Frequently Asked Pest Control Questions


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Ron Dawson - President, ePestSupply

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The answers below are for general Information purposes only and not to be construed as legal advice.

How Good Is Termidor and Do Only Good Companies Offer A Repair Warranty ?

Q- I live in South Carolina and we just bought a home.  I am in the process of finding a company to treat the house and then setup an annual contract with them.
 
My problem is I have been told 3 different stories now from these companies.  I think that I may have decided on one that says he uses this new chemical called termidor.  He said that it is a waxy substance that sticks to them and they take it back to the colony and it kills them.  Have you heard of this chemical???  Also, do you think that only the good companies offer a repair warranty???  This company that uses the termidor said that he offers a 5 year warranty and that after that we would have to reapply the chemical and then the warranty would continue.  Is this pretty normal?  

A- Termidor is applied like any other termite chemical, it is mixed with water, it has no waxy properties and is applied to the soil.  According to the manufacturer, Termidor (active ingredient - fipronyl) works as a "cell degenerator" and therefore has a slow killing effect on the termites - usually 90 days.  It is passed off to the other termites through "lipophilic" or "through the skin" contact and is translocated around the colony network by the termites and body to body contact. No feeding is necessary as is the case with Sentricon and Exterra. Because Termidor works in such a slow manner, we recommend subsequent follow up inspections to insure that it is working properly.  The colony elimination properties of Termidor have not yet been proven in the United States. In my opinion, Premise 2 is just as effective as Termidor. The bottom line is that the pest guy is probably on commission.  Don't believe everything a salesman tells you.

Repair warranties are not worth the paper that they are written on.  The word "repair" in repair warranty means exactly that.  They will repair at their discretion any new termite damage that occurs in areas where termites have never been found.  But only if there is no conducive condition or "attraction" for the termites such as a leaking pipe, wood in contact with the ground, etc.  Areas where termites have previously been found are automatically excluded from the repair contract.  If there is a conducive condition, then - no warranty.  The repairs are generally limited to spackle and paint - not removing or replacing walls, etc..   Most repairs that are performed by these companies cost less than $25.00 in materials.

If the repairs are extensive and the termite company refuses to repair it to your satisfaction, then your only remedy is to sue them.  The problem is that some companies have a disclaimer in their contract that specifies that any complaint will be arbitrated before a professional arbitrator instead of going to court before a judge and a jury.  In essence you have waived your right to sue them by signing their contract.   These contracts have held up in court and the customer ends up getting the raw end of the deal.

Just about all pest companies offer a "service guarantee" or "retreatment guarantee"..  This means that they will return to reservice or retreat if the termites show up.  This is a standard type of warranty and in my opinion the best.   Repair warranties are a marketing tool used by larger companies that are not an insurance policy.  They are a carefully worded way to impress you to close the sale, but usually worthless if you file a claim.

Sometimes a little research is well worth the time and effort and may save you a lot of time and grief.  Check out your pest company carefully.   Then if you decide to do it yourself, we can help. 

Check out this link to find out how some pest companies treat their customers - http://www.syix.com/emu/index.htm




What Are The Health Risks Associated With Cockroaches ?

Q -I have a problem with Cockroaches, they are everywhere! My landlord refuses to spray, (even though she told me at one time it is her responsibility to spray every 6 months!) finally she brought a guy here with a little spray gun to spray.  I was not home so she could not do it.  My question is this - Would it make any sense to spray my unit only?  There are 2 other units in this building and 4 in the connecting building (hers as well) and we all have them,,by the millions!!!

Do you have to spray ALL units in order for it to be done effectively?  Would they not just leave this unit for awhile and then come back from the other units?  Are they a Health Hazard?

A - The health risks associated with German cockroaches (more than likely your species) can range from gastroenteritis including nausea, abdominal cramps, vomiting diarrhea, etc, cause by their fecal material being placed on food, dishes, glasses, etc, to allergic responses such as skin rashes, watery eyes, sneezing, and can even set off asthma attacks in people that have asthma caused by their dead body particles becoming airborne and then being breathed in. 

Treating only your unit can be effective, but it requires, a very thorough baiting with Maxforce bait, and a complete wall and void treatment using Nibor or Boric Acid placed into the walls through switch plates, plumbing access, etc..  There are lots of other products available, but I prefer these for German roaches. 

Spraying is generally ineffective and is cheap for your apartment manager to purchase and easy for the PCO to apply.  But unless all units are sprayed, the treatment is very short lived as the roaches will only escape to the wall voids, attics, etc..  When the spray wears off, the roaches come back out.  Hit'em where they hide !  and feed'em what they want.  The products that I mentioned work very well, and if you want to do-it-yourself, we can help.



