Baiting in concrete

Termite baiting allows a home to be protected from Termite colonies by eliminating the colony before it gets to the home. 

Baits are installed around the perimeter to feed the termites a bait that eradicates the colony. But what if the home is surrounded by concrete? 

That's where we use in concrete bait stations. 

First - we make a nice round hole in the concrete..

BORING! Hmm.. Soft like butter!

BORING! Hmm.. Soft like butter!

A  Sentricon  Always active bait rod, along with it's built in extraction plastic ring thingy and a stainless steel cap.

A Sentricon Always active bait rod, along with it's built in extraction plastic ring thingy and a stainless steel cap.

Next - We clean up our mess and install a Sentricon Always active termiticide rod in the hole.
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And Voila! We put a beautiful stainless steel cap on top which seals with an expandable rubber grommit.

The Sentricon Always active rod will now protect the home from any termites foraging in the vicinity of the home. The termites will feed on the rod and take the termiticide back to the nest, this will gradually eliminate the colony so it's no longer a threat to the home!

An in concrete baiting system ready to go!

An in concrete baiting system ready to go!

The cap is installed and seals the rod in it's little hidey hole!

The cap is installed and seals the rod in it's little hidey hole!

"Inadequate" Ant Capping

Ant capping is barrier that prevents termites from being able to get into a building undetected, this is generally made of a strip of galvanised metal shielding. It's very purpose is not to stop termites completely, but to give them some sort of obstruction so that they have to build a mud shelter tube to go around. 

These can often be overlooked and forgotten about when renovations take place, repairs or changes are made to the existing building and sometimes can just rot away without anyone noticing.

The ant capping metal shield with it's inspection edge being completely covered by a cover strip.

The ant capping metal shield with it's inspection edge being completely covered by a cover strip.

This ant cap was not joined properly during construction, and to add to the potential problems, is clearly rusting away.

This ant cap was not joined properly during construction, and to add to the potential problems, is clearly rusting away.

An addition to this property has resulted in the ant capping being compromised, you can clearly see that the ant cap does not completely cover the new vertical cover strip, causing an easy passage for termites to get in undetected.

An addition to this property has resulted in the ant capping being compromised, you can clearly see that the ant cap does not completely cover the new vertical cover strip, causing an easy passage for termites to get in undetected.

Vertical Transitions such as this one, are a commonplace entry point for termites.

Vertical Transitions such as this one, are a commonplace entry point for termites.

This photo clearly demonstrates a vertical transition where the ant capping is not joined, for the ant capping to be effective both the lower and upper sections of ant capping need to be joined in the middle to form a continuous barrier. In this particular case, it was virtually impossible to visually inspect between the two levels as there was poor access. That's why it's important to get it right during the construction phase.

This photo clearly demonstrates a vertical transition where the ant capping is not joined, for the ant capping to be effective both the lower and upper sections of ant capping need to be joined in the middle to form a continuous barrier. In this particular case, it was virtually impossible to visually inspect between the two levels as there was poor access. That's why it's important to get it right during the construction phase.

How ant capping keeps termites out of a building.

Ant Capping is designed to prevent undetected termite entry.

As with all termite management systems, they are primarily designed to force termites out in the open so they can be easily detected during an inspection, or to deter their entry. For these systems to work effectively, 2 conditions must be met:

  1. The physical barrier system needs to be complete, covering all entry points and forming a continuous barrier around the perimeter of the building.
  2. The property needs to be regularly inspected to ensure that the system is working correctly and there are no termites trying to infest the property.

Check the following photos that identify common problems with ant capping.

The termites have built a large mud shelter tube under this ant cap, but then you see them mysteriously appear in the timber above the ant cap! If this capping was a continuous barrier for the full width of the brick, they would have to build their mud shelter tube OVER the ant cap.

The termites have built a large mud shelter tube under this ant cap, but then you see them mysteriously appear in the timber above the ant cap! If this capping was a continuous barrier for the full width of the brick, they would have to build their mud shelter tube OVER the ant cap.

This explains why termites get in without being seen -  the ant capping does not cover the full width of the brick! This  does not  meet the Australian standard for termite protection.

This explains why termites get in without being seen -  the ant capping does not cover the full width of the brick! This does not meet the Australian standard for termite protection.

This ant capping was only partially existent, with an inspection edge that goes off into oblivion. It was not able to prevent the termites getting in a chewing out this frame.  

This ant capping was only partially existent, with an inspection edge that goes off into oblivion. It was not able to prevent the termites getting in a chewing out this frame.  

