There is a time of the year where termites cause serious damage to structures and crops to warm areas of the United States regions. Homeowners are spending billions of dollars every year to treat the termite damage and repair the infested structure. Termites feed on wood, so they mainly have the capability of destroying the strength and safety of an infested structure. Termites can damage and make it fall until repairs are made. Termites can infest even a house that is not made of lumber as they are capable of living through plaster, metal siding, and more. They are feasting on cabinets, floors, ceilings, and furniture made with lumber.
Most of the time, you may seldom see termites at your homes, but they may lurk in their hidden nests and devour wood from inside walls, but there are ways to find if they exist in your homes or where they are thriving. Because they cannot be noticed before discovering specific damage, homeowners must contact a pest control should they find termite damage in their property. It is beneficial to be able to locate the infestation early to prevent a wider scope of their destruction.
Recognizing Signs of Termite Damage
Inspect the area that’s suspected to be damaged.
If you suspect a particular area of your house for possible termite damage, cut the wood. Different types of termite leave different kinds of damage to the wood. The subterranean termites are most likely to permeate on softwood and eat following the grain. Thus, it is important to employ the termite control team to stop them as soon as you discover their presence. Another type of termites is the drywood termites that excavate a significant portion of the wood-eating along and against the grain. Discovering their presence is a serious matter but less than the subterranean termites.
Look for other signs of termite damage.
If you cannot find the termite itself, try to look for clues or their trails. Some visible signs are floors that buckle or sag, loose tiles, and some pinpoint holes in drywall. You can also notice that damaged wood creates hollow sound when you tap on it, and the damaged timber collapses easily.
Shelter tubes are the most visible clue that termites have come to your home.
It’s the main indication that termites are active. Termites build them up to ensure safe access to the wood. Termite droppings are made from the termite’s saliva, fecal matter, soil, and others. They eat dead trees, which is the primary material of most houses.
Drywood termites live in wooden structures like timber, furniture, and hard floors.
Since they live inside the site they feed on, they are not visible, and most of the time homeowners overlooked them especially if they do not know what does a termite look like. But most of the time, they leave fecal pellets outside the tubes, and you can find them stocked under the infected areas of wall or beam.
Listen for clues.
When you are looking or inspecting your home for possible termite damage, tap the wall using a screwdriver. The damaged lumber sounds hollow as there must be a colony of termite inside. You can also use a stethoscope and listen to different parts of the walls. You may not hear the termites, but carpenter ants have a rustling sound that you can definitely hear using the device.
Ability to distinguish the termite from other pests that infest in houses.
Termites are wood-boring insects that damage properties. Carpenter ants and some breeds of beetles are also fed on wood. It is crucial that you can distinguish which pest has damaged your home for you to know how to deal with the problem and what action should be done against the colony. Of course, the easiest way to identify which pest has invaded your home is you know what do termite look like.
Preventing and Repairing Termite Damage
Contact a pest control professional.
Instead of dealing with the termite damage on your own, let the pest control professionals do the work to get rid of them. Get help from pest management companies in your location and ask assistance to eradicate the pests. Look for a company with a cost-effective solution.
Remove dead trees and stumps in your yard.
A decomposing tree is the main attraction to termites, where they can start their colony. If you happen to store extra construction materials or store a lot of firewood, you have to make sure you place them away from your house. If you bring the woods inside your home, make sure you check out for termites and their trails like shelter tubes or holes.
Use treated lumber in building new structures.
The treated lumber contains chemicals that can be a deterrent to termites. If you are constructing something outside, it is best to use treated lumber for structures like gazebo and deck. It is a good help in making the logs less appealing to termites or other wandering wood-boring insects.
Inspect common termite entry points.
Wood that touches the ground is the common entry point of the termites to get into your property. These are door frames, deck posts, or beams. Try to examine these areas for signs of termites regularly. Remove any water damage in the site and treat the wall or timber with termite repellent to prevent the termite from getting into the wood.
Avoid spreading mulch near your home.
Mulch is often made from wood, and the moisture emits in the soil can attract termites. You can have mulch in your house, but you have to make sure that it doesn’t touch the siding or foundation of your home. Simultaneously, woody shrubs or plants that touch the wood foundation can also house termites and help them hide.
Install termite shields.
If you are currently constructing or renovating your house, termite shields are a big help to deter termites. These metal shields can be put along the foundation of the house. The shield is made of non-corroding metal with no gaps. The gaps will prevent the termites from accessing the wood foundations or any structure of your home.
Determine the damage wall or roof.
If the wood is hollowed or completely rotten, it is impossible to repair it, and you will have to replace the wood. Once you find that the wood is damaged, eradicate the rotten piece using a chisel.
Use a wood filler or hardener.
Wood filler or hardener can be used to fill in the damaged parts. Using a knife, spread the filler in parts of the damaged wood, let it dry overnight. Make sure to remove any bubbles from the filler or hardener to prevent possible gaps in the wood. Wood filler is best for long hallowed grooves and hardener best works for larger holes.
Replace the wood completely. For structures like a deck, remove the affected sections and replace them with new pieces.
Homes made of wood can attract termite infestation, so homeowners must know what do termites look like and should have a regular termite inspection of the sites where termites may start to devour. Dealing with termites can cost homeowners a pretty big sum of money up to 5 billion in treating termite infestation and repairing the damaged home. Learning the signs of termites can help you determine if your home might have termite damage would be a big help in dealing with termite problems.