A termite infestation is something that no one wants to deal with. It can jeopardize the structural integrity of a property and cost thousands of dollars in repairs. Termites are good at hiding, and until you realize you have an infestation, it might be too late. However, several signs indicate the presence of termites that homeowners should be aware of regularly.
Here are the nine most significant signs for a termite infestation to look for in your house.
Mud tubes, the most prominent symptom of a termite infestation, originate from the ground along the walls of your home. They’re also a sign that a termite colony is nearby. If termites have made these mud tubes in your vicinity, it is impossible to eradicate them by breaking these tubes or wiping away the soil. You have to hire a professional pest control company to eliminate them.
You can also find these tubes on large woody plants or trees in your yard or the locality of your home. Termites require specific temperatures and humidity levels to survive. These tubes assist in blocking off chilly, dry air, ultimately transforming your house into a breeding ground for termites.
Hollowed or Damaged Wood
If there is significant wood damage beneath or behind the walls, floors, and other surfaces of your home, it is a sign that termites are eating into the wood in search of cellulose, leaving behind extensive grooves.
As a result of these grooves, the wood becomes hollow with a honeycomb structure inside and gives an empty sound when you knock it. These grooves cause severe damage to the wood and significantly reduce the structural integrity of the building.
Swarms & Discarded Wings
One of the earliest indicators of termites is discarded or broken wings. When a termite swarm matures, winged termites depart the nest to start a new colony. When these winged termites locate a new place to build their nest, they intentionally twist their wings off near closed windows, doors, and other home-access points.
When looking for termites, try to listen to the gentle clicking noise inside the walls of your home. Termite soldiers often make such noises, and they accomplish it by banging their heads on the wood or shuddering their bodies. This peculiar noise is a warning sign to other termites in case a colony is agitated or disturbed. Termites are sensitive creatures with organs at the base of their antennae and on their tibia to detect sounds and vibrations.
Termite Dropps ("Frass")
Termite droppings, commonly known as frass, are a sign of drywood termites. Termites that live inside the wooden structures are known as drywood termites. While digging and consuming the wood they infest, drywood termites formulate galleries and try to keep them clean. They achieve that by constructing kick-out holes where they remove their waste. Because drywood termites consume wood, their feces is also wood, resulting in pellet mounds. These mounds of pellet indicate the presence of termites.
Termite damage can also be seen in the form of tiny holes and wood shavings in the trees surrounding your home. Examine the base of these trees and try to poke their roots just below the soil level using a spade. You may also find other indicators of termite infestation, such as discarded wings or dead termites lying around the tree’s base.
It’s tempting to dismiss an outdoor infestation since it doesn’t directly damage your home, yet termite-infested trees can be hazardous. A tree might fall on your house, lawn, or garden if it is severely damaged. Also, an infestation outside your home suggests that termites might try to come inside when they get a chance.
Stiff Windows & Warped Doors
Stiff windows and warped doors, which are often associated with hot or damp weather, can also indicate the presence of termites. The majority of doors, windows, and frames in our homes are still made from wood. Termites can reach these structures from underneath or outside the house, making them the primary target to attack. Termites cause the wood to distort due to the moisture they produce while eating and burrowing, making it difficult to open doors and windows.
When it comes to paintwork, termite damage to walls might look similar to water damage. The bubbles start to appear in the paint as termites chew away wood from the inside of the walls. As a result, the structural integrity of the walls is compromised, resulting in paint or plaster fractures.
Frequent Short Circuits
Frequent short circuits are also an indicator of termite infestation. Termites are often drawn to the warmth of electrical fittings and can nibble the wires to create an electrical hazard. Regularly examining your electrical fittings and power points is an excellent method to validate termite presence.
All these indicators serve as an early warning system to termite infestation. It is crucial to pay attention to these signs to preserve your property from termites. Another pragmatic solution to detect and eradicate termites is to acquire the services of a registered termite control company. Their experts are trained to spot even the most minor indicators of termite activity and can save you thousands of dollars in house repairs.