The Basics of Using Gas Oxalic Acid Vaporizer

A gas oxalic acid vaporizer is one of the most helpful tools that a beekeeper can use when battling against varroa mites. Oxalic acid is a type of naturally occurring substance that gives beekeepers a chance to avoid the use of sometimes dangerous synthetic chemicals in their beehives. 

When used properly, oxalic acid is very efficient at killing varroa mites without causing damage to the colony. 

Necessary Materials for Oxalic Acid Vaporization Treatment

Before using a gas oxalic acid vaporizer in the bee yard, don’t forget to wear suitable safety gear to keep your lungs and skin protected. Never inhale the oxalic acid vapor at all costs. 

Make sure you also follow all the directions indicated on the equipment and stay updated with all the beekeeping periodicals. Remember that just like anything else, even bee-related stuff also changes now and then. 

using a gas oxalic acid vaporizer
Before using a gas oxalic acid vaporizer, don’t forget to wear suitable safety gear and make sure you follow all the directions indicated on the equipment

Once you have made sure that you followed all the safety precautions on the label of the product, you can now proceed to prepare the following materials:

  • a bucket filled with cool water if the model you are using allows cooling
  • grid board for screened bottom boards
  • measuring spoon
  • oxalic acid crystals (you need 1 gram for every brood box, approximately 1/2 teaspoon)
  • oxalic acid vaporizer
  • power source for the vaporizer
  • an old towel, rags, or anything similar to use as temporary plugs
  • safety gear as instructed on the oxalic acid label, including mask and gloves 
  • timer

Make sure that all of your tools for oxalic acid vaporization are kept together. You can use any container for this. 

Steps for Using a Gas Oxalic Acid Vaporizer

Here are the steps for using a gas oxalic acid vaporizer:

  1. Insert the grid board below the screened bottom boards.
  2. Detach the top of the hive and put a loose plug in the hole in the inner cover.
  3. Prepare the necessary amount of oxalic acid and put it on the cold wand.
  4. Insert the vaporizer wand little by little into the front portion of the hive.
  5. Cover the front with an old towel or anything similar.
  6. Connect the vaporizer to the source of power. 
  7. Set the timer depending on the model of vaporizer you are using. 
  8. Energize the vaporizer and then stand upwind from the beehive.
  9. Once the timer sets off, allow the vapor to cool for several minutes before you remove the wand.
  10. Wait for another 8 to 10 minutes before you open all the ventilation ports and entrances.

Never forget to do another mite count two weeks following the treatments to ensure that it worked. Be extra careful during windy days, too. While a simple towel may work fine as a temporary block for the hive entrance, the important vapors might end up escaping if the wind is blowing it off. 

Applying oxalic acid vapor with a gas oxalic acid vaporizer

While it is safe to use a gas oxalic acid vaporizer and oxalic acid, this will only be possible if you follow the proper safety protocols. Always make sure that you follow the instructions indicated on the label.

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