Controlling & Managing Termites

Winged-Termite Swarm

Reducing the chances of major damage caused to your house by termite infestations involved controlling and managing termites.

Termites cause billions of dollars in damage each year. They primarily feed on wood, but also damage paper, books, insulation, and even swimming pool liners and filtration systems.

Termites are an important subject to consider when buying or selling a home since a termite inspection/infestation report is normally a condition of sale. Regulations require all new buildings, including alterations and extensions, built within designated termite-infested areas to have some form of management against termite attack.

It is best to employ a variety of pest control methods when addressing a termite infestation.

First Step – Learn what signs to look for

Determine if you might have a termite infestation.

  • Discovering winged-termites appearing indoors is a sure sign of a termite infestation in your home. Spring typically is when large numbers of winged termites, triggered by warmer

    Mud Tube Forming in Wall

    temperatures and rainfall. Commonly known as “swarmers,” in nature, they disperse from their current colony, drop to the ground, shed their wings, pair off with a mate and start new colonies.

  • Finding earthen (mud) tubes extending over foundation walls, support piers, sill plates, floor joists, etc, also indicate a termite infestation. The mud tubes are typically about the diameter of a pencil, and are constructed for shelter as the termites travel between their colonies. Determining if the infestation is active or not is simple, break open the tubes and check for the presence of small, creamy-white termites. If a tube happens to be vacant, it does not necessarily mean that the infestation is inactive; termites often abandon sections of tube while foraging elsewhere in the structure.
  • Sub-nests can be detected in buildings by using a moisture metre, microwave and infrared camera.

Second Step – Consider Prevention Methods

Arrange for a professional inspection of your home and yard with a written inspection report covering;

  • areas inspected – include all accessible timbers in subfloor (if accessible), roof void, interior, exterior, garden landscaped areas and fences within 50 metres
  • inspection findings
  • high risk areas inaccessible to inspection
  • other important aspects in determining the recommended options

Complete elimination of the termite colony is the favourable outcome, however this may take several weeks sometimes even a few months. In some cases, complete elimination is unsuccessful and may take years, depending on the circumstances.

Termites have acute survival instincts. The location of a toxic food source if detected by the termites, will be abandoned and too much disturbance of the termites will alert the termite colony to abandon the area. The termites may appear to be gone, but in fact could be colonising in other areas of your house.

Control of termites also involves homeowner assistance by reducing possible termite food sources such as woodpiles and addressing moisture sources. Homeowners may be asked to repair plumbing or roof leaks. This is an important step in controlling an existing infestation as well as preventing future ones.

Baiting

Baiting systems are subject to regular inspection and monitoring by the termite controller. The larger the number of termites that consume the bait, the quicker and more certain is the termite colony elimination process. Successful termite protection of a building using a baiting program often requires expert skill and judgment, based upon years of field-work experience in termite control in a wide variety of circumstances.

One critical aspect is the bait stations should to installed in areas where termites are more likely to be foraging. The termites must be able to access the bait easily to have any chance of a successful outcome.

While bait stations are one effective way to treat entire infestations, and impact the entire colony, their results may not be rapid enough to cope with areas experiencing extremely dense populations and severe damage.

Chemical Soil Barriers

Their purpose is to provide a long-lasting chemical barrier that excludes termites in the ground from entering buildings. In most cases, termites in the structure die off as well, since they cannot return to the soil.

The installation of chemical soil barriers requires expert knowledge and equipment to form a complete and continuous barrier around the structure but does not negate the need for regular competent inspections, at least 3 to 6 months where the termite risk is high.

Different areas and methods of application include;

  • trenching and treating the soil around an external concrete slab edge
  • trenching and treating the soil around walls and piers in the sub-floor area
  • treating the soil with rod injections along the external perimeter of the structure

We recommend 3 or 6 monthly inspections be carried for the first 2 years after a chemical soil treatment and the monitoring of  baiting systems should be carried out every 4 to 6 weeks.

Pesticides

When choosing between pesticides, consider the following;

  • does the product have an obnoxious odour or emit airborne residues or fumes – termites can detect the chemical and will move along the treated soil areas, actively seeking a gap to gain entry into the building
  • are there safer or more effective alternatives
  • are they water based
  • are they a low hazard to humans, dogs, cats and other mammals

There are several types of termite control chemicals registered by the relevant State and/or Federal Government Authority for use in termite control as a soil treatment chemical, however be wary of several outdated products that are solvent based termite control pesticides which may cause health problems to asthmatics during the drying process.

IGR – Insect Growth Regulator

An insect growth regulator affects termites by stopping the moulting process required for the termites to grow and mature. As the worker termites die, the termite colony declines to the point where it can no longer sustain itself, eventually leading to it’s collapse and eradication.

Whichever method you chose to defend your home, it is best to employ a variety of pest control methods when addressing a termite infestation so contact your local pest control professional to discuss your options.

Jim’s Termite & Pest Control will correctly identify the destructive termite species, inspect the building for tell-tale signs, analyse the circumstances and implement an effective termite control program using expert skill and judgement based upon professional training and extensive field-work experience in termite control.

Call 131 546 or book online, for your free, no-obligation quote today!

 

Termite Treatment Service Areas:

VIC:  Termite Treatment Melbourne – Termite Treatment GeelongTermite Treatment Mornington Peninsula
NSW:  Termite Treatment SydneyTermite Treatment Newcastle – Termite Treatment Wollongong
QLD:  Termite Treatment BrisbaneTermite Treatment Gold CoastTermite Treatment NoosaTermite Treatment Townsville
SA:  Termite Treatment AdelaideTermite Treatment Mt BarkerTermite Treatment Adelaide Hills
WA:  Termite Treatment Perth
ACT: Termite Treatment Canberra 

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