Termites exist throughout Australia, especially in urban areas. Although it is rare, it is possible for some termite species to damage a house beyond repair when the infestation has been left untreated for several years. Even if your home is made of stone or brick, termites can still cause damage to door and window frames, plaster, insulation, structural supports, and even your magazine and book collections.
However, it is uncommon for termites to destroy your home completely before you discover their presence. If a colony grows to maturity, you can visibly see their signs of activity. This is why periodic inspections by a reputable termite technician are critical. Adelaide pest control specialists say that early detection of termite infestations will help keep the damage to a minimum.
1. Identifying Tell-tale Signs of Termite Damage
- Wood Damage – This is the well-known sign that termites are causing damage to your house. Severely damaged wood sounds hollow if you tap it.
- Mud Tubes – You can see this along baseboards, walls or in crevices and cracks.
- Piles of Coarse Grains of Sand – Also called frass, these grains are termite fecal pellets.
- Sagging or Blistering Laminate Flooring – This can be a sign that termites have infested the floorboards underneath. Watch out also for a spongy floor.
- Unexplained Cracks – You can see cracks in interior and exterior walls, beams, ceilings and rafters.
- Sticking Doors and Windows – This indicates that termites created a tunnel inside the frames, which causes them to become misshapen.
2. Calling In Professional Help
Whenever you suspect a termite infestation in your property, call a reliable pest control company to assess the situation. Pest control experts in SA emphasize that DIY home applications for termites are not recommended because they cannot get to the root of the problem and are ineffective.
Let the pest control experts work on repairs. During the repair process, you may find more damage than expected. It is for this reason that you should not cover up any termite damage without consulting a termite technician. There can be more termites hiding somewhere.
When it comes to fixing termite damage, you must work with an exterminator who practices green pest control. Although the use of pesticides is unavoidable, experts using green pest control practices will focus on addressing certain target areas, applying only the required amount of pesticides. They don’t use these toxic substances in your living space.
Moreover, they will use integrated pest management strategies to keep these destructive pests from returning to your home and causing further damage.
3. Termite Prevention Tips
The first step to getting rid of termites is to know how to keep them out in the first place.
The presence of termite swarmers flying near the window is the first sign that you could be headed for a termite problem. Spring and autumn are the most common seasons when termites swarm, but they are active all year round, so you must keep an eye out for them during winter and summer as well.
- Schedule a termite inspection with a reputable pest control expert at least once every two years.
- Fill in all the cracks in your concrete, foundation, around your roof and masonry work.
- Fix all leaks in your plumbing because most termite species love moisture.
- Foundation air vents should be fully exposed and not overgrown by plants to keep moisture to a minimum.
- Keep downspouts and gutters clear of any debris to prevent moisture accumulation.
- Repair waterlogged or broken roof tiles as these may become an entry point for termites.
- No wood in your house must be in direct contact with soil. Aim for at least a 45 cm gap between the ground and wood.
- Install termite baits in the ground around your house. These baits involve a series of traps that hold food which is laced with a slow-acting substance toxic to termites. Introduce the poison only if the presence of termites is detected.
A termite infestation is every homeowner’s nightmare. In Australia, termites cause more damage to homes than floods, fire and storms. But with early detection, the damage can be fixed without much hassle. Depending on your home’s construction, the type of termite, and the impact of the infestation, you’ll be investing a significant amount of your time and money when it comes to fixing termite damage. The bottom line is to always seek professional help when dealing with these destructive home pests.
September 26, 2017