Friday, 22 December 2017

Spotting Termite Damage to Floor Tiles and Laminates

Floors are not where one expects a termite infestation to begin, but it is where the signs of termites often first appear.

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Loose floor tiles are not just an inconvenience that mars the beauty of a floor. They could be a sign of subterranean termite infestation. When termites begin to eat away at wooden flooring, it becomes easy for moisture to get into the wood.This moisture can cause the tiles to warp, or can loosen the adhesive that holds them in place. Both occurrences may cause the tiles to become looser. The warping may not be easily visible but if the weight of a person standing on the tile causes it to shift or wobble, then that is a problem that needs to be investigated. 

Generally speaking, soft and pliable tiles such as those made of vinyl are more likely to suffer from weakened adhesive. This is because these tiles come with a coating of adhesive and are put in place after simply removing the backing tape. Older tiles such as those made of parquet or laminate wood are susceptible to moisture absorption and warping. While the termites themselves do not produce moisture, they are attracted to it and once they get into a damp floor, their action of eating the wood exacerbates the problem to the extent that the floor may suffer serious structural damage.


Signs of termite damage to laminate flooring are similar to those of water damage. The flooring will bubble up in some places, and will sag or have a corrugated look in others. If the sub floor or the floor supports have been damaged by termites, the sagging will cover a larger section of the floor and there may also be squeaking when any weight is placed on those parts. Another sign of termite infestation is if a network of hollow tunnels is visible once the damaged laminate has been removed. These are termite tunnels.  Unlike termite damage to tiles where only some tiles may have to be replaced after the infestation has been controlled, it is not possible to repair laminate. Once the damage has occurred, the laminate will have to be completely replaced. 

Preventing Termite Damage

There are many possible causes of damage to floor tiles and laminates. Termites are among the most difficult to spot and at the same time, can be the most destructive. If the problem is not spotted and correctly diagnosed in time, the application of wrong corrective measures could cause the problem to get progressively worse until such time as serious structural damage is caused. If you are seeing signs of damaged flooring in your home, have an inspection done by a professional termite control company. If termites are the cause, only professionals can get rid of them. Ideally, you should have an expert termite inspection done regularly of the complete home to spot the early signs of termites so that action can be taken before any serious damage occurs.

Thursday, 23 November 2017

DIY Pest Control – The Cure Is Worse Than the Problem

There is no part of the world that is free from pests. Wherever you go, there are bound to be flies, mosquitoes, cockroaches or something else to create problems for you. Among pests, termites are perhaps the worst, because of the property damage and health risks they cause. Some pests you may be able to deal with yourself – sprays can get rid of a few bugs and a trap or poison will kill off a rodent or two. Anything more than that and DIY techniques are usually not just ineffective, they can also be dangerous. One area where a lot of homeowners come to grief is in DIY termite control. The average homeowner is not trained in the use of the chemicals and equipment needed for effective termite control. That is why the job is often improperly done and the results could be worse than the actual infestation itself.  This is not an exaggeration. Here’s why:


Most DIY termite control chemicals make tall claims about how effective they are. While the quality varies greatly, they are never as effective as the type of materials that professionals are trained and licensed to use. There is a reason for this – the most effective chemicals could be hazardous to health if not handled and used in the right way. Besides the risk to human health, improper application, either too much or too little of the materials, could result in the termites not being completely controlled. The danger with an incomplete job is that the homeowner may think the problem is solved, while it is actually just hidden from view. He will relax thinking he has nothing to worry about while the termites continue to destroy his home. Another factor is that there are different types of termites and each one needs to be dealt with is a specific way. Professionals know how to identify the various types and what to use to get rid of them. Homeowners do not have this knowledge. There is no one-size-fits-all in termite control. It is because of their special skills that the best termite control companies offer guarantees on their work so the homeowner can really relax knowing he has nothing to worry about.


