The word termite can send a shiver through anyone’s body. One termite by itself is not a huge threat. But, termites usually live in colonies as large as 60,000 and you can even have multiple colonies in your house.
Suddenly the fact that they can consume a foot of wood every 6 months becomes a major issue. In fact it is estimated that termites cause approximately $5 billion worth of damage to properties every year.
But, before you make that call how do you know if you actually have an issue?
Spotting A Termite Problem
Termites may eat wood but they are also capable of burrowing through your dirt to get to the wood. In fact this is one of the most obvious signs that you have a termite issue.
Take a look round the outside of your home near the walls. If there is any mud within a few feet of your home you’ll be able to see small round holes. These are the tubes that the termites use to travel in and out of your home.
You can test if they are active by covering them over. The tube will either be reopened the next day or a new one will be close to it.
Some termites have wings temporarily and these are discarded once they find a habitat. You’ll see lots of tiny wings that look like they come from flies.
However, if there are a lot of wings then it’s likely that you have a termite infestation.
Sticky Doors & Windows
If you have wooden doors and windows and they start to stick then take a look at the edges of the door and windows. If the wood is starting to bulge then there is a good chance you have termites.
The termites eat wood and excrete a mud like substance. This packs into the edges of the doors to keep the tunnels they’ve created free. In turn the mud like substance creates a bulge which makes the door difficult to open and shut.
Controlling The Termites
Of course you may actually see the termite as well but then you need to know what you’re looking at!
It’s a good idea to try and control the environment before the termites become an issue. They say prevention is always better than cure.
Here are some tips to help you control a termite infestation:
You need to stop any ingress of water into your home and fix any leaking pipes. Without a moist environment the termites will not be able to survive; making your home unappealing.
Check Your Walls
Check walls regularly for signs of bubbling paint; this is a clue that termites are at work behind the scenes.
Getting rid of the mud round the outside of your home and replacing it with concrete for at least 2 feet away from your home will make it harder for termites to get in and out.