Fumigation for Termites
Fumigation is a
treatment that is used mainly with a particular species of termites -
drywood termites. One of the more common types, subterranean termites, are
usually treated with other methods (because they have underground tunnels
that are vulnerable to bait systems).
Drywood termites are often treated
with fumigation, which generally involves using one of two major gases
throughout your house: vikane or methyl bromide.
However, methyl bromide
isn't really being used anymore in the United States.
How does it work?
You'll have to leave your house, and it will be covered entirely with a
bunch of tarps (often called tenting). The house then gets locked up so
no one can get in, and the exterminators will pump gas into your house,
leaving it there long enough for it to get into the wood.
the tarps are taken down and the air pumped out of your house. Once it's
been certified to be safe, you can reenter.
Is it safe?
Yes - you definitely don't want to get exposed to the gases. But they
are often pumped in with chemicals that are basically tear gas. The only
purpose is to make sure that anyone who tries to reenter when gas is
still inside the house will know to get back out. Any good company is
going to completely lock down your house so there's no way you or your
family can get back in, and they will test the air for safety.
Generally, Vikane will be diluted if it hits open air to the point that
it's no longer dangerous to people. So if your neighbors are doing it,
and after it's been completed, you don't have anything to worry about.
It's been tested in small amounts on lab animals for several weeks at a
time with no ill effects. You just absolutely don't want to go inside
until you get the OK to do so.
What do I need to do to
prepare my house?
First of all, nothing alive should be
left in your house. No pets, no people, no kids, no fish, no plants.
Anything you don't want dead, don't leave in there.
will need to either throw your food away, take it with you, or put it
into protective bags.
Third, if you're using Vikane, you'll want
to make sure no mattresses or pillows are encased in covers. You either
need to take them out of the house with you or remove the cover.
How long does it take?
It can be anywhere
from half a day to two days. You shouldn't try to come back in until the
pest control company tells you that it's safe.
Sources and Useful Links:
Return to Termites Guide Home
Text copyright 2007-2010 Killthetermites.com and may not be reproduced without
consent. This is not the official web page of any of the products listed on
this site, this is a review page created by an individual.