Written By: Dr. Bob Davis, BCE, Technical Specialist, BASF
Pest Management Professionals (PMP's) have many tools and techniques available for providing termite services. These include application rigs, termiticide application rods (sub slab injectors, short and long rods), volume applicators (JD-9 guns, etc.) and foaming application equipment. Using these items correctly can enhance your liquid termite services. Termite rod/sub-slab injector tips can be helpful in placing the dilution in the target areas. There are different tips available with different flow rates. Some are made for direct wood injection, needle treatments, foaming, etc. However, I suggest that termite professionals should have least three basic rod tips.
- Termiticide Application to Soil along Exterior Foundations: Most applications made to soil proximal to the outer (and/or inner) foundation walls require treatments at 4 gallons of dilution per 10 linear feet per foot of soil depth (exception: Termidor® HE Termiticide label allows for treatments at 2 g / 10 LF / Ft of depth). An industry standard method of providing these treatments include trench excavation (usually 6" wide by 6" deep) and using a "termite rod" or "termite tool" to apply the dilution to the trench and rod to the top of the footer (or bottom of the beam). Equipment examples include the Versatool, Versagun, soil probing tool, etc. Rods are available in ½” and 5/8" diameters. I suggest use of a 5/8" rod for most applications (stronger, more durable rod). The rods have threads at the end for application dispersal tip attachment. I strongly suggest that a tip be placed on the rod AT ALL TIMES. If a tip is not used, then rocks, debris, etc. can ruin the threads and no tip will be able to be used! With tip use, soil will not block the flow through the rod as frequently. I suggest applications be made into the trench and rod into the soil to the desired depth with a tip that provides a 180-degree pattern at a 20 degree down angle. I like the 2 GPM tips for post-construction applications. This tip will place dilution into the trench where needed and not spray material upon the side of the house or onto the person applying. Place the rod where the spray pattern will be towards the foundation wall and not the applicator. 1his tip will help provide solid treated zones in the soil within and beneath the trench during the application. The professional should put soil back into the trench during the application and use the rod to mix dilution with the soil.
- Termiticide Application to Soil under Concrete Slabs, Asphalt, etc.: When a PMP wishes to apply dilution to the soil underneath a patio, porch, driveway, supported slab, floating slab or to soil under an impervious surface along cold joints, etc. Follow the labels for drill hole spacing. Remember that the rate for application for most of these applications is 4 gallons per 10 linear feet per foot of depth. The soil below the slab may have subsided and a void may be directly under the slab. A sub-stab injector or a termite rod with a foot-sealing ram work well for these applications. I suggest using a 2 GPM 360-degree tip. This tip will promote horizontal dispersal of the dilution. PMP’s can use a flexible wire to measure the depth of the slab through a drill hole. Then, adjust the sub-slab injector or application rod (with the tip attached!) for the liquid to be applied below the bottom of the slab. Remember to apply enough material to meet the soil depth requirement! Sub-slab voids are excellent area~ for a PMP to apply a wet foam application. The PMP should apply 3 parts (75%) regular liquid dilution application and I part (25%) wet foam. This will enhance horizontal dispersion and vertical soil treatment.
- Termiticide Application to Soil in Dirt Filled Porches, Below Voids, etc.: PMP’s may want to maximize vertical depth of treatment. One example may be maximizing vertical penetration along the foundation wall under a dirt-filled porch with a sub-slab injector or termite rod, etc. The PMP can promote vertical penetration by using a 2 GPM beveled, single bored straight void tip. Once again, a liquid/wet foam application can help provide horizontal dispersion and void treatments as well as vertical penetration along the foundation wall.
- Use of rod tips can enhance the quality of your termiticide treatments. Please check and verify that all the applicators at your company have these tools for use during termite treatments. They are available at your favorite distributor! Best of luck and "Let's be careful out there"