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Contributor
Kookaburra
Posts: 25
Registered: ‎02-09-2012
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What precautionary measures to take to keep the termites and other bugs out ?

Hello, we are first time home owners. When we bought the house last July, we had about $1200 section 1. The house was tented before we moved in. The inspector advised us to spray some insecticide every year around the perimeter of the house and the fence. What measures do you all take  in general to keep the bugs out  of the house? Also, during what months are these treatments done? I would also appreciate if you can mention any routine maintenance that needs to be done every year for the house in general. Ours is a 40 year old house.

Platinum Regular Contributor
tjh
Posts: 4,823
Registered: ‎01-09-2010

Re: What precautionary measures to take to keep the termites and other bugs out ?

I'm not a believer in the random spraying of insecticides for the purpose of "killing bugs".  That's too broad and unnecessary overkill.  I liken it to nuking Pyongyang to eliminate the regime of Kim Jong Un.  The results would be quite effective, but the fallout - both figuratively and literally, along with the collateral damage and the backlash would be overkill for the intended result.

 

Your "inspector" was likely selling his/her services.  They want you to believe that laying down a half pound of diazinon around the perimeter of one's yard every month is effective pest control.  Doing so may kill exposed insects for a period of time so they can guarantee an income stream of $45/month for as long as you live there.  But it also kills or exposes lots of other living creatures to it's poisonous effects including you, me and our pets and children.  And, it does nothing to remove the source of food and water nor the safe harbor shelter that the pests are using.

 

FIrst, one should determine what pest they are dealing with, where they are living and from where they are deriving their food, shelter and water as well as where they may be entering ones home.  Remove those factors and the problem is most likely eliminated or at least minimized.

 

We had quite a few ants - those pesky and irritating Argentine ants - finding their way into our new home's kitchen.  Obviously, so had the previous owners as they left cans of "ant spray" under the kitchen sink.  We put out a few ant baits and, I looked around outside to see where they were coming from.  I found out that there was a massive nest at the foundation, under the kitchen window.  The ants were using a PVC access electrical fitting above ground to head into their nest below.  I place a few enclosed ant baits near the opening and, two weeks later the ants are no longer in our kitchen.

 

But, even that is not without fallout.  Ants and termites are natural enemies.  Ants help to deter termites.  I guess I can't win.  :smileyfrustrated:

 

I might suggest you search for "IPM" or "Integrated Pest Management" on the internet for a quick education in the natural world around us and how to best deal with it when its presence conflicts with our own.

 

If you're insistent on random spraying like this, please read the pesticide labels carefully and apply according to their directions.  Do not spray just before, during or after a rainstorm as, the product will end up in the storm drains and ultimately in our water supply.  Household use (or misuse) of pesticides has been found to be the major cause of pesticide entry into our water supply as compared to more highly regulated and monitored agricultural uses.

Contributor
NorCalRealtor
Posts: 27
Registered: ‎01-17-2013
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Re: What precautionary measures to take to keep the termites and other bugs out ?

Call Zack Finley 916 833 3239 tell him Eddie Martini said to check in with your for Termite Control Options. They have incredible expertise and actually have treatments for termites that will last for YEARS to come. Each home is different so they will need to come check out your home to get a custom plan together on how to keep your home pest free. 

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WCreeker
Posts: 434
Registered: ‎03-30-2011
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Re: What precautionary measures to take to keep the termites and other bugs out ?

Good post elt.

 

In the 16 years of living in the Bay Area, in 2 houses, I have done exactly *nothing* to kill termites.  In that same time, in those 2 houses, I have had exactly zero termite sightings or infestations.

 

Some common sense moves -- don't stack firewood near the house.  Don't let your landscaping bark pile up against the house.  If there is wood siding to dirt contact, scrape the dirt away so it is no longer touching the siding.

Gold Super Contributor
norcalnative
Posts: 3,277
Registered: ‎05-04-2009
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Re: What precautionary measures to take to keep the termites and other bugs out ?

Termites fly also - our socal home we sold last summer had termite issues under an eve they were working top down. Which case the prevention would have been properly cleaning and painting that area over the years vs it was in a spot never or very very seldom seen so it never got any sort of care every x years.

 

The real basics - simply doing walk arounds and looking for things that pose as potential issues. Plants against the house - dirt against siding, landscape bark is a biggie!!! I had some guys do landscape work on another home we were selling a few years back. I then walked around the home with them and explained what happens when landscape bark is piled against wood siding an entire planter had this issue. The guy truely had no idea and I framed it like this. Listen you were referred by a RE agent for the work to prep the house for sale. These types of little things are things that you must know given the house inspector coming not kidding 4 days later would call it out and then it would be in written form and all potental buyers will question why and if this is a long term issue or just caused by the clean up and crew that just jazzed up the planter for the sale effort.. He was actually thankfull about the learning session and actually found a couple of other things he brought to my attention and then cleaned up to help address the inspection process.

Platinum Super Contributor
buyinghouse
Posts: 5,879
Registered: ‎04-23-2011
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Re: What precautionary measures to take to keep the termites and other bugs out ?


WCreeker wrote:

Good post elt.

 

In the 16 years of living in the Bay Area, in 2 houses, I have done exactly *nothing* to kill termites.  In that same time, in those 2 houses, I have had exactly zero termite sightings or infestations.

 

Some common sense moves -- don't stack firewood near the house.  Don't let your landscaping bark pile up against the house.  If there is wood siding to dirt contact, scrape the dirt away so it is no longer touching the siding.


  I know we get confused by elt1 and tjh. Both wear the same uniform (color). But it was tjh who posted above.

    A week after we move in my daughter comes with her beginner English "look papa, look, bugs"! And on a corner I see these little bugs, elongated body, with wings having a picnic or a party. Gee I said, not me!

 

  Thanks God the company who did the cure for the city came and drilled along the back part of the house and injected some bad thing there to prevent them from coming..........for 7 years they explained, of course, for free ($700). There's no way you can fight nature, you can mitigate the damage these pests do but they keep coming and coming.

 

  If I told you that some of these bugs are digestible you wouldn't believe me. We have back in my country of origin these huge butted ants with wings. They come out of the ground in hordes. They look for a way to find a mate and...mate. But you can see them flying underneath a public light pole. Or in the light outside your home. You catch then, cut their butts off and grab a pan, put some margarine or oil and slightly fry them. Add lemon and salt and that's a delicacy you can taste. :smileyvery-happy:

Silver Contributor
WCreeker
Posts: 434
Registered: ‎03-30-2011
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Re: What precautionary measures to take to keep the termites and other bugs out ?

Sorry tjh!  Totally misread that horrid yellow type!

Platinum Super Contributor
buyinghouse
Posts: 5,879
Registered: ‎04-23-2011
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Re: What precautionary measures to take to keep the termites and other bugs out ?


WCreeker wrote:

Sorry tjh!  Totally misread that horrid yellow type!


  That's why I kept posting dummy things, to get rid of that horrible color!:smileyvery-happy: