Go Back   DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum > Home Improvement > Pest Control

CLICK HERE AND JOIN OUR COMMUNITY TODAY...IT'S FREE!

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 09-01-2011, 07:13 PM   #1
Newbie
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 4
Rewards Points: 0
Share |
Post

termite and repair plan - please critique!


Central NC. I've got an old 2 story shed/garage out back, and after 2 years here I'm just getting around to 2nd floor repairs. The shed has a block wall 3' high with a sill on top of it, and a slab poured inside the wall. Seems like a solid structure.

I had seen termite damage when I moved in and inspected/poked/hammered it, and it didn't appear active - all the wood was dry and mostly solid, and there were no tubes to be found (and I had never heard of drywood termites before yesterday's research - I don't think we have them around here).

During my recent repairs I ripped out some damaged floor and crudely scraped the damaged areas of the joists, and saw no termites. But when I pulled out the screen door frame at the top of the stairs I saw some live worker termites scurry into the wood. Completely surprised me! I then managed to find a tube in the small gap between the stair stringer and the wall - looks like they are getting in through a small gap between the slab and the wall, a hardly visible area. The bugs I saw seem to be in the header of the stairs (if that's what you call it), which is perpendicular to the joists.

The end joist has damage from the stair header all the way to one end. It feels solid, though. I can't poke it anywhere. It seems like the damage is mostly near the surface and not too deep. In the other direction there is a sistered joist all the way to the end (this is along the left side of stairway hole as you go up) - I can't see any damage here, including looking behind the end joist with a mirror extensively. The sister joist seems to be there just for flooring out a thin area around the stair hole.

I've concocted a plan to deal with this, and want to know what you all think. I don't want to go too chemical heavy - I have lots of garden beds around, not to mention enough cancer in the family that I try and limit my chemical exposure when possible. So I've decided to use borax based Bora-care and Tim-bor to deal with it, followed with a "Trap, Treat, and Release" plan as has been described on this forum a few times and seems like an effective and cheap way to go. By the way, I've got a termite contract for the house, and the inspector is due in October. Doesn't cover the shed, though. No signs of trouble at the house. I have seen termites at another spot on our property between the two structures in a poorly built footbridge, which I got rid of.

My plan, followed by some questions.
>Remove the stairs temporarily
>add a sister joist to the damaged end joist with lags all the way to the posts
>sister up the joist on the right side of the stair hole just as good measure (I don't know if these old full size 2"x6" heart pine joists really need it, but just in case there's damage in there I can't see)
>replace the stair header with a doubled 2"x6"
>treat all damaged wood, as well as the stairs, posts, sill, wall, and floor/wall gap with 1:1 Bora-care, 2 applications 1 hr apart
>add dry Tim-bor into crack wherever possible
>replace floor and put stairs back
>start a trap, treat, and release program, assuming I can get some Sulflurin, which I'm okay with in the small quantity I'll need to use

Questions:
1) What do you think of this plan of attack?
2) I've removed the only tunnel I can find - will the termites still in the wood die on their own, since they can't get back to the underground colony? Hopefully the the Bora-care will get them, but if not what happens to them?
3) How in the world to I keep termites from coming up the interior of the block walls and getting into the sill? Is the fact that it's very dry all the way around enough, or is there something else I can do?
4) What am I not thinking of?

thanks so much for any advice!!
-Matt
Attached Images
      

MattyH is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-01-2011, 08:03 PM   #2
pest control operator
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Pennsylvania
Posts: 428
Rewards Points: 0
Default

termite and repair plan - please critique!


Sounds like a good low impact plan. Modern day termiticides are in the same toxicity range as the borates that you are using. Specifically Termidor and Dupontís new product (Altriset, I think?). Carcinogenic properties are null. The borates actually have measurable levels of arsenic, as it occurs naturally in boric acid.

