As with any type of pest, the best way to handle termites is to prevent them from becoming a problem. There are several things that can be done to reduce the risk of a termite infestation.

If you are building a new property or completing a home renovation, you can add in a termite prevention system during the construction process. There are both barrier and insecticide solutions that are designed to keep termites from entering a building or kill them when they do. If a property has already been built, making sure that there are not cracks in the foundation is equally important.

In existing homes, you can reduce termites by eliminating their food sources. The goal is to reduce the amount of soil-to-wood contact around the house. This means keeping your yard tidy. Remove lumber and wood, including firewood, from around the foundation of the home. In addition, you want to keep plants, paper, and cardboard away from the homes foundation. This includes mulch; many people mound mulch in flowerbeds around their yards, but there should be at least a four-inch barrier between mulch and the home’s foundation. Ideally, the only part of the home that should touch the soil is the foundation, with siding starting up at least six inches above the soil.

Drains and gutters can also attract termites. Storm drains should be placed appropriately, several feet away from the foundation, and providing plenty of drainage. That is because moist soil can attract termites. In fact, moisture is a major attractant for a wide variety of pests, so avoiding a moist foundation is a critical step in pest control. Fixing leaky faucets or other sources of excess moisture can reduce the risk of termite invasions.

It is also important to keep from attracting termites. Like other insects, termites are drawn to light. Something as simple as turning off outdoor lights at night and moving indoor lights away from doors and windows during swarm season can help reduce your chances of a termite infestation.

While the above tips can help you reduce the risk of getting termites, it is equally important to keep an eye out for termite infestations. You should regularly inspect your home for damage to the wood or for frass, which is the sawdust-like waste material that termites leave behind, blistering in wood floors or sheetrock, and mud tunnels. Because brick, concrete, and block foundations can all develop cracks, regularly inspecting them and filling in any cracks can help reduce the risk of termite infestation.

Flick is happy to provide you with a termite inspection, which not only includes looking for evidence of current termite involvement, but also looks at ways you can discourage termites from coming into your home.

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