I saw a little termite damage on the baseboard. Should I be concerned?
Sunday, October 21, 2018
Yes, definitely. The photo above is from an actual recent termite inspection in Gainesville. By the time that a termite colony’s galleries (the tunnels they eat through the wood) become visible as linear cratering of the surface of the wood, they can already have done a tremendous amount of damage to the structure of the home. Because they eat the wood right up to the surface of the paint, but not through it, damage is usually first noticed as long soft areas that, when probed, collapse and drop out bits of debris, as in the photo above.
These two photos below show what the inside of the wall above that small area of visible damage looked like. The photo on the right is a wall stud that has been completely destroyed by termites. Because the termite-eaten wall was a bearing wall (structural members above depended on it for support), the damage represented a threat to the structural integrity of the home.
It’s important to know that termite damage uncovered could also have only been a small area. The only way to tell for sure is further probing and evaluation.
Also, only a licensed pest control operator can verify that damage has been caused by termites, or one of several other wood-destroying organisms.
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To learn more about termites, see these other blog posts:
How To Look At A House
McGarry and Madsen's home inspection blog for buyers of
site-built, mobile/manfuactued and modular homes
for Links to Collections
of Blog Posts