Most people have a pretty high expectation of safety in their own homes. However, have you ever considered that your house may be under attack? By what, you may ask? Well, termites of course!
5 Signs of Termites on your Property
You aren’t ever going to fully remove termites from your property. Just like worms, bees, and other insects, they’re naturally present in the environment. However, you can prevent them from feasting on your house.
Prevention is the first key. If you can keep termites at bay in the first place, that’s always the ideal solution. But what about when you see signs and symptoms of termites? In these situations, you need a strategic response plan.
Here are some signs that termites are present, as well as some different steps you can take to address the problem:
- Swarming Termites
Subterranean termites – also known as Formosan termites – are widespread throughout the southeast. They prefer mild temperate climates and humid environments. This allows them to thrive in states like Florida, Georgia, Alabama, and South Carolina.
According to Tri-S Pest Control Service, “They develop huge colonies which can contain millions of termites at once. These termites, if given the conditions to flourish, can cause a massive amount of damage in only a few months. Formosan termites swarm at night normally around late spring.”
Termite swarms are one of the first signs of a termite infestation. They tend to swarm when their colonies reach a certain capacity level and are ready to expand. When doing so, they’ll seek out cracks and crevices in your foundation, walls, or anywhere they discover optimal conditions.
If you notice signs of swarms, contact your local pest control company immediately.
- Clicking Noises
Termites might be small, but they can make a lot of noise when they get to work. If drywood termites have infested your home and are inside your walls, you might even hear them chewing away at your woodwork.
When termites eat food, they make a clicking sound. It’s an unmistakable sound that you’ll immediately recognize. When you do, call your local pest control company for further evaluation and instructions.
- Cracked and Bubbling Paint
Because termites feed on woodwork from the inside, it’s not always possible to see their destruction. Eventually, however, you’ll notice the symptoms of their hard work. As they approach the surface, the paint or coating will start to bubble, peel, and/or crack. Over time, this can lead to widespread damage that’s hard to ignore.
If you notice cracked and bubbling paint, you should feel around and make note of the conditions. If there’s moisture present, you could have water damage or rot from another issue. If, however, the wood is dry and sounds hollow to the touch, termites may be the problem. Call a pest control company to find out more.
- Mud Tunnels
“Subterranean termites usually invade a structure from the soil along the foundation,” Virginia Cooperative Extension explains. “They commonly enter through cracks in the slab, utility conduits, expansion joints, and plumbing connections.”
The trickiest part about subterranean termites is that homeowners typically don’t know they’re present until after they’ve caused damage. In addition to swarms, you may notice mud tubes.
Termite foraging tubes typically extend from the ground to the infested area (likely woodwork). They provide shelter/pathways for the termites and generally have a flat, brown appearance. They’re usually the width of a pencil and can be found along cracks, behind siding and baseboards, and even underneath flooring.
- Wood Damage
Another sign of subterranean termites is the presence of large dark areas or blistering in wood flooring. If peeled away, you’ll notice that only portions of the wood are actually eaten. That’s because termites only eat springwood and leave the grain and face surface intact.
If you suspect termite damage, but can’t see any because of a clean surface, you can always use a tool to confirm. Just grab a screwdriver and lightly tap it with a mallet. The damaged wood will sound hollow (it may even break through).
Don’t Delay – Do Something Today
Termites aren’t something you ever want to add to your to-do list. However, if you notice any sign of termites in or around your house, you have no other option but to act quickly.