Flour Moths In Kitchen


Q - I am seeing flour moths in my kitchen.  How do I kill them and what do I use ?

A - Flour moths (Indian meal moths and Angoumois grain moths)  can only be controlled by finding the source of the infestation.  Check all flour mixes, cake mixes, dog food, etc..  and see what is infested.  Once you locate the source of the infestation, throw it out.  Then spray all the shelves with Demon WP .   You can also fog your pantry or cabinets with CB80.  We sell a moth and carpet beetle kit that contains both of these products.



Centipedes In Basement


Q - I Live in Chicago, Il.  Every summer, we have trouble with centipedes in our basement. I told my father that they were coming from the left corner in a closet where the meter is at. The centipedes come out at night and seems that when I see them, they come around from that left corner. I believe we may have a crack in the foundation that's causing the centipedes to come in. We have sprayed with pesticides, they are usually in spray form and are so powerful that we have to vacate the basement for a day. The centipedes come back within a few days. I heard that it is best to spray for centipedes at night. But my father usually sprays during the day. Maybe we need to caulk those cracks in the foundation. We just had our basement remodeled with carpet and new furniture. It looks really nice, but I do not want to watch t.v. at night with the centipedes!!! I need to know what are some suggestions and a effective pesticide to get rid of these centipedes?

A - Centipedes are an outdoor pest. Their presence indoors could indicate an unusually large outdoor population. This is where you need to concentrate your control efforts. Spraying at night could have some improved control, but generally any pesticide that is professional quality will last (residual) several days or weeks. So spraying at night is not really all that important. Early morning or late evening will suffice. Sealing all cracks will help also. Be sure to spray under shrubs, sheds, etc. and especially very heavy along a 3 -5 foot band around the entire foundation. Also spray wherever centipedes could be living.

Some recommended products are Talstar and Demon WP. Both have little or no odor and a long residual. Either will probably take care of the problem. All you need is a hand sprayer and the right products.



Trying To Find Chordane

Q - We have been treating termite reinfestation for 9 seasons and been through 4 exterminator companies. Your firm seems to promote Sulfurimid. How does this compare to Chlordane? In NY it is illegal. Is Chlordane a US ban or state by state. How can it be obtained? We really need to figure out a way to solve this problem once and for all.  Thanks for any suggestions.

A - Chlordane has been banned in just about every state in the US.   I do not know which ones individually, but I can tell you that the EPA has placed a nationwide restriction on it pending further testing and study by Velsicol Chemical Company.  To date, these tests have not been completed and it is my understanding that even if they were, that due to the bad publicity that Chordane has suffered, it will not come back to the market -  as Chlordane.  It cannot be purchased anywhere in the United States.

If you have been through 4 pest companies, and you still have a termite problem, then the structure itself could be creating a problem that chemical treatments will not solve. Depending on what has been used (Dursban, Dragnet, Premise, etc.) Chlordane may not be the answer to your problems either. Chlordane is not a magic bullet. Rather, it is a long lasting slow acting termiticide that delivered a better long term effect, but short term effects were comparable to the products mentioned. In other words, the only benefit of Chlordane was the fact that it lasted a long time - 10 years average in my opinion compared to 2-3 years for the products previously mentioned - again my opinion.  You might consider using a termite baiting system. What we normally recommend is to spot treat the termites chemically, then use a bait system to control the colony. We offer several bait systems.



What Kind Of Termites And Does Foaming Work ?


Q.  We bought our house 2 years ago. It had a termite problem in one bathroom, so we had it treated per the mortgage company's requirements. The guy drilled a hole in the slab and treated that way.   Well, they're back, in the same place. I noticed that little dirt clod looking thing on the ceiling and when I broke it away to check I could see them looking at me (probably laughing at me, too).   So my questions are as follows;

1. Is this a drywood or subterranean termite?
Subterranean termite. Subterranean means below the ground. When you see dirt or mud, that is always a sign of subterranean termites. Drywood termites do not travel in mud tunnels, nor will you see any sign of dirt.

2. Is the foam treatment you talk about something I can use to spot treat that area so that I can minimize the damage while I wait for them to find the baits that you sell? If so, how should I use it, and if not, what can I do to spot control the termites while I wait for them to find the bait?  For that matter, how much damage can they do in the amount of time it takes for them to find the bait? Is that something I should even be concerned about?
Yes, the foam treatment is perfect for this. The Solo foamer comes with either a clear foaming tube or a brass extension tip that can be inserted right through the sheetrock and the back side of the sheetrock can be foamed. If termites are active, you need to spot treat using foam.  The average time it takes the termites to find the bait is 8 months, damage can occur during this time. You also need to locate the termites point of entry - plumbing lines, cracks in slab, slab construction joints, etc. and foam those areas too. Premise 2 is the recommended product to foam with. Premise 2 can also be used as a soil treatment, so if you wanted to open the hole that was previously drilled and stick a long plastic funnel in it, you can pour 5 -10 gallons of Premise 2  mix below the slab and stop them that way. We have all kinds of tricks to help you treat just like a pro - and save a lot of money.



