Among the most common treatments of termites is using sprays. It is very important to understand the different types of termite sprays and how they are used. Here is a guide on the available commercial and natural sprays, how exactly to use them and reviews.
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How Effective are Termite Sprays?
Termite sprays are very effective in killing termites. There are several types of the sprays and their effectiveness varies depending on their composition as will be discussed later in the article.
Most of the sprays kill termites by disrupting the normal functioning of the termite’s nervous system, and by dehydrating their exoskeletons.
Additionally, some of the sprays deprive the termites of their protein content. There are some of the termite sprays that only kill the termites but also act as a repellant.
You can also make your own termite spray at home if you do not have the money to buy from the stores.
How to spray and how often
Spraying termites is considered to be one of the most effective ways of eliminating termites.
The pesticide chosen is sprayed on the area infested with termites. This ensures that all the termites are killed.
Since some termites live underground, you are also advised to spray some of the pesticide in the soil where the termites are likely to be. You are advised to spray the termites after 3 to 5 years.
How to Select Best Termite Spray
There are a number of things you must consider when choosing a termite spray. Some of the considerations to be made include the following;
Where you intend to spray
While some sprays can be used both indoors and outdoors, some of them do not give you that choice. It is therefore important to choose carefully so that you do not end up with a spray which can only be used outdoors while your interest is indoors.
Area to be covered
Some of the sprays are more economical and effective for smaller coverage. If your whole house is infested, you should use the type of spray which can be carried by one termite and spread easily to the entire colony.
Some sprays are more expensive than others. This may depend on the company producing the spray. As long as the spray is effective, do not use prices as a judge as to which spray is more effective than the other.
Do it yourself Natural termite spray-Orange Oil
DIY Orange Oil-Recipe & How to use
Orange oil is the oil extracted from the rinds of oranges and is usually insoluble in water. Amongst its many uses is killing of termites.
This means, you can classify orange oil as a termiticide. A research carried out in California in the 1930s later yielded results that orange oil is effective in killing termites, mores specifically, drywood termites.
D-limonene is the active ingredient in orange oil which explains its ability to destroy termites. There are two ways in which orange oil can terminate the life of termites. These are;
- Exposing termites to fumes which have a high concentration of d-limonene kills the termites.
- Since d-limonene is easily absorbed into wooden surfaces, termites which feed on wood treated with orange oil die instantly.
Scientists explain that orange oil kills termites by dissolving their exoskeleton and destroying their cell membrane. Consequently, the termite losses not only water but also protein.
This leads to its instant death. You are required to inject the oil into the surface which is infested with termites. Drill holes into the hollow spaces where termites are busy feeding.
Most of the termites are killed by direct contact with the orange oil. Orange oil in some cases simply deters them from feeding and they as a result starve to death. The residual effects of orange oil may go for duration of between three days to three weeks.
There are three things you must do if you want to attain 100% of termite eradication using orange oil;
You must be vigilant
You must be on the watch out to identify termites just when they start infesting your home.
It has been found that orange oil works best for treating new infestations rather than old infestations where termites are fully established.
You are advised to carry out inspections time more often and apply orange oil as soon as you see any termite infestation signs.
Apply orange oil consistently
Orange oil only kills termites in the area of application. This means, if there are termites which are not in the specific part you did the application then they survive.
To avoid such cases, apply orange oil thoroughly such that all termites are killed. In the case where you are treating wood infested with termites, drill many holes so that you cover a large population of the termites.
Use preventive measures to keep termites away
Since you know orange oil may not cover your entire home if it is attacked by termites, it is advisable to use control measures to make your home as uninviting to termites as possible.
You can do so by repairing any water leakages and ensuring all wood is elevated and it does not come to contact with the ground.
Other DIY Termite Sprays
There are homemade sprays that you can use to eliminate termites. They include the following;
Vinegar + olive spray
The mixture of vinegar and vinegar has been found to effectively kill termites. All you need is to drill holes on affected wood or on the mud tubes and spray the place with this mixture. This mixture when sprayed on the termites kills them instantly following the high acid content of the mixture. That aside, the mixture acts as deterrent discouraging termites from coming into your home.
Just like orange oil, fresh lemon juice contains d-limonene. When sprayed on the termites, lemon juice kills the termites by destroying their digestive systems.
Aloe vera spray
You can also crush aloe vera and mix it with water then spray it on the termites. When termites come into contact with aloe vera, they immediately die. Moreover, aloe vera also acts as a repellant keeping the termites away from your home. This is explained by Dr Deepak Pant of Central University of Himachal Pradesh.
Neem oil spray
Although this will only be best if used for a small infestation, it is still helpful. Neem oil kills termites on contact. It is safe for use around your home since it is non-toxic.
