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Category Archive: Termite Removal

Termites: Eating Through Your Home and Body

florida-homeYou probably already know that termites can eat through your home and cause a lot of damage. Surprisingly, these pests can be harmful to your health, too. The Tampa termite removal experts at Apex are well-are of the health issues associated with termites. How can termites hurt you? Here’s what you need to know.

Termites Can Stir Up Mold

Some types of termites live in wood with high moisture content. This type of wood is also prone to mold issues. When termites chew through moldy, wet wood, the mold spores can be released into the air. It’s possible for you to inhale these spores. They could also land on your skin. This is the root of the health issues caused by termites.

Asthma and Allergies

Some people are allergic to mold spores or other fungi. People with these allergies tend to have hay fever symptoms when they’re exposed to mold. Mold spores can also trigger asthma flare-ups if they get inside your lungs. This is known as mold-induced asthma.

Skin Diseases

Mold spores can also aggravate some skin diseases. For example, atopic dermatitis can be made worse by allergens. This can leave you with itchy, red, or crusty skin.

Fungal Infections

Mold can cause some types of fungal infections. An example is allergic fungal sinusitis. This is a sinus infection that can be caused by mold. People who get this infection may have allergies or asthma.

Body Infections

Mold can cause even more serious health problems in some people. For people who have impaired immune systems, mold can lead to infections. These infections could include infections of the skin or the mucous membranes.

Preventative Measures

To keep yourself safe and healthy, clean your home to keep mold at bay. Mopping, vacuuming, and ventilating your home can help. If wood gets water damaged, have it replaced with dry wood before mold can grow. Another preventative measure is having your home inspected for termites.

Termites are dangerous for both you and your home. If you’re worried you may have termites in your home, have an Tampa termite removal expert like Apex investigate. Contact us or read our blog for more info on how to protect you and your home!

Termite Damage 101

homeAre you wondering if you need termite protection? Termites should be a concern for anyone living in Florida. Many of the most termite-infested cities in the United States are in Florida. The hot, humid weather in the state provides the perfect environment for termite colonies. Tampa termite removal professionals have some information to share with Floridians about termite damage.

Cost of Termite Damage

Termite damage is very expensive. Every year, homeowners in the United States suffer five billion dollars in damages from termites. The average homeowner spends $3,300 to repair the damages to their home. Homeowners insurance doesn’t usually cover termite damage.

Why Termites are So Destructive

Termites eat cellulose, which is the fibrous material in wood and plants. Any wood parts of your home could become a tasty snack for termites. They could also damage paper or books. Termites can bore through hard materials like drywall or plaster to reach food, which means even more damage.

Termite infestations can go undetected for years. That’s because the pests usually leave the outer surfaces of wood intact. The inner surfaces could be very damaged before anyone notices.

Another reason termites are so destructive is the size of their colonies. Termite colonies can contain anywhere between a few thousand individuals and several million. There can be several colonies per acre, so plenty of termites could be near your home. Each termite eats two to three percent of its weight daily. With so many hungry termites working together, you can see how your home could be in trouble.

Keeping Termites Away

No one wants termites to invade their home. There are many things you can do to prevent termites from moving in. Termites need moisture to thrive, so try to eliminate or reduce moisture in and around your home. If you have any leaky faucets or water pipes, get them fixed.

Inspect your home regularly for signs of termite damage. Wood that sounds hollow when tapped is a sign that termites could be present. Uneven or bubbling paint on your walls is another warning sign.

Since termites are so sneaky, it’s a good idea to have your home professionally inspected. This can be done once a year. Regular inspections let you handle termite infestations quickly, before they’ve done too much damage.

If you’re worried about termites in your home, the Tampa termite removal specialists at Apex can help. Contact us and we can corner the termites and help you take back your home starting with a free, no-obligation quote.

Tent Fumigation 101: What You Need to Know

real-estate-1686347_1280Central Florida can have some serious pest problems. A year-round temperate climate combined with plenty of water sources makes those problems varied and constant. One of the most serious responses to a pest issue in your home is the use of tent fumigation. It’s a type of Tampa termite control that is only to be done by absolute professionals.

