Many modern Australian houses sit on concrete slabs. Termites can chew through many materials, including plastic and plasterboard; however, their jaws are no match for concrete. But termites don't give up without a fight. If they sense that your home has the right conditions, a termite colony will search high and low for an entry point.
Although termites won't chew through a concrete slab, there are ways that they might crawl through the concrete slab that lies beneath your home.
Termites Crawl Through Tiny Cracks
Even a tiny crack of around 3 mm is large enough to permit termites to enter your home. Moreover, you might not be aware of the presence of cracks due to floor coverings, such as carpets. Termites could easily crawl through a crack and make their way to an item of wooden furniture, all the while hidden by your carpet.
Understand How Settling Causes Cracks in Concrete
If the soil under a house settles, the concrete slab underneath the house will begin to crack. As a homeowner, you can do several things to stop the soil under your home from settling. First, understand that water is the enemy of your concrete slab. Not only does water cause the soil to settle, but it also attracts termites.
It's important that you keep the soil around, and under, your home dry. Ensure that your guttering is sufficient for the amount of rainfall in your area. If your gutters overflow regularly, that water will soak into the soil around your home's foundation. Keep your gutters free of debris. Water also brings tree roots. Tree roots crack concrete slabs.
Termites Travel Along Plumbing
If the small gaps around the pipes that enter your home through the concrete slab are not properly sealed, your pipes will become termite highways. The termites will then use these pipes to attack the areas of your home that are high in moisture, such as the bathroom wall cavity or the cabinets under your sink.
Arrange for Annual Termite Inspections
Obviously, if you live in an area known for termites, you should keep an eye on your home's plumbing. Deal with any leaks quickly and look out for signs of hidden leaks like mold and mildew. Wet wood is termite food. It also gives off a distinct odour, that of cellulose, and will attract nearby termites.
As well as keeping your home and the soil under it as dry as possible, you should also arrange for annual termite inspections. Even if current conditions are not termite-friendly, that could change in the next few weeks or months. Stay vigilant and back up your own efforts with the help of a termite inspector once a year.
Breakfast is the first meal of the day, one that should set you up for several hours of active, busy life. Nothing turns a breakfast bad like picking up your coffee mug, or a plate, and having a critter skitter out from underneath! Ants, cockroaches and more do their best to work their way into our homes, where they aren't welcome and don't belong. Sometimes ant traps and insect bait are enough, but if you ignore the problem it can quickly escalate to where you'll need professional pest control to get rid of your unwanted guests. Professional pest control can provide a wide range of rates and service, and are worth calling.