ANTI-TERMITE TREATMENT IN CIVIL ENGINEERING
Sub-terranean termites are responsible for most of the termite damage in buildings. Typically, they form nests or colonies underground. In the soil near ground level in a stump or other suitable piece of timber in a conical or dome shaped mound. The termites find access to the super-structure of the building either through the timber buried in the ground or by means of mud shelter tubes constructed over unprotected foundations.


Termite control in existing as well as new building structures is very important as the damage likely to be caused by the termites to wooden members of building and other household article like furniture, clothing, stationery etc. is considerable. Anti-termite treatment can be either during the time of construction i.e. pre-constructional chemical treatment or after the building has been constructed i.e. treatment for existing building.
Prevention of the termite from reaching the super-structure of the building and its contents can be achieved by creating a chemical barrier between the ground, from where the termites come and other contents of the building which may form food for the termites. This is achieved by treating the soil beneath the building and around the foundation with a suitable insecticide.
Materials
Chemicals: Any one of the following chemicals in water emulsion to achieve the percentage concentration specified against each chemical shall be used:
(i)         Chlorphriphos emulsifiable concentrate of 20%
(ii)        Lindane emulsifiable concentrate of 20%
Anti-termite treatment chemical is available in concentrated form in the market and concentration is indicated on the sealed containers. To achieve the specified percentage of concentration, Chemical should be diluted with water in required quantity before it is used. Graduated containers shall be used for dilution of chemical with water in the required proportion to achieve the desired percentage of concentration. For example, to dilute chemical of 20% concentration. 19 parts of water shall be added to one part of chemical for achieving 1% concentration.
Measurements: Concentrated chemical in sealed containers shall be measured in litres. Chemicals of different types and concentration shall be measured separately.
Safety Precautions
Chemical used for anti-termite treatment are insecticides with a persistent action and are highly poisonous. This chemical can have an adverse effect upon health when absorbed through the skin, inhaled as vapours or spray mists or swallowed.
The containers having emulsifiable concentrates shall be clearly labelled and kept securely closed in stores so that children or pet cannot get at them. Storage and mixing of concentrates shall not be done near any fire source or flame. Persons using these chemical shall be warned that absorption though skin is the most likely source of accidental poisoning. Particular care shall be taken to prevent skin contact with concentrates and prolonged exposure to dilute emulsion shall also be avoided. After handling the concentrates or dilute emulsion. Workers shall wash themselves with soap and water and wear clean
Anti-Termite Treatment: Constructional Measures
The construction measures specified below should be adopted for protection against subterranean termites originating both internally from within the plinth and externally from the area surrounding the building.
  • Earth free from roots, dead leaves, or other organic matter shall be placed and compacted in successive horizontal layers of loose material not more than 200 mm thick. Dry brick shall be inserted at last 50 mm in brick masonry for providing apron floor around the periphery.
  • Brick on edge masonry in cement mortar shall be laid on the plinth wall. Dry brick shall be placed on the inner side of plinth wall for getting anticipated offset space for coarse sand and on the other side for installing anti-termite masonry groove. In the case of intermediate walls, dry bricks are placed on either side of the brick on edge masonry for getting offset space for coarse sand layer.
  • The dry brick for the anti-termite groove shall be taken out and dense cement concrete 1:3:6 (1 cement : 3 sand : 6 coarse aggregate by volume) sub-floor carpet shall be laid casting the anti-termite groove in position. In case of internal partition walls, the cement concrete sub-floor shall be laid on either side over the dry bricks to sufficient extent for getting staggered vertical joints over the joint of plinth wall and earth filling.
  • Superstructure masonry shall be raised over the dense cement concrete sub floor carpet and over-head jobs completed.
  • The dry brick for coarse sand layer shall be removed and graded sand (of size 3 to 5 mm) layer at least 100 mm thick shall be compacted over the earth filling and underneath the partially laid dense cement concrete sub-floor carpet
  • Dense cement concrete (1:3:6 mix.) sub-floor at least 75 mm thick shall be laid over the sand filling. Necessary finish may be provided to the cement concrete sub-floor carpet.
  • Dry brick provided for apron floor shall be taken out and 600 mm wide formation of earth in 1:30 slope shall be made. Over the formation, 75 mm thick lime concrete 1:3:6 (1 lime:3 sand: 6 coarse aggregate, by volume) shall be laid.
  • Over the 75 mm thick like concrete bed at least 25 mm thick cement concrete topping 1:2:4 (1 cement: 2 sand: 4 fine aggregate, by volume) shall be laid and 12 mm thick cement plaster shall be applied on foundation and plinth