Termites In Flower Bed


Q - I have found termites in the flowerbeds along the front of my brick home. The termites are in the dirt right against the brick but so far I cannot find any evidence that they have entered the house or basement. I think they like the moisture held in by the pine bark mulch and the heat held in by the bricks this time of year since the front of the house gets morning sun. (But what are they eating?!?!? And why can't they stay in the woods where they belong?!?!?) Some of the little buggers appear to be growing wings.  Would a do-it-yourself baiting system be a good choice to control the termites before they come inside?

Would spot treating accomplish anything? If so, what do you recommend for spot treating next to a house with a basement underneath? I don't want them to vacate the flower bed just to move on to another area near the house. 

I would like to use a do-it-yourself baiting system, but am confused about which system would be the best choice for my area a HomeChoice Kit or the Smartdisc Kit.  My yard is full of lovely NC red clay which holds moisture, though I wouldn't call it wet. Would a station with wood sticks be the best choice or would one with ground cellulose work better? The Smartdisc Kit is more expensive, but how can you tell when the termites have been feasting?  Thanks for your help! You've got a great site and I was pleased to discover you are a member of BBB On-line.

A - Thank you for your email. A baiting system would definitely be the way to go. If you have active termites outdoors - but not in your home, then that is perfect. You can bait and not have to use any chemicals. The pine bark mulch is doing exactly as you describe - providing a source of moisture for the termites. There could be some source of cellulose in the bark mulch, but probably not much.

As far as spot treating goes, I would recommend to use either Termidor SC or Premise 2 on a localized basis. It is great for spot treatment and does not repel the termites as Dragnet FT does.

The Hex Pro Termite Bait System is very versatile and our most popular.  The way to tell if there is activity is to remove the wood detector and look for the live termites. Remember, termite baiting only works when live termites are actively feeding at a station.


Problems With Mice In Barn

Q - We've had to replace the fan belt in my car FOUR times in the past 2 years because of field/barn mice gnawing. I've been looking everywhere and am hoping you can help! We live in the Sierras and I must park my convertible in our barn during winter season. Unfortunately the mice also park themselves in the barn during snow too. We have 5 barn cats, which keep the mice out of our pantry and all, but the little rodents STILL manage to climb into my car's engine to snack.  I don't want to put out any poison because of my cats, dogs and "friendly" wildlife critters. I don't know if something ultra-sonic could work because of the activity in and out of the barn. I'm wondering if there's something ... perhaps a homemade remedy ... which I could use to coat my car's fan belt to repel the mice.  Any ideas would be greatly appreciated!

A - Thank you for your email. Coating your fan belt will probably not deter mice. There is no known repellent for mice or rats and ultrasonic devices will not work. As a matter of fact, they are illegal to sell in most states.

I  recommend using Ketchall mouse traps. Ketchalls are wind -up mice traps that are very effective at capturing mice. Wind it up and it will catch up to 15 mice in one setting. I would recommend to use several placed around the barn. You can place a small amount of peanut butter or use a professional lure such as Pro Lure, inside the ketchall to help attract them.


Grubworms Killing Lawn

Q - MY LAWN IS INFLICTED WITH HOLES AND DYING GRASS. A NEIGHBOR SAID THE PROBLEM IS GRUB WORMS. WE SEARCHED OUR YARD, AND SURE ENOUGH, WE SEEM TO HAVE A SEVERE PROBLEM. WE TREATED THE YARD SEVERAL TIMES LAST YEAR, BUT TO NO AVAIL. WE WANT TO GET RID OF THEM AND HAVE OUR GRASS BACK, BUT WE ARE ALSO CONCERNED ABOUT BIRDS. LAST YEAR, AFTER THE FIRST APPLICATION, THE WORMS APPEARED DEAD AND BIRDS WERE SWARMING OUR YARD, PECKING THEM OUT OF THE GROUND. PLEASE, IS THERE A WAY TO SAVE OUR LAWN. SOMEONE TOLD US TO TRY "MILKEY SPORE." WILL THIS WORK? WILL IT HARM THE BIRDS? IF IT WORKS, WHERE DO WE BUY IT? 

