Termites in Bathroom

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Subterranean termite is a real hidden pest. The insect leads an extremely secret way of life, that is why sometimes it is very difficult to identify the presence of termites’ colony nest inside your house.

Slightly but surely, termites destroy all wooden structures of a house including basement, walls and ceilings, making a house unlivable and ramshackle.

In the USA, for example, there are, on average, from 13 to 14 subterranean termite colonies per acre, which means that a typical home may easily have three to four colonies situated under or around it.

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There can be as many as 1,000,000 subterranean termites per colony; the threat of infestation becomes a very real one indeed.

Why Do Termites Live in a Bathroom?

Photo 2Termites build their mud tubes and plant their nests because a bathroom is often a site of certain moisture problems:

  • Inadequate ventilation system. While in a bathroom there is a high humidity level, fault ventilation system doesn’t manage to take an evaporated steam outside. As a result, damp bathroom is a perfect place for termites.
  • Collected water due to leaky pipes. Termites need water badly to retain moisture within their bodies and to keep up living. The water that runs along leaky pipes and collects on the floor creates an ideal condition for termites to live and feed.
  • Humid showers represent a cause for high-level evaporation that gives the termites an opportunity to get the needed portion of humidity.

Learn more about subterranean termites: signs of their activity; best methods of treatment and DIY methods. Eastern subterranean termites and their tunnels and tubes with photo.

Signs of Bathroom Infestation: Where to Search for Evidence?

A few signs that can signal termite damage in a bathroom include:

  1. Loose tiles.
  2. Discolored or sagging ceiling.
  3. Damaged or hollow-sounding baseboards or walls.
  4. Drywall or wallpaper with small holes.
  5. Jammed door or windows.

There are ways that will help you to recognize the presence of subterranean termites inside and outside your house, that can be performed by your own.

Though there are obvious signs of infestation, it is desirable to get a professional consultation on this matter.

Photo 3To recognize the activity of subterranean termites inside your bathroom, you need a good flashlight, screwdriver or pocketknife and coveralls.

First of all, you should pay attention to damp and warm places:

  1. Slightly knock a tile cover of the walls and the floor with a screwdriver for hollow-like sound.
  2. Inspect all pipes for mud tunnels and collecting water with a flashlight.
  3. Inspect drains of bath tub and basin with a flashlight for swarmers (sexed termites with wings).
Recommendation: if you do find the evidence of subterranean termites’ infestation, it is highly advisable not to resort to the help of do-it-yourself elimination activities. One should immediately contact the local expert on termites, because the consequences of such negligence could be irretrievable.

Termites can select drains of bath tubs and basins due to possible clogs. These clogs give them the perfect opportunity to build their mud shelters. Sometimes, it is possible to see swarmers inside the drains. Such an evidence says that you have a sound termite activity inside your bathroom and possibly in entire house.

Warning: Structural damage in a bathroom can be very difficult and expensive to repair due to the challenge of accessing the infestation near plumbing pipes and fixtures. Repairs should be handled by a special service.

Frequently, termites build their mud tunnels on the tile walls “connecting” taps or along the water pipes. Also, they build tunnel along the floor (under the tile where the humidity level is relatively high) and on the ceiling (especially, if you have stretch ceiling that doesn’t allow the moisture to evaporate).

Infestations can be particularly difficult to detect behind tile and bathtubs. If you destroy a mud tunnel you will see a dozens of working termites running to and fro.

Attention! Mud tubes are a real proof of termite infestation inside the building, but their absence does not certainly mean that your house is free of termites. The termites may reach your bathroom through cracks or voids in the foundation, from earth-filled porches, steps, terraces. Never touch mud tubes with bare hands, it may cause allergically reactions and contact dermatitis.

Here you can learn more information about effective termite control remedies: Bora-Care, Boric acid, Borate, Fipronil, Chlorpyrifos, Chlordane, Borax, Timbor, Termidor, Terminator, Phantom, Lorsban, Biflex, Terro. You can choose different forms, such as – foam, liquid, powder.

What Type of Damage Termites May Bring to Your Bathroom?

Photo 4Most of all, termites get to your bathroom from the soil via pipes. Pipes penetration is the first evidence that your bathroom is infested.

You should avoid using pipe wraps made of rubber and cloth that could be very “delicious” to termites and will be easily destroyed. Also, water pipes can be eaten away with rust because of mud tunnels and termites’ excrements.

Foraging termites can lead to the wall and floor tile comes off and break impossible to repair. Under the tile you will see thousands of working termites building their mud shelters.

Termites will not damage a porcelain-coated, acrylic or fiberglass tub. However, termites can damage the wooden beams that support the weight of the tub or of the sink.

Besides, on their way to food and moisture via taps, termites can eat all plumbing materials, such as packing yarn.

Here you can learn more information about termite bait systems: Advance, Green, CSIRO, Nemesis, Exterra, Firstline, Terminate. Also find out how to make baits by yourself and how to refill them?

What One Should Do If There Are Termites Inside a Bathroom?

The struggle with termites is always a combined approach, one should not think that it will be enough to treat only a bathroom leaving the rest of the house neglected. If there are termites inside a bathroom, their mud tunnels can possible stretch to other rooms and house structures with high humidity level: kitchen, basement, other bathrooms.

If you face a problem the bathroom termites’ infestation, you better contact the local expert service on termites’ destruction to get a professional consultation on the spot or over the phone.

In case, there is no possibility to contact a local expert, you can resort to the following termites control measures.

Combine Tent Fumigation and Subterranean Termite Treatment Drilling with liquid termicides. Fumigation will help you to get rid of flying termites who tend to form a new colony inside your dwelling.

Here you can learn more information about fumigation: dangers for termites, preparing for fumigation and cleaning after, how long does this procedure last?

Photo 5The liquid termicides for drilling will slowly but surely kill worker caste of termites that will lead to the death of the queen.

You can tent the bathroom and treat the soil near it. Let the professional search the rest of the house for infestation signs: piles of wings, frass, holes in the wood, mold, mud tunnels.

Combine Soil Treatment with Baits. Soil Treatment with non-repellent termicides will scare the termites away from your bathroom, as well as baits will slowly decrease the population of pests.

Remember, that treating a bathroom, most likely you will need to take off all the tile to have an access to hard-to-get places where termites are likely to live and feed.

Be careful! Though modern termicides are water-based and completely safe for the mammals, one should not neglect the simple rules of self-protection.

What Are the Steps After Bathroom Treatment?

After you have your bathroom treated, the only thing you need is to conduct periodical inspection of the places enlisted above. Precisely look at pipes and inside the drains and taps, knock tile with a screwdriver for hollow-like sound.

You can use duct tape on the floor and walls to trap some possible termites if there are any. This method will show you whether there are termites inside your bathroom again.

Useful articles

If you interested in more information of termites we recommend you to read the following articles:

Helpful video

How to make a bath trap to treat for termites:


Photo 6The best option is to prevent the appearance of termites in your house, though they are not always possible to detect before it became a real problem.

Use the signs of insects inside your house that were given above for your periodical inspection.

Remember, that there are many accessible and safe methods to destroy termites’ colony today.

But only a specialist from termite control service will help you to choose the best option to get rid of the pests inside your house for a long-time.

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