Go Back  DoItYourself.com Community Forums > Insect, Pests and Animal Control. Home Pets and Farm Animals > Termite and Wood Boring Insects
Reload this Page >

Fighting drywood termites for 40 years down here in Florida. Now using heat!

Fighting drywood termites for 40 years down here in Florida. Now using heat!


  #1  
Old 05-02-12, 10:45 AM
Princespec's Avatar
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Florida, USA
Posts: 25
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Lightbulb Fighting drywood termites for 40 years down here in Florida. Now using heat!

We've been tented three times with Vikane, and one time with heat. Even so, I've had to rip up parts of my floor and ceiling to spot treat with Timbor, and to replace some of the damaged wood.

I've decided to spot treat using heat. I've got the area of termite infestation limited to portions of the ceiling. I figure that, using heat is much healthier than using chemicals, and heat should knock out the termites, I hope......

Anyone else spot treat with heat to solve a drywood termite infestation?
 
  #2  
Old 05-03-12, 04:50 AM
P
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 1,871
Received 45 Votes on 39 Posts
Heat and fumigants (Vikane, etc) give no residual protection. Fumigants will penetrate into inaccessible areas; heat may/may not. Tim-Bor is a form of boric acid; very safe and long lasting. I personally would treat exposed wood with tim-bor. I want residual protection.

Being able to make heat to the correct temp at the orifice, nozzle, wand, etc is one thing-the goal is to heat up the commodity being treated to the correct temp for the correct time, otherwise you’ve wasted time and energy.
 
  #3  
Old 05-03-12, 08:26 AM
Princespec's Avatar
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Florida, USA
Posts: 25
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Originally Posted by PAbugman
Tim-Bor is a form of boric acid; very safe and long lasting.
I'm going thru my second 25 pound tub of Timbor. I've even tried Boracare but I've found Timbor so effective that I've stayed with it.

I've killed many drywood termite nests with Timbor and also had to replace quite a lot of damaged wooden infrastructure. I might have used Timbor too much. It now gives me problems with my asthma. So..... I've looked for other ways of killing termites and I've found heat to be a possibly very effective "spot treatment" against the little buggers!

Originally Posted by PAbugman
Being able to make heat to the correct temp at the orifice, nozzle, wand, etc is one thing-the goal is to heat up the commodity being treated to the correct temp for the correct time, otherwise you’ve wasted time and energy.
I've had to remove sections of my ceiling, including tile and drywall, searching for the termite cells. Once I find an infested beam, I apply heat to the beam, hoping to get the "internal" beam temperature to at least 130 degrees, for around an hour. Heat is a little more labor intensive than Timbor, but, if it works as well as I think it will work, it is well worth the effort!

I do not know, yet, just how effective my heat treatments are, but so far, so good. I should find out as the termite season heats up.

I was hoping to find others who have used heat to kill termites, so we could share notes and also share successes or failures.

Thanks for your response! I really appreciated your expert opinion.

Wish me luck! This takes a lot of work!
 
  #4  
Old 07-20-12, 03:20 PM
Princespec's Avatar
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Florida, USA
Posts: 25
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
It has taken me quite a bit of effort and time, but I am quite pleased with the results. I've removed several 2' by 2' sections of the ceiling. If I see signs of termites, such as wings, or especially droppings, I then treat the infested beams with heat. After I am thru with the heat, I pin plastic sheeting in place of the removed sections so I can watch for "new" termite droppings. I wait two weeks, see no more termite activity and then put the old ceiling tiles and drywall back in place.

It is so nice to be able to rid my place of termites this way. I just hope that I've gotten all of the nests. If not, I am sure that they will let me know, someday, with a little swarming.
 
  #5  
Old 07-25-12, 05:35 PM
P
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 1,871
Received 45 Votes on 39 Posts
sounds good princespec; you did your homework first, then worked hard. That’s the right order. I wish I knew more about drywoods and treating but no call for it here in Northeast.
 
  #6  
Old 09-22-12, 06:55 AM
Princespec's Avatar
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Florida, USA
Posts: 25
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Originally Posted by Princespec
I just hope that I've gotten all of the nests. If not, I am sure that they will let me know, someday, with a little swarming.
I'm still fighting drywall termites in my ceiling, but making good progress. I've had to heat-treat an entire beam, from one end to the other.

It seems like the termites spread to other beams in the older areas of the infestation, but it looks like they tended to stay in the one beam and not jump over to the next beam, as they spread out. That was good news.

The heat treatment is working! No more swarming. No wings. Fewer areas of termite granules (droppings). I heat treat and then close the ceiling up for a few weeks, and then drop the ceiling again and check for activity. I have seen fewer and fewer signs of activity over the past several months.

There is the possibility that termites have spread to other areas in my ceiling, but if they have, then sooner or later, they will make their existence known and I will barbecue them like I have these other cells.

It has taken me quite a while to deal with the termites because I have heart failure and I have to limit my physical efforts for when my heart and health allows.
 
  #7  
Old 10-15-12, 04:42 AM
Princespec's Avatar
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Florida, USA
Posts: 25
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
I've been heat treating my ceiling beams for five long months. I have heart failure, permanent atrial fibrillation, insulin resistance and chronic high blood pressure, all of which are under perfect control thru diet, exercise, avoiding irritants and medications. Someone younger, with less serious health problems, could do the heat treating a lot faster. I've got to go at my own speed.

I have not seen any new signs of termite droppings or wings. I have vacuumed any old droppings or wings. At this point, every time I take down a portion of the ceiling, there are absolutely no signs of new activity.

At least "heat" gives us another option, against termite infestations, rather than hazardous chemicals. Our government says that the chemicals used are safe and won't cause health problems. But, I am not a trusting sole. The Chloropicrin, that is added "by law" to the Vikane, was used in World War I as a deadly nerve gas. I don't want it in my home, especially not with my health problems.

Anyways.... I can finally put this issue to bed. Goodbye termites!
 
  #8  
Old 10-15-12, 03:48 PM
P
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 1,871
Received 45 Votes on 39 Posts
Well done princespec!! Wish I knew more about drywoods.
 
  #9  
Old 12-04-12, 02:54 AM
B
Member
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 1
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Re Heat treating furniture with dry wood termite infestation . Can it be done locally on the infected areas by using a hot air gun? It would be hotter than 60 degree C - so maybe less time would be needed to apply the heat?

Regards

Ben - In Durban, South Africa
 
 

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
 
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: