A Pest Inspection is a must when purchasing a property
There is confusion out in the market place about what is included in a Pest Inspection. Is it a Termite Inspection? Is it a house hold Pest Inspection? It's formal name is a Timber Pest Inspection which looks for Termites, Wood Borers, and Wood Decay Fungi and is an integral part of any Pre Purchase Inspection.
Think of a Timber Pest Inspection as a "Super Charged" Termite Inspection.
We can add another detrimental element to a home that the Timber Pest Inspector looks for and that is moisture. There is a low level of moisture in every house which is acceptable. When it's raised beyond this threshold, that's when you start enticing foraging termites into your home.
Called a "Conducive Environment", these areas of concern are hot spots for termite activity. It can be as simple as;
- Garden up against the house providing a source of food, warm and moisture
- Air Conditioning drain leaking directly onto the ground next to the house
- Hot water over flow on older systems can constantly drip providing a water source
- Trees stumps or tree crowns left in the ground to slowly rot away
- Poor drainage under the house keeping the subfloor damp
These are just a simple few and I bet you would have at least 3 out of the 5 around your house now. More information about "Conducive Environments" can be found here on our Termite Barrier Page.
With Subterranean Termites being able to tunnel some 50metres underground it's important for the Timber Pest Inspector to look at environmental conditions around your house, including your fence line. Over time the weather will break down any soft timber previously coated in a "termite resistant" chemical and it's not uncommon to find a termite sub nest in a timber sleeper retaining wall.
Wood Borers are also a common find. Normally brought into the home by timber furniture, these beetles don't need high moisture to survive and can eat hard and soft wood! Laying their eggs in the timber cracks, most of the time we are finding them attacking timber floor boards. They can be treated with a water based chemical but we find it's best to locate the affected timbers and have them replaced.
The most common wood borers are;
- Common Furniture Beetle
- House Longhorn Beetle
- Powder Post Beetle
Some Do-It-Yourselfers recommend wiping the affected areas with diesel. This is something we DEFINITELY do not recommend.
Wood Decay Fungus
Another timber damaging element caused by moisture is Wood Decay Fungus. Several types of fungus eat the damp wood making it rot away like dead skin. Not as damaging as Termites but given the right environment it can posed a threat to timbers in your home. Lignicolous Fungi is responsible for the wood decay. They can be classed as;
- Brown rot
- Soft rot and,
- White rot
The fix is to remove the damaged timber and remove the moisture source.
A Pest Inspection should be part of any due diligence when purchasing a house. Most Timber Pest activity goes naked to the eye so it's important to have out Pest Inspection Team look over the property. Give us a call and compare our quote. We will save you!