Termites can be dangerous, especially when they invade your house. They eat plant cellulose or plant fibers. They are classified according to their feeding behavior and the general groupings include soil-feeding, subterranean, dry-wood, grass-eating and damp-wood species. The dry-wood and subterranean species are largely responsible for the destruction of man-made structures. You should treat them as soon as you notice them. DIY termite treatment is a preferable option because professionals are significantly more expensive. This website, therefore, guides you on how to identify, treat and prevent termites -all by yourself.
Identifying the Signs and Types of Termites
It is very crucial for you to first inspect your home for signs of infestation. Once sure it is infested by termites, identify the type of termites that have attacked because treatments will vary from one type to another. Formosan termites are found in the southern part of the United States. They are also commonly found in Asia. Drywood termites are common in the southern states, along the cost, and in the southwestern states. They can be identified out of their fecal pellets which look like sawdust. This is the first sign of infestation. Fecal pellets are normally spotted near or on window sills, or on other wooden structures within the house. You can also find these termites in attics. The unique thing about these termites is that they spread very fast within your house, causing a lot of damage to the constructions.
The best way of identifying subterranean termites is by any of their mud tunnels or tubes that they make near walls or basements. These termites require moisture to survive and that is why they are often found underground, in wet or damp wood within the house. However, as compared to dry-wood, subterranean termites are smaller in size.
The subterranean termites have different appearances depending on their functions. Soldiers have elongated mandibles and heads, workers are wingless and are light-colored whereas supplementary reproductive termites are short, light-colored, and wingless or have non-functional wings.
Other than spotting the actual termites, there are other signs of invasion. These include paint bubbles and small holes in wood. Also, when wood has been attached from the underneath, a hollow sound will emanate from the wood once you tap it with a blunt object or hammer. This indicates the presence of termites within the space they have created inside the structural wood.
Choosing the Right DIY Termite Treatment Method
There are very many do-it-yourself termite treatment options in the market. The most common ones include use of termiticides, termite baits, and sodium borate.
Termiticides are liquid pesticides used for controlling termites. Although not all termiticides are meant for do-it-yourself termite treatment, the market has some brands that you can use. Termiticides have been for exterminating termites for a long time and they yield quick results. You can use repellants or non-repellants. Repellants discourage termites from entering into your house whereas the non-repellants simply kill the termites. The termiticides must be pumped into the ground through openings or cracks and that is why you should go for products that are safe to the environment.
The use of termite baits is efficient, and does lead to chemical contamination. In involves inserting termite baits into the soil, at various locations near your house. Baits inhibit termite growth and eventually leading to their death. This method is very slow and, therefore, less helpful if you want to exterminate termites immediately.
Further, you can use borate treatment. This method is also effective and popular. Sodium borate is applied on wooden surface and once ingested by the termites, it kills the protozoa in the termites’ digestive tract. This makes the termites incapable of digesting wood, as a result, killing them.
How to Kill Termites Using Natural Methods
If you are against the use of chemicals, natural methods are a good option. These methods include the use of nitrogen liquid to freeze termites, applying some heat on termites, using commercial microwaves, and also through the application of some orange oil.
Worth remembering, even before you think of do-it-yourself termite management, consider preventing or discouraging them. You can minimize their invasion by getting rid of any potential termite food sources, such as cellulose, from the ground. You can also discourage termites by reducing moisture accumulation near foundations and wooden materials.