What Is Timbor?

Tim-Bor (or simply called Timbor) is a borate based termite control product manufactured by Nisus Corporation that contains a naturally occurring chemical called disodium octaborate tetrahydrate. This ingredient is derived from boron-containing mineral deposits. Since boron is a critical element that contributes to the health of many types of living organisms, it can also be safely used in many other types of products such as fertilizers, detergents, medicine, and glass.

Timbor utilizes a high concentration of boron in the form of disodium octaborate tetrahydrate, therefore acting as a form of wood preservative.  In fact, the product contains ninety-eight percent of this ingredient, with the remaining two percent of material being comprised of inactive ingredients.

Usage of Timbor

Timbor is an effective wood preservative, insecticide, and fungicide. It is very well suited for treating against infestations of wood eating insects, such as termites, wood borer beetles, powder post beetles, ants, and even cockroaches. The main ingredient in Timbor kills these insects by releasing a form of slow acting poison that directly affects the stomach.  Once the chemical is ingested, it keeps the insect from being able to metabolize food, resulting in death. Timbor is also highly toxic to different forms of fungi upon contact.

Timbor is most commonly available in a powder format. This powder is then mixed with water to create a colorless liquid formula that is then injected or sprayed under pressure. The product can also be made into foam and applied using a special application process.

Generally, two applications of Timbor are applied to all exposed and accessible bare wood items, such as posts, siding, decks, trim, trusses, and rafters as a preventative.  If the wood is already infested, a pressurized injection of Timbor foam is applied into holes that have been drilled in many different locations.

Timbor is useful against drywood termites, but is less effective against subterranean termites if applied during an active infestation. The reason why it doesn’t work so well against subterranean termites is simply because they have their nests located well away from the wood, deep in the soil. Nonetheless, you can discourage subterranean termites from attacking any wood that has Timbor applied to it, as a preventative measure.


The use of Timbor is considered to be relatively safe, with only a marginal impact on the environment. That being said, over-spraying can be toxic to certain types of plants and ornamentals. Timbor should not be used near water as it is highly toxic to fish. Timbor is non-corrosive, but will leave behind a white reside on certain finishes and glass. It is recommended that tarps be used to further help protect plants, and soil, when applying this product.

Timbor is considered to be safe for humans, as it has a very low level of toxicity. Most borate insecticides like Timbor are considered to be relatively safer for use when compared to other more conventional insecticides. The spray and undiluted powder of Timbor is not easily absorbed through the skin, unlike others like chlorpyrifos, for example.

It has also been determined that if a very small amount of the powder is accidentally ingested, it will not be harmful to humans. There have been no reports of adverse effects on the skin or eyes when using this product under normal conditions following packaging guidelines.

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