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powrus 11-28-2005 04:12 PM

Termite Prevention
How much preventitive action can effectively be done by the homeowner in 2005? How successful are the " Termite bait stakes" being sold at home centers and hardware stores?

My apologies to Terminix and Orkin on this one.


K2eoj 11-28-2005 11:51 PM

In this part of the country we just have to watch for water and wood making contact because the subterranean species need a certain moisture content in the lumber to make it a snack. Our air does not carry enough moisture so we're looking for leaks, sprinklers, drainage, but also condensation is one that people don't think about . I guess in some parts of the South, (like where Teetor lives) they have a couple extra species to make bugs more interesting.<P:
I will say in the termites defense that the subterranean's will not live in our adobe clay. In most of the moldy rehabs we've been doing lately, I wish the little guys were around because i prefer termites to mold and they basicly live on the same stuff.<P>
That probably doesn't answer you question but I saw there were no replies so i thought i'd jump in. In my opinion the extermination business is one of the easiest to rip people off on for a number of different reasons. i resently found out i've been having my precious Colorado trees sprayed for an insect that has not been in the area for 20+ years. The guys doing the spraying never mentioned that fact. HS.

THEBIGPUNN 11-29-2005 03:23 PM

when our foundation was poured last month the only thing for termite prevention was a spray that was done around the perimeter of the foundation. as said by hs, i noted the elevation on our house was done high enough up as to prevent moisture problems.

powrus 11-29-2005 03:32 PM

Thanks, HS. Not to worry about the lack of replies. Termite prevention is not the most talked about subject this time of year. I'm not certain I care all that much inside my warm house :o (smile).

Sorry to hear about the "pests" spraying your trees.


nuts 03-18-2006 07:59 PM

Inspect, a lot
I used to live in a very termite-rich area, when at certain times of year, many termites would be swarming each day. It was fun to watch the birds swoop and catch them mid-air. Anyway, in that area, exterminator companies would offer bonds, where they would do an initial preventative treatment ($1000 or more based on linear feet treated) and, then, they would come out and treat on request, anytime termite activity was suspected (recurring annual fees, though). Termites can be so persistent in areas like that that zapping them with the hard stuff is about the best thing I know of.

Where I live, now, the termites are subterranean and pretty much keep to themselves. They just eat the dead wood around the property and are not a problem, really. Those termite stakes can be very useful for monitoring in these cases, but I'm not sure how effective they are for elimination.

Either way, it pays to inspect the house every year or more frequently. Look all around the foundation, behind bushes, in the crawlspace, etc. for any signs of termite tunnels. Poke a sharp screwdriver into baseboards all around inside looking for any soft spots. Look under sinks, behind the fridge, etc. where any moisture might be. In my experience, termites will go for the soft and juicy trim baseboards before they go for kiln-dried house framing, so it is possible to detect them before any real damage is done. Some termites also nest high up, apparently, so you have to inspect the attic too.

Inspecting every year is just all-around good sense, even without termites, because there are so many things that can happen (water damage, wind damage, etc.).

747 03-18-2006 09:26 PM

This is something i definately know about. I had termites in my house. Hired orkin got the extended service agreement which means i pay a little bit every year they come back inspect and retreat as necessary. After the original treatment they came back and did damage in my living room. Orkin was liable for the damage seeing how it was after the treatment and i have the extended service agreement. They hired a contractor to fix the damage. So the best treatment is this. drill fondation and put chemical in it. Bait the perimeter of the house with the traps. The way that works is like this. They put wood in there that termites like. If they hit. They they change over to another something when the termites eat that they will take it back to there coloney and it will kill the termites there. Also orkin on new contruction can do a pretreament which if i was building a new house i would get done. Termites can do alot of damage. I wish i had a scanner on my computer so i could scan some pics I have of the living room. There were studs you could squeeze in your hand.

umf8181 03-20-2006 10:17 AM

I recently received an article pertaining to inexpensive wood mulch that will be sold in large chains all over the country this year. (Wish I could find it and link it for you.) Anyway, the concern is that much of this mulch will come from trees destroyed in New Orleans and will contain a nasty type of termite. I'm not sure how we can verify where mulch comes from, but thought I'd give you the heads up. Have a good day.

joed 03-20-2006 07:56 PM

Read this. The article is consdiered to be false.

powrus 03-23-2006 08:04 AM

I just happened to review this post which was introduced late last year and didn't realize how much additional feedback you good folks had provided during the past weeks/months.

Thanks for all your replies and for the outstanding info regarding termite protection. Every piece of info had been read and "digested".


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