Pest Away Tips

10 Ways to Prevent Termite Infestations in Your Home

Termites and Infestation Prevention: Protect Your Home

Your home is undoubtedly your dream abode that you have spent your hard-earned money and saved for years. Maintaining and protecting it from any harm is of utmost importance.

However, with termites, this task can become much more difficult. Termites can silently sneak into your home, cause significant damage, and put your investment at risk.

In this article, we will discuss different types of termites, how they can enter your home, and most importantly, how you can prevent a termite infestation.

Types of Termites

Generally, there are two types of termites that can wreck your home; subterranean termites and wood nesting termites.

Subterranean termites are the most prevalent type found in the U.S. These tiny yet powerful creatures create mud tubes that help them to forage their food of choice, cellulose material, and other organic matter.

Subterranean termites attack the foundation of your home, weakening it over time if ignored or left untreated.

Wood nesting termites, as the name suggests, make their homes in dry wood instead of moist soil.

They are smaller in size and can go unnoticed for a long time, silently feasting on wooden antique furniture or other wooden structures of your home.

How Termites Can Enter Your Home

Knowing how termites can enter your home is the first step in preventing an infestation. Here are some of the most common ways termites enter your property:

Cellulose Material

Termites feed on cellulose materials such as wood, paper, and drywall. If you have old wooden furniture or untreated wooden structures in your home, you need to be cautious and make sure to keep a check on them regularly.

Mud Tunnels

Subterranean termites create mud tunnels to move around. These tunnels are a major sign of an infestation and lead termites to sources of food.

Gaps in Windows and Doors

Termites can enter your home through gaps in windows and doors. These gaps could be as small as one-sixteenth of an inch, so make sure that your doors and windows are well-sealed to avoid any intruders.

Firewood

Keeping firewood near your house can attract termites, creating a pathway and sanctuary for potential infestations. To prevent this, store firewood at least 20 feet away from your home.

Mulch

Mulch provides favorable conditions for termites to spread. Avoid keeping a large pile of mulch or other wood debris against your home’s foundation.

Signs of Termites

It’s essential to recognize the signs of termites so that you can take timely action and prevent extensive damage. Here are a few ways to identify a termite infestation:

Buckled Wood

Termite damage can cause wood to buckle, which means that its surface is uneven. Check any wooden structure in contact with the ground like flooring, window frames, and doors.

Pinholes in Wallpaper

If you notice small pinholes in your wallpaper, it could be a sign of termites. Termites bore through gypsum wallboards to reach the wooden structures.

Frass/Termite Droppings

Termite droppings or frass looks like wood-colored pellets. You might notice them at different locations around your home, indicating a termite colony nearby.

Mud Tubes/Tunnels

Subterranean termites use mud tunnels to move around, protect themselves from the environment, and access their food source.

Termite Wings

During swarming season, termites leave their colony to start a new one. They shed their wings, leaving them scattered around your home.

Jammed Windows/Doors

Termites weaken the structure of your home, which could cause doors or windows to become stuck or not operate correctly.

How Termites Can Spread from House to House

Termites can spread through different pathways, making it crucial to take protective measures. They move from one house to another through mud tunnels, which they use to travel to your home in search of food.

During swarming season, flying termites look for new places to start a colony.

Firewood stored near your house, old wood, and cracks in your walls, are also ways for termites to travel.

Termite Elimination Process

If you suspect a termite infestation or even want to prevent them, you need to know how to get rid of them. Here are some of the elimination processes:

Tenting and Fumigation

This process involves covering your entire home with a large tent and fumigating it with gas. Fumigation effectively kills the entire colony residing in your home.

Soil Treatment

Termite infestations in the foundation of your home are best treated with soil treatment. Termiticide, a chemical product, is injected into the soil around your home.

Injection of Termiticide

Termiticide is injected into the wooden structures of your home, killing the termites within. It creates a barrier around the wood, preventing any future infestations.

How Long to Stay Out of Home During Fumigation

If your home is being fumigated, you will have to stay out of it for a minimum of 24 hours, but it can extend to 48-72 hours, depending on the severity of the infestation. And, in some cases, it can be much longer, requiring you to make alternative arrangements for housing until it’s safe to return.

Cleaning After Fumigation Necessary or Not

It’s crucial to remove all food, plants, and pets before fumigation, but afterwards, cleaning is necessary. The technicians will leave the house as dust-free as possible, but you must clean surfaces that come in contact with food even after the tent has been removed.

Identifying if Home Has Been Fumigated

To identify if your home has been fumigated, take a close look at the door hanger that the technicians leave, which will include information about the tent, gas used, and instructions to return to your home. The best way to know if the termite elimination process was successful is to have annual inspections with a professional pest control company.

Wrapping Up

Termite infestations are common and can cause significant damage to your home. Recognizing the signs of termite activity can help prevent significant damage to your property.

Taking proactive measures to prevent termites, like using termite-resistant materials when building or renovating your home, can save you thousands of dollars and provide peace of mind. Regular professional inspections can also help detect termite activity early, saving you time and money in the long run.

In conclusion, protecting your home from a termite infestation requires taking several preventive measures, recognizing the signs of an infestation, and seeking professional help if necessary. Identifying the types of termites, how termites can enter your home, and signs of an infestation can save you a lot of money in the long run.

Taking proactive measures, like soil treatment and using termite-resistant materials when building or renovating your home, can also prevent termites from entering your house. Regular professional inspections can identify termite activity early, helping you to save money, and giving you peace of mind.

With these simple preventive measures, you can protect your home from termites and keep it in excellent condition for years to come.

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