Tent fumigations can be an important tool, particularly if a pest such as a termite is deeply ingrained into every portion of a structure. As a home or business owner that gets put in the position of needing tent fumigation, there are some critical things for you to know going in. Preparation is vital, and a sense of commitment to the treatment technique is a must. At Apex, pest control leaders in the Tampa area with decades of experience, we would offer these tips.

Prepare

It looks like simply a big circus tent thrown over a home, but the amount of prep work that goes into getting a house ready is high. There are a myriad of little things that you may not even think of:

  • Every houseplant needs to be removed.
  • Open every door in the home. This helps create an even flow of air.
  • Remove every piece of food that you are looking to keep.
  • Take out bed linens and curtains.
  • Turn off any gas sources such as stoves.

Ask Questions

Most people will have their home tented perhaps once in the life of the structure, at most. So this will be a new and odd process. Know everything you need to about the procedure, and don’t be afraid to ask about what steps are being taken and why they are being taken.

Take the Proper Time

Fumigation times vary greatly for a lot of different reasons. Size and design of the structure, type of pest being targeted, and the need for additional treatments all may factor in. But you should be able to get a pretty good estimate from your fumigation provider. This can range from a few hours to a week, but with tent fumigation, playing it safe is always best. Never rush back into a home, and always make sure the job has been done thoroughly.

Trust Professionals

Tent fumigations are calculated and complex, so they are truly one of the pest management techniques that absolutely cannot be performed on a DIY basis. Go with those who have experience.

Few Tampa termite control companies have quite the experience as Apex. We recommend tent fumigations as a last resort and will always look into management and preventative measures well before this step, but we are ready when necessary. For more information on our tools and methods, contact us anytime at (866) 675-4070.

Identifying the Difference Between Termites and Flying Ants

ant-22889_1920Mosquitoes are certainly a ubiquitous symbol of Florida, but for the local homeowner, there is no doubt that the most feared are termites. From Tampa to Melbourne, the beaches to the big cities, our termite populations thrive in the state’s semi-tropical and humid environment. Our environment, through its combination of constant heat and moisture, can weaken many types of wood oftentimes leading to termite problems. Having Tampa termite control professionals such as Apex, with decades of experience on our side, will go a long way to securing your home and business.

To even start understanding the termite problem, and how you can combat it, you should be able to identify both the bug and the problems they can cause. We have four common types in the Tampa area:

  • Eastern Subterranean termites
  • Powderpost termites
  • Dampwood Termites
  • Formosan termites

There are other sub-varieties, but these four (and especially the eastern subterranean) are the main instigators in the majority of home damage situations we see. Beyond identifying types of termite, it’s even more critical to tell the difference between the dangerous wood eaters listed above and harmless flying ants.

The two actually look remarkably similar, and termites do not, in fact, initially arrive at a colony by crawling, they fly in the early stages of their lives. Differences in flying ants and, say, dampwood termites are easy for the professional to see, but we figured we’d give you a few tips to begin with.

  • Ants Do Not Cause Structural Damage: It’s best to never let it get to this point, but if the wood you keep seeing those winged creatures fly in and out of begins to sag or crack, there’s a pretty good chance you are looking at a termite colony.
  • Appearance: Differences are a bit more difficult to tell because they are indeed so similar. But the main points of emphasis are a termite’s wider, more-uniform body and its unbent antennae. The arms and legs of flying ants are also bent, and they have notably different sized sets of wings (termite wing sets are basically identical).
  • Life Cycles: Flying ants only live for a few months. A well-established termite colony can thrive for decades, and an individual insect itself can live for years. Point being, if the pest in question seems to be a permanent fixture to a structure, it’s probably a form of termite.
  • Wood: Flying ants eat a lot of things. Termites eat wood.

 

Taken together, these are just some tips when questioning some buzzing swarms around your Florida fence posts. For a truly thorough treatment in Tampa termite control, however, never hesitant to contact the professionals at Apex. We offer free, no-obligation inspections and quotes and can be contacted anytime at (866) 675-4070.

Preventing Versus Controlling Termites

banner1Florida pests come in many shapes, sizes, and species types, but none are quite as feared as our local termites. No pest has the ability to cause more damage before they can even be detected. Because of this, when it comes to this voracious wood-eating creature, the experts in Orlando termite prevention at Apex always push for prevention methods instead of control methods. Although prevention and control seem similar on the surface (if the bugs are gone, does it matter how or why?), they are in fact radically different approaches with dissimilar goals in mind.

