Say you’ve noticed some decaying wood around your home. It’s a sign of either termites, carpenter ants, or other wood-destroying insects. How do you deal with them? One or more of the best termite sprays, killers or treatments may be required to rid your home of the infestation and prevent a new one from occurring.
Depending on the location of the affected wood and what substances you’re willing to use, there are many options at your disposal. Check out some of the most effective solutions to save yourself some time and money.
9 Best Termite Killers, Sprays & Treatments
- 9 Best Termite Killers, Sprays & Treatments
- 1. Bio Advanced 700350A Termite Killer
- 2. Control Solutions Taurus SC Termiticide
- 3. Terro Carpenter Ant & Termite Killer
- 4. Spectracide Terminate
- 5. Ortho Home Defense Termite & Destructive Bug Killer
- 6. BASF Termidor Foam Termiticide
- 7. Harris Termite Treatment
- 8. Bio Advanced 700420A Termite Killer Plus
- 9. Cedar Bug-Free Natural Termiticide
- What Do Termite Killers Do?
- Some Benefits of Using Natural Termite Killers
- A Trick to Avoid Digging Treatments
- Types of Treatments You Should Know About
The Bio Advanced 700350A Termite Killer is an easy to use treatment for outdoor use. It comes in granulated form and will also work underground. To use them properly, you have to sprinkle the granules in affected areas and water them.
That will allow the granules to sink in and kill termites hiding underground. A single bottle of the Bio Advanced Termite Killer should be enough to treat up to 200 linear feet. You won’t need any special tools, either given that the bottle has a shaker applicator.
It shouldn’t take more than a week to kill all termites after application. But, know that this is not a repellent. As the effect of the granules wears off, new ones will be able to move in. Of course, this should happen as the Bio Advanced Termite Killer was formulated as a defense against nasty termite infestations.
It’s also a convenient product to use. That’s because, with a bit of water, the granules will sink in on their own and won’t require you to dig trenches. Although it won’t do anything for termites living inside your home, it’s still one of my favorite termite treatments to use when faced with an advanced infestation.
This termiticide is a fipronil-based formula. Due to its concentration and the broad-spectrum action of fipronil, the Control Solutions Taurus SC is a general-purpose insecticide. That means that it will work on more than just termites and also on roaches, crickets, spiders, ants, and other common household insects.
I recommend using the Taurus SC if you’re not dealing with a massive infestation, but rather as a barrier preventing infestations. It can be used inside and outside your home as it’s relatively undetectable. Unlike most barriers that rely on repellents, the Taurus SC will kill termites that come in contact with it.
But don’t worry; it won’t kill them on contact. Termites have to ingest the poison first, which means that you can spread the Taurus SC among other colony members, thus quickly dealing with entire colonies trying to move in.
Even though this is not a kill-on-contact termiticide, the effects should become noticeable within three days. You might have to wait for more if you’re using it to target ants, roaches, millipedes, and other pests. Sometimes even up to one week.
When it comes to pricing, this is not the cheapest termite treatment. But, it also comes in a large 72oz bottle with a built-in dosage extension. So, it may be affordable if you own a large property.
Whether you want the single pack or two-pack, the Terro Carpenter Ant & Termite Killer is one of my favorite termite killer sprays. It kills termites on contact, which is excellent for spot-on treatments, and it also lingers. The poison persists for up to one month on targeted surfaces, thus preventing subsequent infestations.
You might also like to know that it works on a variety of ants and bees, such as carpenter ants, wood wasps, and other insects that are known to cause havoc inside the wood. I find that the two-way spray nozzle is more than enough to get the solution inside hard to reach places, such as cracks and crevices.
You can use the formula virtually anywhere since it doesn’t stain and is also odorless. However, keep in mind that it could be harmful to humans and animals. So it’s best to use it in tight places inside, and only in affected areas.
Of course, for this to work, you’ll need to figure out which areas are affected first. The formula may have a slightly repellent property which could prevent termites from coming close to it. That’s why it is meant for application directly to high-traffic areas and inside colony tunnels.
The Spectracide Terminate is sold as a complete termite detection and killing kit. You can buy it in single cases or case packs of six. Each pack contains termite killing stakes, ideal for targeting subterranean termites that are causing trouble on your property.
This kit is a bit different than most sprays and granule treatments. It involves placing stakes, with pre-added bait, into the ground, around 10ft apart. You can use the included auger to dig the necessary holes.
