What to Expect with a Termite Inspection

Termite Inspections

Termites are sneaky little creatures. These pests will invite themselves into your home and make a feast with your walls and furniture. The tiny pests can do a great amount of damage to your house. If ignored for a long time, these silent destroyers will eat away the foundation of your house leaving you in a rather unsafe environment. On the bright side, science has allowed us to come up with ingenious ways to protect our abodes and get rid of these pesky little insects.

Before we can get rid of termites, we need to be sure of their existence. It is not easy to detect them on your own, and you need a professional’s eye, expertise, and experience. A lot of times people mistake termites for ants since both these insects look pretty much the same to the layman. It is not easy to detect them on your own, and you need a professional’s eye, expertise, and experience. People usually get an inspection done when they are about to buy a new home to avoid buying an infested house. Some people think that termite inspectors will break open their walls to look for the parasites. But that is not true. The inspectors usually begin by looking at the foundation of your house and then move in to inspect every corner of the property. They would look for telltale signs of termites that the examiners have learned through their training and experience.

These days with the advancements in technology we can see through the walls without really doing anything to them. If the situation requires it, your inspector may employ some gadgets that detect thermal energy. These allow them to spot termite activity inside the walls. There are certain things that you can do to make the process smooth. Remove objects from their way so that the examination can go on. The termite inspectors usually look around the garage, attic, sinks and underneath the walls, so make sure there is space for them to go and take a look. Our inspectors take a closer look at the crawl spaces and search for telltale signs like termite feces and dead termites or discarded wings. The examiners will also try to find signs of damage to the wood that may have been hollowed out. They will try to find mud tubes, which are quite common near termite nests and of course live termites.

Inspectors will pay special attention to potential access points. These are spaces through which termites travel around and include the expansion joints in your garage or cracks in the foundation. Since termites like moisture, they travel towards places with leaks and the inspectors will pay special attention to these areas. The inspectors will also check your yard and patio just to be sure.

The examiners may take pictures of a few areas for their report and send it to you soon after. If signs of an infestation are present, the inspectors will let you know about the measures that you can take to get rid of these pests. Otherwise, you will get to know about a set of preventative measures.

Termite Damage and How to Fix It

Hand of a carpenter pointing at a wood plank destroyed by termites.

Discovering termites in your home can be a very distressful experience, especially if you discover an infestation in full swing. These tiny critters can consume the insides of your house and make the structures hollow. It is vital to immediately look for how much damage they have done as soon as you discover their presence. Many people find out about the termites living in their house after they have already done a substantial amount of damage. That’s because people do not know how to differentiate between termites and ants. To a layperson’s eye, they do look similar unless you are a professional educated to identify the insects. The type of damage control you employ highly depends on the level of your termite infestation. Consider yourself lucky if you discover it in the earlier stages. Before these pests reach the core of your structures, you can choose to employ some home remedies. Termites usually move towards areas with moisture in them. Therefore, it only makes sense to harden that area. You can also identify them through the occasional termite trail. Use wood hardeners to treat wooden structures. There are various wood hardeners that you can choose based on the type of wood you have. Another option is using wood sealers. This product is good at cutting off the oxygen supply and killing termites within a few days.

If the termites have made a home in your wooden structure, you will be able to see clear signs of their presence. You may be able to see the termite trail in irregular patterns. If this is all you see, then it means that you still have time. But if you leave it any longer, the infestation may become deep rooted and get out of your hands. Before that happens, chisel the infested area and make it smooth by sanding it. Next, use wood fillers to strengthen the site and polish the area to top it all off. You need to take special care of these sights during wets seasons and make sure that they do no soak up moisture. Otherwise, you risk the infestation developing all over again. When you see that the problem has gotten out of your hands, you need to call in the professionals. You can identify it through the holes in the wooden surface and a hollow sound from the object. The professionals will remove the damaged parts which may include undoing wires and plumbing in the infested spots. They will scrap the inside of the wood and use special wood-strengthening products in places where they think is necessary. There is nothing wrong if you want to take on the repair-work yourself and you are confident that you can do it without causing further damage, but do not try to fix the infestation with home remedies alone. The whole experience could end up like fixing a crack in the wall with a band-aid. It is very important that you call in the professionals as soon as you suspect that these creatures have made your home, their home. The experts may employ termiticide or bait traps to get rid of these insects. The pest control sprays termiticide in different areas of your house to kill termites. The chemicals in the trap affect the termite that fed on it as well as the termites that come in contact with this termite later.

You can deflect termite damage before it happens by using borate. Building home with this material can help keep the termites away. It can’t deal with an entire infestation but can control it to some extent. Request an examination before the problem becomes worse and costs much more in repairs than in dealing with the infestation.

How to Spot Termites

Termites are the uninvited guests that come to your house and damage your beloved property without you knowing about it in time. These tiny parasites feed off of the walls, furniture and the roof of your house and leave behind a nasty trail of feces and other dead termites. What’s worse is that they are very sneaky, they start working from the inside, so you never know what you are cohabiting. These nasty housemates will slowly eat away your home, and you will not even notice until it’s too late.
These sneaky pests live in large colonies that have a caste system of their own. So, an entire culture of termites is accompanying you without you even noticing it. Termites usually feed on the cellulose found in trees and wooden objects, but they also like to include papers, the insulation between walls, swimming pool liners, and filtration systems, in their feasts.

There are different ways you can spot these silent destroyers, but since they do not live out in the open, you may need a specialist to find these little critters. The first step would be to know what termites look like because many people mistake them for ants. Some termites can even fly around and may even look just like flying ants to the layman.
The difference between these two is apparent when you look at their wings. Ants have larger wings in the front and smaller ones in the back, while termites have two uniform wings on each side. They also have different antennas–ants have slightly elbowed antennas and termites have straight ones. Moreover, in ants, you can easily see the segments in their body because of their thin waist, but termites have a uniform width.
Not only do termites harm your house, but they can also wreak havoc in your yard, slowly. They even survive on living trees and shrubs and harm woody plants that are already on the downward spiral. Termites can be found anywhere, from the foundations of your house to bookshelves and the books on them. If you suspect that these bugs are actively consuming your house, you should inspect your house immediately.

Although it may not be easy to identify an infestation in its early stages, you can always look for signs. The biggest telltale sign of termite infestation is hollowed out walls with fine dust like substance in the place where your wood was supposed to be.
After feasting in one place, termites move to another part of the house and leave behind a trail of feces along with other dead termites. For closer inspection, take a flashlight and check the corners of your house. Take a screwdriver and lightly prod the wall with it. Use the backend of the screwdriver and use a gentle hand, so that you don’t harm your walls. Listen to sounds the wooden parts make. Look out for hollowed sounds. If you feel like the inside of your wooden object is hollow you may have to call in the professionals. For a complete inspection call Gary at Absolute Pest Control at (804) 598-8193 or request an inspection at www.absolutepestcontrolinc.com

Most of the times, it is not easy to identify termite infestation your own. Therefore, if you are buying a new house or renovating your current one, it is always a good idea to call Absolute Pest Control for a complete inspection.