Drywood Termites: Inspection Guide

Drywood termites are insects that like to settle in dead wood structures, including houses and furniture. They need little moisture. That’s why they differ from subterranean or dumpwood siblings. Another difference between subterranean and drywood termites is that the latter are a bit bigger in size but their colonies are not as numerous as the subterranean type. It takes about 5 years for drywood termites to enlarge the nest and make more visible and significant damage to the wood. From this point of view, this type of termites needs some different treatment options.

From the other side, drywood termites live almost entirely inside the timber. The only chance for you to notice them is when alates (winged termites) fly out of their nests. But this event takes place only once or twice a year depending on the appropriate weather conditions. Besides, the number of swarmers may be so little that you may not notice them. Follow this Inspection Guide to get of termites.

drywood termite damage

Termite pretreatment cost

  • Discarted After the flight drywood, termite swarmers drop off their wings, which are equally sized.
  • Little round termite droppings, called frass. Be attentive. This frass much resembles large pieces of sand, gathered in piles. Somewhere above the pile, you will definitely see a little hole in wooden structure of your house.
  • Hollow sound if you tap on the timber. This usually means that the material here has been already damaged by termites.
drywood termite frass
Pile of drywood termite frass.

These signs are very subtle and small. Make sure that you don’t miss them. Otherwise, think about calling the termite control service. The qualified specialists will assume or reject your guesses about termite infestation. After proper examining of your house and surrounding, which is usually for free, the inspector will give you the exact answer about termite infestation. If you are lucky and there are no termites in your house, you will be given thorough recommendations about the ways how to avoid termite infestation. In case your house suffers from these unwelcomed guests, the inspector will offer you the most effective drywood termite treatments.

The cost of termite damage

You have two main variants to control drywood termites.

Mechanical changing of the damaged materials. And nothing more. In this case, you are very likely to repeat the same procedure in a few years of even months. On the one hand, this method is considered to be the cheapest. But if termites have infested your house, making their colony big, you will have to do the repairing works regularly. Think if you really can afford it.

termite extermination methods
Coat floor mouldings, window and door frames with orange oil treatment.

Attempts of total termite extermination. It will be much safer because you will get rid of the unwelcomed guests. In case you apply effective pretreatment measures, the termites will never attack your property. This method is the most expensive, but they are worthy.

Also here are some methods of termite extermination:

  • It works if you know exactly in which piece of wood the termite have made their nest. And if their colony is not very large.
  • Baiting systems. They are very effective as the poisoned termite now is a threat to other members of the colony. They are contaminated. The disadvantage is that baits are long-term methods of killing termites, though very effective.
  • Fumigation and chemical methods. They can kill termite mound very quickly. Mind that gazing is good if termites have settled close to the surface, not very deep. Foams or treatments like Termidor, when applied on wood, can reach even deep hidden colonies and kill the entire colony.
  • Natural termite treatment, including orange oil and heat treatment for termites.

The price of this type of treatment is the highest, because of the chemical cost itself, combined with the cost of special clothes and appliances.

The average price for baiting systems is around $1050. At the same time, on chemical methods, you will spend $1700. They are applied to the area of 1250 square feet.

How to reduce the termite treatment cost?

If the figures seem frightening, you can minimize the termite treatment cost. There are companies that offer termite inspection options once a year. Even minimal termite activity won’t be missed. The earlier they will be detected, the smaller their nest will be, and the simpler it would be to get rid of them.

Free Termite Inspection

Do It Yourself termite treatment

Chemicals are very effective treatments against termites. The drawback is that you should leave the house for a day or so, taking out all food, drinks, medications, so everything that can be contaminated by the chemical substances. They are dangerous for pets and people as well.

There are also natural treatments against termites. Orange oil is one of the most popular. But their sphere of appliance is mostly prevention or, at least, spot treatment. In this case, you find the exact place of termite activity and use the orange oil. Radical methods like fumigation can’t be stood by orange oil. You can use this oil to protect wood surface.

The best termite treatment applications are the following:

  • Orange oil can be applied on wooden surfaces. Termites won’t definitely like these parts of your wooden construction. Termite spot treatment application with orange oil. For this case drill a hole in the part infestated by termites. Then fill it with orange oil. It will destroy the termites’ cell membranes, making them die. But if your house is much damaged and termite colony is very big, orange oil will be a waste of efforts, time and probably, money.
  • Termidor is mostly used for subterranean termites in soil treatment. You may also find dry Termidor for drywood This type of Termidor acts like bait. The insects eat dry Termidor balls, becoming contaminated for other members of the nest. The whole colony will die out very soon.

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