Termites are a terrible nuisance and can be quite destructive. If you have ever dealt with these pests, you will know what a terror they can be. There are ways to rid your home of termites, however, if you are unlucky enough to experience them. Here is what you need to know about termites and the steps you should take if you find yourself sharing your home and belongings with them against your will.
Become Knowledgeable about These Pests
There are several different types of termites. They can be found in every state in the U.S. except for Alaska. They infest wood in structures and eat it. There are three main types of termites in the U.S. The types include subterranean termites which are the most plentiful and widely found, followed by the other two types which are dry wood termites and damp wood termites. Termites love warm climates; therefore they are found most often in states with high temperatures.
Know What Puts You at Risk
Different types of termites tend to infest different types of wood. The termites that are most destructive to homes are of the subterranean and dry wood variety. Because damp wood termites choose moist, decaying wood, they are generally not a threat to homeowners in the same way that the others are.
Know What Damage They Cause
Termites are extremely destructive, leaving a path of ruin wherever they go. They cause structural property damage and can destroy the strength and safety of any building they have infested. They are able to get through plaster, metal siding and many other materials. Once through, they will feast on any wood found within the home, whether it is furniture or actual parts of the building structure.
How to Recognize the Problem
It is difficult to recognize a termite infestation until it is a full-blown problem. Drywood termite infestations generally happen inside walls as well as furniture. Often tunnels that look like mazes become visible close to the surface of the wood. A Drywood infestation will often be accompanied by a nest that may be found inside the wood.
Because subterranean termite infestations often appear as similar damage to water damage, many people assume it is the latter and do not take action until major destruction has been done. If you see any wood that has buckled, floors or ceilings that appear swollen, or a smell that is similar to the smell of mold or mildew, then it may be termites that you are actually dealing with.
How to Get Rid of Them
As soon as you see a sign of termites, deal with the problem immediately. The best thing is to contact a professional exterminator to take care of it in a quick and efficient way.
If you wish to take action on your own, try some of these simple steps. The first is to put a few large pieces of wet cardboard and lay them in an area close to the infestation. The termites will be drawn to the cellulose and will infest the cardboard, which you can then burn elsewhere. This can remove large amounts of your particular termite population.
If you are able to move the infested wood, expose it to sunlight. Termites love darkness and will be killed by the sunlight in approximately two or three days. You can also freeze items to kill termites that have infested it.
Termites are a big problem. If you are dealing with them, use these solutions to get rid of them. Eliminate termites so you can enjoy a pest-free home once again.