A termite infestation is the last thing that Texas homeowners want to deal with. Not only are these pests highly destructive insects, they can be a real challenge to remove and require hiring professional pest control services. Although most residences in areas where these insects live are built with various termite control barriers beneath them, these barriers are not a failsafe against any infestation. The best ways to keep these bugs from making their way into any home is to practice good bug control habits, and avoid inviting them in.
#1 - Don’t Keep Wood Close to The House
Whether it is a stack of firewood, spare lumber from a home renovation project, or the remains of a tree that was chopped down, any wood kept close to the house is a food source for termites and a potential way inside. To avoid potential insect problems, always keep firewood stacked at least 20 feet from the house. Properly deal with old tree stumps close to the residence by having them ground down. Since moist, rotting wood is especially attractive to these specific insects, practice good termite control by keeping firewood protected from the elements, or throwing out any rotted pieces that will not be used.
#2 - Keep Trees Trimmed Away from The House
Tree branches that touch the house or the roof provide another way for termites to gain access to a home. Trees allow these insects to move over any underground barriers. The branches of trees that hang over parts of the roof or gutters can also increase the moisture in these areas, making them more desirable for these bugs. Regular pruning should be considered an essential part of bug control and an important way to prevent the need for control services.
#3 - Keep Gutters Clear and Functioning Well
There are many reasons why keeping gutters clean and clear of debris is important. One reason is to prevent a termite infestation. These insects are attracted to the moisture and vegetative materials that tend to collect in roof gutters, which can easily serve as the perfect breeding ground. Breeding in close proximity to the roof, termite colonies that are establishing themselves in dirty gutters will then have little trouble making their way into the home. It is essential to keep gutters clear of debris and divert rainwater away from the foundation with functioning downspouts.
#4 - Be Cautious With Gardening Mulch
Another place where termites will breed and allows them easily access to the home is in mulched flower beds close to the house. Mulch is attractive in the garden and serves a number of practical landscaping purposes; however, it can also invite these bugs. Because mulch holds water, creating a moist, protected area, these pests will readily move into a mulch pile or landscaped flower beds around the home. Practice good insect control by making sure mulch is laid no closer than 15” from the side of the house and monitor frequently for any signs of bug activity. In areas where termites are especially problematic, the best bug control is to avoid using mulch against the house at all.
Preventing an infestation with good bug control practices is something that homeowners in Texas, and other termite prone areas, should take very seriously. By avoiding the common habits that attract these insects and allow them to eventually enter the house, property owners can avoid the need for costly insect control services. When it comes to these damaging pests, the best form of termite control is not attracting them to the home in the first place!