These stakes can then continue to work up to a year. It’s best, however, to remove them and replace them even earlier than that as the bait could be gone, and the stakes could succumb to structural damage.
Disposing of dead termites will be easy thanks to the locator shield. And, monitoring the termite activity is very simple due to the inclusion of the pop-up indicator. The manufacturer recommends a minimum of 10 stakes for properties up to 1,500sq.ft.
However, depending on the severity of the infestation, you might need more. You can place these stakes as close as two to three feet apart from one another. Of course, to get even more out of the kit, you may also want to try removing termite food sources or fix some of your water leaks.
That should make termites much more inclined to fall for the Spectracide Terminate stake traps.
This product can be a quick fix or a long-term treatment, depending on how you use it. Ortho designed its termite killer in such a way that it can keep termites off your property for half a decade. Of course, for that to happen, you’ll have to use it as a trenching treatment.
That’s not hard, but it will require a bit of patience and know-how. The formula targets most insects that feed on or destroy wood, and this includes termites, carpenter bees, ants, and others.
The primary purpose of the formula is to control the population of subterranean termites. Hence, it is not for indoor use. The bottle comes with concentrated pesticide. As such, you’ll have to mix it on your own and then use your pump sprayer or garden hose sprayer to treat the affected areas.
Although there are clear ratio recommendations on the label, I would say that for every three gallons of water, half a bottle of concentrate should do just fine.
Each bottle of concentrate holds 16oz of the bifenthrin-based Ortho termiticide. Due to its main active ingredient, it’s probably best you avoid using it too close to trees and plant beds. It can also act as a herbicide and kill plant life, which is perhaps not what you intend to do.
Here’s something unlikely to fail you as an indoor termite treatment. The BASF Termidor is a foam termiticide which you can use to fill up colony tunnels or cracks and crevices with high termite activity. Unlike the water-based formulas or dust solutions, this foam is likely to remain there for longer, thus providing greater residual control.
Due to its fast expansion rate, the BASF Termidor Foam makes short work of termite colonies. Yes, it is a lot faster than most baits. However, it’s a situational termite killer because you can only use it in certain places.
You can target harborages and hidden galleries too, but unless you can find an opening, you may have to drill a hole. That will require additional equipment and advanced termite detection skills, which not every homeowner has.
I like that the Termidor is non-repellent. It means that termites will get close enough to eat it since they can’t identify it as something toxic, by either sight, taste, or smell. And, because the formula won’t kill them on contact, it will be easy to broadcast the poison to the entire colony if just a small number of termites snack on the Termidor foam.
The exact formula is hard to compare with other similar products since it’s proprietary technology, but the results speak for themselves.
The Harris Termite Treatment and Mold Killer is a convenient two-in-one termite treatment. It comes in powder form and 16oz jars. The tight seal on the lid ensures a long shelf life, while the quantity is enough to make up to one gallon of the liquid spray formula.
After mixing the concentrate with water, you’ll be able to use your applicators of choice to treat fences, woodpiles, or even spray the solution into cracks and crevices to kill off entire galleries. Provided, of course, that you have the necessary accessories since the package includes none.
The formula does a bit of both in preventing and ridding your home of termite infestations. You may like that it’s an odorless solution, once dissolved in the water, and also non-flammable. With one gallon, you should be able to treat up to 200sq.ft.
This product is not a broadcasting termiticide. It will kill termites quickly after they come in contact with the formula, meaning that you’ll have to play detective and find the high-traffic and high-activity areas beforehand.
Although this formula is cheap and you can get good coverage after mixing it with water, the only disappointing thing is that not even a tiny sprayer pump comes in the package. I can only recommend this to you if you already own applicators, and you’re disappointed by your current termite desiccants or other insecticides.
This termite killer also works on carpenter bees, another known pest that likes to destroy wood wherever it goes. The 18oz spray cans are among the most affordable you’re going to find when it comes to foam sprayers.
The rate of expansion is quite impressive. I like that you can use the extension applicator to get deep into carpenter bee tunnels or termite galleries and seal them up quickly. Thanks to its broadcasting properties, this formula will take care of the rest of the termites. The infected insects will carry on with their daily routine and also bring the poisonous foam back to the nest.
For just 18oz, the 0.05% imidacloprid concentration seems more than enough. It works on both types of insects well. It should, given the fact that it’s an insect neurotoxin.
