About 600,000 homes experience termite-related damage every year. But what exactly do termites do to your home? Termites concentrate on dead wood; they don't attack living things. When they find dead wood, they strive to make it their own home. That includes hollowing out and colonizing large areas.
Damage to the Structure of Your Home
Of course, damage to the structure of your home is the biggest issue. Termites will start eating around doors and windows and can eventually compromise even major areas of your property, such as your roof, studs, and crossbeams. This damage to your home will start off slowly and can be managed and mitigated, but when it becomes more severe larger portions of your property may need to be replaced and repaired.
Causing Your Siding to Crumble
Not only will termites eat through your home's structure, but they can also chew through many types of siding. And that means the damage may not always be visible from the surface. You should regularly inspect your property and shouldn't assume that your siding is protecting it; newer siding can also be more termite resistant.
Eating Furniture Inside Your Home
Once termites get inside of your home, they're very apt to start chewing on any natural wood furniture you have. Finished furniture may be protected for some time, but eventually termites can consume a significant amount of any type of wood. You may not be able to see at a glance because they eat from the inside out.
Signs of a Termite Infestation
Because the termites are inside of your home's structure, you likely won't see the termites themselves. Instead, you'll see signs of the infestation.
You may see shed wings around your property or wood that looks like saw dust around the ground. You could also see outer damage around your home or mud tunnels, or swarmers outside your property. If you physically see termites inside your home, it's likely that you have a serious infestation.
How to Prevent Termites in Your Home
With termites being as damaging as they can be, how can you prevent them?
First, you can have periodic inspections of your property, and you can make sure that your home and outside your home is treated by a pest control service. Preventing termites is always better than treating them once they're already there.
Around your house, you can prevent termites from coming in by cleaning up any brush, preventing bushes from growing near your property, storing wood away from your home, and making sure your siding is in good repair. If your siding is old or damaged, you can get it replaced to create a better barrier between the outdoors and your property.
Fixing Termite Damage
Once termite damage has occurred, you should make sure a complete inspection is done to uncover all the damage. Because this damage can be structural, it can also be dangerous. A contractor can come in and tell you exactly how much the repairs will cost. Sometimes the damage is minimal enough that you can just replace the wood. Other times, you may need to fortify areas of your property, or remove large amounts of damaged material.
If you've noticed signs of termite damage, you'll need to call a professional pest service. Then, you'll have to repair and renovate. When you’re ready, Exterior Medics is here to help.