Last Updated on October 7, 2020 by woodcutter
Keeping a heap of firewood inside your home seems like a great idea, especially when it’s cold. Not only is cozying up in front of the fire the ultimate best way to pass a winter night, but it also keeps your energy bills down.
Although this will save you time and the hassle of collecting firewood from outside, it is not a good idea to store firewood indoors or so close to your home. All it takes is just a small crack or an opening along the exterior of your house for termites to get inside, and then you could find yourself facing a termite invasion.
In this article, I will take you through on how to handle termites in firewood and highlight the main reasons you should never stockpile firewood indoors. Also, I will provide some tips on how best to keep your firewood free from pests.
How to Handle Termites in firewood
Before bringing any firewood into the house, inspect every log, shake and knock the logs together. Eliminate the termites or any other pests that emerge on the surface. If you are using firewood that’s been set on the ground, make sure you check the bottom of it for any termites that may be clinging there.
Termites like to cling and infest firewood. Not only are termites annoying, but they are also destructive. Therefore, if it so happens that the firewood that you brought in is infested with termites and they are crawling all over the place, you can be simply swatted, sweep, vacuum, or spray the termites. If you decide to spray the termites, make sure you follow any pesticide label directions that you will use.
However, if you happen to find termites in firewood or nearby your home, it’s advisable to contact a pest control company for termites inspection. The best way to handle firewood that is infested with termites is to dispose of it. But first thing first, call your local solid waste disposal companies to find out if you could dump the firewood there.
Alternatively, you could also simply create a bonfire and burn it outside of your home. However, before building a bonfire, just make sure it’s legal. Note that it is not recommended to burn firewood, which has been infested with termites indoors, because by bringing it inside your home, and even for the time you load up, be it your fireplace or wood stove, you pose a risk to infest it too.
Tips To Keep Your Firewood Free of Pests
● Properly storage
The ultimate best way to keep your firewood free of pests is to store the firewood properly. Firstly, you can’t just stack firewood as it is purely on the ground; neither can you pile it on some other type of material before elevating it off the ground.
To keep your firewood free of pests, you can easily start by storing the firewood off the ground. Use a rack specially designed for holding firewood, or you can use DIY methods that involve stacking bricks or concrete pads to form a platform on which to store the wood.
● Put them off the ground.
When you use the rack or DIY method, make sure it raises the stored firewood 8 to 12 inches off the ground. This is because distance and off-ground wood storage is a good shield against termites as they can’t survive without food.
● Keep them dry
Keep the wood dry; dry out any moist wood as termites are more likely to be found in wet firewood. To keep the wood dry, heap the wood in loose piles off the ground. Moreover, splitting any large logs into smaller sizes can help speed up the drying process.
Unsplit wood with bark because it also attracts termites and all the other insects than split wood. So it is best to split the wood and remove the bark to minimize the risk of your firewood getting infested with pests.
● Use seasoned firewood
Use firewood that is seasoned instead of unseasoned wood. This is because termites and insects are attracted to unseasoned wood. Termites are more attracted to unseasoned wood because it has a scent; the wood is also full of moisture and has bark and sap.
Besides, seasoned wood burns more efficiently and emits less smoke than that of newly chopped trees. In addition to that, when you use seasoned firewood, you will also avoid the dangers of a too-smoky home or chimney fires.
● Put them in a shady place.
Cover the firewood to keep it dry as dry wood is less enticing to termites and other wood-destroying pests. Always put a durable cover as pests usually go after moist and decaying wood. The best thing is to do is build a woodshed that is specifically designed to keep your wood dry and safe from pests.
● Store them in a dark area in summer
In summer, store your firewood under a dark plastic. In the summertime, heat will build up under the plastic, evaporating any moisture and killing any insects in the wood. However, make sure you allow for air ventilation, especially if your firewood is green and unseasoned.
● Use them chronologically
Use the oldest wood first, and restacking the pile periodically if it makes it easier to access the older logs. This will help to minimize the pests as you are hinder infestations to build up. And it will help keep anyone from carrying infested firewood into your home.
Note that even when you stack your firewood outside, make sure you do not stack firewood against your house and other building even if you elevate it off the ground. Elevating the firewood off the ground might prevent a termite infestation.
However, it might still become a breeding ground for many other types of insects and rodents that would up finding their way into your house. Therefore, stack your firewood at least 5 feet (1.5 m) away from your home or any other building. If possible, you can stack it even further to make sure the pests keep off.
Why you should never store firewood indoors
You should never store firewood indoors only because when woodpiles are stacked against the house or in close vicinity to the foundation, it provides a way for termites to extend their infestation into your home. Wood stockpiled on the ground or directly against the house is more likely to be pest-ridden.
You should never store firewood indoors because the damage caused by termites can be quite problematic. Every year worldwide, termites always causes billions of dollars in structural damage. And with that property owners spend lots of money just trying to eliminate termites and stop further damage.
Termites are very destructive creatures that can destroy entire homes and destroy an entire neighborhood. Termites and any other pests love rotten old wood, trees, and wooden structures simply because these provide them with the necessary food and nourishment they need for their survival.
Storing firewood indoors creates a bad situation not only for you but for the entire neighborhood, especially for those who live in old homes and areas where there are many old houses. This is because if termites find their way into one home in the neighborhood, they will try to get into other homes as well.
However, if you decide to bring firewood inside, you should only get the firewood in the right before burning it. At most, you can store enough for at least two days only. Otherwise, the best way to store firewood is outside. In fact, all firewood should be kept away from the foundation of the home, shed, or detached garage. The farther away from any building, the better.
Do not chemically treat termite-infested firewood, especially if you intend to use it indoors. The bad thing about pesticides is that they can’t penetrate deep into the wood to kill the termites. Moreover, things like diesel fuel as well as pesticides, when put on firewood, will tend to give off toxic fumes when burned.
To Wrap Up
In conclusion, firewood should be stored at least five feet or more away from the foundation of any home or building on your property. Never store firewood indoors as firewood can become a home to different kinds of insects, including termites; as such proper care is required to keep your firewood free of pests.
However, if your firewood or home gets infested with termites, simply follow the tips on handling termites in firewood to stop them from destroying everything. I hope this article will assist you and ensure that unwelcome termites don’t invade your home just because once they come indoors where it’s all cozy, they won’t want to leave.
Prevention is essential, because pests like termites, come in with your firewood, seek new shelter in your home, and damage the structure. In addition to that, they are very costly to get rid of.