4 Types of Termite Control

4 Types of Termite Control

Termites can cause serious damage to your home, affecting both its structure and integrity. Termite damage can also be costly to repair. Let’s take a closer look at how to recognize when you have a termite problem, as well as the different types of termite treatments that are available today.

The first step in preventing termites is to identify when you have a problem. Termites eat wood from the inside out so they often go undetected for long periods of time, causing substantial damage before you even realize you have a problem. Recognizing the signs of termites in your home is a good first step to identifying their presence. Common signs of termites include:

  • Noise: Soldier termites bang their heads against the wood or shake their bodies when disturbed. This can be heard as a quiet clicking sound coming from your walls.
  • Discarded wings: Swarming termites leave existing colonies to reproduce and establish new colonies. Once they mate, they discard their wings. These wings can often be found near doors and windows.
  • Warped wood: Termites produce moisture as they tunnel through wood. This moisture causes wood to warp, making doors and windows difficult to open and paint to bubble. This can often resemble water damage.
  • Damaged wood: Termites eat wood from the inside out, leaving behind a labyrinth of tunnels in damaged wood. This wood will then make a hollow or papery sound when tapped on.
  • Feces: Termite feces, also known as frass, is left behind as termites tunnel through wood. Frass can be seen as piles of pellets, black marks, or a dark, powdery substance near the sites of damage.
  • Mud tubes: Subterranean termites will build mud tubes to provide moisture and to protect them from predators. They use these tubes to travel between their colony and their food source. These tubes are usually found near foundations.


The best way to control termites is to prevent them in the first place. Some common termite prevention tips include:

  • Using concrete foundation.
  • Leaving ventilation space between the soil and the wood.
  • Covering exposed wood surfaces with sealant or a metal barrier.
  • Keeping the soil around foundations dry (through proper grading, adequate drainage, and clear gutters and downspouts).
  • Reducing openings termites can use to get in (by filling cracks in cement foundations and sealing around where utilities pass through walls).
  • Fixing leaks immediately.
  • Keeping vents free from blockage.
  • Making sure trees and shrubs are not planted too close to the home.
  • Not allowing trees and shrubs to grow against exposed wood.
  • Not piling firewood or wood debris next to the house.
  • Having annual termite inspections performed.

Termite Treatments

Once you have an established termite infestation, the next step is deciding which termite control treatment is best for your situation. Treatments depend on a variety of factors including the type of termite you are dealing with, the severity of the infestation, the type and size of your home, whether it is a new construction or an existing home, the cost of the treatment, and more. There are four main types of termite treatments:

Liquid-Soil Treatment

Liquid-soil termite treatments are used on the soil surrounding your home to act as a treatment barrier. They are long lasting, providing protection for an average of 5 years. With these treatments, a trench is dug around the perimeter of your home and liquid termiticide is applied. The trench is then filled back in. This method helps prevent future infestations, as well as killing any existing termites as they travel between your home and their nests.

Bait Treatments

Bait station treatments are another option for treating termites. In this method, bait stations are strategically placed around your home. Each station contains a slow-acting termiticide that the termites take back to their nests and share with other termites. These treatments can take longer to affect termites. They also require regular monitoring and maintenance to make sure each station still contains bait.

Wood Treatments

Wood treatments offer another alternative to termite control. These treatments utilize either surface sprays and treatments or injected sprays and foams. Wood treatments kill existing termites and also soak into the wood to prevent future problems. These treatments require direct access to infested wood which can be difficult to get to in some circumstances. Sprays are better for use in new construction treatments as the wood can be treated as the house is being built. Injected foams are better for use on existing structures as they can expand into cracks and crevices that sprays may not be able to reach.

Pre-Treated Materials

Pre-treated building materials are best used for new construction. The termiticide can either be sprayed or brushed on. Termiticide can also be applied anywhere the new structure comes into contact with the soil, allowing the soil to be pretreated. Using pressure treated wood is also an option as termites are less likely to infest wood that has been mixed with chemicals.

Termites are a serious problem for homeowners. If you suspect you have a problem with termites or other pests, contact your local pest control company for an inspection.


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4 Types of Termite Control

What Is The Most Effective Termite Treatment?

The first step in termite prevention is to be ready for them. One of the most important things you can do is learn the signs of termites in order to catch them early. Termites can often go undetected for long periods of time, causing significant damage before you are alerted to their presence. The most common types of termites include subterranean termites, drywood termites, and Formosan termites. The type of termite and the location of the infestation help determine the best type of termite treatment to use. Here are four of the most common termite treatments utilized by termite control professionals.


Pretreatments are termite treatments that are performed during the building phase of new construction. It is also preferable to utilize pretreatments when constructing additions on an existing home, as well. Pretreatments are more effective and affordable when utilized before the physical infrastructure of a home or addition is laid. Pretreatments involve a combination of liquid termiticide (commonly containing borates), termite bait, lumber treatment, and in soil barriers.

Barrier Treatments

Barrier treatments form a literal barrier in the ground between termites and your home. A trench is dug around the perimeter of your home and the soil that is removed is treated heavily with a termiticide. The trench is then refilled with the treated soil. In some cases, a physical wall is also constructed inside the outer wall of the trench made up of rock, sand, mesh, and plastic. This adds an additional layer of protection between your home and termites.

Liquid Treatments

Liquid treatments are the most common termite treatments utilized. These treatments are effective for termite infestations on the interior of your home. In these treatments, holes are drilled strategically in both the foundation and the wood. Termiticide is then injected into the holes which forces the termites to emerge. The termites are then exterminated by spot treatments with termiticides.

Bait Stations

In these treatments, bait stations containing wood, paper, or cellulose that is laced with termiticide are placed in the ground around your home. Termites are attracted to the bait and eat it. The termiticide is slow acting which allows the termites to return to the colony and spread the bait to others, killing off the entire colony. Bait stations can be used in locations where surface treatments can’t, such as near foundation drains and areas that are covered by slabs or flooring. Bait stations are an effective and long-term treatment solution.

Termites can get out of control quickly and be incredibly difficult to eradicate. If you suspect you have a termite problem, contact your local pest control company for a termite inspection to identify the type of termite and recommend the best course of treatment.


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