Eastern subterranean termites are the most common and widely distributed termites in the United States.  They are often found in the eastern and central states, with the heaviest concentration in south-eastern states. Like all termites, they eat wood and often invade buildings in their search for food which can be seriously damaging to the structure.

Termites and ICF Walls

A major benefit of Insulated Concrete Form (ICF) walls is that they are comprised of polystyrene and concrete and therefore do not offer any food value for termites, ensuring that the structure of the walls will stay intact.  Subterranean termites can however burrow through the EPS foam to reach areas where a food source exists, such as wood roof trusses, wood floor joists and hardwood flooring. This can be particularly dangerous when EPS is used below grade since termites can burrow upwards to the roof without being discovered.

The following are three categories of termite control and prevention that can be used to protect against termite infestation:

  • Physical Barriers
    • Waterproofing and termite barrier system
    • Chemical soil treatment
    • Metal or plastic termite shields
    • Particle sized barrier
    • Wire Mesh
  • Suppression
    • Termite baits
    • Trap Treat Release (TTR)
  • Site Management (not to be used as a single source of protection)

Recommendations for Termite Prevention and Control

  • Reduce or eliminate wood structural elements. If wood cannot be eliminated, use treated wood or wood that is naturally resistant to termites.
  • Use more than one line of defense from the three categories or termite control and prevention listed above.
  • Always retain the services of a licensed/professional Pest Control Operator (PCO) to implement commercial termite control and prevention methods.
  • Monitor and inspect the structure on a regular basis for any signs of termite infestation or damage.

ICF Construction

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