Termites are truly a destructive insect that no homeowner should have to tolerate sharing their home with. They travel underground and invade homes by establishing their well-structured colonies once they find a sufficient food source to harvest. What makes termites so dangerous is their ability to consume and digest the cellulose found in wood.
Every year termites cause millions of dollars in damages just by invading and setting up their colonies on the wood that holds your roof up. It may not be an overnight operation, but termites are hard to find because they travel underground and also typically nest inside wall voids.
Once inside, termites can begin to eat away at your home while you have no knowledge at all. This can go on for years and eventually lead to a possible unstable house structure and a very costly fix.
What Do Termites Look Like?
Termites vary in size, shape, color, and variety due to the thousands of different types of termites. Typically termites will be less than an inch long and have soft bodies with straight antennae. They come in different colors ranging from a creamy white to a dark brown almost black depending on the type and their role in the colony.
Where to Find Termites in Your Home
Termites can pop up almost anywhere in your home which means it can be difficult to find them. Typically termites will work their way up into your house from underground, but sometimes they might start near the roof.
The best place to begin looking for termites will be following the exterior base perimeter of your home. They construct small mud tubes to travel from the colony to the food source and are pretty obvious to the naked eye when looking for them.
5 Ways to Prevent a Termite Infestation
There are a few ways on how to help prevent a termite infestation. There are a few things that can attract termites to your home that many homeowners often overlook.
1. Move Wood Stockpiles
Naturally, keeping the surplus of firewood near a home may be dangerous when it comes to attracting termites. If termites stumble across a large amount of wood that will provide them with seemingly unlimited amounts of food, they might be inclined to stay. Simply moving your wood stockpiles away from the house will help in keeping them at bay from seeing your home as their next victim.
2. Clear Overgrown Vegetation
Anytime there is overgrown vegetation, it welcomes not just termites, but a whole list of other pest activity. When bushes and trees are unkept and begin to grow onto a home it means the feast can continue for termites. Branches and bushes that brush up against homes act as a nice bridge for termites to continue their activity. At the minimum, simply clear the vegetation away enough so it’s not touching the house.
3. Reduce Moisture Around the Foundation
This may be difficult, but clearing up and ensuring that there is no moisture build up near the foundation of the home will help with preventing termites. Termites are going to be attracted to moisture rich soil and dirt, so the less water near the foundation the less incentive they have to pay a visit.
4. Proper Crawl Space Ventilation
More often than not, termites will pop up near or in the crawl space. Taking the extra steps and time to ensure your crawl space has proper ventilation will work wonders when trying to prevent termites. Crawl spaces can very quickly build up moisture and humidity without a proper vapor barrier and ventilation. Not only will this help with termites, but humidity and moisture can lead to other issues like mold which isn’t safe to breathe in or cheap to fix.
5. Restrict Access
This may be difficult to completely restrict all termite access, but there are a few things you can do to keep up on preventative maintenance. Sealing up water and gas lines around the house will restrict possible entry points for termites. Finding any leaking pipes will draw away moisture and ensuring windows and doors are fitting properly will help with preventing termite entry.
Prevent a Termite Infestation in Your Home
The safest way to know if you have termites or what you can do to prevent them is to ask! A termite specialist will know exactly where around your home is susceptible to a termite infestation and provide guidance on how to fix these conducive conditions.
Contacting a termite specialist will help give you a peace of mind and leave you with confidence knowing you’re doing all the right things to prevent a termite infestation. Understanding how to prevent termites in the house will help save you from an infestation which could lead to expensive damages and a lot of mental stress.
Termites will invade a house, majority of the time without your knowledge, and cause massive damage. A professional pest control company can provide quick and easy solutions at a much more affordable price than having to fix damages inflicted by a long-term termite colony residency.