DO IT YOURSELF - WHAT YOU CAN DO TO KEEP CONDUCIVE CONDITIONS MINIMAL AND HELP KEEP TERMITES AT BAY AROUND YOUR PROPERTY
Your detailed Austrapest inspection and report will determine whether there is evidence of timber pest damage and activity. We will note special susceptibility and risk factors such as damp areas, areas with poor ventilation and limited access. We note if there are tree stumps and soil built up too high next to buildings which can allow undetected termite entry. We also look for signs of previous termite treatment.
The Pest Inspection will include a range of recommendations TO DISCOURAGE TERMITES including DIY (do it yourself) recommendations such as removing loose timbers, digging out areas of soil build up, paying attention to your general home maintenance, fixing leaking pipes, removing formwork timbers and improving subfloor ventilation. If your timbers are suffering from wood decay they will be more attractive to termite attack. Termites need moisture – and low, damp, poorly ventilated subfloors with loose timbers are ideal for them.
Austrapest/ Kevmac technicians, with their combined over 60 years of experience and inspecting thousands of Sydney homes and buildings have found there are three major building and maintenance issues that often result in Timber Pest infestation in buildings.
1. Timbers in contact with the ground:
- External timber cladding abutting the ground.
- Formwork timbers
- Wood piers or uprights under buildings with ground and floor contact.
- Timbers frames close/ in contact with the ground (especially in split levels, low subfloor)
- Untreated garden beds and hardwood sleepers.
- Firewood in contact with the ground and the walls of the buildings.
- Tree stumps in garden.
- Dead trees.
- Inadequate subfloor ventilation
- Inadequate subfloor and external drainage
- Hot water system or air conditioner overflows discharging outside the walls of the building.
- Unsealed bathrooms and kitchens.
- Defective gutters and downpipes
- Inadequately sealed and painted external timbers.
3. Other structural problems often found in buildings:
- Inadequate ground clearance under buildings (minimum 400mm from lowest timber to soil should be the lowest clearance)
- Inadequate access available for inspection to all areas of roof and subfloor sections
- External ground level higher than the internal floor level.
- Concealed edge of the concrete slab
- No ant caps.
- External cladding abutting the concrete or soil
All the above are all highly conducive to termite attack and wood decay (seek services of a builder or try some of our useful DIY tips below)
Note: unless capable or qualified of correcting most of the above problems, seek the help of licensed Tradesmen. Termite activity and fungal decay are encouraged by inadequate subfloor ventilation. – Austrapest can advise on the best solutions for clients to DIY or we can install brass mesh ventilators in external foundation walls to improve air flow, or the eco electric fans to move air around.
There are a wide range of brass mesh ventilators available on the market which can be installed in lower external foundation walls to allow better air flow under a building. Austrapest can supply and install Aleta brass mesh ventilators of various sizes and colour to fit most locations.
Austrapest can also supply and install a wide range of 12/ 24 volts electric fans such as the Edmonds Eco fans or the Envirofans to suit most locations. Eco fans are highly efficient, quiet, cheap (at $10 per year to run), extract stale air from the subfloor and replace it with clean, fresh external air from the exterior.
Edmonds Eco fans allow 280 000 litres per year of stale air to be drawn out from the subfloor.
Note it is always advisable to improve subfloor ventilation well prior to redecorating, as better air flow under the building may cause drying and shrinking in skirting boards and architraves.