How to Kill Termites in Soil & Wood


Termites cause damage and destruction to many types of wooden structures and buildings. Although very small, these insects cause more property damage every year than wind and fire combined. Subterranean termites live under the soil, feeding on dead brush and trees. Failure to remove these termites before building structures in the vicinity often results in expensive damage. By leaving these bugs in the soil, you increase the likelihood of future property damage to wooden buildings, fences and other areas of construction. Eradicate termites before they cause irreparable damage.

Step 1

Remove the termites and their shelters before constructing new buildings and fences. Pull out termite-infested tree stumps and roots. Use pressure-treated lumber in areas where wood and soil meet. Construct ventilation openings in crawl spaces to prevent air pockets and allow air currents to pass through.

Step 2

Search the foundation of your house, garage, and other buildings for the appearance of small, earthen tunnels. These shelter tubes provide entry from the termites' nests in the soil into your structures. Look for dried mud tubes, stretching upward from the ground. The diameter of these tubes varies, but commonly measure approximately 1/2 inch thick.

Step 3

Break away any existing tubes to remove the tunnel access from the soil to your structure. Dig shallow trenches along the inside and the outside of your foundation walls. Using a shovel, make these trenches between 4 to 6 inches deep and about 6 to 12 inches wide. Extend the trenches around plumbing pipes and conduit pipes.

Step 4

Mix termiticide according to the manufacturer's instructions and apply to the area of your trenches. Apply evenly to the inside and outside trenches.

Step 5

Set out termite baits to avoid new infestations of termites. These baits come in various sizes for indoor and outdoor use. Locate these baits out of the reach of children and animals. Replace your termite baits regularly to ensure the presence of active ingredients.

Things You'll Need

  • Pressure-treated lumber
  • Shovel
  • Termiticide
  • Termite baits


  • University of Florida: Subterranean Termites
  • Ohio State University: Termite Control
Keywords: termites, kill termites, termite control

About this Author

Laura Dee is a writer, artist, and the co-owner of Wallace & Wallace Copywriting,an online business which specializes in providing marketing materials and copy to various companies. She has written for Demand Studios since 2008 and is currently working on a series of childrens' picture books.