Boric Acid termite spray Review
Boric acid consists of boron which is in almost all places you can think of; soil, rocks, humans, and animals. Boric acid is found to be in powder form. Although it can be used in eliminating all types of termites, it is best used for subterranean termites.
When sprayed on a surface where there are termites or where termites are likely to pass by, the acid sticks on the body of the termites. Unknowingly, the termites carry the boric acid to the rest of the termites. This means that, it spreads the poison to the entire colony.
For this reason, boric acid is preferred by many homeowners for eliminating termites since you will spend less money but get satisfactory results.
On eating boric acid, the termites die since this acid not only destroys the stomach of the termite but also the nervous system. The death of the termites is not however immediate and may take a while. Good news is, no matter how long it takes, it will kill them all.
You can make a boric acid solution by yourself to cut down on the cost of having to hire a professional. The solution will consist of boric acid, propylene glycol and water as explained below;
- Make a mixture of 400 g boric acid, water and 1 liter propylene glycol.
- Always remember to put propylene glycol first in the container then add boric acid as you stir to allow it to dissolve completely.
- Apply the mixture on the wooden surfaces that are infested with termites.
- Use a brush to ensure a large area is covered by the solution. Propylene glycol helps in ensuring the solution goes as deep as possible into the wood.
Alternatively, you can make a mixture of sugar, warm water and boric acid as described below;
- Mix 2 cups of sugar, 1 cup of warm water, and 2 tablespoons of boric acid. Sugar is used so as to attract the termites since generally, insects like sugar.
- Stir until al sugar and boric acid are dissolved.
- Always remember to where gloves and safety glasses.
- You can then spray the mixture on the areas where the infestation has been spotted.
Although boric acid is described as no-toxic and hence less dangerous unlike other termiticides, you must be cautious when you use it. Ensure you do not use boric acid in areas where children or pets play. Eating boric acid could result to health problems.
When applying boric acid, wear shoes, socks, long pants and a long sleeved shirt, protective glasses and chemical resistant gloves. Boric acid irritates the eyes and the skin. You do not want to have sleepless nights due to the irritation so just take the necessary precaution measures.
Spectracide termite spray
This spray has been found to be very effective when used to kill termites. It can be used both indoors and outdoors and it leaves no stains on the surfaces where it is sprayed.
Spectracide termite and carpenter ant killer has lambda-Cyhalothrin as the active ingredient. This is an insecticide which was registered in 1988 by EPA (United States Environmental Protection Agency).
Lambda-cyhalothrin disrupts how the nervous system of the termite functions. This as a result paralyses the termite to death.
You can also use Spectracide Baiting Stakes which have the active component as hexaflumuron. In 1994, it was registered as a termiticide in the US. This termiticide stops the termites from growing.
Spectracide termite sprayer comes with a special nozzle which ensures the foam reaches hidden areas where the termites hide.
You are required to read the instructions on the spray bottle and follow them carefully. It may take about one to four months for the entire colony to be eliminated after spraying the termites.
Spectracide termite spray may kill all types of termites but they are preferred mostly for subterranean termites. Always take the necessary precaution measures since, hexaflumuron is harmful to the skin and lambda-cyhalothrin may be toxic when inhaled.
Term out termite spray
This is a type of spray which will help get rid of termites within your home in a few hours. It kills the termites as soon as it is sprayed.
What makes it even more efficient is that it does not necessarily have to come into contact with termites since it is absorbed through the pores of the termites.
Term out termite spray is made up of very effective insecticides as explained below;
This insecticide affects the functioning of the termite’s nervous system. It paralyses the muscles of the termite with the muscles of the internal organs included. The termite hence dies within a very short period of time.
It functions closely like the Cypermethrin but it is found to work more effectively. This insecticide blocks nerve impulses and causes the musculoskeletal system of the termite to be paralyzed.
It is an insecticide which is no-toxic and works in the same way as tetramethrin.
The following instructions must be followed for use of the spray to be effective in killing the termites;
- Shake the spray before use. Keep all pets away and wear protective gloves.
- Always ensure that the spray bottle is 20-30 com away from the surface that is being sprayed. This ensures that the spray goes deeper into the affected area.
- Once you have sprayed the affected room or place, leave it for about 20 minutes. It is necessary to aerate it thereafter for about thirty minutes.
Will ant spray kill termites?
Most of the sprays used to kill termites can be used effectively against ants. However, only a few of the sprays designed for ants will kill all types of termites.
The reason is that, unlike ants, termites are in hidden places in most cases. For instance, raid ant killer can be used to kill termites but this will only be applicable for swarmer termites or if the termites are crawling on the surface.
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