Has anyone used Spectracide brand "Terminate" Termite spikes..Thoughts?

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by Alf S, Apr 28, 2003.

  1. Alf S

    Alf S Cinematographer
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    Alfie
    We live in OK and this weekend while gardening, my wife found a small amount of what looked like termites chewing on some bark.

    We had a guy come out today and he said it was indeed a worker termite. He inspected the whole house inside and out and did not find any other signs of the little beasts (knock on wood..pardon the pun).

    I've got one more guy coming out for a second opinion just for peace of mind. However, based on the first guy, I'm sure the other company will want to sell me on the Cadillac of killers too: SENTRICON.

    The first guy wants $900 to start, and almost $300 every year after for "maintenance". I realize this stuff is strong and termites are vicious, but geez! $$$$

    We've never had any issues with termites, and don't really know if there's a need to panic or not. The house is 20 years old and part river rock (from ground level up a foot, and the rest is tutor style wood panel and trim

    My wife wants to go for the big guns immediately, but being a little leary, I want to try the Spectracide brand in ground tubes that you get at Home Depot ($94 for 40 tubes).

    Has anyone tried these or know someone who has? Was it worth it or is it a bad "investment"? I've been searching online and haven't found much info, good or bad.

    Any input is appreciated.

    Alfer
     
  2. TonyD

    TonyD Who do we think I am?
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    i plugged them into the dirt near were i saw the termite looking bugs a few years ago.

    it seems to have worked as i havent seen the critters since.
     
  3. ChadM

    ChadM Stunt Coordinator

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    Those prices seem a little high to me. However I am assuming that with this yearly contract there is some sort of "insurance".

    I think I pay $100 to $150 a year, but my house in new so I did not have to pay the up front fee.
     
  4. Eric46

    Eric46 Auditioning

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    I tried the termite stakes about 2 1/2 months ago, and they turned out to be worthless for me. Within 2 months, about half the stakes popped their spring loaded tops. These stakes were located in very different areas around my townhouse. Although there were no termites in sight anywhere, the bait in the tubes appear to have been eaten by small snails/slugs.

    The company said that this has happened before, but said it was uncommon. Their advice was to relocate the stakes to drier areas. For my situation this did no good as they popped in very different areas around my house. I asked them for my money back, but so far no answer to that one. The company, at least so far, doesn't seem to be very customer oriented. I recommend against the use of the stakes, as for me they were a waste of time and money.

    Disappointed customer,

    Eric
     
  5. LDfan

    LDfan Supporting Actor

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    The big name companies like Orkin and Terminix charge way too much. Termite bait systems are good (at least the brand name ones) but they are entirely dependent on the termites finding the stakes. Termites travel in random paths underground and if they take the bait it's a slow and gradual process to nuke the colony.

    I went with a smaller, local company that uses a liquid based treatment. They pump a liquid barrier around the foundation and it effective up to 5 years. The brand name is Termidor (Fipronil). This is the same chemical used in the flea control product Frontline.

    I have a small townhouse and was quoted about $900 from Terminix and $1400 from Orkin. This local company did the job for about $350 and periodically stop by to inspect the property. It's been over 5 years and no more problems.

    Jeff
     
  6. darenr

    darenr Auditioning

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    I agree. There are almost always smaller local pest control alternatives to the 'big boys'. Do some shopping around before shelling out a lot of money for over-priced services and treatments.


    Irvine Pest Control
     
  7. tturtle

    tturtle Auditioning

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    I had a similar experience with some 5-6 of the stakes showing activity, but when checking them there was NO evidence of termintes. Mine were also placed in very different areas around our house, with most of the activated ones near damp areas. I think they get wet and go off. The company should be held accountable for bad advertisements. I noticed they are made in China as well, perhaps they were not done correctly? How can we hold the company accountable?
     
  8. bobPa

    bobPa Auditioning

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    I have been using the spikes, and even though a lot of the spring loaded tops popped up, I was hoping they were still effective in warding off termites......it is just supposed to warn you of activity, they should still do the job hopefully
     
  9. BrianW

    BrianW Cinematographer

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    I used the spikes years ago when I spotted termites in my front yard, feasting on the roots of a long-dead tree. Four months after putting the spikes in the ground, all termite activity had ceased. So they worked for me. However, Jeff is right about termite foraging being a process of Brownian motion. Because I was able to determine where the termite activity was in my yard, I was able to put the spikes where they had a nearly 100% chance of being found. This may not be the case for you, and putting them by the house probably isn't a good idea. Also however, this caught my attention:
    If the first foot of your house is river rock all around, then the only way termites will be able to gain access to the wood in your house is to build dirt tubes from the ground to the siding that sits above the river rock. These are easily spotted (they look like arteries made of dirt), and frequent inspection of your house's foundation should be sufficient to keep termites at bay. At the very least, if you see no dirt tubes, you can probably be assured that termites haven't found your home. Depending on construction, you might need to inspect your foundation inside and out. Of course, all this depends on the extent to which your river rock foundation is the only access termites have to your house. If you have a tool shed against the house, or a sun room connected to the house that sits on the ground, those things are essentially on-ramps for the termites to gain access.
     

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