Termiticide Options

Dampwood termite nymph
Photo by K Schneider
Liquid termiticides are usually used to control subterranean termites. The liquid termiticide is squeezed into the areas underneath a structure, helping to prevent termites entering the home.

If a new home is being built then this termiticide is used to treat the soil before the slabs are laid but for already constructed buildings a trench is usually dug around the perimeter of the home and then the liquid is poured into that trench.

Liquid termiticides help to create a sort of chemical barrier between your home and any termites that wish to enter from the soil. This can also be effective because once the barrier has been created, it prevents any termites inside the home retreating back to their colony – eventually killing them.

Repellent Termiticides

Most repellent termiticides are pyrethroids which are toxic chemicals that are highly lethal to termites but tend to have lower toxicity levels with mammals.

Some of the more common pyrethoid termite chemicals used include allethrins, cypermethrin, fenvalerate, imiprothrin, prallethrin and tetramethrin.

Insects tend to be able to detect most Pyrethoids, so any termite foraging for food near your home will realise the location is toxic and then head elsewhere. Pyrethoids are also useful when used in the construction of a chemical barrier around the home as they are inexpensive and sometimes can last for several years.

The problem with using repellent termiticides is that areas around pipes or lines may not be able to have the repellent applied. So eventually the termites may discover these unprotected areas and begin making their way into the home.

Non-Repellent Termiticides

A better option is a non-repellent termiticide. It works in the same way as a repellent termiticide however the termites cannot detect the toxin. This means that the termites will continue foraging into the termiticide covered areas without realising that they are being poisoned, thus killing any termites that come across this path.

Premise from the Bayer corporation which contains imidocloprid is one such effective non-repellent termiticide. When termites come into contact with this chemical the termites start forgetting to eat, groom themselves and help out the other termites – eventually dieing. It basically scrambles the little brains and nervous systems of the termites causing them to die as an indirect cause of the exposure to the imidocloprid.

However, one of the downsides of this non-repellent is that it is quite expensive and doesn’t last as long in the soil as some of the pyrethoid solutions.

Another option is Termidor which contains the chemical Fipronil. Termidor works because it can be passed from one termite to another when they feed and come into contact with each other.

Termidor can be very effective as the chemical can be passed into the heart of a termite colony, really hitting them where it hurts. It also can last for a long amount of time but there is also a downside, and that’s the price – it can be an expensive solution.

Another commonly used chemical that is available on the market is Phantom. Not only is it one of the most effective termite chemicals available but it is also very long lasting and has a strong track record of keeping termites away from a home once the home has been treated. So check this one out for another option.

Summary of the Termiticide Options

As a summary, liquid termiticides offer fast protection that is quite inexpensive compared to what baiting systems provide and the protection has the potential to last for several years.

The downside to a liquid termiticide is that there are likely to be gaps in your defences which the termites will eventually find and exploit. These termites will eventually find a way in to your home, and so it’s quite difficult to put down a chemical barrier that is free of such gaps.

Another problem is that you shouldn’t use liquid termiticides if it is within 50 feet of a body of water this will put it at risk of contaminating that water. If a body of water is near your home then a baiting solution is a better option.