YOUR FIRST 5 STEPS IF TERMITES ARE EATING YOUR HOUSE –
You might put out ant traps and swat flies, but there is one type of insect that is more difficult to keep an eye on: the termite. No matter where you live in the United States, termite damage could occur if there is wood in the infrastructure in or near your house. Here are four steps to determine if you have a termite problem in your home, and eliminate it as quickly as possible.
Step 1: How to Spot Termite Damage
Unless the swarm of termites is large enough to be noticed, you will not be able to see them as they will be hiding in the woodwork of the home. Termites are light in color with soft bodies and straight antennas. Even if there are no termites in sight, you should be able to notice evident signs of infestation throughout your home.
Check for holes in the wall—these “shelter tubes” burrowed for access from outside can be found in wood above the ground. Below the holes, there will be a pile of discarded fecal matter and other materials from their nests. To double check wood damage, cut away a piece of wood or furniture. Some termites are known to cause enough damage (even to the cracks in concrete) to collapse a home. However, any termite can be a problem and so they need to be stopped before any more damage occurs.
Steps 2-4: How to End a Termite Infestation
After taking the first step to find that termites have infested your home, the best thing to do is to call in a professional for termite control. For step two, the exterminator will use a suitable method to get rid of the termites, most probably apply a liquid termiticide in the soil around the home to stop the termites from entering the home. Anything that a termite carries back that contains the chemical will kill the colony in the tunnels.
The third step is to consider the baiting method. Your exterminator will place plastic stations around the home with a piece of wood in each station. A slow-acting insecticide is added to the wood so that there is enough time for the bugs to bring pieces of it back to the colony to kill it.
Step 5: Prevention of Future Termite Infestations
After you have successfully exterminated termites, you’ll need to make further changes around your home to make sure they stay away. First, keep track of wood sources in and outside of the home. Move the wood piles off of the ground by installing plastic or metal frames and make sure there is enough ventilation in the storage room so that excess humidity doesn’t build up (termites are attracted to moisture).
Hopefully a termite infestation will not happen to you, but if it should occur you now know how to spot it, end it, and prevent any future problems.