How to Prevent Termites in Your Home and Save Money

Aug 23, 2012 by

  • Sumo
Source: University of Hawai'i Termite Project

Source: University of Hawai’i Termite Project

The Termite Problem

The pros at Houses R Us were called out to do a hardwood floor replacement recently and had the job held up for over 30 days because the home had a horrible termite infestation. The owner had no idea that these silent killers had been munching along under the floor and in the walls for some time. Every year, billions of dollars are spent by poor homeowners like this in termite extermination. Don’t get caught out there like these home owners — use these tips to inspect your home and prevent termite infestation.

Termites – What are you looking for?

Source: Ohio State University Fact Sheet

Source: Ohio State University Fact Sheet

Termites come in a number of species including: subterranean, formosan, drywood, and dampwood. They thrive in an ideal environment of shelter, moisture, and an optimal temperature. Of course they need some food to eat and they can find it in many places in and outside of your home.

Inside your home, your furniture, shelves, books, carpet and insulation are at risk. Outside of your home, termites look to munch on housing foundations, dead plants, trees

, wood and wood in soil.

If you spot a winged swarm inside or outside of your house, don’t make the mistake of dismissing termites for common ants. Termites antennae are straight, their waists are wide, and their wings are similar to each other in size. Seeing these insects outside doesn’t necessarily mean that you have an infestation, but you’ll want to definitely check. Seeing these insects inside your home indicates you may have an infestation somewhere in the dwelling.

Other signs include discarded wings, hollow sounding wood, and mazes and sawdust found in wood.

How To Prevent Termite Damage

Routine checks in and around your home will help you prevent termite damage and save you a ton of money. Here are some tasks you can complete and keep in mind:

  • Fix moisture problems – Any leaks or excess water will attract a number of home owner issues, termites being one of them. Leaking faucets, clogged gutters, and AC units can all pose possible termite problems. Furthermore, redirecting water away from the foundation of your home is essential. Whenever you experience a moisture related problem, fix it immediately.
  • Keep wood away from your foundation – Firewood and wood piles should always be kept at distance from your home’s foundation. This includes the crawlspace. Your crawlspace should be well ventilated since it is already an ideal space for termites to settle.
  • Manage landscaping – Keep flower and planting beds away from the foundation of your home and mulch levels several inches lower than the siding of the home.

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