It really doesn’t matter what time of year it is – termites are a pest that can be active all year round. The physical form of a termite and their ability to create the conditions they need to survive allows them to thrive even in the cooler months. If termites manage to infiltrate your home, they can create a genuine safety risk to your family – not to mention causing thousands of dollars in damage. There’s never a better time to ask whether your home is at risk of termites.
What Can Termites Do to a House?
Termites are extremely active in Brisbane and South East Queensland due to the humid temperatures, these conditions create the perfect environment for termite workings, colony survival and reproduction. The climate is especially favourable for native economically damaging species of termites such as Coptotermes acinaciformis and Schedorhinotermes intermedius. Termite colonies range in size from a few hundred individuals to enormous societies with several million individuals.
Termites feed on the cellulose found in timber. To do that, they chew through timber. They will chew through structural and decorative timber. Walls, floors, ceilings, skirting boards, structural timber – nothing is safe once termites choose your home as a place to live. The damage done by termites can result in weak, unsafe areas and even compromise the structural integrity of your home. The effect is similar to that of rotting wood – everything becomes weaker and at risk of collapse.
What Attracts Termites to Your Home?
Timber is the main factor that brings termites to your home – even more so if it is damp or rotting. Australians are usually keen gardeners, but we don’t always clear away the debris we remove from gardens. If you have fallen trees or limbs around your house for any period of time, the chances are good that the wood is beginning to rot. Particularly in a wet or humid climate.
This type of decaying wood is like ice-cream to termites, it’s irresistible! so you need to take special care around the yard all year around. Keeping firewood elevated and away from your house is a great place to start. You’ll want to repair rotting fences, and search the yard for discarded pieces of wood – especially close to your house.
Another attractor for termites can be common garden mulch. This is usually made from timber, so avoid putting this on gardens or garden beds right near the walls of your house.
How to Tell if You Have Termites
Here’s a few warning signs that termites may be causing (or about to cause) damage to your home:
Weak or Hollow Wood: The visible timber in your home may show signs of warping or sagging. Think floorboards, skirting boards, door and window frames. This is a giveaway, but even if timber looks ok, giving it a gentle tap will produce a hollow sound if its damaged.
Check the Garden: It’s likely that termites will attack the wood around your yard before they get inside, so keep an eye out for visible damage to firewood, tree branches and even fences.
Termite Mud Tunnels: Many termites live underground, making them hard to spot. However, they usually create a series of mud tunnels to move through, and can be visible on external or internal walls. If you see little tunnels of dirt through your home or garden, it’s time for a termite inspection!
Physical Evidence: Keep your eyes peeled for discarded termite wings. Reproductive females can actually fly, known as a “colonising flight” they have one aim and one aim only – they are in search of timber and it may very well be your home. Once settled, they shed their wings – Look out for dry fine long wings around your property – this might mean trouble.
Call in the Professionals and Stay Termite-Free!
Bruin Pest Management in South East Queensland are the ones to call if you think you might have a termite problem. They can perform Termite Inspections to AS3660.2, provide treatment for termite infestations, and install high-tech barrier systems to keep your home safe in future.
To protect your home from termites this winter, contact the professionals at Bruin Pest Management for an obligation-free quote today.