Warning Signs & Prevention

How can I tell if I have termites?

You may be wondering if termites have invaded your home. It could be due to a neighbor or friend who uncovered a termite issue at their home. It may have been due to an advertisement talking about the damage and costs associated with termites. Regardless, you wouldn’t necessarily know if you have a problem, because termites can silently destroy the wood in your home without you being aware of their presence.

Termite damage can range from minor to serious, and the repairs can be costly. So, how can you tell if your home has termites?

The following are some common warning signs to look for:

  1. You may see winged termites that we call “swarmers” in the spring. These reproductive termites fly out to begin new colonies.
  2. Termites may build mud tubes in the soil near your structure. They use these to travel from place to place without being exposed to light. They are typically found around foundations and basement walls.
  3. In some cases, you may hear termites banging their heads on tunnel walls in order to communicate with one another. This will sound like a dull clicking or rustling.
  4. If you tap on wood that has been infested with termites, it will sound hollow.
  5. You may find sawdust piles, referred to as “frass”, under exit holes, which is termite feces.
  6. Lastly, you will find serious damage in wood furniture and personal items, as well as bowing floors, sagging ceilings, warped floors, and weakened support beams.

Check your home and property for the following to avoid drawing termites to your property:

Check your home and property for the following to avoid drawing termites to your property:

  1. Firewood and wood piles close to your home, especially if the wood is wet or damp. It is important to keep wood dry and store it at least twenty feet away from your home.
  2. An excessive amount of moisture around your home, as well as drainage problems, can cause water damage to the surrounding wood. In turn, termites are drawn to damaged wood.
  3. Decaying tree stumps and fallen trees.
  4. Mulch and soil are also culprits, if they are too close to the wood of your home and cause wood rot.
  5. Cracks and crevices in exterior walls and foundation make it easy for termites to invade your home.

To eliminate any possibility of a termite invasion, you should contact a professional pest control service. Specialists have the expertise to eliminate all termite issues by first identifying the problem through a thorough inspection, and then developing a treatment plan that is right for you.

What are termite swarmers?

Termite swarmers are the largest termites that make up a colony (except for the queen). They are the reproductive members of a colony, a dark brown to black in color, and are the only termites that have wings. With their wings they are able to "swarm' from their colony and find a mate, allowing them to reproduce and form new colonies. Their wings are shed shortly after swarming. Many times, the only way you will suspect that you have a termite infestation is if you see the termite swarm itself, or if you happen to notice their discarded wings.

When termite swarmers are most active

Swarmers become active when temperatures reach a steady 70 degrees, usually in the spring and after the last freeze. Young adult male and female swarmers leave their nests in large groups in order to find mates. After mating, both the male and female swarmers shed their wings, signaling that they are couples. They select a nesting site, mate and reproduce, thus becoming king and queen of their own colony.

What seeing termite swarmer activity means

If you observe swarmer activity on or around your property, you will know that a termite colony is somewhere nearby. Swarmers, or their piles of wings, are often the only visible signs of an infestation. This proof of their existence means you may have a serious and potentially expensive problem on your hands, and you need to get help right away.

If you suspect that you have a termite problem because you have observed the activities of swarmers, you can book your termite service through SimplyPest.

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