Should Schools Have a Termite Plan?
You don’t have to be an honor student to know that termites are destructive creatures that can cause extensive, expensive structural damage to buildings, including schools. In fact, termites cause $5 billion in property damage and treatment costs in the United States each year. According to Terminix® customer data, the average cost to treat and repair an active infestation is over $8,000*.
What is especially scary about termites is that they can often cause considerable damage long before any visible signs are seen. In addition to being potentially expensive, termite damage repairs can also be disruptive to school calendars and schedules, as well as inconvenient for students, teachers and parents.
A Termite Lesson
To help you decide whether a termite plan is right for your school, it’s important to understand some basic termite facts. Because termites eat cellulose, which is found in wood and plants, they seek out anything wooden, such as the wood found in buildings. They can enter your school through cracks in the foundation, bricks and mortar, as well as through other tiny openings. Using their incredibly strong jaws, termites can chew through wood, digesting the cellulose, excreting the rest and causing damage in the process.
- Termite colonies can grow very discreetly. By the time you notice signs, an infestation can be well established and quite large — and may already have caused structural damage to your school building. There are some signs you can watch for, including:
- Shed swarmer wings, especially near closed windows, doors or other sources of light (swarming termite wings are all the same size, while swarming ant wings consist of one larger pair and one smaller pair)
- Mud tubes, about the size of a pencil, where the ground meets the building
- Rippled appearance in wood
- Blisters on wood surfaces
There are many other signs of an infestation that can be recognized by qualified commercial pest control professionals.
Fortunately, there are some school and grounds maintenance practices that can help prevent a termite infestation. Some helpful steps include:
- Repair any leaky pipes or clogged roof gutters
- Fix any improperly vented foundations or overgrown landscaping that could result in a moist environment
- Eliminate any wood that comes into contact with your school’s exterior or that serves as a bridge between the ground and a building structure
- Remove stumps, vines, mulch or any wooden items from your school’s foundation
- Trim back tree limbs from the school building
- Seal openings or cracks in your school’s foundation, roof or walls that could allow moisture to enter and create a conducive termite environment
- Fix any loose or defective seals around conduit or plumbing lines
However, even with knowledge and prevention, termites could still attack your school building. That’s why a termite protection plan from a pest control company like Terminix® Commercial is a smart idea. An effective termite treatment plan can help rid your school of existing termites, plus help protect it from future infestations. This will help keep your school safe from unexpected and potential costly termite-related damage and repairs.
Terminix Commercial termite specialists know where termites may be active and how to customize the right treatment solution for your school. After performing a thorough inspection of your school’s property, they’ll choose the right treatment plan to fit your specific needs. With training and experience in treating termite threats in all parts of the country, Terminix Commercial termite specialists can tailor specific solutions for your school, shutting down subterranean and drywood termite species alike. Terminix Commercial can even target termites in hard-to-reach places behind concrete and asphalt.
When it comes to termite protection, a proactive approach gets the best grade. Our schools and public building must last a very long time for us to receive the full benefits of these major taxpayer investments. Protecting them from termites and other destructive forces helps ensure that they will continue to serve the public well for a long time to come. Your school may even be eligible for a grant when you adopt an Integrated Pest Management program.
Move to the head of the class by getting a professional commercial termite inspection for your school before you have a reason to suspect termite activity. Request a free estimate today, before the dismissal bell rings.
*Average repairs: $7,229 from 2016 survey by Decision Analysts for TMX independent contractors in the TMX network. Estimated treatment: $1,363. Every home is different; repair costs may vary.