraping it off and wasting it.

The picture above should show you what a difference having the proper tool makes. The picture on the left is just the bead I did by hand, using no tooling. It just looks messy. The picture on the right almost looks like I didn’t even use any sealant at all. The angle and lighting made it difficult to show but there’s a straight and thin line of sealant along the moulding. It looks much more professional.

The right thing to do is to eventually remove all the badly applied sealant and then redo it with proper tooling. For now though, it’s not the plan, because despite my best efforts, the ants continue to find new ways in.

As I feared, it’s just a never-ending back and forth now.


Since my last post, I confirmed the latest silicone seal that I used near the door jamb prevented them from popping out into my bedroom. The bad news is that it only took them less than a day to figure out they could just go underneath the flooring plank and pop out in a gap in between the end of the plank and the tile of the bathroom. This gap is less than an inch from where I applied the silicone. I saw the gap earlier and I was wondering if I should just seal it up just in case. I didn’t and now I know I should have.

This morning, I applied silicone all along the edges the flooring planks at the threshold. It’s been less than a day but it seems like they don’t know how to get in now. The bad news, however, is that I’ve discovered a new point of ingress. The ants are coming in from under the door jamb on the opposite side of the threshold. The threshold was/is a highway of sorts. They pop out from one side of the door jamb and then make their way parallel to the threshold and then go under the door jamb on the other side. So tomorrow, I have to seal off the other side as well.

So this is proceeding pretty much as I had feared. It’s just a series of escalating actions on my end. I block and seal off gaps, get a short respite, and then the ants go probing for other openings, and find them. I continue to block and seal, and the cycle begins anew.

My resolve remains strong however. I have lots of sealant, tape, and foam left. It’s a singular entity versus a hive mind of possibly thousands. Who will win in the end?


The battlefront in my war against the ants has shifted slightly. If you’ve been following this saga, the ants were firmly entrenched underneath bathroom sink, in the sink cabinet. After much hard work and strife, I sealed them out of the cabinet. They then were using the outside of the cabinet, which I then also sealed off.

The ants then moved to the threshold between my bathroom and my bedroom. The current front is now the doorjamb, the floor moulding, and the gap between my floor planks and where my closet starts.

In the photo above, you can see basically where all the ants are currently coming and going from. The metal track is where my closet door slides along. All that dried foam is from where I sealed off large gaps where the ants are going under the flooring and the moulding. I’ve never used sealing foam before and it’s very difficult to apply accurately. More is better than less, however, because once it cures and hardens, you can use a utility knife to cut it down to size. I haven’t done that yet.

You’ll also notice the silicone sealant along the rest of the moulding. Yes, the bead I applied is messy and inconsistent but that’s not my concern right now. My primary concern is ensure my latest efforts prevent the ants from entering my apartment.

Whenever I seal off a new area, it always takes a few days to assess if my efforts have worked. I’ve realized that just because I see no ants a few hours or even the next day, it doesn’t mean they can’t come in any more. It could be they’re just not interested in coming into my apartment for whatever reason. Remember, I’ve seen no ants for nearly two weeks in some instances, only to see them again. Who knows where they were or what prompted to return again.

What’s interesting is extrapolating where this is all going. The ants seem to be moving their points of ingress further into my bedroom and away from the bathroom. How far into my bedroom will this go? I hope they just give up at some point.


So about 45 minutes after I made my last post, I decided to call the non-emergency police line. I was getting tired and I knew that if the alarm was still going off when I actually wanted to sleep, I would have trouble falling asleep.

I have heard that people can be on hold for hours on the non-emergency line but it only took a minute to get through. I told the call taker exactly what I wrote in my last post: an alarm across the street was going off for nearly an hour and a half, I thought I heard the fire trucks attending earlier but nothing changed, and the alarm was loud enough to bother the whole block. I also told the call taker that I might break into the building soon to turn it off myself if nothing changed.

They knew I wasn’t lying about the alarm because they said they could hear it through the phone. Interestingly, they also said they hadn’t had any reports about this alarm all night. Was I really the first person to call this in after nearly two hours?

Now of course, as it always happens, as I was on the phone, the alarm went off. I told them immediately and remarked that this was just my luck. I went outside onto my balcony and told the dispatcher that I could see fire trucks down the block, in front of the building with the alarm. I guess they finally turned up? Who called them?

The dispatcher said that if the alarm went off again, I should call this number again and to not break into the building to turn off the alarm myself.

The alarm stayed off all night.


I hope you’re able to listen to the audio file that I’ve embedded above. If you can, you’re listening to an alarm that is going off from across the street. There is a new apartment building being constructed and it should be done in about two or three months. Clearly, the building’s alarms have been installed.

Now why did I decide to record this? Because this alarm has being going off for over an hour and a half now. It started around 11:30pm or so and it’s now nearly 1am. You can hear the alarm anywhere in my apartment. It’s not deafening but it’s loud enough to be annoying. It’s also loud enough that most people would have trouble sleeping. Closing my windows does not mitigate the loudness of the alarm to any extent that would be considered acceptable.

I don’t understand why no one is responding to this alarm. About ten minutes after the alarm started, I heard sirens from what I would assume to be the fire brigade. Unfortunately, if the fire trucks were for the alarm, they weren’t able to turn it off.