A - Grub worms can only be controlled at certain times of the year. The problem is that once the eggs hatch, then the grub gets very large very fast. The grub larvae can only be controlled when they are small and still near the surface of the soil - that is generally during late July - early August. The only product that works on Grubs is a product called Merit.  Merit contains Imidichloprid - the same ingredient in our popular Premise 2 termite chemical.  Merit is mixed with water and sprayed on your lawn in late May - Late June. Merit kills the newly hatched grubs that hatch from the newly laid June or May beetle eggs. Merit will not kill grubs that are in the last larval stages - before they hatch into beetles.   Milky spore is not recommended as like any fungal agent, it depends on the soil moisture to thrive and in hot dry summers it will die very fast unless the yard is kept saturated with water constantly. Even then, your control will be limited. Merit will not harm the birds once it is watered in your lawn.



Carpenter Ants In Trees

Q - I live on a dead end street where the side and back of my house have woods behind them. I have a above ground pool on the side of the house. Large trees (75 feet in height) surround my house. It seems that carpenter ants are dropping on average, one tree per year. Up until now I have been fortunate that they are dropping away from my property. I am cutting down one tree now that is extremely close to the house and I am sure, is the next to fall. Since the property is mine, naturally I would like to keep as many trees as possible. Any way of treating the whole area? Any recommendations?


A - I recommend to use Advance Carpenter Ant Bait and sprinkle it around the base of the trees and also sprinkle it in the valleys of the tree branches. Etc. You can also take duct tape and wrap it around the tree branches sticky side out and then coat it with the Advance bait. Baiting is going to be your best bet as it will result in the killing of the ant colonies.   Spraying such a large area will not result in destruction of the nests.


Worried That Termites Will Move From Fence To House

Q - Thanks for the quick reply to my questions on do it your self termite baiting! You suggested a termite spot treatment for our fence (the only place we are noting any termite activity) however I worry that this will repel the bugs away from our fence and towards the home (one fence site is only 1 1/2' from the house. Would it make more sense to put the bait traps in and hope that the termites will be happy with the fence and the traps and leave our home alone. I also have been looking at lots of websites directed towards termite control and one site was a little hedgy on baiting as it is still "so new."  They specifically stated that it could take months for termites to gravitate to the traps and in the meantime might decide our house looks good enough to eat! (With so many different areas on our fence affected I am thinking we are dealing with multiple colonies and wondering if baits would still be effective)  Anyway....since I have not a clue in what direction I should go I guess my main question is With our fence so close to the house, with multiple areas eaten on different parts of the fence...would a chemical spray be more effective than the baits??

A - You bring up some good questions and I appreciate your concerns on termite baiting. Relatively speaking - termite baiting is new. So is the internet. The internet is here to stay even though it still has it's critics - although they are few. Termite baiting is the same. For some reason, some people just don't want to accept change - in fact they fight it. Termite baiting is the greatest advancement in termite control since the invention of organophosphate insecticides in the early 1940's. This invention and the invention of the stainless steel handheld sprayer have had such as profound affect on pest control that now when you think of pest control - you still think of having baseboards sprayed with a silver spray can by the Orkin man. We quit spraying baseboards years ago.   Now we use baits for just about everything - roaches, ants, crickets, silverfish, and yes termites. Baits perform better - and in the case of a colony of ants or termites, it is the only way to achieve total control. Without baits, you will be subject to limited control and continual application of pesticides to maintain that limited control - ants or termites.

It is true that baiting is slower process. The average amount of "time to termite activity" in termite bait stations is 8 months. That is why we recommend spot treatment of termites in the beginning. Treating your fence will not necessarily cause termites to gravitate towards your home. That is an old myth - used by pest control sales people to sell termite jobs. The truth to the matter is that once termites are on your property - single or multiple colonies, it is only a matter of time before they find your home regardless of whether you treat your home or not.  The reason is that a colony of termites will forage for food sources (wood or cellulose) in an area as large as an acre or two.

I recommend to treat your fence - if your are concerned about repelling the termites, (which is not a concern) then use Premise 2. Premise 2 is non repellent and kills the termites without repelling them. Dragnet FT will repel termites but also kills them very effectively.

Then use our HomeChoice Termite Bait system to go after the colony. This is exactly the plan that many pest control companies use and recommend. Your other option is to only chemically treat the fence and then "wait" for the termites to hit the house and then chemically treat the house. You may have some damage to replace or fix, but it is an option. If you do opt for a chemical treatment over a bait system, just be prepared to continually treat to keep the chemical effective - since most chemicals only last about 1-2 years.  On second though - go with bait. :-)



Termites Only In Fence And Pest Company Wants Over $1000.00


Q - Last fall we began noticing "eaten" areas of our old wooden fence surrounding the house. When we first bought the house, we were told that carpenter ant damage was noticeable. We thought that the ants were back but when we contacted the pest people, inspections resulted in diagnosis of termites. After several different companies came by with quotes ranging from $800-$1500 we were all set to have a spray done to our house to prevent anything from getting in here. (The damage (in 6 or 7 different areas) is limited to the fence and no one has noted anything in the house). Now we are being pushed towards baiting which seems to be a more realistic choice since our termites are in the fence. But the price is 2x the price of spraying.