The benefits of prevention as opposed to controlling, removing, and isolating termites, particularly in Florida, are pretty self-evident. Peace of mind is an obvious place to start; when going with a fully-integrated and thought out termite prevention system, you can rest assured that the creatures will never have an impact on your home or business. But, there are other reasons, and the we’ve served up a few of our most common below.

Cost

First and foremost, with many pest control techniques, cost must be taken into account. Termites are a creature where the benefits of paying to be secure from them far outweigh the short-term goal of being stingy. Once colonized within your walls, species of the bug like the Eastern Subterranean termite can decimate many thousands of dollars worth of materials before they are discovered. Not only that, but the cost of removal (complicated and thorough) is usually higher than the simple cost of prevention in the first place.

Regular Visits

When attempting to control termites, this may mean that technicians must be on your property consistently. In a busy world with a busy life, this isn’t always ideal. Well-thought-out termite prevention measures, whether pre-home construction or post, on the other hand, can stop the problem without repeat visits to a home or business.

Variety of Methods

Our options for termite prevention at Apex are varied, from treated wood to intricate systems like Bora-Care® and Termidor®. When it comes to the unfortunate step of termite removal, however, the methods can be more limited, and none of them are particularly fun for the homeowner.

Home Care

Finally, if you have a termite prevention system in place, you needn’t worry as much about your own behavior attracting these fearsome pests. Our systems are not fool-proof, but they go a long way towards total denial.

So, before termites have a chance to pay your property a visit, secure it with innovative techniques from the leader in Orlando termite prevention at Apex. We offer free, no-obligation inspections and always respond to any inquiries promptly. In a state where pests are part of the everyday fabric of life, enjoy your time more comfortably knowing you have the best on your side. Contact Apex anytime at (866) 675-4070 for more information.

Frequently Asked Questions about Termites

queen of termite  it's very rare

queen of termite it’s very rare

Termites are one of the most feared Florida pests, but also a creature with many mythologies and urban legends attached to it. To understand how to combat termites, it’s critical to know their habits, feeding capabilities, and risk areas. In short, it’s good to have a FAQ area for guidance regarding general termite behavior. The experts in Tampa termite control, Apex, compiled just that. Below we’ll cover some of the most common questions regarding termites.

What does a termite look like?

Termites come in a variety of species, and each will have its own look. These include the Eastern Subterranean, Dampwood, Formosan, and Powderpost. But essentially, what a termite will look like depends on where it is in its lifecycle. Clear and honey colored, about the size of a large ant, worker and soldier termites have a prodigious head with a claw. They can also be seen, generally on first contact, with wings, as they are flying pests before settling down in a location to nest. Any sign of termites in these stages (worker, soldier, or reproductive) is cause for concern.

How do they behave in your house?

It’s important first to put this in context; termites cause five billion dollars worth of damage each year. They are dangerous not only to your bank account when within your home, but to the very structural integrity of your home.

Termites in nature have one goal: to consume wood. This process in the wild makes them valuable contributors to the ecosystem, as they breakdown fallen trees and decaying wood. But, they carry this same behavior into the walls of your home, creating the potential for disaster. Termites establish colonies and can go about their business in relative anonymity. Often, the true extent of the damage is unknown until it’s too late.

How can I tell if I have a problem?

First of all, you’ll be able to see the termites. There will seem to be wood damage to your home, and/or you see vulnerable areas that have been compromised by water damage. Hollow wood is another obvious sign. You may see mud tubes, which basically are a unique roadway for termites, particularly subterranean. If you see these around you home, you almost certainly have an issue.

What can be done for prevention?

Keep an eye out for vulnerable areas of your home, and secure access points to the inner walls as well as you can. But, most importantly, get preventive work by pest control professionals.

Tampa termite control is best practiced by experts such as those at Apex. We can conduct a thorough inspection of your home, and help with any FAQs you may have. Contact us today at 866-675-4070.

