Before you purchase a property in any part of Australia, it's important that you check it for termites. Since termites die when exposed to sunlight, you won't find them crawling out in the open. So, even a thorough examination of a property can miss the presence of termites. Termites are often busy in the places you can't see.
So, if you suspect termites but can't find any recognizable signs of their presence inside a property, look for the following signs outside the property.
1. Mud Tunnels
Examine the siding of a house, including where it nears the soil for the presence of termite mud tunnels. Subterranean termites come up from the soil using mud tunnels when they invade a property. The mud tunnels protect them from deadly sunlight and their worst enemy — ants.
2. Termite Frass
Unlike subterranean termites, which don't usually leave frass scattered under the wood that they infest, drywood termites create kick holes to get rid of their frass, or faeces. Look for piles of frass, which looks like pepper, under window frames, outdoor furniture and at the bottoms of wooden fences.
3. Damaged Wood
Check all wooden structures around the property that you plan to purchase. If you find a fence, fence post, wooden shed or children's playset that is badly damaged, check for tunnelling inside the damaged wood. Also, check for frass and mud tunnels nearby or on the wood to confirm the presence of termites.
4. Termites in the Soil
In yards with woody plants, you can check the soil for the presence of termites. Termites don't just eat wooden structures, they will also attack the roots of woody plants and shrubs. If a garden has used wood chips as mulch, termites will also feast on that mulch. As such, be sure to dig around in the soil of the garden if you suspect that termites might be nearby.
5. Termites in Trees
It's also a good idea to check any trees on the property for evidence that termites are living nearby. Termites will feast on dead tree limbs and even dead trees if they can, and that includes drywood termites and subterranean termites. Look for mud tunnels on the bark of trees and frass scattered around the roots.
If you do find evidence of termites, hire a pest inspection company to perform a pest inspection for you. A home inspector won't have the knowledge to determine the extent of a termite infestation.
For more information on termite inspections, reach out to a pest control company.