Elite Bay Area Termite Control Industry Info

(877) 312-3289
1318 Old County Road
Belmont, CA 94002
Owners Jeremy Schreckengost (L) and Benjamin Kahner believe in taking a customer-oriented approach to termite control.
If you’re dealing with a termite infestation, make sure you understand the difference between repellent and non-repellent treatments.

Orange oil is a popular option for dealing with termites, but according to Benjamin Kahner, co-owner of Elite Bay Area Termite Control in Belmont, when it’s used to treat an existing infestation, it can actually make things worse. “Orange oil has become a prevalent treatment option because of its nontoxic nature, but it’s important to remember that it’s a repellent, which means termites can actually smell it and dig further into the walls to get away from it,” he says. “It’s effective, but it’s better used as a preventative measure than a remedial one.”

In contrast to a repellent like orange oil, non-repellent treatments actually attract termites and act as a virus that spreads throughout the colony. Mr. Kahner believes this is a more effective treatment given the social proclivities of the target. “Like ants, termites are very social—they regurgitate the wood they ingest and feed it to each other, and they also lick and groom each other as a way to deal with fungal growth that accumulates on their skin,” he explains. “Because of their inclination toward these social practices, the termites actually do most of the work by spreading the treatment chemicals throughout the colony.”

How to differentiate termite types
If you’ve detected the presence of termites in your home, you might not know how to identify if they’re the subterranean or drywood variety. Fortunately, there are a couple of easy ways to tell the two apart. “Subterranean termites look like little black ants with wings, and they usually swarm during the spring,” says Mr. Kahner. “On the other hand, drywood termites look like little red ants with wings, and they swarm in late summer and early fall. Depending on their color and the time of year, you can determine which type of termite you have in your home.”