How to iden­tify ter­mite in­fes­ta­tion

Lesotho Times - - Property -

FA­MIL­IARIS­ING your­self with the signs of an in­fes­ta­tion can help you pro­tect your prop­erty from the costly ef­fects of ter­mite dam­age. What are ter­mites? Ter­mites are a species of wood-bor­ing in­sects. This means that they at­tack the wood on your prop­erty, and that weak­ens the struc­ture of your home.

Even prop­er­ties built pri­mar­ily out of brick or stone can still suf­fer from ter­mite dam­age be­cause struc­tural sup­ports, as well as other build­ing com­po­nents, are con­structed of wood and other cel­lu­lose-based ma­te­ri­als -the sub­stances on which ter­mites like to feed. Why are ter­mites a prob­lem? A ter­mite in­fes­ta­tion can be hard to spot as they live un­der­ground and eat away at wood from the in­side. Ter­mite dam­age can there­fore run into mil­lions of rands, as they can steadily eat away at the struc­ture of your home for years with­out any ob­vi­ous signs to alert you to the dam­age they are caus­ing.

When you con­sider that un­treated ter­mite dam­age can cause struc­tural in­sta­bil­ity, it’s no won­der that ter­mite dam­age can be so costly. This is why ter­mite con­trol is so im­por­tant. What should I look out for? Be on the look­out for ter­mite swarms, mud tubes and piles of dis­carded wings, which are an in­di­ca­tion of an in­fes­ta­tion.

Af­ter ter­mites swarm, which is typ­i­cally dur­ing warm spring days, they can shed their wings and leave piles of them be­hind.

Ter­mites need two things to sur­vive, wood and mois­ture, so min­imis­ing ac­cess to both of th­ese is a good start to pro­tect­ing your home. While it’s al­ways best to get a pro­fes­sional pest con­trol com­pany in to sur­vey for ter­mites, there are a few prac­ti­cal ter­mite con­trol tips that home­own­ers can em­ploy to pro­tect their homes.

Wood that di­rectly touches soil gives ter­mites easy ac­cess to your prop­erty. To deal with this, reg­u­larly in­spect fence posts, trel­lises and land­scap­ing ties.

Check­ing fire­wood that’s stacked up against the house, mulch that touches the house, struc­tural sup­ports and wood de­bris (of­ten from build­ing) buried in the soil will help you spot early signs of ter­mites.

A seem­ingly small leak can cre­ate per­fect mois­ture con­di­tions for ter­mites. When­ever pos­si­ble, try to fix leaky tapes, gut­ters and down­spouts that leave wa­ter near the foun­da­tion.

To dis­cour­age ter­mite ac­tiv­ity around your prop­erty ground slop­ing to­ward the foun­da­tion and fix in­suf­fi­cient ven­ti­la­tion in base­ments and crawl spa­ces. — Prop­erty24

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Lesotho

© PressReader. All rights reserved.