Table of Contents
- 1 Do Termite Sprays Work?
- 2 Is Vinegar Enough?
- 3 Precautions
- 4 Additional Safety Tips
- 5 Benefits Of Using Termite Sprays
- 6 When To Call A Professional Exterminator?
- 7 What To Consider Before Purchasing?
- 8 List of the Best Termite Spray Options
When it comes to termites, you can use an insect spray to control the population of the pest and to shield your home from a looming infestation. Below, I have reviewed 3 of the best termite spray products that are guaranteed to do the job.
Insect sprays are staples in every household. It’s a convenient and affordable solution to manage pests. And since not all homeowners can afford expensive treatments, they resort to these insect sprays to get rid of the infestation.
Do Termite Sprays Work?
It all depends on the formula of the termite spray you’re using. Each commercial spray that you’ll find in the market has its active ingredient.
Most of the time, these are Insect Growth Regulators (IGRs). What it does is it stunts the growth of the termites in the larva phase. This will stop the growth of the colony and eradicate the entire population at some point.
Aside from IGRs, termite sprays are also blended with termiticides that kill the pest upon contact. These are termiticide concentrates mixed with water to achieve a safe and household-friendly level of potency.
Back in 2000, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) banned the use of Dursban, a popular household insecticide during that time. It was found that continuous exposure to this chemical will result in neurological risks in children. It was discovered to have contaminated edible vegetation.
Is Vinegar Enough?
When it comes to pest control, vinegar is liquid gold. It can kill bugs, spiders, ants, and a myriad of other insects. However, when it comes to termites, you need something way potent. Although it can kill the colony members upon contact, it has very little to no residual effect.
Countless re-application is necessary to make a dent on the termite population. The biggest consolation here is that vinegar is non-toxic.
Also, many termite species produce acetic molecules in the process of digesting wood. Since acetic acid is a component of vinegar, many termites can survive the bombardment of the DIY pesticide.
As much as commercial termite sprays aren’t as potent as the termiticides pest control companies use, it’s essential to take some precautions. Continuous exposure to this chemical, even in small amounts, can lead to irritations and complications for those with underlying conditions.
Based on the World Health Organization guidelines, the safe use of pesticides should include the following:
➡️ Storage And Transport
The pesticide/termiticide should be locked away from children and any unauthorized users. Also, it should be stored in a place where it won’t be mistaken for a drink or food. Moreover, the pesticide should be stored away from heat and direct sunlight.
Always keep the pesticide in its original container, complete with an English label. Also, you should purchase an insecticide with a complete guide in case someone swallows or got exposed to the chemical.
If you’re disposing of an expired termite spray or any pesticide, it should be poured on a dug hole in the ground. Make sure that it’s not going to be in contact with any water drain or source. Pouring the termiticide on the drain isn’t advisable. Also, never throw a termite spray in an open fire.
Additional Safety Tips
In this post, James from DoYourOwnPestControl gives us more tips for safe handling of pesticides:
Aside from the guidelines of WHO, you should always wear protective gears like masks, gloves, and protective eye wear. If any part of your body parts got in contact with the spray, wash it thoroughly with flowing water.
If your eyes, nose, or mouth got exposed, it’s best to consult a physician right away. This is even more pressing when it comes to kids.
Also, avoid applying termite sprays on food preparation areas. If someone in your family experienced adverse reactions upon the application of the spray, discontinue usage.
Benefits Of Using Termite Sprays
Setting aside some minor downsides, termite sprays help homeowners manage the infestation. As long as the termite population is still small, termite sprays can help eradicate the entire colony.
Here are some benefits of responsible use of termite sprays:
➡️ It Can Really Kill Termites
If applied on the actual harborage of the pest, these sprays can really kill a portion of the colony. The diluted termiticide can seep through wood surfaces and get into the pest.
➡️ It Has A Residual Effect
Commercial termite sprays offer a residual effect that can last for days or even weeks. This means that the active ingredient continues to kill termites upon contact. Long after the colony is eradicated, you can use termite sprays to shield your home against another infestation.
➡️ It Comes In Various Concentrations
Depending on the formula, termite sprays can be used daily or on a weekly basis. It’s important to check the concentration level of the pesticide. In addition, this will allow you to treat the infested area in just a few applications.
