It is important to keep up with termite prevention whether you live in a new home or it is one that you have been dwelling in your whole life. A colony of these pests can do a significant amount of damage to your home, nibbling away at the beams that are holding your house together.
Termites are a huge factor of home destruction and cause over $1 billion per year in damages. A single termite colony can contain 350,000 up to 1 million workers. The queen termite has the ability to lay several thousand eggs a day and she can live up to 50 years. This is why termite prevention is so crucial.
Conditions Termites Love
Before looking at your options for termite prevention, you may want to understand what attracts them to your home in the first place.
Termites are subterranean which simply put, means the ground is where they choose to build their colonies. They create tunnel systems to a depth of three feet below the surface. They will feel on any material in your home that has cellulose in it and wood contains a lot of it. Even if only a beam is touching the ground, they will find it. Lastly, they love water; this includes leaky faucets.
Termite Prevention In Your Home
Termite prevention can quite honestly, save your home. Fixing any water leaks in your house is important. Eliminating any water sources takes away a requirement they need to survive. If you have any brush around your house you need to clear it away. Also, if you have firewood or building wood laying around, it should not be stored by your home. If you have no choice, then keep it up on metal slabs of some sort.
Mulch is a touchy subject in termite prevention. Of course you want to mulch your flower beds around your home but mulch provides a water and food source to hungry termites. Rubber mulch is a good recommended alternative to use around your home and it looks like wood. It may be a bit more expensive but so is termite damage.
If you have any old stumps or dead trees in your yard they need to be removed. Termites are attracted to them as they decay. When they are done feeding on the tree, they will start feeding on your home.
Termite prevention to the exterior of your home includes keeping gutters clean of debris and sealing and cracks in the foundation. It is important to make sure that everywhere in your home is well ventilated, including your attic. This prevents moisture build up.
Pest Control Options
If you have followed termite prevention procedures and these pests sill start munching on your home you can try and use either liquid termiticide or subterranean bait.
The liquid termiticide will be applied around your home and under the foundation. There are some options on the market that act as a repellant that are helpful in new construction job sites as well as those that poison nerves and kill the exposed termites.
The subterranean bait works to eliminate the termite colony from its source. Bait is set around your home and these units get checked once a week. If there are termites found then a toxic bait is put in the place of the original bait. This poison acts slow and allows them to carry it back to the colony and spread it to other termites before dying.
A key element in termite prevention is having your home inspected once a year. Early detection can save a lot of damage from occurring to your home at a later time.