I was really excited to see a "do it yourself" baiting kit but I am wondering if it is as easy as it sounds. If kits only run $200-$300, why are companies charging well over $1000 for baiting. Also, with one of the termite damage areas about 1 1/2' away from the house, would baiting still be suggested-especially if we are doing it ourself. What should a do it yourself-er prepare themselves to be doing when going with bait treatment?

A -Your question is a common one. It really is true that you can buy a do it yourself termite baiting kit for $200.00-$300.00. As a matter of fact - You can buy the Hex Pro Termite Baiting Kit which is the exact same thing a Sentricon. The reason your company charges so much is because they are in business to make money. And after they come back a few times to check your bait stations and maybe use a few gallons of Termidor SC or Premise to stop the termites on your fence, they look at their P&L and smile - all the way to the bank. Termite baiting is a very profitable business for those pest companies that do it correctly and keep their cost down and profits high. It is not uncommon for pest companies who perform termite baiting to charge 5-6 times what the bait costs them.

Fortunately - that is why we are in business. We sell to pest companies who perform termite baiting and we will also sell to you - along with complete directions on how to do it. Termite baiting is not rocket science, and if you have 15 minutes a month to spend checking bait stations, then we can save you a lot of money. What I would recommend is to use our Sub-Termite spot treatment kit to kill the termites on your fence, this is done by treating the soil below your fence and then install a Hex Pro Termite Baiting kit around your home and do your own baiting.  As far as preparation goes, just be prepared to do a little work and save a lot money.


Winged Ants in An Apartment

Q - I live in an apartment. These little flying ants come out about every March and last for about 2 to 3 months. I am the only tenant that has these pests. The property management has done nothing to control these ants, so I need to do something to get rid of them. I have tried bombing and spraying with an over the counter spray (Flying Insect Killer Plus) Nothing really seems to work. I cannot find exactly where they are coming from. It definitely seems like the walls. I have had a couple of different exterminators inspect, but I get different answers (pavement, moisture, but they are not termites) Do you have any suggestions that I may do to survive my 3 months with these bugs without going through the property management?

Never spray liquid sprays for ants - you can't kill the nest this way.  Spraying will only kill the worker ants but not the queens.  This may reduce your ant population but unless you can kill every single worker - which will cause the colony to starve and crash - which is very difficult in ant control,  you will not get control.

A - When controlling ants - you have to eliminate the nest or colony. This is the only way to get total control. So that is where your search begins. Generally you will see more activity closer to the nest than away from it. Look for signs of nesting around windows, doors, and other places where moisture is prevalent. That is where most ant species prefer to nest. So look for the moisture, also air conditioners, shower stalls, or bath tubs on outside walls are good places too. Sometimes you can actually follow the ants back to their nest if they are trailing around. If not and you only see winged ants then it may be very difficult to see anything. Next - begin your control effort by trying some different baits. We sell the Drax Combo bait syringe and the Gourmet bait syringe - both are fairly inexpensive but do a good job. Place small pea size placements of one of these baits wherever you think the ants are. Place the placements in window sills, corners of walls, even take off electrical switch plates and put the bait inside the outlet - the same for plumbing lines. If these baits do not work, then you may have to resort to dusting all the wall voids in your apartment with Boric Acid Dust. This is accomplished by removing the electrical switch plates and inserting a small duster (white crusader) into the wall void and blowing the boric acid dust into the walls. All switch plates, electrical lines, plumbing lines, weep holes, cracks, crevices etc, need to be treated to basically toxify all the places where the ants might live or travel. This is called a wall and void treatment . This may take 2-3 hours to perform but is safe for you and will kill everything that bugs you - ants and roaches. Our Home Roach kit is perfect for this.



Using Timbor For Drywood Termites in California

Q - In reading the product data for using Timbor it recommends drilling the wood  and injecting the termite infected area and the wood for pretreat with 60 psi. What sprayer do you have that will meet this PSI and comes with a small  injection tube?

Do you sell foaming agents that I can use with Timbor products? I want to treat the attic and wood outside? Any advice?

A - 60 PSI for the Timbor application is purely to ensure that the material is dispersed throughout the infected areas. What helps to overcome this is to try and seal as many kick out holes as you can find. That way you don't lose as much pressure. The Solo Foamer works great in applying Timbor, as the foam will slowly penetrate all the galleries. Actually, I would probably recommend Premise 2, because it works faster at killing the termites. Just foam the Premise into the galleries and that should do the trick. Premise 2  is non repellent also.

