Inner West Council

Termite barriers in buildings

Why have them?
There are more than 350 species of termites in Australia alone, 30 of which are responsible for the costly damage to buildings which often goes undetected until the damage is so severe that it requires extensive repairs or replacement.

When are they required?
The Building Code of Australia 2008 requires that all new building work, or alterations and additions have a termite risk management method or system installed. This law came into effect in August 1995 and the method of protection needs to be installed in accordance with Australian Standard 3660.1-2000.

Types of barriers?
Since the introduction of the first barrier in 1995 for the protection against termites, numerous barriers have now been introduced into the market place.

Barriers can be either chemical or physical or a combination of both and the methodology will vary on each individual project.

These can be used separately or in conjunction, together with other traditional termite resistant construction methods such as ant capping, stirrups and "monolithic" concrete slabs. 

Note: These are not the only methods available and we recommend that you contact a registered termite applicator to discuss the best option available to your application.

Methods in use and systems available for the protection against termites are constantly being developed by various companies and adopted by the Australian Standards.

Who does the treatment and certification?
*Pest controllers (licensed by the Workcover Authority) for chemical treatments *Registered applicators (who are accredited by the relevant companies) for physical barriers and reticulation systems.

On completion of the works you will be provided with a certificate and a durable notice that should be installed in a prominent position on the building such as inside or on the meter box. This notice will include the method of protection, date of installation and the service life of any chemical barrier.

What about maintenance?
Any protection system must be maintained as advised in the notice affixed to the building. Thorough regular inspections are also important. The requirements as set out in the Building Code of Australia are considered minimal and owners of buildings may choose to incorporate additional termite protection systems in their buildings.

Further information
This is meant to be a brief summary and guide only to the relevant legislation and the applicable Standard. If you require further information please contact Councils Construction Assessment Team on 9716 1800 for a more detailed interpretation of the termite requirements.