These wood-chewing intruders could do enough damage to completely wreck your home, so proper eradication is a must. Since the standard chemical treatment, sulfuryl fluoride, is a potent greenhouse gas, avoid fumigation if possible. Spot treatment with safer methods is sufficient 70 percent of the time. Here are some points to consider:
1. Hire a pest-control specialist to set underground trap, half-buried metal or plastic bait stations placed around the perimeter of your home. Use pine wood as bait, and check monthly. Once they are attracted, replace the wood with a boric acid solution.
2. Avoid placing mulch up against your house—termites use it for cover. Make sure no wooden part of your house, especially structural wood, touches bare soil.
3. If you're already infested, check with integrated pest-management specialists who might use natural orange oil or salts of boric acid instead of harmful chemicals. For large infestations, heat or microwave treatments are available as nonchemical options, although they are expensive.