Why call a professional Pest Controller
Conditions Conducive to Timber Pest Attack (Not only Termites)
Why call a professional Pest Controller?
Conditions Conducive to Timber Pest Attack
(Not only termites)
By Chris Nelson
Business Development Manager
Accurate Pest Management
If you have ever had a Termite Inspection or a Pre-Purchase Timber Pest Inspection done, then this will mean a lot to you, as this is a major part of both reports. This covers not only Termites, but looks at fungal decay, chemical delignification (See Blog), Borers (See Blog) and conditions conducive to Timber Pest Attack.
Only a few years ago when looking to purchase a home on the Sunshine Coast, we found what we thought was a beautiful home. After getting the Pre-Purchase Pest Inspection, we found out that all the timber decking at the entrance and the back patio were severely damaged with fungal decay, but had also spread to the beautiful French doors. Alas, we didn’t purchase this home, thanks to the report looking at the Conditions Conducive to Timber Pest Attack.
So what are the different types of conditions conducive to timber pest attack and what do they mean?
Moisture: - Termites/fungal decay
- Air Conditioning - Nearly every Air Conditioner installed, the water overflow pipe discharges just near the side of the home and creates a lot of moisture, unless the overflow pipe has been redirected.
Termite Nest built under Air-Con Overflow Pipe
- Hot Water Systems – very similar to Air Conditioning installations, where the overflow pipe is generally located next to the tank and close to the house.
- Leaking/broken down pipes & rusty gutters – Lets face it here on the Sunshine Coast we do have our main share of rain, sometimes I think we should be called the Rainy Coast!
So how does leaking down pipes and rusty gutters effect or encourage termites or fungal decay?
The leaking water will pool around the side of the house and remain damp, or if poor drainage will cause a quagmire, which of course will encourage Termites and if any wood nearby, like landscaping timbers will cause fungal decay and of course encourage termites.
- Site drainage – If water does not drain away will cause a quagmire leaving it damp or muddy, which will encourage termites and if any wood, like landscaping timbers around the damp or muddy area will cause fungal decay and of course encourage termites.
- Leaking pumps/tank – Same as above.
Timber:(Celulose) – Termites/fungal decay/borer
- Stored Timbers – Think this is pretty self-explanatory, where there is stored timbers next to the house, not only will this encourage termites as an external source of food, the timbers could, over a period of time develop fungal decay and motivate woodborers. Depending where the timbers are stored can also breach an installed Physical Termite Management System, but also a chemical Termite Management System for easy access for termites to gain access
into your home.
Stored Cardboard - Same as stored timber however, you could also find a plethora of insects living between the layers of cardboard.
Decks on ground - Even though this is very appealing the way it finishes of a home, it present some problems, like brigding the Physical Termite Management System when the house was built. In many cases decks on ground have not been treated or installed with Termite Protection. We have seen time after time the deck built above the weep holes in a brick home, allowing termites direct access to your house. Often decks on ground don't allow for ventilation and can cause moisture build up, therefore creating conducive conditions for fungal decay or worse, Termite Activity.
- Stumps – We receive a lot of calls per month with customers calling to say they have termites in a tree stump. Chances are if you have a dead tree stump in your garden, you most likely will have live termites. Learning from personal experience, if you cut down a tree, remove the stump, however, if the stump is to big would recommend getting a tree removal company or tree grinder to remove stump. I left a tree stump and after a year had termites consuming the stump and then tracking towards my home. I had to have the stump treated then removed after a few weeks making sure the termites were eradicated and then installed a Termite Management System to the perimeter of the house.
- Timbers in ground concrete – We come across this a lot, like posts or piers for awnings, major stumps supporting the house, posts for pergolas all concreted directly into the ground. This is very common in some of the older constructed homes. The concrete supporting the timber posts could crack underneath the post and allow moisture to build up and once again attracting Termites and this could allow them to bridge across and straight into your home. Landscaping timbers like retaining walls or fences is another common site where the timber supports are concreted into the ground. One of the most common is when a gate is attached to the house & the post attached for the gate is either touching or to close to the ground and could allow termite to bridge the installed Termite Management System. Needs to have a clearance of 75mm from the ground.
Darkness:- Termites/fungal decay/borer
- Subfloors – Often subfloors are forgotten about and this is where some of the damage can be done. With a lack of ventilation and if the subfloor gets damp is the ideal breading ground for Termites, fungal decay and borers. Make sure you get the annual Termite Inspection done.
Termite tubing/mudding leads in sub floor (Tanawha 2019)
- Decks on ground – See above information -Decks on Ground Timber.
- Low traffic voids – This is somewhere you don’t go very often like if you are lucky enough to own a wine cellar, or inside stair voids etc.
If you need or want any advise and would like to book in a Termite Inspection or, if you are purchasing a home and need a Pre-Purchase Timber Pest Inspection, please call Accurate Pest Management on 1300 787 415 or go to our website www.accurate-pest.com.au and book online.