Anti Termite Treatment : Treatment for Existing Building: Post Construction Treatment
Material
(i)         Chemicals : Any one of the following chemicals conforming to relevant Indian Standards in water emulsion may be used for soil treatment in order to protect a building from termite attack.
Chemical with Percent  Relevant Indian Standards
(Active ingredient)
Relevant Indian Standards
Concentration by weight
Chlorpyrifos 20EC
IS 8944
1.0
Lindane 20EC
IS 632
1.0
These chemicals are available in concentrated form in the market and concentration is indicated on the sealed containers. To achieve the specified percentage of concentration, chemicals should be diluted with water in required quantity before it is used. Graduated containers shall be used for dilution of chemicals with water in the required proportion to achieve the desired percentage of concentration. For example, to dilute chemical of 20% concentration, 19 parts of water shall be added to one part of chemical for achieving 1% concentration. Oil or kerosene based solution of chlorpyrifos 20 EC or Lindane 20 EC, 1.0 percent (by weight) concentration is useful for treatment of wood.
(ii)        Measurements : Concentrated chemical in sealed containers shall be measured in litres. Chemicals of different types and concentration shall be measured separately.
Treatment
(i) Once the termites have an ingress into the building, they keep on multiplying and destroy the wooden and cellulosic materials, and as such it becomes essential to take measures for protection against termites. Anti termite measures described below are necessary for the eradication and control of termites in existing building. To facilitate proper penetrations of chemical in to the surface to be treated, hand operated pressure pump shall be used. To have proper check for uniform penetration of chemical, graduated containers shall be used. Proper check should be kept so that the specified quantity of chemical is used for the required area during the operation. Chemical treatment for the eradication and control of sub-terranean termites in existing building shall be done as per IS 6313 (Part III).
(ii) Treatment along outside of foundations: The soil in contact with the external wall of the building shall be treated with chemical emulsion at the rate of 7.5 litres per square metre of vertical surface of the sub-structure to a depth of 300 mm. To facilitate this treatment, a shallow channel shall be excavated along and close to the wall face. The chemical emulsion shall be directed towards the wall at 1.75 litres per running metre of the channel. Rodding with 12 mm diameter mild steel rods at 150 mm apart shall be done in the channel. If necessary, for uniform dispersal of the chemical to 300 mm depth from the ground level. The balance chemical of 0.5 litre per running metre shall then be used to treat the backfill earth as it is returned to the channel directing the spray towards the wall surface.
If there is a concrete or masonry apron around the building, approximately 12 mm diameter holes shall be drilled as close as possible to the plinth wall about 300 mm apart, deep enough to reach the soil below and the chemical emulsion pumped into these holes to soak the soil below at the rate of 2.25 litres per linear metre.
In soils which do not allow percolation of chemicals to desired depth, the uniform disposal of the chemical to a depth of 300 mm shall be obtained by suitably modifying the mode of treatment depending on site condition.
In case of RCC foundations the soil (backfill) in contact with the column sides and plinth beams along with external perimeter of the building shall be treated with chemical emulsion at the rate of
7.5 litres/sqm. of the vertical surface of the structure. To facilitate this treatment, trenches shall be excavated equal to the width of the shovel exposing the sides of the column and plinth beams upto a depth of 300 mm or upto the bottom of the plinth beams, if this level is less than 300 mm. The chemical emulsion shall be sprayed on the backfill earth as it is returned into the trench directing the spray against the concrete surface of the beam or column as the case may be.
(iii)       Treatment of Soil under Floors : The points where the termites are likely to seek entry through the floor are the cracks at the following locations:
(a)        At the junction of the floor and walls as result of shrinkage of the concrete;
(b)        On the floor surface owing to construction defects;
(c)         At construction joints in a concrete floor, cracks in sections; and
(d)        Expansion joints in the floor.
Chemical treatment shall be provided in the plinth area of ground floor of the structure, wherever such cracks are noticed by drilling 12 mm holes at the junction of floor and walls along the cracks on the floor and along the construction and expansion joints at the interval of 300 mm to reach the soil below. Chemical emulsion shall be squirted into these holes using a hand operated pressure pump to soak the soil below until refusal or upto a maximum of one litre per hole. The holes shall then be sealed properly with cement mortar 1:2 (1 cement: 2 coarse sand) finished to match the existing floors. The cement mortar applied shall be cured for at least 10 days.


(iv)      Treatment of Voids in Masonry : The movement of termites through the masonry wall may be arrested by drilling holes in masonry wall at plilnth level and squirting chemical emulsions into the holes to soak the masonry. The holes shall be drilled at an angle of 45 degree from both sides of the plinth wall at 300 mm intervals and emulsion squirted through these holes to soak the masonry using a hand operated pump. This treatment shall also be extended to internal walls having foundations in the soil. Holes shall also be drilled at wall corners and where door and window frames are embedded in the masonry or floor at ground. Emulsion shall be squirted through the holes till refusal or to a maximum of one litre per hole. Care shall be taken to seal the holes after the treatment.
(v)       Treatment at Points of Contact of Wood Work : The wood work which has already been damaged beyond repairs by termites shall be replaced. The new timber shall be dipped or liberally brushed at least twice with chemical in oil or kerosene. All existing wood work in the building which is in contact with the floor or walls and which is infested by termites, shall be treated by spraying at the points of contacts with the adjoining masonry with the chemical emulsion by drilling 6 mm holes at a dowonward angle of about 45 degree at junction of wood work and masonry and squirting chemical emulsion into these holes till refusal or to a maximum of half a litre per hole. The treated holes shall then be sealed.
Infested wood work in chaukhats, shelves, joints, purlins etc., in contact with the floor or the walls shall be provided with protective treatment by drilling holes of about 3 mm diameter with a downward slant to the core of the wood work on the inconspicuous surface of the frame. These holes should be at least 150 mm centre to centre and should cover in entire frame work. Chemicals shall be liberally infused in these holes. If the wood is not protected by paint or varnish two coats of the chemicals shall be given on all the surfaces and crevices adjoining the masonry.
Measurements : All dimensions shall be measured correct to a cm. The measurements shall be made of the surface actually provided with anti termite treatment. Measurements shall be done separately for treatment of foundations, soils under floors, voids in masonry and wood work as detailed below:
(i)         Treatment along outside of foundations : The measurements shall be made in running metres taking length along the plinth of the building.
(ii)        Treatment of soil under floors : The measurements shall be made in square metres, inside clear dimensions of rooms, verandah etc. shall be taken.
(iii)       Treatment of voids in masonry : The measurements shall be made in running metres along the plinth of the building.
(iv)       Treatment of wood work : The measurements shall be made in running metres for chowkhats, joints, purlins, beams etc.