When a homeowner detects a termite swarm, it could mean the house is infested and may have already suffered damage. However, identifying a swarm allows the homeowner to take action and alleviate a problem that may have otherwise remained hidden.
Memphis, TN (PRWEB) April 08, 2013
If you’re still thawing out from last month’s cold weather, you’re not alone. The majority of the continental United States has been locked under historically chilly weather. In fact, March 2013 was the second-coldest on record since 2000 and the average March temperature was 13 degrees cooler than last year, according to the National Weather Service.
The good news is that weather patterns are changing and the country is expected to warm up. The bad news: This quick warm-up is the ideal wake-up call for termites, which will begin swarming in large numbers in many parts of the country.
Termite swarms are weather-driven events that typically occur on sunny, warm, calm days following a spring rain. During a swarm, winged termites leave their existing colony to find a mate and establish new colonies. While termite swarming can occur as early as February, due to unseasonably cool weather this year, activity has been delayed throughout much of the country.
Using termite service call data from 2011 and 2012 and population density statistics, Terminix, the nation’s largest pest control provider, has identified the metro areas with the highest probability of upcoming swarms. The Terminix Top 15 Termite Towns include:
1. Atlanta, Ga. 9. Los Angeles, Calif.
2. Miami, Fla. 10. Phoenix, Ariz.
3. Orlando, Fla. 11. Nashville, Tenn.
4. Tampa, Fla. 12. Tucson, Ariz.
5. Washington, D.C. 13. San Diego, Calif.
6. San Francisco, Calif. 14. Houston, Texas
7. Dallas, Texas 15. Memphis, Tenn.
8. Boston, Mass.
Termites are found in every state except Alaska and cause more than $5 billion in annual damage. Because termites generally eat homes from the inside out, they often go unnoticed by unsuspecting homeowners. Termite colonies can remain hidden behind walls and other structural elements for years before their presence is detected and the extent of the damage becomes evident. Even more disturbing is that termite destruction is rarely covered by homeowners insurance, leaving the owners responsible for sometimes expensive out-of-pocket repairs.
“When a homeowner detects a termite swarm, it could mean the house is infested and may have already suffered damage,” said Paul Curtis, Terminix entomologist. “However, identifying a swarm allows the homeowner to take action and alleviate a problem that may have otherwise remained hidden.”
Eliminating termites requires the help of a trained professional, but homeowners can take the following simple steps to help make their home less inviting to these wood-destroying pests:
- Fix roof and plumbing leaks. The moisture from these allows termites to survive above ground.
- Clean and repair gutters. Gutters that do not drain properly can allow water to accumulate near the foundation.
- Eliminate wood-to-soil contact. Any wood that simultaneously touches the soil and the home can provide termites with direct access to the structure. This includes keeping firewood or other wood debris from being stacked against the side of the home.
- Keep mulch or soil from piling up directly against the home. Soil or mulch can hide termite activity and allow for easy access into the home.
- Schedule an annual inspection with a trained professional. Prompt treatment and regular inspections can save thousands of dollars in damage repair.
For more information on this year’s termite swarm season or to schedule a home inspection, visit terminix.com.
Terminix, a subsidiary of The ServiceMaster Company, is the world’s largest pest control provider. Headquartered in Memphis, Tenn., Terminix services more than 3 million customers in 47 states and 14 countries. Terminix provides pest control services and protection against termites, rodents and other pests threatening human health and/or safety. To learn more about Terminix, visit http://www.Terminix.com.
With a global network of more than 7,300 company-owned, franchise and licensed locations, Memphis-based ServiceMaster is one of the world’s largest residential and commercial service networks. The company’s high-profile brands are Terminix, TruGreen, American Home Shield, ServiceMaster Clean, Merry Maids, Furniture Medic and AmeriSpec. Through approximately 20,000 corporate associates and a franchise network that independently employs an estimated 31,000 additional people, the ServiceMaster family of brands provided services and products to approximately 8 million customers during the last 12 months. The company’s market-leading brands provide a range of residential and commercial services including termite and pest control; lawn, tree and shrub care; home warranties and preventative maintenance contracts; furniture repair; home inspections; home cleaning; janitorial services; and disaster restoration. Go to http://www.servicemaster.com for more information about ServiceMaster or follow the company at twitter.com/ServiceMaster or facebook.com/TheServiceMasterCo.