If you live in a part of the United States that experiences blizzards, snowstorms and intense wind conditions every winter, inspect your roof now to protect your home from termites in the spring and summer. Shingles can loosen up and blow off your home's foundation during seasonal storms. The wooden foundation beneath the roof's underlayment bogs down with water and rots, which places your home at risk for insect damage in the spring and summer seasons. Here's what you should know about your roof and how termites affect it.
How Can Roof Damage Lead to Termite Problems?
One of the biggest issues with harsh winter weather is snow and ice. Snow and ice can cause problems if they melt on your roof during the day from sunlight and heat and refreeze during the night when the temperatures drop. The changing roofing temperatures can trap moisture beneath your shingles, which later spreads to the underlayment and insulation on the roof. Unless you have a clear view of your roof's shingles during the times above, you most likely won't notice any problems until the snow and ice goes away in the spring. However, termites can notice the damage in your roof and take advantage of it.
Some termite species, such as dampwood, swarm to your home by air and enter the damp, rotting material on your roof. Other types of termites live outside but build deep tunnels that lead from multiple underground nests in your yard to your home. All termite species tend to lose their wings once they land. You may only notice clear-colored wings on your windowsills, baseboards and attic flooring.
You may notice small piles of sawdust on the attic's flooring if termites infected the wooden trusses that support your attic, or if the pests constructed satellite nesting sites beneath the wet wood of your roof's underlayment. One of the ways you can tell if termites infested the underlayment is to shine a flashlight along the attic's ceiling. The light may reveal tiny nicks or holes in the wood. Some of the wood may also appear cracked, frayed or loose.
Taking steps now can help prevent major issues like those above.
What Can You Do?
The most important thing you want to do is get rid of the termites in your home before you replace or repair the roof. Even if you remove the damaged wood in your roof and other places, termites and their young can hide in seemingly unaffected areas of the home and infect the new foundation later. You may face additional home repairs that add to your expenses.
A termite control company usually treats termite problems by fumigating the home. Fumigation services last about three days, depending on the company providing the service. A pest control company may also help you get rid of any termite mounds on your property by placing chemicals in the soil. However, this is something you can discuss with the contractor you choose before they render services. Every termite control company offers different pest control treatments.
After you secure your home and property, contact a roofer and repair the damages in your attic, shingles and underlayment. Also, repair any problems in your siding and gutters. Termites can re-enter the wet or compromised wood in these locations. Also, inspect the trees on your property for termite damage, such as peeling bark or deep holes. Termites can build nests in the barks of old, decaying trees and infect your home in the future.
For more details about termites or how to protect your home from them, contact a termite control contractor near you.