Termite treatment used to be easy. You grabbed your favorite DDT related termite control product, drilled some holes twenty-four to thirty-six inches apart and injected the product under the concrete slab – problem solved. Despite its other nasty side effects, it was a fantastic tool in the battle against termites.
Today we have a cornucopia of products, each with its own unique set of advantages and disadvantages. Some are great in one specific aspect of control, but lacking in others. Some repel the termites, some encourage the termites to forage around in treated areas, others are baits that once the termites feed on them, guarantee eradication.
So how do you make an educated decision about termite treatment for your home?
There are three main distinctions between termite treatment products available today: Repellent, Baits, and Non-Repellent. Each product has been tested by the EPA to control termites effectively, but some will last longer, others will require stations being placed in the ground, but all can treat your problem.
Repellent products are designed to keep termites away from treated areas. In theory, the termites will sense the product in the soil, avoid that area and forage elsewhere. The shortfall to this class of products is that they rely on a complete, uninterrupted barrier all around the home, or structure in order for them to work. If there is a break in the barrier, due to any myriad of causes, the barrier will not repel, but will appear as an “open door” and termites can go right through. Excess water in the soil will lead some repellent products to allow termites to pass through while the soil is wet, but prevent them from going through again, once the soil dries out. The problem is you can’t always tell.
Bait products are wonderful tools. Once again, in theory, a bait will be consumed by the termites, shared with other members of the termite community and… voila! No more termites. The trick is getting the termites to feed on the baits. Our native termite species are notoriously fickle when it comes to their food supply. You cannot force feed bait to termites. No feeding equals no control.
Non-Repellent products are like a silent alarm in how they control termites. Termites will forage around in the treated soil, not realizing they are being exposed. Being social insects, the termites will share the exposure as they rub up against each other, and control is achieved. The shortfall with the non-repellents is that some of them are very mobile in the soil in that they are liable to be taken up by the root systems of any plants nearby. Termite control product will protect that plant, but it may render your tomatoes inedible, and not leave behind an effective barrier.
At University Termite & Pest Control we use Termidor HE as our termite control product. It is non-repellent, but does not get taken up by plants easily. If you want to know the other reasons why we chose this product over others give us a call today.