We all know what a nightmare termites can inflict on properties, especially those that are located in high-risk areas around Australia. Termites like wooden homes found in damp and humid places. They thrive and breed in these areas, and it is very difficult to detect their presence at first. Only when your home gets badly infected with termites will you be able to know for sure.
You can always hire a contractor to repair the termite damage, but most don’t have the budget for that all the time. Another option is to leave the termites to feast – sounds pretty bad, eh? Termites need to be dealt with right away. If you can’t hire a contractor, then you will probably have to repair termite damage yourself. The question is, can you?
Yes you can, but not all the time. It depends on how severe the termite damage is. Firstly, you should get a professional termite inspection on the property. The inspector will identify any existing termite damage, look for evidence of previous termite activity or damage, and conduct thorough checks of the property, searching for any moisture, leaks, or conditions that are susceptible to a termite attack. If damage is found, the extent of damage will be a major factor in deciding whether you can fix them yourself, need to get a contractor or avoid the property altogether.
Non-invasive Termite Damage
Some termite damage is still minimal but is already visible on the surface. The infestation has not yet reached the inside of the wood. However, there are definitely some termite trails that you need to address immediately. You can repair them by applying wood hardeners. This is an adhesive product that treats wood by filling in holes and cracks that the termites created. Hardeners give the infected wood more protection from termites. Another wood treatment product that you can use is wood sealer. It kills termites by preventing oxygen from going inside the wood.
Slight to Moderate Termite Damage
At this stage, the termite damage has already entered the wood. You will not only see small termite trails, but some wider and deeper openings on the infected surface. Termite droppings are also visible. Although, this is still not considered to be a serious termite problem, it needs to be treated and repaired right away. If not, the infestation can spread deeper into the core of the wooden materials. The good news is, this type of termite damage is still treatable without hiring help.
Using a chisel, scrape first the infested top part of the wood surface. Then sand the part smoothly and apply wood hardeners or fillers. To be sure that fillers are perfectly in place, polish the top part one more time.
Additional care should be applied to the treated wooden parts during the wet season. The key is to prevent moisture because it helps termites in reinfecting the repaired parts. Always keep those parts dry by wiping them with dry cloth.
Heavy to Invasive Termite Damage
For heavy and invasive termite damage, you will need to get a professional in. At this stage, the wood has suffered extensive damage that ordinary wood hardeners and fillers can no longer solve. Before any termite infestation reaches this stage, you need to repair it right away because getting help can be costly.
In any case, if there is a termite presence in the property, a termite treatment and control plan are essential. There are a few termite control options available including chemical barriers, above ground or in-ground baiting and other long term management systems. The option you go for largely depends on the level of infestation, environmental conditions of the property and your budget. We can discuss the option best suited to you.
More importantly, it is highly recommended for home buyers to hire a building and pest inspector before purchasing any property. It will help determine if there are present infestations on the properties or none. For those living in Gold Coast or Brisbane, Quality Building Reports can help you determine if your prospected home is termite-free. We also give advice and recommendations to rectify any termite conditions that your property may have.