Hundreds of natural disasters destroy thousands of homes in the United States every year; however there is one tiny, yet largely dangerous offender that causes more damage to homes and other wood structures across the country, than hurricanes, tornadoes and fires combined. What is it? The home wreckers are very small, soft-bodied insects, known as termites. According to the National Pest Management Association, termites cost Americans more than $5 billion in damage to their homes every year. Of all the countless pests and critters that cause annoyance to homeowners, none are more destructive to a house than termites. Close relatives of cockroaches, termites live in large colonies and can single-handedly destroy a house’s foundation in a few short years. Knowing how to find termites in your home can go a long way to preventing serious structural damage.
Unfortunately, termite detection is very difficult until they have had significant impact on a house or building. They are sometimes called “silent destroyers” because of their innate ability to eat through wood shingles, flooring and even wallpaper without being heard or seen. As a homeowner, it is a good idea to do an annual termite inspection so these destructive creatures aren’t unknowingly invited into your home.
To deter termite infestation, measures should be taken to discourage termites from finding moisture, food (which is wood), and shelter. Here are some tips on how to find termites or evidence that termites may be present on your property:
- Keep all wooden parts of the house foundation at least 6 inches above the soil.
- Maintain levels of mulch several inches below siding and away from any wood parts of the house.
- Slope the soil away from the foundation.
- Drain rainwater away from the foundation.
- Keep plants trimmed so they do not touch the house.
- Do not attach flower planters against the house.
- Perform regular inspections of cracks or joints in concrete slabs for termite detection.
- Install metal flashing when building wooden or treated lumber porches or decks attached to a house.
- Keep basement and crawl spaces dry.
For more information about how to find termites in your home or to schedule a FREE inspection from the specialists at ACTION Termite Control, call (877) 556-4131 today.