Strong chemical agents used for effective termite control could cause serious health problems for those who inhabit the house, if not used correctly. The long-term consequences can be serious. Professionals know what is safe for your family and what is not and will be able to ensure that everyone in the home has their health protected. In fact, in some cases, existing health and other issues will make the use of chemicals unsafe. In such cases, professionals will be able to use non-fumigation termite control techniques to get rid of the pests.

The Environment

In the early days, termite control meant simply spraying poisons wherever termites were thought to be nesting. The environmental consequences of this were huge and over time effective but environmentally safe products were developed to get rid of the pests without hurting the environment. Modern products are closely regulated to ensure that they meet the required norms. Amateur use of these products could result in chemicals being mixed and used in a manner that will hurt the environment. Besides the potential danger to plants and wildlife, do you want your family to live in an environment trap?

Using a professional termite control service means that your home is safe, your family’s health is not at risk, and that you are protecting the environment and finally that you have spent your money wisely.

Monday, 30 October 2017

The Cost of Repairing Termite Damage

Paying off a home loan can take 20 or more years. Finding out, 10 years into a mortgage, that the biggest investment a person will make has been seriously damaged by termites is that last thing any homeowner wants. The value of the home you are still paying for can be seriously compromised. Termites are hard to detect and by the time they are noticed, the cost of repairs can be huge.
  •   Termite damage repair in the U.S. is estimated to cost upwards of $ 5 billion a year.
  •   About 600,000 homes are affected annually. 
  •   The average cost of repairing termite damage is around $3,300, but it can often go much  higher.
Repairing Structural Damage

Termites can literally eat away at the basic structure of a home. Repairing structural damage is essential and must be done quickly, to protect the integrity of the building. On an average, repairing structural termite damage can cost about $3,000 but can escalate to a much greater amount, depending on the extent of the damage.

Repairing Cosmetic Damage

No one wants to live in a rundown home with visible signs of termite damage. A home is a reflection of those who live it in and a damage done creates a negative image about its residents. Termites can cause discoloration in sheet rock, peeling paint and even buckled floors. Besides the appearance, these can result in health hazards from tripping on the uneven floors, inhaling of dust and chemicals in the paint and other complications. The average cost of cosmetic repairs on termite damage is estimated to be about $2,000 but it can easily go much higher. For example, if hardwood flooring has been damaged, the repair cost is much more than that of replacing a few tiles. 

Extermination and Control Costs

Before any termite damage repair can be done, the termite infestation will have to be controlled. The cost of this will vary depending on the extent of the damage and the type of treatment being done. Many homeowners are shocked at the repair costs they will have to bear and because of this often try DIY termite control methods. The hype around termite control products and the amount of information on how to go about it that is available online make is seem like a simple and easy way to cut costs. However, DIY termite removal is never as effective as that done by a professional termite control service and any marginal savings will be more than offset by the high risk of the termites returning. Having to repeat termite damage repair after a short time can ruin a family’s finances.

Prevention Is Best

Regular termite inspections/treatments by professionals are the most economical way to protect a home. Not only will the treatment be effective, the best companies offer a guarantee on the work they do, so the homeowner can rest easy, knowing that he is protected against future termite infestation and the subsequent repair costs. Termite treatment is like a medical checkup. Nothing may appear to be wrong, but the checkup may reveal an incipient problem that, if caught early, can be treated more easily than if the condition is discovered later.

Monday, 25 September 2017

Does Home Insurance Cover Termite Damage?

Owners know that homeowners insurance is an essential part of keeping their home safe. If damage or loss should occur, the policy will pay for repairing the damage or rebuilding the home. The peace of mind that comes from this knowledge is an integral part of the comfort that a home provides. However, a typical homeowner’s insurance policy will have a number of exclusions – things that are not covered under the policy. In most cases, one of these exclusions is termite damage. Check your insurance policy. Even if it does not categorically state that termite damage is not covered, it may be mentioned under the list of exclusions or elsewhere in the fine print. The reason for termites not being covered is that home owners insurance typically covers the unexpected or uncontrollable such as storm, flood, fire or earthquake damage. Insurance companies consider termite damage to be controllable and preventable so the policies do not cover this kind of damage or loss which could run into thousands of dollars.Professional termite control is the best way to keep your home safe.

