Termite Infestation – Detection, Solution and Prevention Tips

difference between ants and termitesOne of the worst pests that can destroy your property are termites, which are actually very different from ants. They look similar but have completely different behavior and they (termites) pose a higher threat to your home. Unfortunately, a typical termite colony is made up of over 300,000 to about a million of swarmers, soldiers and workers that can cause serious damages to your home. Moreover, one termite queen lays thousands of eggs in a day, and these can survive for up to 50 years! With that in mind, it is easy for a queen to repopulate the colony after you have exerted a serious effort in eliminating these pests. So, it is best to prevent them from infesting your home to avoid massive headaches and property damages over time.

Common Breeding Grounds of Termites

A large percentage of termites are mainly subterranean, which means they dwell in the ground. These insects create tunnel systems in the soil, which may extend to a maximum depth of three feet. Here, they make mud tubes that will connect their colonies located underground to food sources above such as wood materials in your home.

There are also some termites who live in water sources such as a leaky faucet or any damp areas produced by rain. They look for a place where there is moisture, so they will be able to survive and populate.

Lastly, termites prefer to invade wood or any types of material that have cellulose. Termites feed on this component found in wood, and it is typical for an entire colony to it and invade other nearby areas with any wooden material. Although termites who dwell on the ground live on humus and dung, among other materials, their main source of food is wood.

Ways to Resolve A Termite Infestation

Having termites in the house can be quite stressful. So, if you find yourself deeply concerned about termites infesting your property, then the following techniques on how to eliminate these pesky insects may be helpful.

1. Prepare a bait for subterranean termites.

Unlike your usual tool for deterring termite invasion, a bait works by killing the entire colony at its primary source. You can set these baits deep in the ground, which may be at least every 10 feet or more around your home. With this method, untreated segments of wood are attatched to bait stations, which cna help identify the presence of termites within your property.

Then, each unit is checked and evaluated on a weekly basis. Once live termites are detected, these wood segments are replaced with another bait filled with toxic substances that these pests ingest and take to their colony. Eventually, termites slowly die once the toxin take effect, and the rest of the colony may be eliminated completely. There are also bait traps that can be used indoors, particularly when damages due to termites are observed.

spraying termiticide2. Use liquid termiticides.

Another effective solution to termites invading your home is the use of liquid termiticides.

This is a type of pesticide in liquid form, which is applied underneath and around your home’s foundation. It may also be applied to the soil before a home is constructed.

However, for existing structures, proper coverage of the pesticide is ensured by digging out and drilling the foundation before applying the solution.

You can find different types of liquid termiticides in the market. There are those that repel and block termite invasions while others immediately kill these pests once they are exposed to the chemicals.

3. Make use of home remedies or natural solutions to eliminate termites.

For homeowners who are looking for a more eco-friendly way to kill termites, the use of home remedies may be a viable option. Clove bud oil, for instance, is a type of essential oil that works efficiently in eradicating these pesky insects. Simply get a mist sprayer or empty bottle of perfume, pour the oil into the container and spray generously on areas where termites dwell. You may also use vetiver oil to prevent these pests from coming back.

Another natural remedy to kill termites is aloe. To prepare an effective termite-busting solution, crush the plant and place it in a sprayer. Then, pour some water that is enough to submerge the plant. After 2 to 3 hours, strain the liquid before adding about 5 parts of water for every 1 part of aloe into the container. Spray the contents directly on the termite-infested area.

I’ve also taken the liberty of uploading this video on the prevention of termite infestations using certain DIY techniques if you have some time and you’re willing to get down and dirty to do it on your own.

How to Prevent Termites from Infesting Your Property

Considering how difficult it is to eliminate termites once they have invaded your home, it is best to prevent them from coming in and spare yourself from serious problems caused by these insects. The following are some tips that you might want to try to prevent these insects from getting inside your property.

1. Check for leaky areas inside and outside your home and have them fixed immediately. Be sure to eliminate leaky water source to prevent them from surviving, populating and destroying your home later on.

2. Inspect your home for any heavy or thick vegetation as this can create moist areas that support the survival of a termite colony.

3. If you have plenty of firewood or spare construction materials, be sure to store these far from house as possible. Keep in mind that termites feed on wood, so any scrap of this material can be quite inviting to these pests. In case you have a limited space at home, you may consider creating a thick barrier beneath the wood products in your storage area. This discourages termites from creating a direct path to the wood and into your house.

4. As much as possible, try not to use mulch within your home because this material serves as a food and water source for termites.

5. Get rid of dead trees or stumps in your yard. Once these decay, they serve as food for a colony of hungry termites. In the same way, make it a point to use treated lumber when you plan to use wooden structures that are set directly on the ground. While there is no guarantee that the chemicals used in the lumber will prevent termites from invading the material, they can serve as a deterrent for patios or even decks made from treated lumber.

Ensure your home’s quality, appearance and integrity for years by safeguarding it from termite infestation. With these tips and strategies, you can ward off these pests while enhancing the durability of your property.