Identifying a Potential Termite Infestation

termite-specialOne of the most dangerous insect infestations is also one of the more difficult to identify: termites. They have the remarkable ability to eat away at wooden structures without actually destroying them, at least initially, and it can be months before a problem begins to show itself. By then, you’re probably too late to avoid costly damage, not to mention a significantly more difficult extrication. Fortunately, there are methods of detecting termites around your home, and, with the help of Orlando termite control professionals, your home can be secured from this ever-evolving threat.

Florida is prime ground for termites of many varieties. Our climate is never too cold and provides a consistent water source. During the rainy season, humidity combined with almost daily rain can weaken wood. In nature, this is a fine thing; termites feed on decaying tree stumps and other ground-level rot, assisting in decomposition and ultimately the ecosystem. In the walls of your home, of course, this natural habit of wood destruction is certainly not a fine thing. So, where to look and what to do? Here are some tips.

  • Winged insects: Termites can be difficult to detect, but they are not invisible; winged termites will find their way into your home before burrowing into any damaged wood. If you see termites around your home in their flying state, it’s a good time to call professionals to check for a larger problem.
  • Standing water: Particularly in the Central Florida area, wood can become damaged due to water very easily over the long, humid, rainy season. Damaged wood is a magnet for many species of insect, notably the locally common dampwood variety. Water, whether via a leak in your home plumbing or a crack in your ceiling, acts as both a food source and habitat creator for termites.
  • Damaged wood: As noted above, some termites will only go after wood that is damaged (as is their natural state), so protecting the wood you have in and around your home can be a key to keeping termites out. Any wood that is touching outdoor soil directly has the chance to become quickly compromised and should be monitored. If you haven’t caught the signs of an infestation, wood becoming damaged seemingly from within is also the most obvious termite signal.
  • Dirt tubes: Created by subterranean termites, these noteworthy dirt trails can be visible on the exterior of a structure. Seeing the tubes in general can be a sign of a termite issue, but for more conclusive proof, check to see if there is termite activity inside these tunnels.

Crucially, keep in close contact with Orlando termite control experts like us at Apex. With decades of experience in Central Florida termite situations, we can often see issues before they are obvious. Call us today at (866) 675-4070. We offer free, no-obligation inspections and will return your call within 24 hours.

Prevent Termites from Swarming this Spring

termites-34672_1280(1)In Florida, one has to think of the seasons a little differently than everywhere else in the country. Spring, a traditional time to start preparing for insects, starts in February in Orlando (if not earlier, especially this year). When planning for the season and the pests, it will inevitably bring termites. With slowly warming temperatures, these well-known pests begin the process of creating new colonies, and often the target can be your home. It takes experts in Orlando termite control, such as the masterminds at Apex, to figure out the structures most likely to be vulnerable to termites. Having this professional expertise on your side is vital, as not all buildings are created equal in terms of being prime habitat for the state’s outsized termite population.

There are some things that you can do to prevent termites from swarming your home or business in the first place, and you should be looking into these measures now. Termites are notoriously difficult to remove from a structure, but prevention is a much more reasonable goal. Five things in particular to watch for:

  • Work outside in: This seems like an obvious tip, and maybe it is, but it can’t be stressed enough. Secure the exterior of your home first and foremost. This means checking for any vulnerable entry points, which include everything from cracks in the walls to broken roof tiles. Termites, like most pests, are attracted to moisture; air-conditioning units and bathroom/kitchen areas are important to check. It’s also important to remember that nearly every termite colony begins just outside your home (in tree stumps, fences, etc.) and move inside.
  • Attics: There is always ample wood in an attic, and it’s a space you rarely look around in. This all equals a ripe environment for a developing termite colony that you may never notice. Especially in the spring, it’s a good idea to check this area thoroughly.
  • Clothing: Termites eat just about everything, but one thing they seem to be fond of is cellulose commonly found in most clothing. Outdoor clotheslines that are left unattended for long periods of time, and cloth in general outdoors, can be a huge attractor.
  • Garages: Perhaps behind the attic, this is the most common origin source for termites. Most are indoor and outdoor, to some degree, and contain older wood. Try to keep your garage as sealed as possible, and store everything in plastic bins.
  • Food sources: Termites will come to your home for food and water (usually in that order). Limit exposed, untreated wood, and make sure moisture (pipes, etc.) is rare. Doing this will ensure that you will find yourself in good shape this spring.

