Termites and How they Can Damage Your Home
Termites have built a pretty solid reputation as pests that you don’t want anywhere near your home. As small as an ant but way more destructive, termites are often hard to notice until it’s too late. While there might be some small signs of termites in your home, the signs are usually minimal and easy to overlook. But every year thousands of people fight to prevent these destructive pests from damaging their home’s structure and costing them thousands of dollars in damage.
Termites can destroy your home
The damage caused by termites doesn’t just look bad from the outside, it can actually destroy your home if it goes unnoticed for too long. Termites go after damp wood and can eat into the structure of a house, including support beams, floor and ceiling joists or wall studs. The worst part is that by the time you can see possible signs of a termite infestation, it’s probably already too late!
It's hard to spot termite damage
There are very few obvious signs of termite damage, with most of it only being noticeable after the significant damage has already been done. Some warning signs to watch for include:
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- Doors and windows that seem jammed
- Tiny holes in drywall, sometimes with mud over them
- Damaged paper and wood objects that are near floor cracks
- Hollow sounding wood
- Mud tubes coming out of wood
Termite damage can be dangerous
As house supports are weakened by termites eating through the wood, the structure of the house becomes unstable. This can mean the potential for dangerous situations. When floor and ceiling joists or support beams are compromised by termites, just being in your home can become risky. These structures hold up the house and keep it upright, and when they are weakened, the possibility of collapse increases.
How termites enter your home
Since they are as small as ants, termites can slip into your home virtually unnoticed through cracks in the floor or cracks in the foundation. Termites build tiny tubes of mud called ‘shelter tubes’ to travel through, which is a common way for them to move around your home. The goal of termites is to get to wood in dark and damp areas, to feed on it.
Termites cause long term damage
Once you’ve found you have termites and have called an exterminator to help you treat them, the problem isn’t necessarily solved. In order to restore the integrity of your home, and hold onto your resale value if you ever choose to sell, you’ll need to do extensive repairs. Any wood that has been touched by termites has to be completely replaced, which can often turn into a costly fix. This is why prevention against termites and diligent watching for them is so important.
Prevent termites from taking hold (is the best way)
Since termites are so difficult to find once they’ve made their way in, taking measures to prevent their entrance is the best way to deal with them.
- Make sure any cracks in your walls, floors and basement are sealed
- Ensure any exposed wood is not damp
- Eliminate any contact between wood and soil, particularly in your basement
A pest removal company can help
Termites are a hard pest to detect, and an even harder one to get rid of. A termite problem, once detected, is best treated with the help of an expert. A professional pest removal company can effectively seek out the infestation and apply a treatment to terminate them. While it might be possible to fend them off yourself, you should contact a professional to ensure you get rid of them the first time around!