Termites and protecting the home
Termites can cost the homeowner tens of thousands of dollars if left unchecked, with the average cost of treatment and repair costing the homeowner approximately $10,000. As a homeowner you can not be complacent. There are a number of simple ways to reduce the risk of termites before they become a problem. Some of these solutions include;
Fix any moisture problems like poor drainage, leaking pipes or inadequate ventilation.
Check your home's surrounds – shrubs or garden beds should be well clear of the building edge and not cover weep holes (the small gaps left between bricks to let water drain out).
Keep areas under your house clear – don't store items that can reduce the ventilation space under the house.
Remove any wood that's in contact with the ground and close to the house.
If you're building a new home, certain construction methods and materials can reduce the termite risk considerably.
- professional pest inspector and follow their advice to reduce your termite risk.
What are some of the signs you might have termite infestation?
There are a number of indications that you might have termite problems
Mud tubes they build for protection, hollow sounding timber (meaning they've eaten away at the timber), sagging floors or doors, easily damaged skirting boards, door jams or architraves, cracked paint or plaster (termites eat away at timber they affect the structural integrity causing cracks in paint or plaster) or power failures (termites are attracted to the warmth of electrical fittings behind walls)
- Mud tubes.Termites build these tubes for protection and are seen in brick foundations or in architraves.
- Hollow sounding timber. Easily damaged skirting boards, door jams or architraves (because termites take away the structural integrity of timber, a small knock to these areas can cause damage). In this instance the termites have eaten through the balustrade, it was only when the owner knocked it that the damage was discovered.
- Structural damage caused by termites which was only discovered when a pest inspection was done.
Temperature and rainfall also have the largest impact on termite activity, followed by the house's age. If you come across a termite nest on your property, don't disturb it until you've determined an appropriate termite management plan with a qualified pest manager.
Your pest inspector is your friend, listen to their advice and maintain a regular pest inspection schedule.