Preprint Article Version 1 Preserved in Portico This version is not peer-reviewed

Heat Technology Aiming to Mitigate Structural Heat Sinks for Drywood Termite (Blattodea: Kalotermitidae) Management

Version 1 : Received: 25 October 2021 / Approved: 26 October 2021 / Online: 26 October 2021 (15:44:16 CEST)

How to cite: Tay, J.; James, D. Heat Technology Aiming to Mitigate Structural Heat Sinks for Drywood Termite (Blattodea: Kalotermitidae) Management. Preprints 2021, 2021100394 (doi: 10.20944/preprints202110.0394.v1). Tay, J.; James, D. Heat Technology Aiming to Mitigate Structural Heat Sinks for Drywood Termite (Blattodea: Kalotermitidae) Management. Preprints 2021, 2021100394 (doi: 10.20944/preprints202110.0394.v1).

Abstract

With heat treatments to control drywood termites (Blattodea: Kalotermitidae), the presence of heat sinks, which have insulating properties, causes heat to be distributed unevenly throughout the treatment areas. Drywood termites may move to galleries in heat sink areas to avoid exposure to lethal temperatures. To mitigate heat sink effect, studies were conducted in Crytotermes brevis-infested homes in Honolulu, Hawaii to reflect real-world scenarios; either a standard heat treatment performed by a heat remediation company or improved heat treatment methods were used. For improved treatments, heated air was directed into the toe-kick voids of cabinets to reduce heat sink effects. Eight thermistor sensors were placed inside toe-kick voids, in the treatment zone, embedded inside cabinets or the sidewall, or in a wooden cube to monitor internal and ambient temperatures to ensure sufficiently high heat reached all areas. Target temperatures above 46 °C or 50 °C were recorded in all areas for 120 minutes. A pretreatment inspection was conducted, and follow-up inspections were performed at 6 months posttreatment to confirm termite inactivity using visual observations and a Termatrac device. In improved treatment homes, no termite activity was found after treatment. Efficacious heat treatment protocols for structures using the improved method are proposed.

Keywords

heat treatment; termite control; termites; drywood termite; Crytotermes brevis; wood pest; heat sink; heat technology; non-chemical; pest management

Subject

BIOLOGY, Entomology

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