If termites have been burrowing between the cracks of the unfinished wooden steps leading to your home's back porch, eliminate them by completing the following project. Afterward, clean and seal the wooden steps to make the steps unfavorable for pests in the future.
- orange oil
- soft cloths
- boric acid granules
- heat lamp
- wood cleaner
- water hose
- wood sealer
- paint tray
- paintbrushes (various sizes)
Apply Orange Oil and Boric Acid
Use a broom to remove loose debris from the steps. Apply an even coat of orange oil to the spots where you have previously spotted termites. Orange oil is a product that contains d-Limonene, a natural terpine. D-Limonene can be used to eliminate termites, but will not cause harm to you. Wipe the orange oil onto the surface of each step with a soft cloth.
Sprinkle a layer of boric acid onto each step. Any termites that weren't killed by the orange oil that you applied will be prone to bodily injury if they walk through the boric acid. The granules will pierce the body of each termite that comes into contact with the product. If the acid granules are ingested, the termites involved will die.
Install a Heat Lamp and Prepare the Sealer
Set up a heat lamp next to the steps. The warmth and light that the lamp emits will kill any lingering termites that weren't killed with the orange-oil or boric-acid granules. This may take a few days, and the lamp should only be used on days when it is not raining.
Once all of the termites have been eliminated, clean the steps with basic wood cleaner and a sponge. Rinse the steps off with a water hose afterward and wait for the wood to dry. Mix a can of wood sealer and pour some of the sealer into a paint tray.
Apply One or Two Coats of Sealer
Apply the wood sealer evenly to the steps with a paintbrush. Use a thin paintbrush to coat small details in the wood or crevices that weren't effectively covered with the standard-sized paintbrush. Wait for the sealer to dry and add a second coat of the product if you notice that any sections aren't as evenly covered as some of the others. After the sealer has dried, you can use the steps in a normal manner and will no longer need to worry about termites destroying the wood.
For professional help and treatment, call a company such as Ace Walco & Sons Termite & Pest Control.