Preparations for termite season are underway. We are stocking up on Altriset and Termidor (termite control products) in anticipation of a busy season full of termite treatments. If it is anything like last year we should be swamped. We have had a mild winter and a moist year so I am betting that termite activity will be in full force for 2013. We all need to know what to look for and how to react when we stumble upon what looks like termite damage. Here is some interesting information concerning termite extermination and how to get rid of termites.
Before we get into termite control or termite extermination there are a couple things you should know about how termites live. Here in central Texas we are generally dealing with subterranean termites. The best method of subterranean termite control is first to avoid standing water near or around your home’s foundation. It is vitally important that you divert water away from structures on your property. Always make sure crawl spaces are properly ventilated. Also never bury wood scraps or waste lumber in your yard. Buried scrap wood will almost certainly attract a termite colony. Most importantly, make sure there is NO wood to ground contact. You want to see at least an inch of space between the ground and any wood portion of your structures. Direct ground contact is like just too easy for the little critters.
Our subterranean termites live underground. They have colonies that can contain up to 2 million members. That is a whole lot of termites to feed. They need to get their food from above ground and will build “mud tubes” to travel from the colony to above ground food sources. These tubes are build as protective pathways for the critters to travel through hopefully undetected by you or your local pest control Austin company. All these termites feed on cellulose. Cellulose is in many things. It is found in wood, paper, sheet rock, just to name a few.
Termites will travel up from their colony through the mud tubes into your home looking for the cellulose food sources. Generally on a cement foundation the termites will find weak points in the foundation to gain access to their food. Termites will be generally be moving through foundation cracks, plumbing penetrations, or even through a mud tube up the side of an exposed foundation slab. Because many of their pathways are behind walls and hidden by construction, you might not even know you have an infestation until the damage is bad enough to be visible. Also keep in mind that subterranean termites swarm in the spring. Groups of reproductive termites pour out of established colonies to start new colonies. This swarm will generally be extremely noticeable to a homeowner. There will literally be hundreds and hundreds of winged termites pouring out of a hole. Hopefully this hole isn’t inside your home, but I have seen that many, many times. When this happens people don’t care about how to get rid of termites, they just want a termite treatment now.
Keep in mind, even if you don’t see any damage a professional inspection might not be a bad idea. Any Austin pest control company should offer a free inspection to let you know if you have something to worry about. They can also fill you in on any options concerning how to get rid of termites. You can then make an educated decision about what type of termite treatment you are comfortable with and what type of termite extermination is right for your budget, home, and peace of mind.
If you have any questions about how to get rid of termites and what types of termite treatments are available, please contact us, the Bug Master is happy to answer any of your questions.