Pest manager David Arnold shares his experience of using Sentricon AlwaysActive to treat and protect an old Queenslander home. 

Homeowners suffering a termite attack on their property want the termites gone and their home protected as quickly as possible.

For pest managers, a treatment plan would involve addressing the active termites, starting with locating and destroying the nest. Good communication with the homeowner is essential as some infestations may take many months to control, depending on species, time of year, number of colonies present, proximity to alternative food sources and so on.

Comprising both Above-Ground stations and In-Ground (AlwaysActive) stations to form a complete solution, the Sentricon system has been proven across the globe to protect homes against termites. Sentricon is unique in that pest managers can treat active termites with the aboveground stations while simultaneously installing a perimeter system in the form of the in-ground AlwaysActive baits. There is no need to wait for termites to be eradicated – the protective zone can be installed on day one.

This is good news for homeowners who don’t want to wait any longer to protect their homes and good news for pest managers who can use the in-ground AlwaysActive stations to help with eradicating the active infestations as well as providing lasting protection.

When faced with a long-standing termite infestation in an old Queenslander in Brisbane, David Arnold from Termite Doctors and Pest Management Services Brisbane needed to consider every possible solution.

Being an old Queenslander, the house had VJ (vertical joint) boards for the internal panelling. These are vertical boards that run from the floor to the ceiling, with traditional tongue and groove locking. They are attached to the ceiling with cornicing, to the floor with skirting boards and often have a dado rail to provide structural support through the centre. The house also had structural beams along the panelling for additional support as there were no wall cavities, just a 19mm panel.

“This was a very common method of construction in southern Queensland from the early 1900s up until the mid 1940s, before changing to a post-war house construction with fibrous cement and asbestos sheeting inside,” said Mr Arnold.

High moisture levels and plenty of wooden panelling and boards meant termites had taken hold of the property. “This termite infestation had been known to the owner for at least four to five years, with evidence of their damage on and off during that time. They’d had other pest companies come and take a look over this period, but the owners weren’t comfortable with the advice they had received,” Mr Arnold said.

In addition to having these unique structural elements and moisture issues to consider, Mr Arnold also had to meet the owner’s wishes regarding treatment.

“The owner is very health conscious. They didn’t want any dusts or foams used in their home. The health of their family and pets was a key contributor to wanting an alternative to chemicals, so we raised the option of the Sentricon system.”

The Sentricon system comprises of above-ground stations where a termiticide matrix is housed within stations mounted on conducive sites, as well as in-ground (AlwaysActive) stations containing a termiticide rod installed into the ground as an external perimeter system.

“We installed three above-ground stations inside the house,” described Mr Arnold. “It was easy to identify where the termites were; they had been running up and down the VJ panels and we also found nesting in a wardrobe.“

While the above-ground stations were taking care of the active termites, Mr Arnold set about creating a perimeter around the property, to prevent termites re-entering. “We installed 22 external AlwaysActive stations, with a mix of in-ground and cored stations,” he said. “It probably took two months to get full control and we haven’t had any activity since. We had great success with this job,” said Mr Arnold.

AlwaysActive termitcide rods are highly attractive – this one had been entirely eaten out

Being able to install a perimeter treatment at the same time as treating the active termites was a significant benefit for the homeowner and using a complete system made it a fast and easy job for Mr Arnold. “You need alternative options where you can work products in together, depending on the situation,” he said. The customer was “stoked” with the result and is now set up for quarterly inspections of the AlwaysActive stations around the perimeter of the property.

As the termiticide in Sentricon is fully contained within the stations, it is a zero risk option for families, their pets and the environment. The AlwaysActive rods are highly durable and do not leach into groundwater systems, ensuring safety to the environment and peace of mind for homeowners who are looking for an alternative option to traditional liquid soil treatments.