In the forest, termites are useful creatures. They enter a dead tree anddigest it into humus (rich topsoil).
Every year, termites cause a staggering $5 billionin damage, according to the National Pest Management Association. If leftunchecked, termites can eventually destroy an entire home, chewing their waythroughwood support beams, roofs and flooring. They have also been knownto cause electric failure as they tunnel their way through cables in search offood.
Unfortunately, termite damage is generally not covered by homeownersinsurance, and you should contact your agent and review your policy fordetails. The reason termite damage is not typically covered is termitesdo their work slowly and over time. The destruction is not sudden, like astorm or fire.Fortunately, with maintenance and attention from thehomeowner, termite damage can be stopped or prevented altogether.
By following these treatments and preventive tactics, homeowners can reducethe possibility of an infestation in their homes.
Treat the soil around your house.The first and most important step is to use termiticide to treat the soil around the house. Some choosethe DIY route, but professionals can typically get this done in less than aday. Once in place, a treatment will last several years.
To treat the soil, a 6-inch trench is dug around the house, right up next tothe foundation, into which several gallons of the chemical mix are poured in.Some professionals will also inject the concrete foundation with chemicals.When termites ingest the treated soil, they die. They can also carry thechemical back to their colony, with the potential of eliminating much of thepopulation.
Choose something other than mulch.For foundation plantings near your house, choose rock or pea gravel instead of woodmulch.
Maintain proper drainage. Termitesare attracted to moisture and by maintaining proper drainage around your house,youre taking a proactive step in deterring termites.
Contract with a pest control company.Look into awarranted spraying contract with a pest control company. Foran annual fee, your home is inspected and sprayed. If termites get in after alland cause damage, the costs of repairing it are covered.
Signs of a termite infestation
Its important to remember that termites are often mistaken as white ants.If you see signs of termites, contact a pest controlcompany immediately.
Mud tubes on foundation walls. Onetelltale sign of an infestation is a series of mud tubes on the surface offoundation walls.These are little tunnels built fromchewed-up wood,soil and feces that allow termites to get around and evade predators.
Tiny holes in the wood. These areoften the size of nail holes with mud and dirt near or in the entrances.
Wood that sounds hollow. If yousee cracks and gaps in the wood that sound hollow when you tap it, you may havebeen hit by termites.
Once pest control treats your home for the infestation, contact a professionalcontractor if necessary to assess the damage and replace the damaged wood.
See the article here:
Keep Termites Out and Know the Sure Signs of an Infestation
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