termite management systems for new homes

Termites are a major issue on the Gold Coast causing thousands of dollars of damage to homes every year. It is vital to install a termite management system to protect your home.

In this blog, you will find information about termites on the Gold Coast, termite management systems, why your home is at risk and what you can do to best protect your property.

Termites on the Gold Coast

Termites present a major risk to homes across Australia and the Gold Coast is no exception.

Data collected by the CSIRO reveals that virtually all urban areas in Australia are affected by termites (see map below).

Termites are the leading cause of damage to houses in Australia, alongside storms and fire. Experts believe that one in every three homes on the Gold Coast either have a current termite infestation or have had one previously.

Termites can do extensive damage to homes in a short amount of time. In 2019, one unfortunate couple had to leave their home due to extensive termite damage just months after purchasing the home. You can read the full article here.

There are many different species of termites. However, the most common species of termite found on the Gold Coast is Schedorhinotermes Intermedius.

This breed of termite builds nests that are spread out. These nests are very difficult to destroy quickly due to their vastness.

The best form of protection against termites on the Gold Coast is the installation of a termite management system.

termite map

What is a termite management system?

A termite management system is one or more defences used to protect a home from termite infestation. Australian Standards recommend that all homes have a termite management system.

The Queensland Building and Construction Commission (QBCC) outlines several different termite management systems that can be used on the Gold Coast.

A termite management system can be one or a combination of the following:

Concrete slab

Concrete slabs are thought to be able to stop termites from entering your home.

This is not completely accurate as concrete is not impenetrable. Over time, your slab becomes cracked which allows termites to travel through the cracks into your home.

You should always combine a concrete slab with some other form of protection, like a chemical barrier.

concrete slab with cracks

Stainless steel mesh barrier

During the building process, a stainless-steel mesh barrier can be placed over your concrete slab to better protect you from a termite infestation.

This mesh has gaps that are too small for termites to climb through and stops termites from entering your home from underground.

It can also be used to protect pipes from termites.

steel mesh sheeting in concrete slab

Ant caps

Ant caps are sheets of metal placed between pillars and the suspended wooden floors of your home which are installed during the building process.

They are used to force termites out into the open, so they can be easily detected. Rather than eating their way into a home from the inside of the timber pillars, they are forced to go around the ant cap and leave their tracks behind.

Without ant caps, termites can easily get into the timbers of your home undetected.

ant capping

Termite collars

Termite collars are hard plastic rings that go around pipes to prevent termites from getting concealed access to your home. These can also be installed during the construction process like steel mesh and ant caps.

Much like ant caps, they are designed to expose a termite infestation to the naked eye, rather than prevent it.

Still, this makes finding and treating an infestation much easier.

Termite resistant materials

During the construction or renovation process, you might also use materials that are resistant to termites.

These include steel, concrete, treated timber, graded stone, masonry or fibre-reinforced cement.

termite resistant wood

Bait stations

Another form of a termite management system is the use of bait stations.

Bait stations are installed around the house and property at various intervals to attract and kill off termites. However, it is a flawed system as it allows space for the termites to forage through the area between the baits into the house.

Termite bait stations are primarily used as a method of early detection and should be checked regularly.

termite bait system

Chemical barrier

The best form of protection against termites is the installation of a chemical barrier.

A chemical barrier involves digging a ditch around a property, filling it with a chemical solution, and covering it back over. Alternately, if the concrete is around the border of the property, holes are drilled into the concrete, filled with chemicals before being sealed up.

The chemical used varies between different chemical barrier installers. However, the most effective chemical barrier will kill termite infestations at the source.

For example, Termidor is a poison that kills termites slowly over time. When a termite encounters a Termidor barrier, it is poisoned. The affected termite takes this poison back to the nest, spreading the poison from termite to termite.

Eventually, the whole nest becomes poisoned and dies off.

Termite spot treatment

Is my new home at risk?

Many people believe that if their home is new, it has little to no risk of a termite infestation. However, this is simply not true.

Termites don’t differentiate between new timber or older timbers. As such, new homes are just as vulnerable to a termite infestation as older homes.

Even if the wood used in construction is free from termites, the area around the property may not be.

Metal frames do not offer complete protection either. Termites can easily climb up the metal frames to reach the wood in your home.

Thus, all homes should have a termite management system.

termite management systems for new homes

 

How to best protect your property

The best way to protect your property is through a properly installed termite management system and regular timber pest inspections.

Hiring a qualified pest inspector to install a chemical barrier is essential. If improperly installed, your management system will not deter termites.

If properly installed, it can protect your home from termites for up to 8 years.

Annual timber pest inspections are also vital as they give you the best chance of discovering a termite infestation early before too much damage has been done.

To enquire about these services, contact DedAnt Building and Pest Inspections today via our website or call us at 07 3807 0122.

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