Termite Damage: Warning Signs and Treatment
Termites are the biggest pest threat to homeowners as they can literally eat away your house. Identifying warning signs early can prevent further termite damage to your home.
These pests feed on cellulose-based materials like wood, furniture, books, boxes, and drywall coverings. A termite infestation can come from the air or water.
Dry-wood flying termites will be on the look-out for new colony spaces. Meanwhile, subterranean termites enter your home through leaking pipes, and water foundations in search for food.
Early Signs of Termite Damage
One of the first signs of a termite infestation is the appearance of flying termites. These are termites that fly at night, and are attracted to luminous light sources. They can be found in the daytime as well, but more often they are most active at night. After mating, they discard their wings and start to build a new nest.
Discarded wings is a strong indicator that your home might be infested with termites.
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Holes in Wooden Objects
Cellulose is the basic food of termites. So, objects made of wood or paper might show signs of termite damage in the earliest stages. Some of these include holes in books and light wooden objects like cardboard. Larger infestations can infect pieces of solid wooden furniture denigrating its quality completely.
The presence of earthen molds on walls or joints is another certainty of a termite infestation. If left unchecked they could multiply, and grow on foundations of walls and other places in no time. Mud tunnels of earthen packing are found between the ground and sub-ground. These aid termite workers to transfer food and moisture. You can find them close to the foundation of homes. These passages can also be seen on interior walls and pipes.
Termites emit a sound which is mostly for communicating signals to the rest of the group. This sound is the result of incessant tapping of the pincers to the head. If you listen closely and hears these kinds of sounds, then it very likely means the presence of termites.
Look for these pellet like substances, usually in or around the sites of termite infection. An infestation can’t be far away.
Hard to Open Doors and Windows
As termites eat away the timber of windows and doors they produce a moisture which makes the wood warp becoming stiff to open and close.
Signs of bubbling paint are implications of an excess build-up of moisture. Besides being water damage, termites tend to build up moisture for their easy passage and survival.
Signs of Wood Damage
Termites eat wood from the inside making the wood hollow. It feels papery and looks blistered. Tap onto a wood structure, and if it gives off a hollow sound then it’s a dead give away that termites have been there already.
Ways to Get Rid of a Termite Infestation
Once you have identified termite damage, necessary steps may be taken to try controlling the damage. Here are the most effective ways to get rid of termite infestation:
Use a Liquid Termite Barrier
This method requires you to build a pesticide barrier surrounding your house. Termites will be poisoned upon coming into contact with it. It not only kills them but also is a preventive measure for the future. You should place this liquid around specific infested areas like wood stumps and wooden structures.
If just one infected termite goes back to the colony, it can infect the others with the poison liquid.
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Use Chemical Treatment for Interiors
While liquid termite barriers and poison are effective in exteriors of your home, they cannot be used in the interiors of your home because of their toxic nature. Direct chemical sprays can be used here and there in wall cracks, crevices, and attic spaces. It allows you to easily spray the foam into the narrowest corners in your wall. Once there it expands to kill termites that might be hiding in hard to find places. Also, it leaves behind a residue that lasts for a month and prevents further infestations.
Place a Cardboard Bait
You can trick termites with a piece of cellulose. In this case, piece cardboard and preferably one which is dampened previously. Termites are attracted to these materials and would infect it in no time. The cardboard can be removed, and burned to eliminate all signs of the pests.
Use Boric Acid Directly on Termites
Borax can destabilize the nervous system of termites, and cause subsequent dehydration ultimately resulting in death. Infested pieces of wood may be sprayed with borax or it can be directly added to them regularly until all the termites are dead.
The borax solution can be made easily by dissolving borax powder with hot water. This can be used both in interiors and exteriors.
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The unprecedented nature of property damage caused by termites is enormous and often goes undetected until major damage has already occurred. It is extremely important that you identify the early signs of a termite infestation, and take steps to minimize property damage.
There are numerous ways to treat termites, but it is essential for you to make a choice based on the location of the infestation, how serious it is, and how fast you want to get rid of them.***
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