Termite damage is one of the biggest threats to your home; keeping them out is imperative. Luckily there are easy and inexpensive steps you can take to keep the little buggers from eating your house from underneath you. To know how to protect your home, we need to understand what they eat, what environment they prefer, and how they move in.
How They Get In
Two main kinds of termites invade houses. Some are subterranean, and the other kind is airborne. The termites that come through the ground travel on the foundation of the building and enter the wood section. Fortunately, when this happens, you can see a brown tube running up the foundation that they create to protect themselves from predators and the open air. Seeing these mud tunnels is a good indication of a possible early infestation. Find a reliable termite control service to take a look before they can create a colony.
Airborne termites are a bit more tricky to detect during the initial stages of infestation. They will enter the attic area, usually through the vents under the soffit. The problem with detecting airborne termites is that the traces they leave indicate that they are in the house and are there to stay. Male termites fly in, and when they find a suitable mate, shed their wings, so finding them means you’ve got an infestation. You’ll need to call an exterminator.
How to Keep Them Out
Repairing cracking foundation, so termites don’t have an easy way to get into the wood of your house is a good and easy way to keep them out. Sealing the cracks in the soffits can limit access. Using screens over the vents can also block entry.
What They Eat
Termites love the porous parts of wood; this includes paper and especially mulch and firewood. Termites will happily eat whatever they have within reach, and if your mulch is too close to the wood section of your house, then you will eventually get migration into your home. You’ll want to keep mulch over a foot away from the wood section of your house.
Firewood is another place termites like to live, especially if the wood was cut down while dead and standing. Keep firewood at least 20 feet away from your home.
Ground termites love damp soil, so it is important to make sure that your gutter system is working optimally to keep water from accumulating by the foundation. Subterranean termites will eventually make their way to the wood in your house if they are living so close to your home. There are many other reasons to keep the water draining away from the house, which makes it even more beneficial to make it happen.
Installing a good guard in the rain gutters is a great place to start. Make sure the gutters are working optimally during a rainstorm and that no water is flowing over the top. This water will go directly next to your foundation and create a breeding ground for termites.