As far as a sprayer that will deliver 60 PSI - the Chapin 1 gallon sprayer will deliver it if you keep it pumped up. I believe it comes with a small injection tube. The B&G sprayer (not listed on our website) also comes with an injection tube for crack and crevice application. Both brands are a little expensive for homeowner use.

Normally for spot treating drywood termites, I recommend our drywood termite spot treatment kit. It comes with everything you need for spot treating and works great. We sell Masterline foam for use in the Solo Foamer. Treat your attic using Timbor - the correct way to apply it is with the B&G 2 Quart Duster or the B&G Electric Duster.  You could also use the B&G Mini Duster but it would take considerably longer.  Outside wood is difficult to treat unless it is bare exposed wood.   That is because most chemicals including Timbor will not penetrate paint or varnish, stain, etc..



Advantage of The HomeChoice Termite Bait System over Terminate Alone

Q - I have looked at the Spectracide Terminate bait system (little spikes) that is sold at Home Depot and other retail stores and it appears to use the same active killing product. I'm sure you are familiar with these. These baited spikes are priced around $95 for 40.

I'm not sure from reading your web site what and why your $250 system advantage is vs. the $90 for the spikes.

Could you enlighten me as I'm trying to help a neighbor make a choice of how to treat his home. His wife is ill and the $2,000 cost from the contractor is more than their budget now allows.

A - The reason the pest contractor wants $2000 is because the system they sell and maintain requires monthly inspections and regular monthly maintenance. Termite baiting is a little more sophisticated than the package on the Terminate product would lead you to believe. You simply can't put Terminate stakes in the ground and expect the termites to find them before the Sulflurimid in them (toxicant) loses it's effectiveness. Basically Terminate only lasts about 30 days after it is placed in the ground. Less if it stays wet.   After 30 days the bait matrix degrades and is no longer effective.  To keep Terminate effective all year, you need to replace each stations before it degrades, usually about every 30 - 60 days.

By using a Termite Bait Station as a Detection tool, you can wait months or even over a year for the termites to start feeding. And during this time you never have to replace anything. That keeps your cost extremely low. Remember - the average amount of time to termite activity is 8 months. And termites are not active in most parts of the country at ground level during the winter. If you used Terminate only - as directed, you would have to replace the stations every 2 months to be sure that they are effective. Even then you couldn't be for certain that they are effective. The Terminate stakes are the most effective the day that they are placed into the ground - then day by day they gradually lose effectiveness until there is nothing left except just the plastic and the cardboard matrix. The Terminate stake at that point is no good and needs to be replaced.



Serious Tick Problem In Home

Q - We have a serious Tick infestation in our home. They can be found just about everywhere, dressers, ceilings, carpets, etc. Any advice on controlling this pest would be appreciated. We have tried several things and have reduced the population to a degree but do not feel sufficient control has been reached. We do have a dog and Cat and have eliminated their access to the house.

A - Indoor Tick infestations are best controlled by applying Demon WP or Demand to all baseboards, window sills, under furniture, rugs, etc. Apply it just about anywhere that the ticks are found, but be sure to allow all surfaces to dry before reentering the house. These products are easily applied with a handheld sprayer. They come concentrated but easily mix with water and have little or no odor.

You have to remember however, that all insects, ticks included, usually come from outdoors. Treat outdoors with Bifenthrin, and thoroughly saturate all areas where ticks could be found. This includes under shrubs, decks, on tree trunks, standing or tall grass and weeds, etc.

Be sure to treat your animals also. We recommend to use PetCor flea spray on them. PetCor is easily applied and contains Precor a growth regulator that is great for flea



Can I Treat For Termites Myself ?

Q -I have recently found out that I have termites. Is it possible to eliminate them myself, and what is the cost of treatments. Also, once eliminated, what do I do to find out what damage has occurred that needs repairs.

A -When assessing termite treatment options, you need to consider the complexity of your home, the species of termite ( I am assuming subterranean or ground termites) and the most important question, if you want or desire to try and control them yourself. The general reason for this is that you can save thousands of dollars by doing it yourself. Realistically, the chances of you gaining the chemicals that the pros use are available in most areas without any need for licensing. They are not restricted use products. However, they are generally only available from a specialty distributor such as ePestSupply.com.

As far as damage goes, if the damage is not visible, then it's not visible. Even a trained pro cannot assess damage that cannot be seen. There are special scopes and cameras that can be placed inside the walls to try to see hidden damage, but 99% of the professional pest companies do not use them. They basically use the "eyeball" method. Any damage to trim or sheetrock is usually very evident. If not, then don't worry about it. If you are concerned about structural damage, then call a pest consultant to come out and inspect your home for the damage. Then kill'em yourself !



