It is unlikely that your untrained eye will be able to see all of the damage done and a common misconception is that once you get rid of the termites, your problems are solved. This isn’t the case, as severe infestations require complete removal of damaged wood. Lighter infestations require repairs and sealing the wood so that unhatched eggs don’t start to rebuild a colony.
Before you begin any repairs, make sure that you have destroyed the entire colony, as well as any eggs that could hatch in the future. Termites follow tunnels and trails so a good eye or trained professional is necessary to track their movement. Seal the wood with a protectant that keeps termites from being able to access the wood that they’re after. Then it’s time to move on to the repairs.
If you want to attempt to repair the damage yourself, you will first need to inspect all load-bearing structures. This includes floor joists, rafters, still frames and beams.
Termites are known to eat anything containing cellulose. This may necessitate replacing plywood, cabinetry, roof sheathing and cabinetry. Often times your drywall will also need to be replaced. Some of the wood – if it hasn’t incurred too much damage -can be scraped and then sealants are used to keep the termites from being able to access the cellulose in the wood. Total replacement of weakened wood is often necessary in houses with severe infestations.
If you are attempting to remove the termite infestation on your own, make sure that you contact a professional – such as www.pestcontrol.us – to find out what kind of termite did the damage. Different species do different amounts of damage and depending on which type of termite infests your house, the repair process could differ.
Subterranean termites destroy wood starting from the inside and working their way out. This type of termite often eats through wooden structures before you even realize it’s there, and often requires costly repairs once you find it. Another type of termite is a drywall termite. This particular bug feeds on dry wood, often leaving floors and furniture with a sanded appearance.
If you have found yourself with a big project and limited funds to do this, remember that you are not alone. Millions of Americans have experienced the same problem. Asking for advice and acknowledging the severity of the situation is important, as is turning to the professionals for help if you need to. These problems – if left untreated – can destroy entire homes from the inside out.
This is a costly expense that happens all too often, as termites are hard to detect. This is the main cause of large infestations, as you often don’t know you even have a problem until it’s too late and you discover the weakened wood.
DIY projects are definitely money savers, but unless you’re a capable repairman as well as someone experienced with hazardous chemicals to treat the infestation, it’s probably a job best left to the professionals. Failing to remove the entire colony, or to locate and repair all the damage could lead to costs totaling tens of thousands of dollars.
Your best bet is to get a yearly termite inspection and treat any damage before it’s too late. The cost of the inspection is hedged by the potential for much higher costs down the road. Sometimes it’s better to spend a small amount than risk facing huge repair bills down the road.