Do-It-Yourself (DIY) Termite Control

Many homeowners as well as commercial building managers wonder if it is possible to perform termite control work without the use of a professional pest control company. While generally a professional is needed as they have the expertise to identify the pest and understand the construction of the structure and how best control to control termites, steps can be taken to supplement the work of the professional. Prevention of termites by removing water, wood and conditions conducive are helpful. Unlicensed commercial building employees are frequently prohibited by law from doing pest control work.

Since access to equipment needed is limited to professionals in the case of liquid soil treatments, termite control for subterranean termites using liquid soil treatment is nearly impossible by anyone other than the professional. Tanks, pumps, hammer drills, and safety equipment are all items rarely found with anyone other than the professional pest control company.  For baiting, specialized augers are needed as well as a formal monitoring program. For wood treatment, many times infested wood is not readily visible. All of this points to the value of the professional. For drywood termites, it is not possible to fumigate unless the company is licensed as a pest control company.

There are websites which sell termite control products online. In some cases such sites sell products that might not be legal for homeowners to purchase and this is an issue that state regulators and the US Environmental Protection Agency are evaluating. The most common online product sold for termite control is the liquid soil treatment and the homeowner sometimes will try to perform liquid soil treatment with equipment at hand.

There are also retail stores specializing in pest control either freestanding or as part of a hardware store. The store staff can usually provide advice so that the homeowner knows what they can and can’t do. Many of the over the counter products specifically state that the use of the product is supplemental and that a professional should be contacted. Property owners/managers should carefully evaluate their options.