How Often Do You Really Need To Spray Your House For Termites?

Having termites is never a pleasant experience. Not only can they significantly and often permanently damage your home, but they're also carriers of various diseases. Many people wait until they have an infestation to get their home treated against the pests, but at that point, the damage may already be done. Instead, you should be getting regular preventative treatments.

The most popular method is to have pest control professionals spray your house against termites, and this is because of how effective it is, as well as how long it lasts. When your home is treated against termites, a strong chemical repellent is sprayed in a small trench dug around the perimeter of your house, which targets them at the source. These sprays usually last anywhere from 5 to 10 years, though it's better to err on the side of caution and spray more frequently. If you're nearing the end of that time frame, it might be wise to have someone come inspect your home for signs of termites, as well as to check if the chemical battier is still doing its job.

Termite bait stations

Spraying isn't the only way to treat your home for termites, though. Another popular pest control and prevention method is termite bait stations. These are plastic tubes that are sunk into the earth around the perimeter of your home, and filled with pieces of wood or other termite bait. The bait contains toxic chemicals, and when the termites bring the food back to the colony, it kills them off.

These traps need to be replenished at least once a year, or more if you're dealing with a persistent infestation. Ideally, these traps would totally eliminate all surrounding termite colonies, but it's recommended to keep them replenished to prevent re-infestation. With termite bait stations and sprays alike, you should get your home inspected for signs of termite infestation or presence at least once a year. Bait stations are a helpful indicator for pest control specialists to gauge the level of termite presence in your home.

Other termite prevention tips

If you aren't actively dealing with or recovering from a termite infestation, then you can wait a little longer between each treatment. However, it is important to take active measures beyond pesticide sprays or traps to prevent them from burrowing into your home. One way to do this is to remove any dead or decaying wood from your property, like tree stumps, old branches, and so on. Even if the wood isn't right near your home, termite colonies attracted to the dead matter will eventually make their way over. 

Similarly, don't store any wood on the ground or floors. Raise any wood piles or chopped firewood at least a foot or so off the ground, and store it at a distance from any building, including your home, barn, or shed. Consistently wet and damp wood can also encourage termites, so if you have a fence, deck, or other wood structure that's incurred moisture damage, tend to it immediately to prevent termites from making a home out of it.