Termites Love Moisture

Termites Love Moisture

If termites love moisture and we are in the middle of a drought, does it stand to reason that your home is safe from termites at the moment?

Unfortunately the dry conditions we are currently experiencing in south east Queensland will not provide protection to your home from termites. In fact the lack of water in bush and parkland is driving termites into suburbia and into our homes.

Keeping the areas around your home dry and well ventilated will minimise the risk of termites attacking and damaging your home. In an ideal situation all the external walls of your home would have at least 30cm between them and any other item. In the real world most home owners have little control over how close to external walls hot water systems, air conditioning units, water tanks, fences and garden sheds are situated.

Termites eating wood in Sunshine Coast homeOn the other hand, you can control foliage and dense vegetation, keep it trimmed away from walls to improve ventilation. Lower garden soil levels that have built up against exterior walls, remove garden debris from against and underneath your home and never build mulch up against your home.

If your home is on a concrete slab ensure that the slab edge is exposed all the way around the house. Clear blocked weep holes, ensuring that soil levels are well below both weep holes, damp course and, preferably, footings.

Homes constructed with a crawl space beneath the floor are at particular risk to termite attack if the subfloor space is moist or not well ventilated. Moisture in this area often comes from leaking plumbing, which should be repaired as a matter of urgency. Avoid using the subfloor area as storage space because this will decrease ventilation. Never store timber or firewood beneath your home.

Repair leaking gutters and down pipes, dripping taps and leaky pool filtration equipment. Ensure that water from down pipes goes down a drain and that overflow pipes from hot water systems and air conditioning units are not discharging water against the exterior of your home.

House stumps eaten out by termitesTermite colonies will grow to meet the food supply available; more food = more termites. The amount of timber around the outside of your home can be reduced by constructing new additions such as fencing, retaining walls, decking, pergolas, gates and garden edging out of termite resistant materials which include metal, stone and brick.

Reducing termite food supply and keeping construction materials that are susceptible to termite attack as dry as possible will decrease the risk of termites attacking your home. It’s also vital to have a professional termite inspection carried out at least once every 12 months. Frequent, regular inspections ensure that if termites do get into your home they will be detected before they have had time to cause catastrophic amounts of damage.

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