Does Boric Acid Kill Subterranean Termites?

One day you’re walking on your wooden floors and it feels oddly flimsy. Upon closer inspection, you found that your home is now the breeding ground of subterranean termites! Now you’re wondering if boric acid can kill these pests. We researched this concern for you and here’s the answer we found.

You can use boric acid to kill subterranean termites. This chemical compound is quite an effective solution to treating the hordes and nests of these pests.

Take note that proper boric acid application is still vital in ensuring its efficacy in eliminating subterranean termites. Continue reading as we tackle some methods to use boric acid properly to kill these insects. We’ll also discuss some signs of subterranean termite infestations so you’ll know the right time when to use boric acid in your home.

Worker and nasute termites on decomposing wood. Does Boric Acid Kill Subterranean Termites

What Are The Early Signs Of Subterranean Termites?

Warning: boric acid can be a hazardous substance. So ensure that your home has subterranean termites before using this chemical compound.

Colony of subterranean termites build nest beneath the tree trunk.

Some of the early warning signs of subterranean termite infestations are:

Hollow Wood

Some parts of your home’s wooden structure might feel rickety or sound hollow suddenly. If these signs exist, you might now be sharing your home with a subterranean termite colony. It’s because these insects like to eat wood and won’t stop eating that material.

Tap on your house’s wood walls and check if certain areas now produce cavernous sounds. Otherwise, walk on your wood floors and check if the particular locations in the flooring are now weaker than before.

Strange Sounds

Pay attention to unknown noises coming from your home’s ceiling, floor, and walls. If you hear sounds like buzzing, clicking, or rustling behind certain structures, subterranean termites might already be in your abode.

Warped Doors And Windows

Subterranean termites often produce moisture from their bodies to pass through the tunnels they make from eating wood. The leftover dampness can warp structures like wooden doors and windows, making them difficult to open and/or close.

Don’t hesitate to use appropriate actions to eliminate these critters once you notice these signs. Keep in mind the termites will eat more of your home’s wooden materials the longer you don’t rectify this situation.

bottle of pure boric acid chemical compound beside a petri dish with solid crystalline powder substance

How Effective Is Boric Acid In Getting Rid Of Subterranean Termites?

Boric acid is usually an effective solution in eliminating subterranean termites. Once applied, the acid sticks to the termites’ bodies, which they can spread to their colonies. Doing so may also activate chain reactions, leading to the elimination of subterranean termite nests while maintaining strict budgets.

Termites are eating the wood of the house. They destroy houses, wooden parts and destroy wood products

How Do You Kill Subterranean Termites With Boric Acid?

Directly spraying boric acid onto subterranean termite nests and/or feeding grounds may kill these insects. But boric acid application without using other materials may not be ideal to eliminate subterranean termite hordes.

Continue reading this section to know two procedures that can help you kill a significant number of subterranean termites in your home:

Method #1: Direct Application

What You’ll Need

  • Boric acid
  • Water
  • Non-toxic propylene glycol
  • Large paintbrush
  • Stirrer (e.g., spoon or stick)

Step-by-Step Guide

Step #1: Create The Mixture

Mix 400 grams of boric acid and a liter of propylene glycol into a fairly large metal container. Make sure to add the propylene glycol first before pouring the boric acid. Stir the solution slowly until you can’t see the boric acid in the liquid.

Step #2: Apply The Solution

Grab another metal container. But this time mix a 1:1 mixture of the boric acid solution and plain water. Then, dip the large paintbrush into the new concoction and use that tool to apply it to the subterranean termite-infested area.

Method #2: Use A Spray

What You’ll Need

  • Boric acid
  • Metal container
  • Sugar
  • Sprayer
  • Stirrer (e.g., spoon or stick)

Step-by-Step Guide

Step #1: Prepare The Components

Mix two tablespoons of sugar and boric acid in a cup of water. You may also want to wear safety glasses and rubber gloves for this step. That way, you can protect yourself from relatively any accidental direct contact from the solution.

Step #2: Spray The Area

Pour the mixture into the sprayer. Use that tool to spray the offending areas with the boric acid solution. Wait until the concoction takes effect and remove the insects’ carcasses from the affected areas afterward.

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Aside from the methods mentioned above, you may also create and use subterranean termite bait stations. If you find this technique interesting, watch the video below to learn how to do it:

How Long Does It Take For Boric Acid To Kill Subterranean Termites?

It takes about 10 to 21 days for boric acid to kill subterranean termite nests. However, the efficacy of newly applied boric acid may not last long. So numerous reapplications might be necessary to kill subterranean termite swarms completely.

How To Treat Subterranean Termites?

Aside from using boric acid, other solutions are available to treat homes against subterranean termites. Some of these alternate techniques are:

Fumigate The House

Fumigating your home can be a good choice if the subterranean termite infestation in the property is quite severe. It might also be ideal to call a professional for this procedure to ensure the expert eliminates the insect menace from every nook and cranny in and around the lot.

Take note that it’s still possible to fumigate the house and kill a significant amount of subterranean termites. But you may need more than one termite-killing spray to kill these pests from multiple locations in your home.

Also, not every bug spray on the market has the chemical formula to kill termites. For example, using certain bug foggers may kill other insect infestations on your property except for subterranean termites. Make sure to read the product's label before finalizing your buying decision to prevent any unwanted purchases.

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If you found a total release fogger that can kill subterranean termites, watch this video to learn how to use the product:

Use Fipronil

Fipronil is another chemical compound that you can use against subterranean termites. It’s also reasonably effective in deterring and eliminating other pests, such as:

  • Ants
  • Beetles
  • Cockroaches
  • Rootworms
  • Weevils

Pesticides with fipronil function by disrupting the insects' central nervous systems. These solutions often bind into the pests' nerve endings, causing them to become dizzy and lose normal body functions.

However, bear in mind that the use of chemical pesticides isn’t an eco-friendly solution to eliminate subterranean termites and other insects. It’s because it takes about 125 days for fipronil to break down into the environment. Plus, it doesn’t mix well with water, making it hazardous to nearby aquatic life.

Contact Pest Control Professionals

It’s a good idea to contact professionals in the pest control industry if you’re not confident in tackling the job of killing subterranean termites. But keep in mind that not every pest control expert has the knowledge and/or experience in dealing with these particular critters.

Think about the following factors when choosing the right subterranean termite control experts:

  • Years of experience
  • Equipment and materials to use
  • Types of services to render
  • Availability and costs

termite inside a wood panel of a home. Does Boric Acid Kill Subterranean Termites

Final Words

Homeowners can use boric acid in areas infested by subterranean termites. Applications for this chemical compound often vary from direct use to using a spray bottle. Use the appropriate method that meets your insect-killing requirements and make the most out of the product.