The ant cap on this wall ends up butting up to a timber frame, there's no inspection edge and no surprises the termites got in. 

The ant cap on this wall ends up butting up to a timber frame, there's no inspection edge and no surprises the termites got in. 

This is the most common failing of ant capping, failing to form a continuous barrier when there is a vertical transition, nothing is preventing the termites coming up between the two piers and into the lower bearer, and it would not be visible until it's too late.  

This is the most common failing of ant capping, failing to form a continuous barrier when there is a vertical transition, nothing is preventing the termites coming up between the two piers and into the lower bearer, and it would not be visible until it's too late.  

It's abandoned - termite bait stations!

Termite bait stations can be a very effective method of controlling termites, but only if the system is maintained. More often than not, a building with bait stations has an infestation due to a lack of proper maintenance of the perimeter baiting system. It's not uncommon for us to be called to a house with an infestation that already had a perimeter bait station monitoring system in place. When we check the bait stations, the attractant wood has been eaten out long ago......

So what can be done?

Well, the safest thing is to make sure that you have a reputable pest controller monitoring the bait stations, this may seem costly but it is so much cheaper than dealing with an infestation and subsequent damage.

Failing that, it may be prudent to check the bait stations yourself. At least something is being done to monitor termite activity, if you find termites, then you can call a pest controller (The Termite Trackers!) to eradicate the colony.

This bait station is far from effective as it is protruding significantly, the top should be flush with ground level.

This bait station is far from effective as it is protruding significantly, the top should be flush with ground level.

This bait station was very close by to an termite entry point on a house, as you can see the termites have already eaten most of the wood out before abandoning it.

This bait station was very close by to an termite entry point on a house, as you can see the termites have already eaten most of the wood out before abandoning it.

A Sentricon bait station graveyard, these bait stations were monitored for a while but have now been abandoned....

A Sentricon bait station graveyard, these bait stations were monitored for a while but have now been abandoned....

this bait station hadn't been checked for years....

this bait station hadn't been checked for years....

Hot Water units - a constant source of moisture.

Termites love moisture, no wait, they NEED moisture to survive, so it's not surprising that a big part of a good inspection requires checking for sources of moisture. A storage hot water unit has a relief valve that is often dripping water. This persistent source of moisture is ideal for termites, as they need a reliable source of water to survive. Ensure that this water is piped away rather than dripping against the footing of your house, openly inviting termites.

The Overflow on this hot water unit (Copper pipe going into the soil) drains near the base of the house, coupled with all the vegetation nearby, this is a great invitation for termites.

The Overflow on this hot water unit (Copper pipe going into the soil) drains near the base of the house, coupled with all the vegetation nearby, this is a great invitation for termites.

This overflow is actually plumbed around the hot water unit, but still drains right against the house, it actually drains next to timber lattice! Once again, vegetation is prevalent around the base of the building.

This overflow is actually plumbed around the hot water unit, but still drains right against the house, it actually drains next to timber lattice! Once again, vegetation is prevalent around the base of the building.

Even concealed hot water units have insufficient drainage. 

Even concealed hot water units have insufficient drainage. 

Subfloor covering

Access to the subfloor area of a house is vital for a proper termite inspection. More often than not, if there is a termite infestation then there will be evidence in the subfloor. Not only that, but anything that might be inviting termites into the building will probably be evident in the subfloor (Think leaking pipes and random bits of timber stored in the subfloor)

This garden area not only restricts access to the subfloor, but the plants and decaying organic matter is like a billboard inviting the termites in!

This garden area not only restricts access to the subfloor, but the plants and decaying organic matter is like a billboard inviting the termites in!

There's little hope of doing a good termite inspection with this much foliage! (And a greater chance of finding termites!)

There's little hope of doing a good termite inspection with this much foliage! (And a greater chance of finding termites!)

Not only do the plants against the building compromise the building, but having the timber in the garden makes a great appetizer for the termites before they make it inside.

Not only do the plants against the building compromise the building, but having the timber in the garden makes a great appetizer for the termites before they make it inside.

This subfloor opening was ONLY JUST big enough!

This subfloor opening was ONLY JUST big enough!

Potential problems..waiting to happen.

Building using recycled materials certainly makes ecological sense, however, they need to be understood so as to be used most effectively. Used railway sleepers are often used in new building work, but they are usually not treated and can also be a problem when attached to a building. It's best to avoid using any recycled susceptible timber if it comes into contact with the ground.

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A retaining wall/landscaping timber attached to a building, causing a potential breaching point for termites. 

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These timbers will negatively impact both a physical and chemical barrier.