Termites in The Houston Home
Termite Protection :
The Bugging Question.....
What do you feel when you hear the word termite?
This family of minuscule hungry insects can strike fear into even the most confident of homeowners.
Are there low-toxic or nontoxic methods to discourage these home-eating pests?
What should you know about these pesky house invaders?
Types Of Termites
Types of Termites
Two of the most common types are Dry wood and Subterranean. In the Houston area, the vast majority of wood-boring insect problems
stem from the subterranean (meaning, in the soil) variety.
Dry wood termites live inside of wood, and can cause structural damage. They tunnel through wood, and can access a home through its
walls. Tight construction is a must to protect the home. Caulking joints is also important, as their bodies are very small and can bore into
tiny cracks and crevices. Using Boric Acid on the wood used for framing is considered by some to be an effective deterrent.
Subterranean termites (the most common) can also cause structural damage. They, too, tunnel through wood. But unlike the Dry wood
pests, the subterranean bugs must have moisture to survive. These insects look for ways to move from the soil into the wood structures.
They create tiny tubes made of earth, through which they tunnel, and these are kept moist. These subterranean pests tunnel through, but
do not live in the wood.
What Termites look like on the side of a foundation ... ( they secrete a Mud Tube to protect their bodies from sunlight )
So what is a homeowner to do to prevent these pesky pests from wreaking havoc inside their walls?
Let's discuss what you, as a homeowner, can do to discourage nest-building from the start of your project. Then we will look at some of
the common barriers used to deter these home-eating mini-monsters.
Pre-Construction and Construction Practices
One of the best bug deterrents is a poured, reinforced concrete foundation free of any cracks. Block foundations give plenty of hiding
spaces for mud tubes to be built in search of your wood.
Be certain that your builder plans for drainage to be taken AWAY from your foundation. This is critical, not only to keep your basement
dry, but to keep moisture from inviting pests.
Do not allow any lumber, mulch, or other wood products to be stored near or under your crawl space or foundation. Be sure that any
shrubs or trees are not planted too close to the home. They may invite too much moisture to your foundation if not given enough space.
Since subterranean termites thrive in moisture, it is critical to keep the wood in your structure well above the ground, and to moisture
seal any wood that is near ground level. Some recommend that wood be no nearer than 6-18" above the ground - the higher the better.
Be sure to insist (consider adding this to your contract) that all lumber and stumps, dead trees, scrap wood, etc, be REMOVED from the
site after construction. You may also prefer to schedule periodic removal while construction is still in process.
Backfill should NEVER contain wood, scraps, stumps, OSB board, or anything that would attract insects and give them a convenient fuel
station on the way to their favorite diner (your house)!
What Termites do to wood...
Types of Termite Barriers
Types of Termite Barriers
There are several types of barriers.
These may be divided into 3 categories:
Chemical treatment is common in many areas.
Every year thousands of homes are attacked by termites or other wood destroying pests. Home purchasers need to know if these pests
are present before investing their money. Therefore it is wise to have the property inspected by a representative of a licensed pest
control company who can detect the presence of wood destroying pests and can provide a report on his findings.
Who Orders An Inspection?
A pest control firm may be selected by the seller or his agent, lending institution, or buyer, depending on the state's real estate laws or
established practice. As a purchaser, you should be advised as to which company is doing the inspection and in some areas as a buyer
you can make the selection. A termite inspection can be ordered for your convenience at the same time you order your home inspection.
What Does The Inspection Entail?
A qualified representative from the licensed pest control company will perform the inspection. He inspects all visible areas of the
structure which are readily accessible to him. If he finds evidence of an infestation he reports the evidences on a specified form. An
inspection may include sounding or probing areas where infestations are suspected.
What If Evidence Of An Infestation Is Found?
The company will recommend the appropriate treatment to control the pest. For termites, a treatment is usually warranted for a year,
Meaning if an infestation is found while the warranty is in effect, the company will retreat at no charge to you.
Please contact us today at ATEX Inspects LLC to order your complete home inspection,. For your convenience, we will be glad to order a
termite inspection to be performed by a licensed Pest Control Inspector at the same time as your home inspection. For both services,
contact us today at ATEX Inspects LLC - 281-216-1171.