Dabugman Says: When Termites Invade
When Termites Invade
It's what you don't see that can cost more money than what you may see.
I am talking about termites, to be more specific eastern subterranean termites. These little insects can eat a pound of wood per year. Not much you may think, but that's about a 4-foot section of your floor joist, wall stud, or windowsill. Did you know that termites account for more than 1 billion in property damage to over 600,000 homes each year? That's more than the annual dollar damage caused by fires and storms combined.
These wood destroying pests only need 1/16th of an inch to get into your home and start feeding. That's a simple crack in the foundation or a separation between your wall and slab. Many homeowners first encounter termites as flying ants, these are not ants with wings they are the reproducers of the colony. These reproducers or swarmers gather into a mud castle built by other termite workers just for the sole purpose of flying out into your home and selecting a mate so the colony can grow in numbers.
By the way, an average size colony can be approximately 30,000 to over a million looking for food 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. They take no time off for sickness nor do they have vacations; they just work, work, work.
I have personally seen homeowners ignore these signs thinking they are ants, when in fact, the damage has been significant enough that I had to step over a threshold as not to fall through the floor into the crawl space. Annual termite inspections are a great way of giving peace of mind as to whether there may be an infestation present.
Choose a reputable company by asking many questions; know your pest. The Internet is filled with information about all pest types, become knowledgeable. Some pest control companies would like to believe that you are ignorant of the situation - prove them wrong.
FACT: Termite swarmers have four wings that are of equal size - an ant swarmers' front wings are longer than their rear wings. If you haven't had a termite inspection in over a year call now to get one performed for your peace of mind. Your home is probably the biggest investment in your life; don't let it fall down around you.
Mark Dieter is a certified inspector in Maryland and Pennsylvania with Enviro-Tech Pest Services, which he is an owner and operator. Please send comments or questions to firstname.lastname@example.org