Termites are an issue across the country and in many places across the world. There are as many as 3,106 species of termite with more still to be classified.
Termites are capable of eating approximately 1 foot of a 2×4 piece of wood in as little as six months. This may not sound significant, but if they are undetected for any period, they can do an impressive amount of damage, especially if they are one of the species that eat faster than this.
The earlier you realize there is a problem and contact the pest control service, the better the chances of saving your home. You need to know how to identify you have a termite issue in your home.
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Step outside your home and look at the floor surrounding the outer walls. If you have a flower bed or even grass, the termites can burrow through this to access the wood in your foundations. You’ll see small mud tubes dotted across the ground; these are their access points.
To confirm this, cover one or two tubes over and look the next day again. The tube will be uncovered, or a new one will have been created next to it.
The best way to block termites getting in this way is to put a thick layer of concrete all-around your home, at least 6” wide.
If you see termite wings, especially near the access points in your home, then you have termites. When termites mature, they swarm out of the nest and mate, ready to start a new colony. Once they find the right spot and land, they twist their wings off as they won’t need them again.
This results in a visible pile of wings which tells you the termites are there.
Termites eat the wood; carpenter ants move it to create a tunnel. Both like to keep their tunnels clean, so create small hoes to the outside world. Their waste is pushed through these holes; you’ll see it on the floor near the wood as a small pile of sawdust. If you look at it closely, it may resemble tiny wood pellets or coffee grounds.
It’s a sign the termites are active and in the wood near where you’re stood.
If your floorboards seem to be blistering, then there’s a good chance the termites are working below you. The wood may appear to have water damage, but this is the weakening of the board’s thanks to the tunneling effect of the termites below. You can lift a floorboard, and you’ll see the grooves, in a honeycomb shape, where the termites have been moving around to find food and create a nest.
If you spot any of these signs, it’s time to act fast!