Removing the tunnels wonít stop the termites, but bora-care and tim-bor will. You do want to destroy all visible tunnels, as you can then monitor for new tunnels easier.The borates do act as a repellent as well as a toxicant so stay vigilant. I use tim-bor in wall voids and garage sills of our own house for termite prevention and a mold prevention.

The termite bait is a good idea if they eat it. Make sure that you use enough or it wonít work even if they do eat it.

The bora-care applications can be further than 1 hour apart if that is more convenient for you, even days apart, fyi. The wood cannot have been painted, stained, oiled, etc previously.

The sill on top of the block wall is, I assume wood. Spray it well with boracare, as long as it has not been painted, stained, etc previously. Can you drill into the block voids and blow tim-bor in there? That would be an ideal use of tim-bor; will last for years in there. The dryness is also a limiting factor to the termites as well. Spray the sill plate 3 or 4 times, as you donít have access to the underside or far side of it.

Keep us posted.

PAbugman is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to PAbugman For This Useful Post:
MattyH (09-02-2011)
Old 09-02-2011, 10:10 AM   #3
Newbie
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 4
Rewards Points: 0
Default

termite and repair plan - please critique!


Thanks for the info, PAbugman!


Quote:
Originally Posted by PAbugman View Post
Removing the tunnels wonít stop the termites, but bora-care and tim-bor will.
What about the termites in the wood now - if I've blocked their access back to the ground can they continue to survive in the dry wood? I'm concerned about any I miss with the Bora-care treatment.

When you use Tim-bor is it always in powder form? (I figure for liquid use Bora-care is probably better, though way more expensive.)

How would you suggest blowing Tim-bor into the blocks? Two holes per block (one on each half)? Upper block or lower block? The wall is 4 blocks high with the lower partially buried.

Lastly, should I seal the gap between the slab and the blocks somehow?

Thanks!
MattyH is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2011, 10:37 AM   #4
pest control operator
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Pennsylvania
Posts: 428
Rewards Points: 0
Default

termite and repair plan - please critique!


Termites in the wood now will die from being cut-off. Even though they arenít cut off per se, as they travel through the toxicant they will die. This is all relying on the fact that the wood is dry. If their is a chronic roof leak, gutters perforated, any chronic water issue, etc. then they will be able to form an above ground nest. This is rare but happens. It sounds like you are on top of the maintenance issue though.

Tim-bor can be mixed with water and often times is. I use it both ways. In stud wall voids, block wall voids, I like the raw powder. When our bathrooms were roughed-in I sprayed tim-bor on all studs and sub-floor as a solution. If you use a water based solution, always stir it in a bucket first, donít shake it. It goes into solution so much easier when stirred. You can use elec drill with paint stick or by hand. It will be cloudy at first but should soon become clear. If not, keep stirring. Donít overdose, but follow label for mixing instructions. If you overdose you may not get it into solution. If I remember right Iíve used as much as 1.5 lbs per gallon of water and it worked. Donít hesitate to spray multiple times. Timbor doesnít penetrate very deep like boracare does. Again, if wood is painted, stained, sealed then forget it. Timbor will corrode metal applicatiors and metal in general. Clean out with water and dry when done if using metal.

Typically a block wall has 3 voids and we use various hand dusters sold by our suppliers. A garden store duster should work well-you will want an opening at least 1/4Ē or more as tim-bor can clog quickly. Drill in the mortar joints. I like to treat close to the soil line, but the middle hole can go up to the top of that course in order to stay in the mortar joint, meaning your drill line will be staggered up and down, not a problem. Some voids wonít take well, so the ones beside them can get more dosage.

Sealing the slab block gap-I wouldnít unless you are going to panel the walls somehow. I donít reccommend covering basement, shed, utility, garage walls as it prohibits inspection/monitoring. If they come up that way, you will see them and can react.

