De-Webbing as part of general ongoing maintenance of buildings is consiodered to be essential.
Late 2007 Stephen Koelewyn reached an opinion that spider webbing plays an important factor in the decay process of timber framed manmade structures.
We are all aware of abandoned buildings full of spider webbing being run down and with a higher degree of deterioration.
It is my opinion that Spider webbing plays a critical function in the decay process of structures, if these structures are left abandoned and/or regular ongoing maintenance is not carried out, spider webbing densifies, hereby restricts air movement within voids that are not used or cleaned frequently, this restriction of air movement causes humidity levels to rise providing ideal conditions for fungi, mould and bacteria to establish and reproduce.
Ausinspect in 2017, I now have now developed a new technique for webbing spider control that is effective long term and reduces the amount of chemical needed to effectively treat spiders.
De-webbing is very important, the common practice of simply sweeping the webbing away from surfaces such as window openings and/or eaves soffits only soils surfaces and has little long term effectivness.
Ausinspect takes a totally different approach, I soft wash the exterior of the building with soaps, this cleans the accumulated fungi/mould/bacteria, accumulated dirt and webbing, this removes many of the conditions for siders to exist and more importantly removes conditons for spiders to re-establish.
Common knowledge is that webbing spiders will transfer to new locations with the wind, they make a bit of webbing, much like a parachute and are swept away by the wind, spiders then seek areas of air movement to establish, the air movement allows for food such as flying insects for example to be caught in the webbing for consumption, so based on these facts, we know that spider webbing will typically restablish and densify very much in the same areas as they had before unless significant changes are made.
Ausinspect, since 2007, spent a decade of trials to more effectively control webbing spiders with the understanding that spiders contribute to eventual decay in buildings, sweeping of the webbing as a dewebbing proved ineffective in long term control, year after year the spider webbing needed to be swept away and spiders chemically treated.
Ausinspect then intiated a soft wash of the exterior of buildings, firstly to provide a service that meets the rule of thumb recomendation that all buildings ideally should be washed once every 2 years and repainted every 8-10 years. With this soft washing, spider activity was reduced significantly, if not completely eliminated.
Ausinspect Case Study - I have a house located in Yowie Bay, in Sydney's south, that I treat every year for general pests including webbing spiders, this property is located on the north/west corner of the bay, given that prevailing winds come from the south, this property is in particular exposed to winds comming off the water, this property had a much more severe exposure to webbing spiders than similar properties simply due to it's location and the lay of the land. Since having fully washed the exterior of this property with soaps and polish, the restablishment of spiders has been minimal at best, virtually non existant. This raised a number of questions, is the fact that the building was washed, were all the spiders removed, this is probably the case, however, this does not explain why none restablished, this appears to be a case of food source for spiders being removed, the polish of surfaces has made surfaces slippery for spiders or webbing to attach, then lastly, the waxes used to polish, contain a content of palm oil from species of palm that are naturally resistent to insects in their natural growth environment in the tropics. This case study clearly highlights that washing of buildings with soaps is not only effective but crucial to overall durability of the building;. An additional benfit has been the ant activity around this building has also been reduced significantly.
We conclude that de-webbing of buidings is necessary, washing of the exterior has huge benfits for prolonging the durability of a building and reduces the use of pesticides to achieve control of spiders.
Ausinspect, always working toward a better understanding of buildings and pest control.
Having inspected buildings for decades, treated termites, carried out general pest control and built many buildings, I have observed over the years all forms of spider webbing and the consequences that arise of dense spider webbing that has accumulated over time.
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Office of Fair Trading (NSW)- Building Inspections - A Home Buyer's Guide PDF Reader
Office of Fair Trading NSW - Home Building Service - Includes Licence Check
Institute of Building Consultants
AEPMA - A Code Of Practice - For Prior To Purchase Timber Pest Inspections - Stephen Koelewyn - participant Drafting Committee
AEPMA - Australian Pest Managers Association I am no longer a member of this Association
AUSINSPECT is well equipped to carry out specialised building works, termite treatments, termite nest location, termite nest eradication, effective repairs to buildings and property maintenance. We own our own machinery and truck for efficient, cost effective undertaking of works, our specialty is the repair of termite damaged and decayed structures.
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