➡️ It’s Affordable
Unlike professional treatments, termite sprays offer a cheap solution to minor termite infestations. Also, it’s very easy to apply since it already comes with a nozzle or a spray hose.
When To Call A Professional Exterminator?
If termites are already infesting a big part of your home, termite sprays alone can’t fix the problem. It’s best to invest in a professional treatment to ensure that all the pests will be eradicated.
Take note that only licensed exterminators can handle and procure potent termiticides. These professionals know the proper application and precautions needed to ensure that the treatment will be safe and efficient at the same time.
Also, it’s best to consider the best termite spray as complementary protection against the pest.
What To Consider Before Purchasing?
If you’re planning to purchase a termite spray, always consider the following points first:
➡️ Spray Construction
Application is crucial when it comes to termite sprays. With this, you should look for a spray construction that’s easy to use.
I recommend an adjustable nozzle that will provide a variable spraying power. If you’re purchasing an aerosol version, make sure that the can has enough pressure to eject the termiticides properly. Also, opt for one that sprays in a concentrated trajectory.
➡️ Active Ingredients
Termite sprays come with different active ingredients. Each of these kills termites in different ways. Deltamethrin is the most common active ingredients in most termite sprays that you can purchase from home supplies stores.
Deltamethrin belongs to the pyrethroid family. It’s a synthetic version of pyrethrin commonly used as treatments for lawns, golf courses, and other outdoor areas. In pure form, Deltamethrin is colorless and odorless. To prevent Deltamethrin from being mistaken as a drink, pesticide manufacturers blend it with various scents. Termite sprays with Deltamethrin come in orange, cedar, and other scents.
Deltamethrin is a potent insecticide that can kill a variety of insects. Furthermore, it can be formulated in aerosols, granules, dust, and more.
How Deltamethrin Works?
When a termite gets in contact (or eats) with the substance, it will target their nervous system. The toxicity will kill the pest. Anyway, Deltamethrin is perceived to be less dangerous to mammals due to their bigger size, higher body temperature, and lower chemical sensitivity.
Still, you should practice caution when applying Deltamethrin-based sprays. Chronic exposure to this chemical can lead to numbness, itching, burning, and even muscle twitches. These symptoms should go away within 48 hours unless the person has an underlying condition.
Another active ingredient used in termite sprays is cyfluthrin, another pyrethroid.
➡️ Allergies Of The Occupants
Before you apply or purchase a termite spray, make sure that no one in your family is allergic to the active ingredient. As mentioned above, Deltamethrin is the most common ingredient of over-the-counter termite sprays. Exposure to this could lead to skin and respiratory irritations.
An acute allergic reaction may lead to swelling of the face, lips, and eyelids. In rare cases, it can cause tachycardia, bronchospasm, epigastric pain, and nausea.
If someone has a history of adverse reactions to synthetic chemicals, you can opt for a natural formula. Below, I have reviewed a Bonide Termite and Carpenter ant killer which consists of natural ingredients that are non-toxic and non-staining.
➡️ Pet Safety
Aside from securing your family, you should also consider the welfare of your furry friends. Deltamethrin is relatively safe, but you should avoid using it in areas where your dog or stays. Exposure to termite sprays may lead your pet to experience excessive drooling, muscle tremors, vomiting, and incoordination.
If your pet exhibits these symptoms after the application of the pesticide, it’s best to send it to the vet right away.
➡️ Residual Effect
The residual effects of the termite sprays give continuous termite-killing effect on your home. Also, it will shield the treated area from another infestation within a specific period.
Usually, the best termite spray will have a residual effect of 4 weeks or more. If used outdoors, the residual effect could be shorter since rain and outdoor elements will wash out the chemicals.
List of the Best Termite Spray Options
1) Bayer BioAdvanced Carpenter Ant & Termite Killer Power Sprayer
- KILLS 60+ LISTED PESTS: Yellow Jacket Killer. Also kills ants, termites, fleas, ticks, crickets, spiders, flies, and more. Even controls Carpenter bees!
