Termites: Treatment, Control, and Home Pest control Palm Desert

Termites are a common problem in homes across the United States. They cause damage to wood structures, including homes, schools, and businesses. If left untreated, termite infestations can lead to structural damage and even collapse.

Termites are insects that feed off of dead organic matter such as wood. They are also known to eat paper, cardboard, and other cellulose materials. The termite population has been growing at an alarming rate since the 1980s.

If you suspect that you have termites in your home, contact a pest control professional immediately. At On the Fly, we specialize in pest control Palm Desert residents can rely on.

What are Termites?

The most commonly found species of termites are subterranean or dry wood termites. Drywood termites live on decaying trees and shrubs. Subterranean termites prefer moist environments like soil near water sources. Both types of termites build nests underground where they lay eggs and store food for their young. When conditions become favorable, these termites will begin feeding on nearby vegetation. Once this happens, it is very difficult to stop them from spreading throughout the area.

Identifying Termite Infestations

There are several ways to determine whether or not there are termites present in your home. One way is by looking around outside your home. You may notice small holes in the ground surrounding your foundation. These could be signs of termite activity. Another sign would be seeing large piles of dirt next to your home's foundation. This indicates that termites have burrowed into the earth underneath your property. A third method is a thorough inspection of your home's exterior walls. Look closely at any cracks or crevices along the surface of your home. Any type of insect life should be visible inside those areas. Finally, look under furniture and appliances. It is possible that termites have made their way into your home via items stored within your home.

Types of Termite Treatments

Once you identify termites in your home, treatment options include chemical treatments, heat treatments, and biological controls. Chemical treatments involve spraying chemicals directly onto the affected areas. Heat treatments use high temperatures to kill all living organisms in the area. Biological controls utilize natural predators that consume the pests. All three methods work well when used correctly. However, if done incorrectly, they can actually make matters worse. For example, using too much pesticide can harm plants and animals in your yard.

Chemical Treatments

One of the easiest ways to treat termites is with pesticides. There are many different kinds available depending upon what kind of termite you have. Some examples include boric acid, copper sulfate, pyrethrin, imidacloprid, fipronil, methoprene, and cyfluthrin. Pesticides come in liquid form and must be applied carefully so that only the targeted area receives the correct amount. The too little pesticide will do nothing while too much can result in serious health problems.

Heat Treatments

Another option for treating termites involves heating up the entire structure. In some cases, this process requires removing everything from the house except the floor joists. Afterward, the temperature is raised until the whole building reaches about 200 degrees Fahrenheit. At this point, the termites die instantly. While effective, this technique is extremely dangerous because it exposes people working on the job site to extreme heat. Furthermore, it takes time to complete which means that the termites continue to spread during the waiting period.

Biological Controls

Finally, there are biological controls that rely on naturally occurring predators to eliminate the termites. Termites are attracted to certain smells and tastes. Certain foods attract specific species of ants. Ants then carry the termites back to their nest where they are eaten alive. Other biological controls use parasitic wasps that attack the termites once they enter the colony. Wasps inject paralyzing substances into the body of the termite before laying eggs inside its head. Once hatched, these larvae devour the termite from the inside out.

Regular Home Inspections and Preventive Measures for Termite Control

A good first step towards protecting yourself against termites is having a thorough home inspection performed regularly. Inspectors will check for evidence of termite presence and help you decide how best to protect your home. An inspector will examine the exterior of your home and inspect the interior surfaces. He/she may look under sinks, behind appliances, and around pipes. This type of inspection should occur every year. It's important to note that not all inspectors perform inspections like this. Make sure that yours does!

The most effective way to prevent termites from entering your home is by sealing cracks and crevices. These openings allow moisture to penetrate through walls and floors. Moisture attracts termites. You can seal them with caulking compounds made specifically for this purpose. Another method is to install weather stripping along with doors and windows. Weatherstripping prevents air currents from blowing through gaps between door frames and window sills. Finally, you can apply insecticides to any exposed soil near foundation walls. Insecticide-treated mulch or gravel placed directly beneath foundations helps keep pests away from the base of your home.

There are several things that homeowners can do to reduce the chances of getting termites. One thing to avoid doing is using pressure-treated lumber. Pressure treatment kills the natural bacteria found in trees and shrubs. When used indoors, pressure-treated lumber creates ideal conditions for termites to thrive. Wood products containing arsenic are another potential source of termites. Arsenic acts as a pesticide but it doesn't kill termites outright. Instead, it makes them sick so they don't reproduce. However, if you're concerned about the safety of your family's health, you shouldn't be buying wood products containing arsenic.

You can also make sure that your yard isn't attracting termites. Remove debris from lawn areas and plant grasses that aren't attractive to termites. Also, remove weeds and plants that provide food sources for termites. Lastly, try planting native vegetation instead of non-native landscaping. Native plants won't attract termites because they contain no chemicals.

Protect Your Home Through Good Pest Management Plan

Pests can wreak havoc on our property without us knowing it. We often overlook small problems until we see large ones. That's why it's crucial to know what kind of pests live in your area and take steps to get rid of them.

It's very difficult to completely eradicate termites from your property. But, you can take steps to minimize their impact. A well-thought-out plan of action will include regular inspections, proper maintenance, and prevention measures. Your local exterminator can assist you in creating a comprehensive plan.

Protecting your home from pests is important. Termites are one of the biggest threats to your home. Protect your home from these pesky insects with proven and effective pest control Palm Desert services from On The Fly! We offer comprehensive pest control services for residential and commercial properties including termite treatment and control solutions. Our experienced inspectors will consult with you about the best treatment option for your home. Call us today for a free inspection!