We make wooden monitoring stakes about 8-10 inches long, look like short tomato stakes. Pine wood is conducive to termites. We hammer them into the ground in the perimeter of structure, treated or not, and monitor. Your termite activity is greater than ours, so check at least once a month if not sooner.
PAbugman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-12-2011, 01:47 PM   #5
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 51
Rewards Points: 0
Default

termite and repair plan - please critique!


We have carpenter ants and last couple years, I have noticed increase in visibility of them. Last month, I have mix borax with sweet syrup and put it under their visible route. Didn't see much of change, slight decrease in number of ants.

But 3 days ago, my carpool area had hundreds of dead carpenter ants and some eggs were fall from either deck or some where under deck to ground.
Dead ants fall for 3 days and somewhat stop now.

I am thinking of buying a professional grade pesticide to spray around that area to see if I can kill more.

I have talk to contractor and he wanted to open up the siding to help us get rid of ant nest, but this won't happen until next spring.

Will it be best to make up another bait with borax with sweet syrup and spray around the area or pesticide in professional grade?

This time, I am going to open all inside house electrical outlet and spray them too.

I am open to hear more advises on the matter.
Andee77 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-13-2011, 04:23 PM   #6
pest control operator
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Pennsylvania
Posts: 428
Rewards Points: 0
Default

termite and repair plan - please critique!


We donít tear open walls or anything for carpenter ants anymore. Learn about Termidor and spray the perimeter, high and low as well as the trunks of mature trees that are close to the house.
PAbugman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-15-2011, 09:50 AM   #7
Newbie
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 4
Rewards Points: 0
Default

termite and repair plan - please critique!


Isn't alarmist spam against the rules here?!
MattyH is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-15-2011, 10:23 AM   #8
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 9,968
Rewards Points: 0
Default

termite and repair plan - please critique!


Correct. Thank you MattyH!

Gary
__________________
If any ads are present in my answer above, I do not condone/support/use the product or services listed, they are there against my permission.
Gary in WA is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-25-2011, 03:38 AM   #9
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 51
Rewards Points: 0
Default

termite and repair plan - please critique!


Quote:
Originally Posted by PAbugman View Post
We donít tear open walls or anything for carpenter ants anymore. Learn about Termidor and spray the perimeter, high and low as well as the trunks of mature trees that are close to the house.
We just entered into official fall weather in Seattle.
I have purchased professional grade pestcide liquide called Cy Kick and sprayed where most of carpenter ant traveled and were found.

Is it okay to spray in this time of the month/season to kill carpenter ants?
I have not seen a lot of them lately but one or two around.
Technician told me if weather gets cold and wet, it won't be working because they will be going into dormant.

I used bait and maybe that worked to kill a lot of ants brecause lots of dead ants and their eggs fell under there nesting area for few days about a week or two ago. I know more is hiding in that area (inside siding of one area of the house). I would like to know, my spraying solution is useless because the time of the season.
Will spray in spring too, but not sure if we do need to open up the siding to get rid of them completely.
I did researched and Cy Kick works like Termidor.
Andee77 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-25-2011, 11:46 AM   #10
pest control operator
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Pennsylvania
Posts: 428
Rewards Points: 0
Default

termite and repair plan - please critique!


Iíd definitely treat now as it isnít cold enough to stop the ants. Anyway, indoors they wonít go dormant as our homes are conditioned for the season. We get calls in January from people who said they thought the ant activity would stop because of winter-itís not winter inside the wall voids, etc.

Iím curious-what kind of bait did you use that gave you good results? Carpenter ants donít always co-operate with baiting programs.

Rather than open up siding, can you treat the gap, crack, etc where the top of siding meets the soffit? Sometimes the chemical will run down behind the siding; very desirable. Maybe itís a two story though. Use pin stream in all gaps, cracks and linger on the ones that take the chemical, even if very slowly.
PAbugman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-26-2011, 11:27 AM   #11
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 51
Rewards Points: 0
Default

termite and repair plan - please critique!