Cost and Hassles

There are always bills to be paid and adding termite control to the list may seem an unnecessary expense, especially if you have not had termite problems before. Keep in mind that termites can attack a home any time. When the cost of repairing the damage they can do is taken into account, the cost of termite control pales into insignificance.

The hassle of tenting a home and finding a place to stay while to extermination is going on is another reason why people avoid getting termite control done. Modern non-fumigation termite control uses low toxicity chemicals that complete the job in one day, so you can return home for dinner. A technique that uses microwaves and not chemicals to kill off termites is also available.

Protecting Your Home

Your home is the center of your life and where your family’s future is built. Termites could enter it at any time. Often the damage they cause is very severe even before it is noticed. Even if you do check the house once in a while for signs of termite infestation, it takes a trained professional to spot the signs early and take action before any major damage is done. True, there are all kinds of material available online about DIY termite control. What needs to be remembered is that these procedures are meant for the layman who does not have access to the expertise, experience, materials and equipment that professional termite control companies do. You may be lucky enough to spot termites and use some homemade solutions to try and get rid of them. The operative words here are “homemade” and “try”. Do you want to place your home in the hands of termite control actions that may, only may, work? Or would it be better to invest a small amount in professional termite inspection and control? That is the kind of termite insurance your home needs and deserves. Contact a professional termite control company and keep your home and possessions safe. It is the best form of termite insurance there is.

Friday, 25 August 2017

Preparing For a Termite Inspection

A termite infestation can cause thousands of dollars of damage to your home. By the time you see the signs of the infestation, a great deal of damage may already have been done. Regular termite inspections by a professional termite control company is the best way to spot signs of termites early and take action to remove them before extensive damage occurs. Each company will have its own way of carrying out the inspection, but there are basic actions that they all do. By doing your part in preparing the house for the inspection you can make the process go faster and help the inspector do his job efficiently. Here’s how to go about it.

Provide Access

  • Garages are often messy and cluttered. Move everything 2 feet away for the walls to allow the inspector to have a clear view of where the walls meet the floor slab. The expansion joints are a common point of entry for termites.
  • The attic is another place that is often cluttered. Use the inspection to get rid of all the unwanted junk and tidy up the place. This will give you more usable space, reduce places where termites could nest and above all make it easier for the inspector to do a thorough inspection.
  • If your house has a raised foundation, the inspector will have to go under the house to look for signs of termites. Clear away anything that could block access to the crawl space.
  • Clear anything kept under the bathroom and kitchen sinks so the inspector can check for signs of leakage and evidence of termites.

What the Inspector Will Look For

The inspector is a trained expert who will be able to spot signs of termite that you may not notice. That being said, no one knows your house as well as you do so spending some time looking for the following signs of termites and informing the inspector of anything you may find will help him to work faster and complete the inspection quickly to reduce the disruption to the home routine. Look for:

·         Signs of termites:

    • Termite droppings
    • Evidence of swarms (such as discarded wings)
    • Mud tubes
    • Hollow or damaged wood
    • Live termites
·         Potential termite access points:

    • Cracks in the foundation around plumbing
    • Expansion joints (found in the garage and other places)
    • Hollow block walls
    • The side of foundation walls and piers
  • Conditions that may lead to future termite infestations:
    • Plumbing leaks
    • Wood-to-soil contact

Questions to ask the Inspector

If termites are found, ask the following questions so you know exactly what the control process will involve:

 o   What treatment is going to be used?

   o   How extensive is the infestation?

   o   What will the treatment cost?

   o   Are there options to provide for extended protection?

   o   What type of guarantee is given?

   o   How long will it take and how will the household be disrupted?

Regular termite inspections and control measures by experts are the best way to protect your home and your family.


Monday, 24 July 2017