Signs of Wood Eating Insects
Is Your Home Infested?
While houses and buildings can be destroyed by earthquakes, hurricanes, and floods, these calamities don’t happen as often as the most common threat to homes, insect infestation. Have you discovered signs of wood eating insects? Is your home infested? Without our realizing it, insects can slowly take over our homes, eating their way into our food, our clothes, our things, and even the home itself. Because they act slowly, not many people realize they have a problem till there’s a big problem. Many people do not even realize they have a problem until they have their home inspection prior to the buying or selling of a home. We have asked Mark, a Dallas Home Inspector to give us his thoughts on wood eating insects.
Pest control can seem expensive and when it is not done in time, a property can be damaged leading to great losses. It’s important to spot the signs which tell you your house is being taken over by thousands, possibly millions, of tiny creatures. The following are four steps to determine whether pests have taken over your home.
Step One: Start in the Basement (If You Have One)
Because it’s underground, the basement is a good place for these creatures to start. Termites may especially like the basement, as some of them start by eating the foundation of the home. Survey your basement, and work your way up and around the house, checking each room for signs of insects and points of entry.
Step Two: Take note of Live Insects
Having live creatures in your home doesn’t necessarily mean they’ve taken over or had a nest somewhere. However, it is not to say that they haven’t or don’t either. So take note of live insects, how many you have, and how often you see them. Seeing lots of bugs often is one clear sign that a problem is starting or is well underway. There is need to worry.
Step Three: Take note of remains
If you don’t see any live bugs, but notice remains of bugs, then this is another indicator that they can be living in your home. Droppings (also known as frass) are a sign that something has been eating. Most bug droppings appear like pellets. Also look out for wings, sawdust, and fine powder or dust. Apart from this, always check for the mud tubes termites tend to build. These are soil based tubes that you may find going up the walls or wood panels.
Step Four: Call an Expert
It doesn’t hurt to get your house checked for bugs once a year. Many times, experts can spot signs and patterns of infestation that we can’t. They also know that the type of damage bugs can inflict will vary from species to species and within species as well. Remember, an ounce of prevention is worth more than a pound of cure!
Remember to clean your home well each year. The term “spring cleaning” is there for a reason. Not only do you get to air out your house after the winter and get rid of dust, but you can also fortify it against insect infestation. The early spring is when most insects begin to spread out and build their homes, so keeping your home clean and practicing preventive measures early in the spring can prevent the problem from even starting.
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