Prevent Expensive Termite Problems: BEFORE the Cost

By: Tim Mcintosh

Dealing with a termite infestation in your home is a problem that no one wants to have. Not only can termites do serious damage to your home, but they can also be an incredibly expensive setback as well. There are a number of things you can do in and around your home to prevent termite problems before the issue requires the help of a professional. You may not be aware that you are potentially making the problem worse by everyday things that you do around your home. You might be inviting termites in without even realizing it!

Termites need moisture, food (in the form of wood), and shelter to survive. Chances are you have plenty of each of those things all around and throughout your home. Luckily, there are several simple precautions you can take to diminish your chances of a termite infestation.  Take a look at our tips below to help save you time and money before a termite invasion takes over your home.

First of all, you’ll need to understand a little about how termites find their way into your home and what type of damage they can do. Termites commonly find shelter in your outdoor landscaping, as mulch provides everything that they need: moisture, wood, and shelter from the elements. Another common spot of attack is in the wood of your home closest to the soil – from that entry point, they move on to the upper levels of the house. Termites will move through materials such as insulation and plaster as they continue their search for food. As you can see, these critters can do a lot of damage in a short amount of time.

Figuring out a way to prevent an infestation is simpler than you might think. Obviously, you won’t be able to rid your home of wood or water, but there are things you can do to make your home a less desirable place to be for these pests.

Much of the preventative work you will need to do actually take place outdoors. You should be sure to keep all mulch at least a few inches away from the foundation of your home, since as we’ve already established this can be a hotbed for termite activity. It’s also a good idea to use another form of mulch, such as rubber, rather than wood. Although all mulch provides an attractive environment for termites, we know they love nothing more than a healthy offering of wood to snack on.

Other things to look out for in your yard are any dead trees, stumps, or roots. These sources are a favorite of termites when they are out in the natural elements. Keeping your yard free of these things will certainly make it a less attractive place to be for those pesky little guys. Something else you may not have considered is your firewood stack. While firewood is definitely something you’ll want to keep around, be sure to move it away from the foundation of your home.

The above suggestions take care of the food issue, so now it’s time to tackle the moisture. After all, there are many sources of water throughout your home. Much of the moisture prevention takes place outside your home, as well. 

Keeping your foundation dry is key in this prevention process. Divert sprinkler water away from the foundation, as well as any rainwater you may encounter. The best way to do this is to keep your gutters maintained and in good condition. You will also need to make sure you keep the mulch in your landscaping to a density of fewer than two inches, as the deeper it is the more likely it is to trap in moisture.

All plants, shrubs, and ground covers should be kept a few feet away from your home. Also, be sure to refrain from keeping flower planters in your home. Keep all shrubbery, trees, and plants trimmed back to prevent them from touching your home.

Inside and outside your home, be sure to immediately take care of any leaking water. Regularly check all faucets, air conditioning units, and pipes for leaks.

One more thing you should do to prevent a termite invasion is to have your home regularly checked for termites. Even a once-yearly inspection can lead to early detection, which can save you from excessive damage and expense. Having an expert come out to your home can be beneficial even in instances when termites are not present. Discuss the preventative measures that you’re taking and find out if you might be missing anything important.

Now that we know what termites need to survive and how to eliminate those things from your home, let’s discuss what to do if it’s too little too late and you already have an infestation. The first very step? Call a pest control specialist. You simply won’t be able to tackle the problems that termites can bring into your home. Enlisting the help of a professional is absolutely essential. There are a number of tactics they may try to deal with the issue, depending on severity.

Liquid termiticide may be applied to the foundation of your house and under the foundation. Termiticides can either act as a barrier or repellant to termite invasion, or they can act as a poison that kills off termites when they are exposed to the liquid. Often used in new construction, the termiticide is applied to the soil before the home is built. However, it can still be used in existing homes as well. Your pest control specialist will partially dig out the foundation to ensure your home is receiving appropriate coverage.

Another option is subterranean bait. This approach attempts to eradicate a termite colony at the very source. The pest control technician will install bait in the ground all around the perimeter of your home. These stations are filled with toxic bait that will be carried back to the colony by those who find it, eventually killing all who ingest it. These bait stations can also be set up throughout the interior of your house if termite damage is present inside your home.

The hope is that by following the preventative measures listed above, you won’t have to deal with the devastation that termites can bring. However, if an infestation has already occurred, the best approach is typically a combination of both termiticides and bait units. Termites are incredibly difficult to eliminate, so enlisting the help of a professional is almost always necessary. The value you find in your home goes well beyond anything monetary. You want it to be a safe and secure place for your family to grow and create a lifetime of memories. Termite damage can take that away from you much quicker than you might think.

If you think you might have a termite problem on your hands, or simply haven’t had an inspection in a while, contact Eco Max Pest Control for your free estimate. With more than 15 years in business, our pest control experts can help you eliminate any termite problems you might be facing. Our staff of experienced, trained technicians are ready to provide you with prompt, reliable, and professional service today.



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