Flood Impact on Termites: Should You Call for a Repeat Treatment?

Floods brought about by extreme weather can cause various levels of damage to properties. After such an unfortunate event, one of the questions that homeowners ask is whether they need to call a pest control company to determine its effect on the termite treatment or protection that they have previously invested in for their home. However, there is no simple answer. It still depends on the damage to the soil that the flooding brought.

First, let us discuss how floods affect termites.

Termites love damp areas.

If you live in a place where it always rains and floods, there is a high probability that you have termites living in your house or wooden furniture and fixtures. Frequent flooding could damage your home’s foundation and termites can easily get inside your house.

Termites can survive being underwater for long periods of time in saturated soil.

They may not be able to survive after several months, but if flood subsides just after a few days, they will still be there. A study on termites was done after hurricane Katrina hit in New Orleans in the United States. There was flooding for a month and was found out the Formosan subterranean termites could not survive being underwater this long as they do not make an attempt to get out of their underground galleries. However, termites that live in blocks of wood did survive.

Should you have your house retreated for termites after flooding?

Perhaps. After flooding, you need to make an inspection to determine if you need to call a pest company for retreatment. If only a simple flooding occurred, there is no need to repeat treatment. However, a repeat of treatment is necessary if one of these two conditions are met:

  • If the soil where treatment was done has been disturbed by at least six inches wide and six inches deep. Displacement and erosion could cause this disturbance so it is likely that treatment is needed again.
  • If a large amount of sediment has covered the area where termites were treated. These termites have the ability to move across sand or mud, avoiding soil that has been treated.

Normally, the ingredient used in the treatment of termites binds strongly to the soil where treatment was done even if it is saturated with water. When there is significant disturbance done to the treated areas (as could happen in a flood), that is when the main ingredient loses its hold on the soil.

In times of flooding, be proactive against pests that can do further damage to your property. Call your local Modesto pest control company and have them inspect the flood impact on termites.