Top 9 Natural Ways to Get Rid of Termites
Want to kill termites naturally and fast? So you should try to use top 9 natural termite killers we listed here. Read on to learn how to kill termites naturally yourself.
Termites are one of the most damaging infestations when it comes to our homes, businesses, and yards.
Luckily, you’ve got options. But maybe you’re uneasy about using some of the products on the market that could have safety risks for your family and aren’t sure what kills termites naturally.
We’ve got you covered. We’ll fill you in on the most effective natural ways to kill termites and how to get started.
How to Kill Termites Naturally
Below are the top 9 natural termite killers that you can use to kill termites naturally. Simply pick your best natural termite killer and let’s it work its job.
Termites are designed to live in the dark and being exposed to sunlight can wreak havoc on their colony.
The sun is a very simple natural way to get rid of termites and is completely free to take advantage of. All you have to do is make sure that the infestation is exposed and let the sun do the work.
Once you’ve found where the termites are hiding, expose the area to sun by clearing out nearby brush and moving any objects that are providing shade. Without anything to block the sun’s rays, the termites will die.
Simply place the furniture outside in an area where it will get direct sunlight for as many daylight hours as possible.
For furniture that termites can hide inside, you can also use some bait (like the cardboard trap described below) to help lure them out so they’re more likely to be exposed to the sun.
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2. Heat and Cold Treatments
Changing the temperature around the colony is a natural way to get rid of termites that uses absolutely no toxic materials to take care of the problem.
Heat treatments are done by pest control professionals and can be used for your whole house or just for furniture.
To have your home treated, a specialist will come for an inspection to find where the termites are located and recommend what items should be taken out of your home for the treatment.
On the day of treatment, heaters will be set up to raise the temperature in your house to between 120 and 140 degrees Fahrenheit for at least 35 minutes.
To treat furniture, the infested items can be put in a heat chamber and exposed to the same heat for up to four hours.
Cold treatments are usually used for furniture or for treating specific spots of high activity.
Liquid nitrogen is a non-toxic natural termite killer that can be used to freeze out the pests. This method is typically carried out by a specialist who will pump liquid nitrogen into the infested areas.
If you live somewhere where winters reach temperatures below 20 degrees Fahrenheit, you can put your furniture outside on cold days for the same effect.
These temperatures are just too low for termites to survive and most or all of the termites in the treated area will die from exposure.
3. Cardboard Trap
Termites are attracted to the cellulose in cardboard so if you’ve got boxes around, you’ve got the basics for a trap. For best results, replace traps regularly.
Corrugated cardboard is best for traps. You can use a box, a stack of cardboard sheets, or a rolled up piece of cardboard.
- Place your cardboard trap near the infestation.
- Spray it with water. Wetting the cardboard will make the scent stronger and help attract more termites to it.
- Once the termites have swarmed the cardboard, remove it from the area and dispose of it, ideally by burning it.
- Place your cardboard trap near the infestation.
- Apply a natural insecticide. A few options are included later in this article.
- Spray it with water to help make the cardboard scent stronger.
- Once the cardboard has killed some termites, clean up the dead insects and dispose of the trap.
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4. Beneficial Nematodes
Nematodes are microscopic worms that will kill termites without damaging your lawn or garden. They also pose no risk to humans or animals so it’s a very safe option for your family.
Many consider this method the best termite killer out of all the natural options, but it can only be used outdoors.
Nematodes are best applied in certain conditions. Cloudy or rainy days around dusk are best since sunlight can kill them.
- Use a hose to thoroughly wet the soil around the building’s foundation or other affected area. This step isn’t necessary if you’re applying right after rain.
- Connect a hose end sprayer. Check it for any screens that could act as filters. Remove them.
- Put the nematodes in the bottle attachment and stir to mix thoroughly.
- Spray the area thoroughly. Shake the sprayer occasionally to make sure distribution is even.
- Keep the soil where the nematodes were sprayed moist for at least 5 days after application.
If you don’t have a hose end sprayer (or a hose), you can use a watering can instead for small areas.