Now, there is one small issue with this foam. Since it has a fast expansion rate, it can be challenging to gauge how fast you should spray it. If you only find small tunnels, then you might be ok with a quick puff. But, if you want long-term protection and a guarantee that you’ll kill off all subterranean termites, you may have to apply the foam in large volumes, at a faster rate.
It only seems fitting to add a natural solution too. And, even though it’s not my favorite, it’s still worth taking a closer look to give you a better understanding of why so many people choose synthetic termite killers.
First of all, the main ingredient in this termiticide is cedar oil, at a concentration of 10%. That’s more than enough for most dry wood and subterranean termites, as well as for carpenter bees and powder post beetles.
You should know that even though it’s an oil-based formula, you can spray it quickly and without worries. It won’t stain most surfaces it touches. The oil can also seep deep into the wood, even treated or varnished wood.
This termiticide also offers some long-term protection from future infestations. Although not the most efficient or fastest termite killer, it will do its job. There’s also the added advantage of the formula being pretty much weatherproof because of its ability to penetrate deep into the wood.
I like that the 32oz bottle comes with its a sprayer nozzle. But, the beam is not narrow enough to properly treat small cracks and crevices. You may still need an aftermarket wand applicator to get the cedar oil termiticide deep into termite galleries.
What Do Termite Killers Do?
Depending on what you need, they can do a lot of things. However, most termite killers work similarly with the only difference being in how fast they can kill the termites. For example, the majority of termite killers contain insect neurotoxins as the main active ingredients.
Toxins ensure that unlike other insecticides that you may use for a quick kill, termites can also spread these killers to other colony members. Of course, there are also plenty of on-contact termite killers. They’re, in fact, excellent as barriers.
There are also termite killers who act as desiccants, but they’re not usually as efficient due to how resilient termites are. That’s why not all carpenter ant insecticides necessarily work against termites. It often goes the other way around.
Some Benefits of Using Natural Termite Killers
One of the most popular natural ingredients in termite killers is cedarwood oil. Cedarwood oil can be useful even during severe infestations if you know you can contain the spread. But most importantly, cedarwood is preferred for long-term protection treatments.
Because of the oil's ability to get absorbed deep into the wood, most formulas won’t stain. On the other hand, they won’t get washed away either. They’ll remain inside the wood for months or years, preventing new termites from setting up shop.
Another great thing about natural products is the lack of toxic chemicals that can spread underground and affect plant life and water sources.
A Trick to Avoid Digging Treatments
The best way to avoid having to dig trenches and place termite killers while on your knees is to look for and use granules. Termite killers in granulated form can sometimes have high moisture-wicking properties.
That usually means that once watered, the granules soften enough to go underground on their own, but without losing their integrity and potency.
However, here’s a word of caution regarding these types of granules. Many homeowners complain that such pellets don’t go in deep enough or that they’re not strong enough. I find that it’s usually a case of misusing the product and not following instructions correctly.
Just because the granules can absorb water doesn’t mean that you have to water them down vigorously. Too much water will render the formula inert and the granules useless.
Types of Treatments You Should Know About
Not all kinds of termite killers and treatments are interchangeable. Some are very specific in what they can do and how to use them. Take, for example, termiticide foams. Foams are best for targeting nests, galleries, voids, and other places where it’s unlikely that you can get enough dust, granules, or spray.
Foams also expand and seal off the exits but don’t force the termites to find alternate routes, since they’re perfectly fine to snack on the foam until the entire colony is dead.
Granules and sprays can be used indoors and outdoors with greater success than foam. Depending on how waterproof the formula is, you can even create a barrier around your whole property by just spraying fence posts.
There are also bait stations that target underground termites. Again, these are somewhat niche treatment products since you won’t be able to use them against termites snacking in your attic. Bait stations are usually placed either above ground or below ground, and I almost always recommend the latter.
If you can find bait stations with monitoring features, that’s even better. Remember that just because you’re using a recommended termite treatment, it doesn’t mean that you can set it and forget it. Always monitor the progress.
My Final Tips on Dealing with Termites and other Similar Wood Destroyers
Before you start shopping for the best termite killers, sprays, or treatments, be sure to at least find out what areas around your property are most affected by termites. You can’t stop the devastation without knowing where the pests are, as the location often indicates the best course of treatment.
You may even need more than one type of termite killer to get the job done, so be sure not to jump the gun on any product no matter how good it looks on paper. Luckily for you, most average households only cost a few bucks to treat for termite infestations.