New Home Pretreatment For Sub Termites

Q - I am about to begin construction of a new home in northern Kentucky. What products are recommended for use during the construction phase to discourage termites?  Are stronger, more effective products available to professional applicators?  If so, would these products be available to persons involved in agriculture?

A - When preventively treating for sub termites, a soil treatment is usually recommended to create a chemical barrier that kills and repels termites before they enter your home. This type of treatment is usually called a "pretreatment". A typical pretreatment using Dragnet FT or Talstar is usually all that is needed to prevent termite infestation. The chemical is sprayed onto the soil area before the plastic is laid (monolithic slab) just like spraying a yard. The amount of chemical used is 1 gallon per 10 square feet. So to calculate the amount of chemical just take your total square footage of the ground "thumbprint" area and divide it by 10. If you have 2000 square feet then you will need 200 gallons of diluted mix. After the home is built, you will then need to treat the outside perimeter foundation. This is done by digging a small trench 3-4" deep along the wall with a pick and flooding the trench with chemical. The rate of application here is 4 gallons per 10 linear feet. A simple way to calculate the chemical needed is to take the total linear feet divide by 10 and multiply by 4. If the total linear footage is 200 linear feet (all outside walls measured) then 200 divided by 10 is 20 times 4 is 80. You will need 80 gallons to treat the outside foundation.

Your total chemical gallons needed will be (approx) 280 gallons. I recommend either Termidor SC or Premise 2.

The other possibility is treating all of the base plates, window sills, and studs (4 feet up) with Timbor or BoraCare. Timbor and BoraCare work extremely well at killing termites and anything the eats the wood. Timbor mixes at 1 lb per gallon, and you will need approximately 25 pounds to treat your home. BoraCare mixes in 1 gallon of water and treats up to 800 sq ft of wood.  What you treat and where is up to you. Some customers treat every square inch of wood and both sides of the sheetrock (paper backing which termites will eat). We sell all of these products and even a 25 pound container of Timbor.  These are the same products that the pros use.  There are no licensing restrictions on these products.  



Placement Of Baits For Termite Control & Eradication

Q- I live in a wood frame house in south Louisiana that is built on concrete piers capped with sheet metal termite shields. I recently found an area where the termites created a tunnel around the shield. I used Spectracide Terminate as a stop gap measure in the affected area until a long-term plan can be implemented. The widest portion of my home is 30' wide, the narrowest is 24' with an overall length of 61 feet.  Will baits placed along the perimeter of the house provide adequate coverage for the entire structure or will additional stations need to be placed under the house?

A - We do not recommend placing termite bait stations in the ground under houses. The reason is that monthly checking of stations under your home tends to be cumbersome and it is usually a lot easier just to place them outside the foundation where they are easily accessible.

Q - Will rainwater runoff from the roof be a problem? I assume that I should place the baits away from the drip line as close to the house as possible?

A - No, the stations need to get wet occasionally, place them just outside the drip line where they can get wet and become a natural part of the environment. Do not let them stand in water - if they do, then dig the hole deeper to allow for drainage or move them farther out. Do not place them in low areas. You may need to build a small mound to raise the station a few inches.

Q - How many stations will I need for the house?

A - Based on the dimensions that you gave me, you have around 176 linear feet. One station placed every 10 feet will yield you 17.6 or 18 stations.

Q - Additionally, I have a 20' x 30' workshop that is built on a slab and is located 6' from the house. The slab has no penetrations in its center or walls. What is the recommended number of baits for this building? In the 6' common area between the house and the shop do the baits in this area serve both buildings or does each building need its own "ring" of baits ?

A - For an additional 100 linear feet you will need 10 stations. However - a trick is to run a single row of stations between the house and the garage eliminating the need for stations side by side in this area. That would eliminate a few stations.


Foaming Agents For Use With Timbor

Q - Do you sell a foaming agent that works with TimBor for between walls? If not, what do you recommend as a foaming agent ?

A - Yes, we sell a product called Pro Foam Platinum - it mixes at a ration of 16 to 1. It's what all the pest pros use. Pro foam contains a superior foaming agent and also wetting agents to help the pesticide penetrate the wood. Use it with the Solo Foamer.



Drywood Termites In China Cabinet

Q - I have moved in my aunt's maple china hutch into my house and it obviously has termites in it. I was told afterwards that they found termites in her old wood house. How do I get rid of them before they get in my house?

A - Sounds like you have Drywood termites. Drywood termites are infamous for infesting furniture. The problem is that if they are in the furniture - it is very likely that they will (or already have) swarm and infest your home. I recommend to immediately remove the china hutch from your living area and place it in an outside storage or patio area. You can wrap it in plastic sheeting to help protect it from the weather.

