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Do You Have Termites? Here’s How To Tell

Termites are an extremely destructive pest, and if they aren’t caught quickly they can do major damage to your home. Each year American homeowners spend billions of dollars on home repairs that could have been avoided with proper termite prevention methods. By having a pest control expert inspect your property regularly, you can ensure that structural pests like termites never become a problem.

Termites Present Major Problems

Termites may be tiny, but the number of the threats that they present are quite the opposite. If termites find their way into your home they will start eating away at just about any object that’s made of wood. This includes the very building blocks of your home, and the damage to this wood can be very expensive to repair. Most of the time homes that have been plagued by termites require repairs to the areas near the damage as well as the affected wood itself. If termites find their way into your home the entire property must be closely inspected before you can determine if damage has been done.

Structural Damage Can Be Dangerous

Many homeowners think of structural damage only as an expensive repair, but it can also pose a hazard to your loved ones. In certain areas of your home, this damage can be dangerous: It could lead to weakened hand rails and even reduced floor support.  When a pest control provider that specializes in termites visits your home, make sure that they examine your entire house in their search for pests.

Identifying the areas where damage has taken place can be hard for a novice, but a seasoned pest control expert will be able to spot it in no time. There are several types of pests that can cause structural damage, and the results are how you can tell which pest you have. When termites are present they eat away at the wood rapidly, leaving it rough and hollow, and oftentimes leaving behind mud and dirt.

Carpenter ants, the other primary source of pest-related damage in the U.S., leave wood in a very different condition. These ants build their nests inside of the wood, and in areas where they are present wood will be hollow and completely smooth, as if it has been polished. Carpenter ants are usually a sign of excess moisture and water damage in your home, whereas termites can attack any home.

Know The Treats In Your Area

There are several types of termites present throughout the United States, and you can normally identify the type of termite that you’re facing based solely on your location. Here are the three most common types of termites in the US, as well as the areas where they are most common:

Subterranean termites are easily the most common type of termite found in America, and their presence has been reported in just about every state. If you have termites in your home, the odds are that it is the subterranean variety. While these termites work at a slower pace than some varieties, they can attack just about any type of wood.

Dampwood termites are found in states where moisture and humidity is common, and states like Florida and Louisiana experience many dampwood termite swarms. These termites can only feed on wood that has already been damaged by water, making it more malleable and easier to eat.

Formosan termites are the most destructive variety of termites there is, but luckily they are only found in extremely warm climates. These pests can do much more damage than their relatives in a very short period of time, due to the extreme size of their colonies. Luckily formosan termite activity is mostly limited to the deep south.

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