A termite infestation can be costly, both in money spent trying to eliminate the pests and money spent repairing damaged wood.
If you’re in the process of selling a home or if you’re in the process of purchasing a home, a termite inspection—also known as a Wood Destroying Organism (WDO) inspection—can clearly identify any pest infestations. If termites are identified, there are a number of extermination methods to get rid of them, including termite bait stations, insecticide chemical treatments, and fumigation.
Bait stations contain wood, cellulose, or paper that is laced with poison. When a termite enters the bait station, they eat the infected wood and then return to their colony where the infectious poison spreads. Bait stations do not offer immediate results: they are intended to eliminate termites over the course of a few weeks.
Because termites are hardy pests, bait stations must be placed in strategic locations to maximize effectiveness. Stations are typically placed where infestation is occurring, or where infestation is likely occurring. Prior to placing the bait, it is crucial to determine where the infestation is most prominent. Once location is determined, the bait stations are placed ten to fifteen feet apart from each other, and designed to slowly infect and kill termite populations.
According to the University of Kentucky, bait stations are most effective when placed during warm and hot months, March through September. Bait stations have been found to be less successful during winter months. Regardless of the month, when you confirm a termite infestation, it is always best to act quickly to eliminate them.
While you can purchase and plant bait stations yourself, termite eradication takes precision and patience. A licensed termite repair professional can determine where the infestation is occurring and place bait stations in the appropriate locations, even if that means crawling in hard to reach areas, like underneath your home.
Meanwhile, insecticide chemical sprays are another effective means to rid your home of a termite infestation. Like bait stations, insecticides are designed to poison termites.
Some termites are subterranean, meaning they live in the soil. Other termites live and breed directly on wood surfaces. Insecticides can treat either infestation, as it can be sprayed in the soil and on wood.
You can purchase termite insecticide from the store, and spray the chemical yourself. It is very important to note exactly where the infestation is occurring, so you can spray in the correct area.
There are professional pest control services which offer routine spraying, like once every two months. Though this is a contracted service which you pay for per appointment, it is an effective way to completely eliminate termites.
Fumigation is a more comprehensive eradication method, used when infestations are not localized in one area. A lethal, odorless dose of gas is emitted into an enclosed space, which quickly kills pests.
Depending on the specifics, fumigation can take from a few hours to an entire week. A pest control expert will determine the scope of your infestation problem, and plan out the best way to eliminate the bugs. During the fumigation process, all people and animals must leave the property. Food that is not securely placed in the refrigerator must be thrown out or removed from the property, too.
Fumigation is a more extensive process compared to bait stations and insecticide. This method is used to exterminate pests in hard to reach areas, or areas which were not previously identified as locations where an infestation is occurring.
There are two types of fumigation methods. One is to seal the space using tape, and the other involves placing a tarp over the home. A pest control expert will determine the best extermination method for your infestation situation.
As you can see, there are a number of ways to exterminate termites. It is very important to determine the location of the termite infestation prior to selecting a method. Then, when choosing a method, bait stations, insecticide, or fumigation must be placed or sprayed strategically, to maximize effectiveness. Consult with a North American Home Services pest expert for more information on how to get rid of termites.