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Termites, Powderpost Beetles, Carpenter Ants, Oh My!

Well, folks, Spring has sprung. That means one thing for homeowners -- many annoying pests, such as termites and other wood-destroying insects, have come out of hiding in search of a much-awaited feast. Termites pose a significant threat in Indiana, especially in the Spring and Summer months when temperatures and humidity are on the rise. Other wood-loving insects commonly seen in our state include powderpost beetles and carpenter ants.

Where do these pests come from, and how do they get inside your home? Homeowners are often shocked to find that their houses are infested with termites or other unsuspecting pests, especially in the case of termites who usually remain unseen as they live inside wood structures of the home. They typically live outside, in the soil or inside decayed wood and trees, and accidentally find themselves inside your home when out searching for their next meal. Termites and other pests almost always enter homes through cracks in the foundation or around door frames or window frames.

How can you protect your home from termites?

First and foremost, it's important to make sure that you don't have any wood, aka termite food, touching the foundation of your house. Make sure to remove all firewood, mulch, limbs, and tree branches around the perimeter of the foundation. Termites and other pests also love moisture, so it is imperative to fix any drainage issues around your home that cause water to accumulate unnecessarily. Another helpful tip is to inspect all lumber before purchasing it for DIY home projects, such as decks and garden planters. Finally, it is very helpful to enlist the help of a home inspector to spot potential points of entry for these pests -- foundation cracks, broken shingles, and loose seals around electrical and plumbing lines.

How do you get rid of termites that are already in your home?

If an inspector discovers a termite infestation in your home, it's probably best to call a professional pest exterminator. The exterminator will typically treat the soil around your home with a liquid termiticide in addition to placing termite baiting stations throughout the interior and exterior of your home. However, it is very important that you take the aforementioned precautions in order to prevent a re-infestation of pests once the extermination is complete.


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