I used 2 different types of bait and not sure which one was effective.
About 1 1/2 to 2 months ago, there was so much of carpenter activity and didn't know what to do. We were in talk to replacing siding due to bad surface issues from paint problem.

We have Cedar T&G siding and total cost of siding replacement was too much, we had to debate to do it or not. Also, couple of relayable contractor told us, if this is their siding, they won't replace, instead would just hire good painter to salvage the siding.

If we were replacing the siding, I was going to wait to see where their nest is and just spray strong solution. But we are not going to replace the siding, we may need to open up that area see if they are gone.

I am not sure if we need to open up now or wait till spring for this?

I read somewhere, carpenter ants like sweets and borax will kill them. So, I have melted borax powder into warm water and pull in syrups to attract them to take some of bait. Not sure this was cause or I had "Intice Fine Granular Insect Bait" for silver fish last year. I used very little and didn't need them as silver fish was gone.
So, I just pull all my bait around where their main route was.

So, not sure which bait worked to kill them like that, but it sure did work.

But ants activity was still going on and about 2-3 weeks ago, whole lot of dead ants came down to ground from deck area where I think their nest might be. I took one of dead ant and egg to near by DIY professional store for solution and advise. One of technician was there and she told me, it is unsual to hear my type of story. But probably, live ones pushed dead ones out of their nest to clean them out.

During this time, we also saw whole bunch of ants walking around our deck. I regret, missing this chance to spray the solution.

Now, weather is much colder and we have rains on and off, but I did spray around their nest area couple days ago.

So, you think, we should spray around the house and should open up the siding to make sure they area all gone, right?

I hope, we can get rid of them soon and be one less worry to our list.

Thank you so much for your advise and reply.

Have a good day!!!
Andee77 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-26-2011, 12:22 PM   #12
pest control operator
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Pennsylvania
Posts: 428
Rewards Points: 0
Default

termite and repair plan - please critique!


We donít open up siding and rarely even drill holes especially since we began using Termidor and Phantom. The ants, most of them, will need to leave the nest to forage and will contact the residuals that way. Treat into cracks and crevices on the exterior, focusing especially on the gaps that take the chemical well. Ant baits work slowly; if they worked to quickly, the ants would die before returning the bait to the nest. You may still be getting a kill from your baiting. Keep fresh bait in place, but donít spray near the bait. Ants continually clean their nests out; we use that as evidence to find their nests. There are usually dead ant bodies in any ant frass. The nest is close by to where you found the frass, bodies, etc. Focus on those areas with the above described spraying.
PAbugman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-26-2011, 12:45 PM   #13
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 51
Rewards Points: 0
Default

termite and repair plan - please critique!


Quote:
Originally Posted by PAbugman View Post
We donít open up siding and rarely even drill holes especially since we began using Termidor and Phantom. The ants, most of them, will need to leave the nest to forage and will contact the residuals that way. Treat into cracks and crevices on the exterior, focusing especially on the gaps that take the chemical well. Ant baits work slowly; if they worked to quickly, the ants would die before returning the bait to the nest. You may still be getting a kill from your baiting. Keep fresh bait in place, but donít spray near the bait. Ants continually clean their nests out; we use that as evidence to find their nests. There are usually dead ant bodies in any ant frass. The nest is close by to where you found the frass, bodies, etc. Focus on those areas with the above described spraying.
Cy-Kick (solution) I purchased from near by DIY store works like Termidor based on what I read as how they work.

If I open up electric outlet and spray inside, will this help us from ants coming inside the house?

If bait gets wet, that won't work, right?

Can you spray solution during rainy day?

Andee77 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
bora-care, subterreaneans, termites, tim-bor, trap-treat-release


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Termite repair to load center wall - precautions shepiii Electrical 3 01-21-2009 04:14 PM
Badly termite damaged wall phenix76 Building & Construction 3 01-14-2009 11:12 PM




Top of Page | View New Posts

Copyright © 2003-2014 Escalate Media. All Rights Reserved.