For Three Bunny Mama and Anthracite, you’re dealing with bugs that hang out in wall voids and enter the bathroom looking for moisture. Usually they find access points around the openings where the pipes enter the wall or cracks in tile grout. Sealing those up might help some. But if you’re fighting them with topical sprays, you’re fighting a losing battle. Treat inside the walls with a straw-type applicator on an aerosol. Read the label to make sure it will affect the pest you’re dealing with, although pyrethrins will pretty much take care of them. Pillbugs and sowbugs hang out in high moisture areas, so make sure you don’t have leaking or anything in that vicinity (or in the basement underneath or outside of the house).
Catrandom, call a professional immediately. If you are definitely sure you’re having termite swarms, then your house is in danger. Termite swarmers are reproducers and do not damage the wood. However, where there’s smoke there’s fire, and the workers are around somewhere. They are the ones that do the damage, they are almost never seen, and they are busy 24/7/365. You cannot treat for termites yourself. Call a professional. The cost of termite treatment may seem steep, but it’s nothing compared to what you’ll have to pay down the road for repairs. Termites cause more damage to U.S. homes (in terms of dollars) than fires and storms combined. I would recommend one of the baiting systems, as they are less intrusive and environmentally friendly. I have my preferences among baiting systems on the market, but since I work with one of them (my system of preference, BTW) it doesn’t seem right that I make a recommendation. But investigate them and make the most educated choice you can.
RTFirefly, thanks for the kind words. Always happy to help a fellow Marxist. Unless you pay for preventive termite treatment, you can’t stop them from getting in. Termite-proof construction is a myth. You can remove conditions conducive to wood destroying insect infestation, though. Don’t pile up debris, especially wood debris against the foundation of your house. Trim shrubs so they don’t touch the house. If you have drainage problems, get them fixed. All these insects need water, so don’t let the area near the foundation stay moist. Make sure you don’t have wood-to-ground contact anywhere on the house. Look for termite mud tubes in the basement and on the outside foundation. Subterranean termites have to maintain contact with the soil. In order to do so, they construct shelter tubes from mud, bodily fluids and fecal matter. They sort of resemble the worms you can make by rolling clay on a table. If you find something like this and break it open, you may even see termites crawling around in there. They look like little white ants or worms. They are adult workers, however, and they are eating your house.
For preventive ant treatment, you might want to do a quick spray around the outside perimeter with a microencapsulated formula every month or so during the hot weather.
Milo, it’s a tossup. I once did a termite job in a church. Chemical termite treatment involves drilling through the slab every foot or so along the outer perimeter walls, so you’re talking a buttload of holes. This church had slab floors that were about 2’ thick, and very hard. It took forever to drill a hole. Plus, I kept getting almost to the point where my bit would pop through when I would hit rebar (metal reinforcing bars inside the slab). We always used GFI boxes to cut off the power if we hit metal, so we wouldn’t destroy pipes. So I’d be almost through drilling a hole and the damn drill would cut off. I’d have to start all over again. Took forever to do this job.
Another nightmare I had was a rat job in the Bronx. The damn things were jumping around while I was tiptoeing through the basement. ::shudder!!!::