- KILLS ON CONTACT: Kills listed insects on contact
- BROAD-SPECTRUM OUTDOOR USE: Use on lawns, landscapes, foundations, decks and around home structures
- ALSO USE INDOORS: Apply around sinks and storage areas, behind baseboards, around doors and windows, behind and under refrigerators, cabinets and stoves, the underside of shelves and other similar...
- RESTRICTIONS: Not for sale in MA & NY
My top recommendation is the Bayer BioAdvanced Carpenter Ant & Termite Killer Power Sprayer. It comes in a ready-to-use 1.3-gallon with a built-in spraying rod and hose. With its active ingredient, Deltamethrin, this will kill termites in contact.
The sprayer is battery-operated and the 4 AA batteries needed to run it are already in the package. You can use this to treat termite-infested patios, fences, houses, decks, posts, woodpiles, and more.
Aside from termites, the BioAdvanced spray will also eradicate carpenter ants, scorpions, flies, ticks, fleas, and more insect pests. You can also use it as a barrier after a termite treatment to prevent the pest from coming back.
One last tip, though. Avoid spraying this under a fruit tree or any edible vegetation in your garden.
✔️ Comes with a built-in sprayer
✔️ Large gallon to cover more areas
✔️ Powerful residual effect
❌ Very strong smell, always wear protective gears during application
- Kills Carpenter ants, termites, carpenter bees, wood wasps, and other insects
- Kills on contact and continues killing for up to 1 month
- 2 way spray nozzle allows you to reach crevices where pests live
- Odorless and non staining formula
- Ideal for indoor or outdoor use
If you want a handy spray, the TERRO Termite Killer Aerosol Spray is what I recommend. It has Deltamethrin as an active ingredient with a residual effect of up to 4 weeks.
This comes with a 2-way precision spray nozzle that you can use for a wide spray application or as an injector to tiny crevices. This is safe to use indoors and outdoors.
It comes in a 16 oz. can and a formula that doesn’t stain. TERRO can kill carpenter bees, termites, beetles, borers, wood wasps, and more insects.
Just make sure that you spray this 10 inches away from the surface in the wide-spray mode. Overall, it worked longer than expected and our piece of termite-infested wood became termite-free in a few applications.
✔️ Convenient aerosol spray
✔️ Comes with a 2-way spray nozzle design
✔️ The residual effect of up to 4 weeks
- INSECT KILLER - This pest control is great for use on subterranean termites, carpenter ants, carpenter bees, wood-infesting beetles, ants, crickets, earwigs, fleas, fire ants, house flies, mosquitoes,...
- PROTECT YOUR LAWN AND HOME - Termite and Carpenter Ant Killer is designed for use on home lawns, flower and vegetable gardens, fruit, nut and ornamental trees, and the outside surfaces of buildings.
- 5 YEAR BARRIER - To control subterranean termites, the chemical emulsion must be dispersed in the soil to provide a barrier between the wood in the structure and the termite colonies in the soil. One...
- DUAL ACTION DEFENSE - Contact kill gives you immediate results when spraying insects directly, while residual activity kills insects when they return to treated areas.
- EASY APPLICATION - Product quickly mixes with water and should be applied using sprinkler can, hand sprayer, or low-pressure sprayers. Carefully read and use according to label directions.
If you’re worried about the adverse effects of synthetic chemicals on your home, you can opt for Bonide Products Termite Treatment. This kills Drywood, Subterranean, and Formosan termites upon contact.
It’s made of potent ingredients guaranteed to kill termites in a few applications. Since it has natural ingredients, this spray is non-toxic and non-staining. It also penetrates wood deeper, even painted and varnished types.
Aside from its potent termite-killing power, it has a fresh scent. Once the termite gets in contact with the pesticide, it will dissolve their eggs and larvae. This kills the next generation of the infestation. In addition, the cedar aroma disrupts the pheromone signals of termites, thus ruining their path into your home. With the dual-action formula, termites will die upon contact and with the residual effect of this Bonide treatment.
✔️ Made of natural ingredients
✔️ Penetrates varnished and painted wood
✔️ Non-toxic and non-staining
The best termite spray can help you manage the termite infestation. If you apply it right, it should kill a large portion of the colony without harming your home. If you still find the infestation is too large for sprays alone, don’t hesitate to ask the help of a professional exterminator.