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How Effective Are Chemical Barriers Against Subterranean Termites?

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Subterranean termites are the most destructive pest in the US, and the chemical barrier is one of the methods used to prevent and stop infestations. But how effective are these barriers really? Let’s find out!

What is a chemical barrier?

The chemical barrier is a perimeter that is created by injecting termiticide near the foundation of the home. Since subterranean termite colonies are underground, the workers travel through the earth to reach the wood of the home and forage it. The barrier interrupts this path, killing any termites that come into contact with it, or coating them in slow acting termiticide that is spread throughout the colony, which will lead to the death of the colony.

How effective is the chemical barrier?

Chemical barriers are very effective at stopping subterranean termite infestations. They will stop an infestation almost immediately if a fast-acting termiticide is used. If a slow acting termiticide is used, the barrier will destroy the whole colony, but the infestation will continue for a period of time.

Alternative treatment methods

Alternative treatments against subterranean termites include physical barriers and baiting systems. Physical barriers are very effective, and they can last for 50 years, but their major drawback is that they can only be installed while the building is under construction. After the home has been built, the chemical barrier is the only viable alternative. Chemical barriers are also cheaper to install, but they only last for 8 years.

The other alternative method is the baiting system. The baiting system consists of small plastic containers that are placed in shallow holes in the ground. Inside the containers, you will have cellulose that is laced with a slow acting termiticide. The concept behind this method is that the termites will grab the cellulose and spread it throughout the colony. Because the termiticide used is slow-acting, the termites will not know that it is poisonous, and consequently, they will not avoid it. Once the cellulose is spread enough, it will kill a majority of the colony members including the queen. The one problem with the baiting system is that it takes a few months to kill a colony, so it is usually used as a prevention method, or in conjunction with a chemical barrier in order to destroy the colony on the property.

If you would like to know more information about chemical barriers and other termite treatment methods, or if you have an infestation that needs to be removed, contact us today.

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