The high humidity levels in North Carolina create the perfect conditions for termites to thrive, and so termite control is a critical part of your home maintenance plan that protects your North Carolina home from serious structural damage.
While you should always secure a termite inspection before you buy your property, it is up to you to keep your house pest-free once you have signed the final papers. Be sure to add these termite prevention strategies to your home maintenance plans so that you can preserve your most valuable investment.
Reduce Moisture Around Your House
Wood and moisture are never a good combination, but termites love wet wood because it makes it easier for them to gain access to your house. Start your termite prevention plan by checking around your house for sources of moisture that need to be removed such as plumbing leaks near wood surfaces.
Check your roof and attic spaces for leaks to ensure that these do not lead to rotting wood. Then, make sure that your air conditioning system drains condensate away from the foundation of your home. If you have sprinklers, make sure that the heads direct spray away from your home’s exterior walls.
Remove Infested Wood Sources
Although termites usually prefer dead trees, there are certain species that take up residence in live ones. Watch your trees for signs of termite action such as seeing small holes drilled into the bark. If you suspect termites, then arrange for a professional termite inspection to determine if these trees need to be removed.
Eliminate Access Points
Termites tend to bore through weakened wood to get into your home, but they can also crawl through small cracks just like any other pest. Seal any holes or cracks that you find around your walls, doors and windows. Then, make sure that any cracks where your pipes meet the ground or wall are also sealed.
Practice Proper Storage Methods
Firewood is a common way that termites are brought onto a property. Always check your firewood for signs of termite activity before bringing it home. Then, store the wood at least six-feet away from your house, and arrange for it to be kept up high, off the ground.
Look around your house for other types of cellulose that attract termites. For instance, cardboard boxes, photographs and newspapers all contain cellulose that termites can use for food. Try to reduce the number of these materials in your house, and store these items in plastic boxes away from wood surfaces.
Check for Signs of Termites Indoors
A termite colony is usually built deep within the walls of a house. However, you can still keep an eye out for signs of termite activity during your regular pest inspections.
Large infestations can generate noise such as scratching or knocking noises that come from the walls. You may also notice a hollow sound on what should be solid wood when you tap it. On the outside of your house, the paint on wooden siding may start to bubble as moisture gets into the holes that termites create.
Arrange for Regular Inspections
The current recommendation for termite control is to have your house inspected annually for signs of activity. Since identifying a termite infestation early gives you the best chances of avoiding major structural damage, this method is the best way to know that your house is secure.
Keep in mind that an inspection can be arranged at any time. For instance, you should probably have your house checked if you know that termite activity is identified nearby such as at a neighbor’s house.
At Pest & Termite Consultants, Inc., we perform termite inspections and treatments. Contact us today to protect your property.