Our drywood termite kit is for performing spot treatments. Normally, you will find small "kick out" holes where the termites are tossing the wood pellets out of. That kick out hole leads to the nest. Find the Kick out holes and then inject our products into them. The other alternative is fumigation, which you will have to contract with someone locally to perform. You can read more about Drywood termites at http://www.epestsupply.com/drywood.htm.



Termites In Shed - Can't Afford Professional

Q - I have termites in my shed that is about 30 ft from my house, if I use something to kill them will it just drive them to my house? And what would you recommend to kill them, I can not afford to have it professionally done. And should I treat the house as well even though there is not evidence of them in the house? We just moved here 18 months ago and was told it had been treated for termites a couple of years before we bought it. Any information you could give is appreciated.

A - If you have termites in your shed, then treating your shed with a repellent termite chemical such as Dragnet could drive them to the house. On the other hand if you treat the shed with a non-repellent termite chemical such asTermidor SC or Premise 2 or if you install a baiting system such as Hex Pro, then the chances of them moving to the house are greatly reduced. All termite chemicals that have been available for the last 13 years have a limited life span. Most have a half life of 9 months. (point in which half of the chemical is gone) Your previous treatment is probably long since deteriorated.



Termite Bait Stations Inside Homes

Q - You don't seem to discuss bait stations that can be applied to the active tubes when found in the inside areas.  Is there a problem?

 
A - Good question. The problem with interior termite infestations, is that there is too much competing wood such as studs, trim, base plates, paper sheetrock coverings etc, to entice the termites to feed on a prefabricated bait station. Remember termites will eat anything made of wood or cellulose, paper etc. . Several companies market an indoor termite bait station, but I have never talked with anyone that was completely satisfied with the results they got. We have a new above ground bait station that keeps the bait moist (which may help to entice the termites) that we are experimenting with right now, but until we good results, we will not market it. The Sentricon above ground station is marginal, and the Exterra system comes with a "bait bag" that can be placed inside walls which have termite activity that seems to work better than Sentricon.   The only above ground bait station that I can recommend is the Firstline above ground station which works well outside on brick walls, and concrete foundations, stucco, etc, but not on wood siding.  

Normally, we recommend to foam inside walls with the Solo  Foamer . Use a small amount of foaming agent, a small amount of Termidor SC or Premise 2 a small amount of water, shake it up, pump it up and walla ! a shaving cream type of foam that works great for filling wall voids, eaves, etc. You need to stop the termite infestation with chemicals and then use a bait system such as Hex Pro Termite Bait System.


Termite Company Wants Thousands For Termites In One Spot

Q - We have a two door garage outside. An inspection done by a professional found only one area at the center part in between the doors that showed signs of active infestation coming up under our asphalt driveway. What product or products would you recommend? They wanted to sell us a complete bait system all around the house for thousands of dollars even though the man said we only had this one problem area. Help!

A - What you are experiencing has been a common practice in the pest control industry for decades. Most pest companies will recommend a complete treatment (full treatment) on a home even though termites may be in only 1 or 2 spots. They do this to limit liability and because everyone knows that termites will move from a treated spot and enter in an untreated spot. This is the reason for the bait system. Bait systems go after the colony. When using a bait system we recommend to spot treat the areas with either Dragnet FT or Premise 2.  This can easily be done on your garage center support by drilling 1/2" holes every 12 inches around it then placing a long plastic funnel into the holes and pouring the chemicals through the funnel. You can take a flashlight and look through the other holes to be sure that the chemical is flowing properly around it. Pour as much chemical as it will take. You can mix it a gallon at a time in a bucket and pour it in the funnel.

We sell a sub termite spot treatment kit that should do the trick. I would then install our HomeChoice Termite Bait System and do your own termite baiting. These are the same products that thousands of pest companies use.



Chiggers and Ticks on 5 Acres of Land

Q - I have been taming about 5acres of rough overgrown, [30 years] land in west. ky, it is under a heavy oak canopy , and is heavy with ticks of all type, and chiggers in the heat of summer. land has been burned virtually to the ground. looking for a product to spread overland to help reduce, eliminate, and keep it that way. thank-you


A - Chiggers are actually the immature stage of the straw itch mite. Controlling the ticks and chiggers on 5 acres of land is a tough job - the best you can hope for is control and not total elimination. If you have a way of spraying the ground - with a boom type sprayer or some type of hydraulic sprayer - then I would recommend regular applications of Talstar. I would spray it at least one a month until the problem is under control. You may also consider using a growth regulator (IGR) such as Precor to control the eggs and immature stages of the ticks and chiggers. It is the cheapest and best control and will provide as good control as anything else available. It mixes at a very low rate so you can keep your cost down.


 

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