Termite prevention is a great way to save money, time and a lot of hassle. If you have a termite infestation, you will need to employ a professional, but prevention you can do yourself. So, rather than pay that high cost for a service you would prefer not to have, take your own steps to prevent termite infestations.
Termites are an expensive problem. Have you ever heard the quotes from termite professionals using non toxic sprays? It’s a costly thing, indeed, and a troublesome pest to eliminate. A queen termite can lay over 1,000 eggs each day, and live between 30 to 50 years! Rather than dealing with that problem, it’s best to avoid it all together.
What Attracts Termites
Before learning the keys to self termite prevention, it helps to understand why insects are drawn to particular spots. Most termite live underground and the love soil. The build elaborate tunnel systems, with mud tubes. These mud tubes might go right underneath your home, and then up into your home in search of food. Well, rather, wood.
Termites eat any material that contains cellulose, and wood is one such material. They also consume dung, vegetation and other stuff, but wood is their absolute favorite. They love it. Kind of like you love hamburgers or lasagna or whatever your favorite food is. So, termites devour wood.
They also need water. Water might come from a leaky faucet, or rain, or whatever, but termites can’t survive without water. Termites need food and water to survive. A termite heaven includes soil, delicious wood to eat, and a plentiful water source. So, prevention means eliminating their needs as much as possible.
Termite prevention is pretty simply, you just need to obey some key rules. First, fix all water leaks inside and outside of your home. Again, termites need water, and if there are no leaks or other water sources, they can’t survive. So, one of the first steps of termite prevention is always to remove potential water sources. Eliminate leaks as well as puddles.
The next step in prevention is to clear away brush or other vegetation that grows close to your home. Dense foliage can create moisture, and moisture, again, is a water source. The prevention of water sources is key, and one of the easiest ways to prohibit colony survival. Termite prevention involves making sure the area around your home is dry.
You should also store excess building materials away from your home. Termites love scrap wood, so you should make sure it’s not near your home. You might also build a metal platform so the wood isn’t on the ground, and the termites can’t access it to easily. If you are building wooden structures that will touch the ground, you might consider treated wood.
While treated lumber doesn’t guarantee defense against termites, it can help. If you’re building a deck, for example, you’ll want to take termite prevention into consideration, and pick your wood carefully. While treated lumber may cost more, it costs less than dealing with an infestation! You might also consider concrete supports at the base. Termites can’t eat concrete.
You should also avoid spreading mulch around your home. Mulch is a food source and a water source for termites, and therefore you don’t want to have it near your home. There are rubber mulches, nowadays, which are better for termite prevention. Otherwise, termites can chew up all the mulch and chew right into your walls. Yuck!
Termite prevention also means removing any dead trees, stumps, or other potential food sources for termites. You should also seal the cracks at the base of your home, if possible. Otherwise, wandering termites can just crawl right into your home! You’ll also want to keep your gutters clean and without debris, so there’s no potential for water pooling or dampness.
Remember, prevention is all about removing food and water for termites. Once you start thinking that way, you can more easily identify potential problem areas. Walk around the outside of your home and consider where termites could make their way into the wood. Look for water, damp areas, and other things termites like. Try thinking like termites think, and clear out the potential access points around the perimeter of your home.
If termite prevention fails for you and you have an infestation, you’ll probably need to hire a professional to help you get ride of the termites. A professional knows how to really get to the termites, and make sure they’re completely eliminated. A professional will use insecticide or baiting or a combination of the two. If you’re worried about having chemicals in your home, you should ask about non toxic sprays. You could consider do-it-yourself options, but the general rule is that termites are not a do-it-yourself project.