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Termites Be Gone: Proven Techniques for Successful Termite Control In Virginia Beach

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Termites can wreak havoc on your home, causing structural damage and leading to costly repairs. It is best to get in front of termite problems. Way in front. We have some tips to help you do just that. Today, we're going to share with you proven techniques for successful termite control. We'll cover how to spot the signs of active termites on your property, why it is hard to find evidence of termite damage, how to prevent termite damage long before you see warning signs, and the secret weapon professionals use to actively eliminate termite colonies 24/7/365. We've packed everything into this little article. But, as short as this article is, you may not have time to read about termite control. No problem. You can call or text and get fast answers to your termite questions. Hawk Mosquito & Pest is a certified termite control company that offers professional-grade termite pest control in Virginia Beach. We can help. With that said, let's take a look at what you need to know most about termites in our area. 

a big termite on sawdust

Spotting The Signs: How To Identify Termite Infestations

The first, and arguably most important, fact to know about Virginia Beach termites is that they are incredibly sneaky. In our area, the termites we deal with are Eastern subterranean termites. They hide in the ground and stay hidden from view. When they attack the wood of your home, they do it with stealth and precision. If you hope to catch signs of termites on your property, you need to know where to look.

In Your Yard: You may see termites in your yard if you know that they are sometimes found underneath dead branches, logs, construction materials, and other wood sources. The trick is to pay close attention when you pick stuff up. A termite worker is ? of an inch long. That's just about the size of something you're sure to miss. Joking aside. The big reason people don't see termites is that they don't realize they're looking at termites. While you may recognize a termite when shown a picture, it is quite a bit different when you see one in your yard. Its tiny size makes recognition difficult. You may think you've uncovered tiny little pale-colored ants. If you do, you'll miss an important warning sign.

In Your Landscaping: Sometimes swarmer termites appear in landscaping or on walkways. When you see a swarmer by itself, you may pay no attention to it. Swarmers aren't much larger than workers. Even at ? of an inch in length, the size of a swarmer masks the subtle details that would make you take notice and say, "Is that a termite?" Our recommendation is to look for two characteristics: black body and white wings, and the stretched teardrop shape of the wings.

On Your Foundation: Subterranean termite workers create mud tubes on foundation walls and other surfaces to travel from the ground to aboveground wood sources. You may see these tubes. But a mud tube can look like muddy rainwater ran down your foundation and left a hard muddy pathway behind. Look closer. Rainwater doesn't leave a wiggly mud line that is the width of a pencil. If you see something like that, you're looking at a termite shelter tube.

Under Your Home: Do you have a crawl space? If so, you may find all kinds of evidence in there. You may find mud tubes on surfaces, termite workers just below the surface of the ground, shed termite swarmer wings clinging to spider webs, or termite damage. If you see wood damage, check to see if there are stacked tunnels that feel gritty to the touch. Termite workers bring soil up into their tunnels and dirt is often associated with visible subterranean termite damage.   

Now that you know what you're looking for in your yard, let's talk about why it is important to go looking for these warning signs.

Termite Damage: Impacts On Structural Integrity

How much do termites cost U.S. property owners each year? What do you think? Hundreds of thousands? Millions? Hundreds of millions? According to the National Pest Management Association, the cost of termites is around $5 billion per year. And the worst of all termites are subterranean termites.

How does all that damage happen? Bite by bite. Subterranean termites come up from the ground, find a pathway to wood, and tunnel inside. Once they find a wood source, they consume it secretly. Why are they so secretive? It has to do with two factors. First, subterranean termites hate light. They avoid all sources of light, even the moon. The second reason is that subterranean termites have a high moisture requirement. They can't survive in dry conditions. For these two reasons, they create mud tubes. Their tubes block the light and trap the moisture. If subterranean termites access your home through wood-to-ground contact, you won't have the mud tubes as a warning sign.

The insidious nature of termite damage is that the tunnels created by termites will weaken the wood of your home. As wood bends, stress is applied to the structure, causing the damage to spread to wood that doesn't even have termites in it. For example, a floor that begins to sink down isn't fixed by replacing a few boards that have termites in them. The whole thing has to be torn out and replaced.

When it comes to guarding your property, it is best to apply proactive measures to keep termites out. Let's look at some termite prevention tips that will guard your property even if you never see active termites or warning signs of termites on your property.

Protecting Your Property: Effective Termite Prevention Methods

Termites are simple organisms motivated by simple factors. If you understand these factors, you can take steps to deter termites from selecting your home to feed on. Here are a few tips to give you an idea of what you'll need to do.

  • Remove natural wood sources. Termites prefer natural, decaying wood sources, such as logs, stumps, and dying trees. When you pick up dead branches in your yard, either remove them or store them in some kind of container to keep them off the soil. If you have stumps, consider burning them out. If you have a dying tree, maybe it is time to call a tree doctor.
  • Replace water-damaged wood. Termites will target wood-damaged wood first. If you have a moisture problem, you have a vulnerability that could lead to a termite infestation.
  • Consider wood-to-ground contact. Does your home have a wood skirt that touches the soil? Do you have a back deck with wooden supports that go down into the soil? Do you have a wooden fence? When termites can enter wood and remain underground, they can tunnel into your home without making a single mud tube for you to detect.
  • Deal with moisture to prevent future issues with rotting wood. A damaged or obstructed gutter system is sometimes the catalyst for termite problems. Make sure rainwater is channeled away from your foundation.
  • Consider other termite food sources. Termites eat cardboard boxes, books, documents, clothing, and other objects found in trash piles. If you have some junk on the ground, keep this in mind. Store that junk in a receptacle.

These preventative tips will make your yard less interesting to termites, and they will remove the factors that increase the chances of termites finding their way into your home. If you want to step up your game, the best termite control solution is the Sentricon® System with Always Active™. It provides a way to easily detect termites that come to feed on your home, proactively works to eliminate attacking colonies by using the workers against their own colonies, and even arrests termite damage inside your home. Let's look at how this preventative and proactive system works.

Professional Termite Control: Long-Term Termite Control And Protection

The Sentricon® System with Always Active™ is a professional-grade solution that is not available to consumers directly. For efficacy, it is installed and maintained by Certified Sentricon® Installers. When Sentricon® termite bait stations are appropriately installed and maintained, your property is fully protected. Here are a few reasons why.

  • Sentricon® is in the ground, where subterranean termites live.

  • The bait in Sentricon® bait stations is scientifically proven to be more appetizing to termites than wood.

  • The Sentricon® bait doesn't wear out over time; it only gets better.

  • When termite workers find the Sentricon® bait, they take the active ingredient back to the other termites in their colony, and one by one they are eliminated.

  • Termite workers never stop looking for food sources. When they find a source in your yard, they will keep looking, which is why they always find the Sentricon® bait.

  • When termites take the bait, your certified technician knows it and will monitor the activity and use a stronger bait if needed. Most of the time, the standard bait is more than strong enough to get the job done.

  • If you have termites inside your home, then your Sentricon® System will stop those termites because they must return to the nest in the ground. When they leave your home, they come in contact with other termites that have taken the bait and picked up the active ingredient. 

When you want to get rid of termites in Virginia Beach or guard your property with ongoing, always active termite control, Sentricon® is the best choice. Contact Hawk MP today to learn more about this powerful, award-winning termite control solution.

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