I am not understanding how this alarm hasn’t been handled yet. All construction sites for new apartments should have security after hours. If there is security, why haven’t they called someone to take care of this? If there isn’t security, why the hell not?

The only silver lining to all of this is I’m probably not going to bed for another two hours or so. When bedtime does come though and this alarm is still going off, I’m not sure how I’ll be able to sleep.


I had a coffee at 10pm this evening, just because I could. I don’t have to wake up at any specific time tomorrow because I don’t have any work until the new year.

I have a full two weeks off this year for the holidays. I have some things I want to do and also no plans at all at the same time. There are a few housekeeping duties that I need to attend to, like cleaning and getting rid of stuff, but I am ok with days where I sleep in until I feel like it and sip coffee until the late afternoon.

I also have lots of video games and TV watching pencilled in. My service of choice for this month is Netflix and I’ve been catching up on many shows I’ve missed.

I fully expect my sleep schedule to get completely messed up and I’m looking forward to that.


I’ve been observing my bathroom for ants for the last two weeks and I haven’t seen any. It doesn’t mean they aren’t there, it’s just I haven’t been able to observe them. That said, they were pretty easy to find when I started my battle with them, so this is a great development.

This weekend, I went to battle the ants underneath my kitchen sink. I was going to reinforce some areas that I had taped off with stronger tape that isn’t affected by heat. I spent about an entire hour under the sink and I didn’t see a single ant. I’m not going to declare victory based on that alone because I saw a ton of ants a few weeks ago and I hadn’t changed anything since. There’s still many gaps and holes to still seal up under the sink. I likely did not see any ants because they either found somewhere else more to their liking or colder weather had driven them to somewhere warmer. Their absence is because they are choosing not to be under my sink, not because they can’t get to it. I am sure if I gave the good reason to be there, they’d easily find their way.

I need to continue to seal all the gaps and put some expanding foam into the larger holes. I feel perhaps the winter is giving me a respite from the ants and once the warmer weather returns, they’ll be back in greater numbers as well. I need to use this time wisely and prepare.


I know I complain about the weather a lot on this thing but I have to admit, this has been one of the most mild winters I’ve experienced in many years. A year ago, we experienced one of the worst snowstorms in recent memory. It took people upwards of eight hours to commute home.

This winter, so far, has been quite pleasant. Not only have the temperatures remained well-above freezing, the usual rain that is a staple of Vancouver winters has stayed away for the most part. It’s been dry enough that it’s beginning to worry some experts because it could lead to more drought.

I have no complaints at all. The dryer weather means driving is easier. The warmer temperatures means being outside is less of a hassle and I haven’t had to break out my warmer clothes. It also means I’m less tempted to turn on the heat and thus increasing my hydro bill. It’s all good to me. Let the warm days continue.


I was not home for the majority of Sunday and while I was out, I received a phone call from the building manager. He said that the unit below me I had some pooled up in the living room and they wanted to check if the leak was coming from my apartment. I was unable to come home immediately but I did check the security camera that I have in living room. I didn’t see anything weird. My camera also has audio and I didn’t hear the sound of water either. I had some doubts that whatever leak was coming from my place.

I returned home as soon as I could, without upending my original plans. When I arrived home, I saw a mysterious puddle of water in my living room. It was about three feet long and about a foot wide. It would be the amount of water you’d see if you spilled about a glass of water on the floor.

I texted the building manager and let him know I was home. A few minutes later, he arrived at my door with a plumber in tow. They checked a whole bunch of things in my apartment but to make a long story short, they determined the leak did not originate in my apartment. There’s a long wall that divides my living room from my bedroom and the water pipes are inside this wall and they go up to the unit above and down to the unit below.

I could see the faint lines of a water stain on my flooring and I could tell the water actually seeped from inside the wall, underneath the floor moulding, and onto my flooring. The plumber determined whatever was the source of the leak, it was above me. The building manager and plumber then left to go above me to check on those units.

I was left to clean up the water. I used a bath towel to soak up the water and it didn’t take much effort to do so. I remember the flooring guy that sold me my floors said that my floors could handle liquid spills for about 24 hours before it might be a problem. I wasn’t away for nearly that long so I’d like to think my flooring is still ok. Just to make sure, I turned on a fan and blew air along the affected area to help dry out the floors.

The bigger question is what condition is my wall in on the inside? Is the drywall all mushy and wet in there? Or did the leak basically go under the drywall, miss all of it, and just pooled up on my floors?

The building manager came by later to tell me they weren’t able to find the source of the leak but he did tell me that he knows that the person on the 30the floor installed a new dishwasher a few days ago. They couldn’t find any evidence though that this was the issue. So, there’s nothing to be done for now. You can fix a leak that you can’t find.

Every couple of hours I go and check the area to see if any new water has accumulated but so far, there has been nothing. In terms of water leaks, this was on the lower scale of impact. I am thankful I didn’t come home to my entire apartment covered in inches of water. It was clear that some amount of water leaked into my apartment and then stopped. While I am thankful it wasn’t catastrophic, it worries me that this happened in the first place and we don’t know why and where the source of the leak is. In my experience, water leaks aren’t a one-time event and they don’t usually fix themselves. I don’t think this is the last time I’ll have to deal with this problem and that worries me.

What troubles are ahead of me?