What an Arizona Homeowner
Needs to Know About
The subterranean termite is extremely common throughout the Valley. These termites live in the soil. They are social insects and live in colonies that can approach 300,000 other termites. A "mud tube" is often a sign of infestation although these mud tubes are not always visible since they can be hidden by walls, plumbing, cabinets and other obstructions. Here are some examples of what these mud tubes look like.
Because termites are so common throughout the Valley, every home built is required to have a termite "pre-treatment". During a pre-treatment the soil is treated just before the concrete foundation is poured. This treatment establishes a barrier in the soil that reduces the likelihood of termites entering the home. The products used for these pre-treatments break down over time leaving a home vulnerable to a termite infestation. We find that many Phoenix area residents do not know this pre-treatment was ever performed. This lack of awareness leads to homeowners that do not necessarily know the risks going forward or what the recommended approach is to keep the home protected against termites.
Installing landscaping, digging pools, pouring patio slabs and other activities that create disturbance of the ground too close to the foundation can ruin the termite pre-treat barrier and void the initial warranty. Without a barrier, termites can enter the home through cracks in the foundation, through cracks around plumbing going into a home or along the concrete slab around the entire home. Left undetected, termites can obviously cause significant damage.
We are often asked what is the recommended approach to keep a home protected against termites. Dr. Baker of the University of Arizona provides some guidance in an article title Arizona Termites of Economic Importance (2005). He states: "In the post-construction phase, inspect your home twice a year or better yet, employ a pest management professional (PMP) to do an annual inspection. The practice of repeated visual inspections insure that termite infestations will be promptly detected once termites have invaded the home. This practice allows control methods to be employed contemporaneous to the infestation, reducing the risk of serious structural damage." If a termite infestation is found during an inspection or if a homeowner wants to re-establish the termite barrier proactively, there are some excellent options available to keep your home protected.
The most common treatment approach in the Phoenix area is a "liquid treatment". This liquid treatment is applied by trenching around the foundation of a home and "rodding" down into the soil where the subterranean termites live. The liquid product most commonly used are "non-repellents". Non-repellents were introduced over 15-years ago. Termidor is a non-repellent that many homeowners have heard of through advertising. These non-repellents have been a game changer for termite control. In the past, the products used were repellents. The challenge with repellents was that it was impossible to create a full barrier under a home where different cracks and crevices were present. In addition, the termites would be repelled by the repellency and simply go to where there was no repellency to enter a home. This made control incredibly difficult. With non-repellents the termites cannot detect that the product is there. Since termites are social insects they get the product on themselves and transfer the product to other members of the colony, ultimately taking care of the entire colony.
We will send out an Arizona licensed termite inspector to assess the termite needs at your home by performing a full inside/outside inspection of your home. The Blue Sky inspector will be available to you for any questions you may have.Why Choose Blue Sky Pest Control for Your Termite Needs?