It’s one of the most dreaded things for a homeowner to find: it’s termites. Although termites aren’t harmful to humans directly, they can indirectly cause lots of turmoil and trouble for homeowners. If termites go unnoticed or untreated for a long period of time, they can eventually cause structural damage to your home and wooden furniture pieces.
To ensure you keep your home safe and termite-free, it’s best to know all the signs of termites. For starters, understand there are several types of termites. Termites will resemble ants but will have larger waists and shorter legs.
Termites also have straight antennae. When the wings of termites are present, they’ll both be the same length. Now that you know what termites look like, let’s focus on how to tell they’re in your home without actually seeing a live termite.
Continue reading the guide below to get started!
1. Termite Swarms
Mature colonies will swarm during certain times of the year. These swarms are mature termites leaving the colony to start new colonies.
Most swarms will happen during the spring and fall. Swarms can also happen inside the home or outside of the home, so it’s important to be on the lookout for them.
The species of termites will determine when they swarm, as well as the weather conditions. Some termites will swarm in the morning while others swarm during the evening hours. If you do happen to notice a swarm of termites outside of your home, then this is a sign that they’ve invaded your home.
After seeing a swarm of termites, be sure to contact professional help immediately.
2. Termite Wings
Not too long after the mature termites leave the colony and swarm, they shed their wings. You’ll start to see piles of termite wings either inside or outside the home. Look on the surface of your home’s foundation and in spider webs.
These are typical places for wings to land. You might also see wings on window sills or on the floors and countertops inside your home. If you suspect there might be termites in your home, then take the time to look around the house for wings.
Wherever the termites are swarming, there will be wings.
3. Termite Feces
Termites not only use wood to build their nests with, but they also eat wood. After dry wood termites eat wood, they’ll leave termite droppings behind. Most droppings will be left in mounds or piles.
Termite droppings are normally one millimeter long and resemble wood shavings or even sawdust. Piles of termite droppings can be found just about anywhere in the home, so always be on the lookout for them.
4. Termite Mud Tubes
Mud tubes are built by subterranean termites who use these tubes as bridges from the wood they’re consuming to their colony. These mud tubes help keep them safe while traveling back and forth. The tubes are made from wood, small pieces of soil, and other debris.
They protect the colony from predators but also help hold moisture as well. If you see mud tubes in or around your home, then there’s a termite colony nearby.
5. Clicking Sounds
Have you been hearing weird clicking sounds coming from within your walls? It’s not your imagination. Termites will shake their bodies or bang their heads up against the walls to signal danger to the rest of the colony.
If you listen closely, you can also hear termites eating the wood in your walls. Find the spot where you believe termites might be and place your head up against the wall. You’ll be able to hear them munching on the wood.
6. Hollow Walls
Because termites eat and use wood to build their nest with, eventually, the wood in your home becomes hollowed out. Over time, they’ll cause a bit of damage to the structure of your home for this reason. Termites will eat wood from the inside out, so if you knock on different areas of your home and the wood sounds hollow, then it could be a sign of termites.
Fortunately, this will usually only happen when a termite infestation goes untreated for a long period of time. This is fortunate because if you catch and stop the termites in the early stages, you’ll prevent them from hollowing out the wood in your home’s structure.
7. Sticking Doors
Have you noticed the doors in your home opening and shutting differently than normal? As termites eat through door frames, they can cause the doors to become stiff. This then makes it difficult to open and shut them.
The same is true for windows and window frames. It can be normal to notice this difficulty during high heat or humid environments. However, if you notice it during colder months, then this is another sign of termites in the home.
When the termites eat the window or door frames, they weaken them. This also introduces moisture to the doors, windows, and frames. The frames will then either wrap or shift, which causes the difficulty of opening and shutting them.
Know the Signs of Termites and Stop Them
Although you don’t have to worry about termite bites or direct danger, termites in or around your home can cause major structural damage if left untreated. Know what termites look for, how they differ from ants, and how to tell they’re in your home. When you know what the signs of termites are, you can catch them and stop them before it’s too late.
Use the guide above to help you do just that!
Do you believe your home’s infested with termites? Contact Mountaineer Pest Services today to see how we can help you!