Also, there’s no reason not to be confident in your termite protection as the most dangerous months near closer. For that reason, calling Orlando termite control experts at Apex is always advised. Contact us at (866) 675-4070. We offer a free, no-obligation quote and visit, and will always get back to you within 24 hours.

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It’s Time to Terminate Your Termite Problem

termitesWhen you open the door to the north side of your house, you note the wood door frame is rotting at the base. You think nothing of it for a few months, then look again and realize the damage is growing. What you first believed was simple water damage is more than likely termite destruction. Unfortunately, if you see termite damage, the amount the termites have already gnawed through that you do not see could be extreme. Even if you do not see telltale rotted wood along door frames, other signs may indicate the presence of termites. Read below for a list of clues brought to you by Apex Pest Control, your termite control in Orlando experts, to help you determine whether your home may have been invaded by termites.

  • You See Wings: If you have a basement or carport that has evidence of clear insect wings flittering about, termites may have created a nest nearby. During spring, termites sprout wings to fly from their home nest. When they find a good location and a mate, they drop their wings and begin work on their new home. A large collection of wings indicates many termites may be lurking nearby.
  • Woods Hollowed Out or with Tunnels: Hollowed wood, or wood with tunnels running through it, are some other signs that termites are near. Sometimes, the wood contains termites, larva, or nymphs. Any wood with signs of insects in it should be taken far from your home. Knock on the wood around your home’s perimeter in search of a hollow sound. If any hollowed wood is located, call an exterminator immediately. Not only will you require complete termite control services, but you will probably have to replace the affected wood within your home.
  • Mud Tunnels: Many termites travel through mud tunnels they build along the ground or a few inches above it. These tunnels usually lead from one opening of the nest to another and often cling to the sides of buildings.
  • How to See Them: At night, use a flashlight to look for termites gathering in clusters or lurking in cracks along the lower walls of your home. Termites are nocturnal, meaning it will be simpler to find them at night while they are active.

Because termites can cause such huge amounts of damage, it is imperative to treat your home now. Any signs of damage should be replaced and the entire home treated regularly to ensure the original problem leaves and does not return. Call Apex Pest Control, your termite control in Orlando, at (866) 675-4070, and read our latest blogs for information pertaining to termites and other pests, home pest control, and yard maintenance.

How to Take on Your Termite Problem

tap2Termites love Florida’s warm and moist subtropical climate. With the abundance of wood, Florida is the ultimate termite home. Unfortunately, termites snack on more than fallen tree branches; they attack the wood outside and inside your home and within the walls. Learning the habits of termites will help you note any changes and determine whether you need to contact the Orlando termite control team at Apex Pest Control.

  • Their Seasonality: With spring and warmer weather, termites are stimulated to swarm. Termites do not typically fly, so if you see them swarming in large numbers, they have left their previous home and are looking for a mate to create a new colony. Once they land, wings are shed and the colony begins, and it may be much closer to your home than the existing colony.
  • The Signs of an Infestation: Signs of termite infestation are generally not noticed by homeowners until damage is evident. If you see termites around a tree or in decaying wood near your home, they may be content to munch on natural sources. However, it is a very good idea to remove any fallen branches or decaying wood, including mulch, to keep termites far from your home. Another telltale sign of termites is evidence of mud tunnels. These tubes are conduits for termites to travel unnoticed from one area to the next. If you see termites or their mud tunnels around your home’s foundation, contact a pest control company.
  • Treatment of Termites: Treating termites seems like a pretty easy procedure: simply drive to the local hardware store and purchase a bag of termite control pellets. How sure are you that they work, though? Do they have any warranty against infestation? When it comes to protecting your home from damage, choose a pest control specialist to carefully inspect your home and property, determine the types of termites on your property, and chemically treat the nests and your home with the correct insecticide at the proper dosage. Apex proudly backs its termite protection with a $1 million warranty.

Entomologists in Florida have recently discovered a hybrid termite that has been destroying wood across the state. Ensure your home is protected with a thorough termite inspection by the Orlando termite control specialists at Apex Pest Control. Read more about termites and other pests in our blogs, and call Apex today at (866) 675-4070 for an appointment to meet with our termite professionals.

Service beyond
the expected.

Routine termite bond inspection. The tech was very prompt, courteous and professional.
Joseph S, Oviedo