What Not To Do About Termites On Your Austin Property
Termites are such well-known destroyers of property that people try to handle a termite infestation on their own, thinking that acting fast will help remove the problem. But the best course of action for termite control is professional solutions because a failed elimination attempt can end up making the problem worse.
Termites & The Damage They Cause
Termites are small insects that eat wood. They look similar to ants, though they have fewer body segments and behave quite differently. While both ants and termites form caste-system colonies, termites aren’t likely to be found crawling around out in the open. Instead, they spend their entire lives underground or within the woods that they chew through. They avoid light completely, preferring their life in blind darkness. As such, the damage that termites cause is often hidden from view. The signs of termite activity are often minimal until an infestation is so far along that the damage is extensive. By hollowing out interior and structural woods, termites are responsible for the irreparable damage that increases your risk of collapsing walls or roofs. That’s why it’s better to go with what works for termite control rather than try to find your own workarounds.
Don’t Try These Methods
Because the damage they cause can be extensive, termites prompt people to try all kinds of unproven or generally ineffective solutions. You can go online and find any number of supposedly cheap and useful methods, but they often don’t address the root of the problem the same way that trained professionals do. Don’t waste your time or money on these methods:
- Vinegar: To hear some folk tales tell it, regular household vinegar can ward off everything from warts to termites. However, there is no evidence to prove that vinegar wards off termites and it certainly isn’t effective at removing existing colonies.
- Orange oil: The chemical compounds in an orange rind do, in fact, melt straight through a termite’s exoskeleton and kill them more or less on the spot. The problem is that these oils will only work to get rid of surface termites, which account for only a small portion of their much larger, hidden populations.
- Over-the-counter products: Controlled chemical sprays and other store-bought products aren’t guaranteed to work if they aren’t administered by trained hands. They can also contain harmful ingredients that can be dangerous for people and pets.
Tried & True Termite Prevention
There are many more phony solutions you can find touted all over the place, but it’s perhaps more important to focus on the things that do actually decrease your likelihood of a termite infestation. Keep in mind that these are preventative measures, not solutions to existing termite populations:
- Soil contact: Termite colonies start in the dirt and then grow toward sources of wood. As such, anywhere that soil touches wood can be an access point for termites. Smart garden placement and keeping plants trimmed back from your exterior will help deter new populations.
- Wood storage: Piles of wood or other yard debris around your property can be an attractant for termites, so it’s important to keep these things stored well away from your structures.
- Moisture damage: Termites are attracted to moist areas and some eat only damp woods. Water damage can also cause holes and mold that make your exterior more accessible to pests. Repair leaky pipes quickly and replace water damaged wood.
The Only Guarantees Come From Accurate Service
The surest way to avoid termite colonies is with routine and frequent service from pest professionals. At Accurate Termite & Pest Control, our trained technicians will check your property high and low for signs of termites. If problems are found, we’ll work quickly to solve them before termites can cause irreversible damage. If termites aren’t already a concern, our exterior treatments and routine inspections will help make sure that your property never suffers from termite damage.