Termite Treatment Options for Your Home or Building
If you think you may have a termite infestation in your home or any property you manage, a professional, licensed termite expert should be consulted. If termites are present and have infested your home, the termite control expert will first determine which species is attacking your home before making any recommendations. In Southern California, it is important to determine if you have drywood termites, subterranean termites, or both.
Homeowners and property managers should schedule regular termite inspections as part of routine home maintenance program. More often than not, homes sustain significant termite damage before the owners become aware of an infestation.
Subterranean Termite Treatments
There are significant behavioral differences between drywood and subterranean termites. Subterranean termites build nests in underground soil close to or underneath a house. Often, homeowners may be able to see evidence of termite tunnels in the yard. Drywood termites also build nests and tunnels in the wood they infest and leave small, sawdust-like droppings.
Use of a Termiticide
Termite control exterminators may treat subterranean termites in one of two ways. The first method of subterranean termite extermination and eradication is by applying a Termiticide to the soil around and under a house. Applying a termiticide to the soil provides a barrier of protection and addresses potential termite entry points. Pest control experts may also apply the termiticides to the surface of infested wood or inject it directly into the wood.
Subterranean Termite Barriers
When using a liquid treatment at your home’s termite entry points and infestation points, your pest control expert will dig a trench around your home and apply the termiticide in the trench. The trench will be filled in, creating a barrier to protect against termites and termite damage. Liquid treatment is often used in conjunction with termite monitoring and bait stations.
Repellant vs Non-Repellant Liquid Applications
Liquid applications with bait and monitoring systems can be utilized with repellent or non-repellent bait systems. Repellent liquid products do not attract termites; they make the treated area unappealing and termites that come in contact with the repellent termiticide will avoid the treated area.
Sometimes the perimeter of a home may be treated with a repellant product to discourage termites from burrowing through to the building. This type of termite treatment is not always as effective as one might expect. With “repellant” termiticides, termites will exploit any small untreated area to gain access to the structure.
Non-repellent termite eradication treatments are set out in the paths of the forager termites. The products such as Premise and Termidor are odorless and colorless and termites are unable to detect it but it will adhere to their bodies. They will inadvertently bring the termiticide back to the colony where it will infect the rest of the colony.
Drywood Termite Treatments
Drywood termite infestations are typically treated through either gas fumigation, heat treatments including microwave treatments, termiticide injections, or other non-toxic options such as orange oil applied directly into the wood housing the colonies. Liquid applications with bait and monitoring systems can be utilized with repellent or non-repellent bait systems. They can be used inside and outside your home and the termiticide can be injected directly into the affected wood as well.
Direct wood treatment does not utilize tenting or fumigation. Instead, an odorless liquid can be injected into the infested wood, immediately treating the infestation. Odorless and immediately effective, wood treatment also offers protection against further termite infestations by rendering the wood uninhabitable.
Termite Treatment of Entire Structure using Fumigation
Termite control experts may recommend eradicating drywood termites by fumigating the entire structure using a termite fumigation tent. This termite treatment and control option provides the ability to treat every area of your home, especially when multiple termite colonies are throughout in the structure.
Once tented and sealed, gas is introduced. The gas spreads throughout the entire home, including those hard-to-reach cracks, crevices, and crawlspaces where the colonies may live.
Although fumigation is usually 100% effective at eradicating all pests in the building, its important to have a second line of defense so that termites don’t return after the fumigation is complete.
Tenting the structure exterminates all the termites at that time. Termite and pest control experts can recommend the appropriate ongoing termite control treatment options customized for your home or property.
Your termite treatment expert can recommend the best option depending upon how extensive the termite infestation is.
The Best Time to Treat for Termites
Spring and Summer are the most critical times to treat for termites as these are known as termite swarming seasons. Most homeowners notice the swarms and increased termite activity by wing shedding and increased sawdust-like droppings.
As a rule, homeowners should treat for termites when signs of an infestation are first discovered. Termite eradication specialists will recommend treatment based on weather conditions, forecasted weather conditions, and soil conditions. Treatment for subterranean termites using bait and liquid methods should not be applied prior to rain as rain may reduce the effectiveness of the termiticide.
Termite Considerations When Buying or Selling a Home
When buying or selling a home or property, termite activity reports and inspections are often required. The termite control expert will offer different treatment, repair, and on-going treatment plans. Read the fine print carefully concerning repairs and guarantees. Some ongoing termite treatment plans are not transferrable to the new owners.