Simple to use and cheap to buy, borax is a popular choice among do-it-yourselfers and professionals alike for killing termites and several other kinds of pests. Despite the somewhat synthetic sounding name, borax is a mineral and totally natural.
This natural termite killer a good option for both indoor and outdoor use because it’s safe for humans and animals to be around. It causes digestive upset when ingested, though, so it’s still a good idea to keep small kids and pets away from it as a precaution.
This option is generally meant for outdoor use.
- Combine 1 ½ cups of borax powder and 1 gallon of hot water in a bucket. Stir the mixture until all the powder has dissolved.
- Pour mixture into the container of a pump garden sprayer.
- Spray the infested areas as well as surrounding wooden surfaces.
- Let it dry and apply another coat or two.
- Combine 1 cup of borax powder with ⅛ cup powdered sugar and ½ cup of flour in a bowl.
- Add a bit of water and mix. Continue adding and mixing until the consistency is like soft dough.
- Use your hands to roll the mixture into olive-sized balls.
- Place up to three balls in each area that you’ve seen termites. Spray them with a bit of water regularly to make their scent more noticeable to the pests.
- When the balls get really hard, replace them.
- Locate an area where a lot of termites are grouped. If you know where their nest is, that spot is ideal.
- Expose the location as best you can and sprinkle borax powder directly onto the affected area.
- Sweep up powder and dead termites regularly and replace with fresh powder.
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Other Natural Insecticides
While borax is one of the most popular natural substances used to kill termites and other insects, there are plenty of other choices to consider too. Some effective options might even already be in your house.
These are used for spot treatments and on unaffected wood to prevent termites from spreading.
1. Diatomaceous Earth
Sometimes what kills termites is completely safe and even beneficial for humans. Usually used in the form of a white powder, diatomaceous earth is a type of sedimentary rock that is deadly for termites but some people use a food-grade variety as a supplement.
And because it comes straight from the earth, it’s a very eco-friendly choice that poses no risk to the environment.
This substance kills termites by dehydrating them so it’s important to sprinkle the powder directly on them and generously on areas they frequent.
Diatomaceous earth can be used both indoors and outdoors, so try applying it to exposed wood, furniture, and even carpets and rugs. Anywhere you’ve seen termites is a good place to sprinkle some since it’s so safe to use.
2. Orange Oil
Orange oil is an essential oil made from the fruit’s rinds and can be found in many natural health stores. It contains D-limonene which kills termites and many other common pests on contact by drying out their exoskeletons.
While it’s generally safe for people and pets, it can be irritating if it makes direct contact with your skin undiluted and can cause digestive upset if ingested, so you should still be careful when using it.
Apply orange oil diluted in water to infested wood, especially in the cracks where termites might hide. It can be helpful to drill well-spaced holes into the wood to get the solution farther inside.
There are also orange oil-based products available. Orange Guard and XT-2000 are the most commonly used options.
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3. Neem Oil
Neem oil contains a compound called azadirachtin that kills termites by preventing them from molting. Termites that make contact with or ingest the oil will be killed.
Neem oil can be irritating to the eyes, skin, and stomach, but is non-toxic and considered safe for human use.
Apply neem oil in the same way you would apply orange oil. The goal is to place it where termites will touch it directly.
Neem oil-based pesticides can be bought in large quantities from various pest-control companies, including Dyna-Gro and Safer Brand.
4. Vinegar and Lemon Juice
Vinegar is a common ingredient in DIY pest control and can be easily used to kill termites.
Adding lemon to the mix makes it even more effective as lemons contain d-limonene, the same natural termite killer found in orange oil.
To use this method, mix 1 cup of vinegar with ½ cup of lemon juice in a spray bottle and spray directly onto termites and infested areas.
This solution poses no risk to your family and can be reapplied as often as needed to kill the termites in your home.
Finding termites in your home can be a major concern because of the damage they cause, and knowing the toxicity of some pesticides only adds to the stress of the situation. Thankfully, there are numerous natural termite killers that are safer for you and your loved ones.
Now that you know how to get rid of termites naturally you can make an action plan. Try combining multiple methods for a more successful result.
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