Termites are destructive pests that cannot be eradicated by common do-it-yourself measures. Statistics show that termites lead to more than $5 billion in property damage each year. If you are concerned about termite activities in and around your property, make sure to contact a licensed pest professional to conduct a thorough inspection of the premises. An attempt to get rid of the termites yourself might only make the problem worse than it already is.
It is hard to prevent a home infestation of termites, if you do not know what draws them to your property in the first place. Here are a few things that nay make your property attractive and conducive for a termite invasion.
1. Firewood & Woodpiles: Many home owners keep firewood stacked against their homes or on the stoop for easy access. However, doing so can draw termites towards the home and provide a point of entry. The National Pest Management Agency (NPMA) recommends keeping firewood and woodpiles at least 20 feet away from the hone, and if possible, store wood raised at least 5 inches off the ground.
2. Improper Drainage: Cleaning gutters is no one’s favorite chore, but it is a necessary step to take to prevent termites from gaining entry into your home. Termites are attracted to moisture, and clogged gutters can cause water to pool around your property and make insulation vulnerable to termite invasion. Diverting rainwater away from the foundation of the home with downspout extenders will also prevent water from pooling around the house and attracting termites. Moisture is very important to termite physiology. Termites will dry out and die if they are not in a humid environment. Termites live in environmentally controlled mounds. This means you have to ensure that you do not have any leaks or moisture within and around your home. Broken pipes should be mended to avoid water within and outside the house. Bathroom a can create a favorable humid environment. As for the exterior of the house, ensure there is no leaky water system or air conditioner. Limiting humidity in your home goes a long way to decrease the possibility of a home infestation.
3. Excess Wood and Tree: Many people are guilty of having stumps and dead trees in their yards. Any rotten wood material can serve as termite fuel and eventually aids in termites entering your house. Also, tree limbs and leaves that come in contact with the roof and home exterior can provide a pathway for termites to create a new colony. Tree limbs that block sunlight can stow the evaporation of precipitation encourage moisture build up which is conducive for termites.
4. Mulch: Mulch is frequently used near the home and against the foundation. Mulch, however, can serve as a source of food for termites, and also retains moisture which usually attracts these destructive and invasive pests. Minimize the usage of wood mulch and keep it at least 15 inches away from the foundation. Monitor existing mulch for any sign of termite activity, especially below the surface.
To reiterate the earlier point made, it is unwise to try to eradicate termites from your home by simple do-it-yourself methods that you might have glimpsed on the internet, no matter how simple and effective they seem. Seek the opinion and expertise of a trained professional.