One of the worst things about termites is that they can be living in your house or out on your property for a long time before you realize they are present.
Whether the issue is subterranean termites, which tend to live underground, or drywood termites that burrow into wood, these pests are discreet and challenging to discover.
Sadly, the most common sign that you need termite treatment is realizing that the pests have created significant damage when you never knew they were there.
This is precisely why it’s so important to watch out for warning signs and take action as soon as you suspect termites are afoot. Termite inspections and termite treatment are the best options available.
Common Signs of Termite Activity
When you are worried you may need termite treatment, there are a few signs to watch for. Some of these things include:
- Drooping or discolored drywall
- A hollow sound when tapping on wood
- Buckling laminate or wooden floorboards
- Extremely squeaky floorboards
- Strange maze-like patterns on walls, floorboards, or furniture
- Piles of wings left by swarms that look similar to fish scales
- Visual evidence of termite swarms flying on your property
- Mud tubes across any part of the foundation of your home
- Mounds of termite pellets, which look like piles of pepper or salt
- Stuck doors or windows
- Damaged, crumbling wood
- Loosening tiles from the extra moisture that termites leave on floors
- Pinpoint tiny holes in drywall
- Peeling paint that looks as if it was water damaged
If you notice one or more of these things, termite treatment may be the next step to take.
What Discarded Wings Look Like
If there is a termite swarm outside or in the home, this indicates that termites have grown up and left to make new colonies. It also means you might need termite treatment.
When swarmers go into the air, they also shed their wings. This can lead to the presence of wings on surfaces near the home’s foundation or nearby spiderwebs.
What Termite Swarmers Are
Swarmers are a specific kind of termite that leaves an entire colony once or twice a year. This usually occurs in the fall or spring. However, the timing of a swarm varies based on the species of termite and the weather conditions.
A swarm on the outside of the home may not even be noticed as the process happens quickly in the afternoon or morning hours, often when people are not present. However, some swarms can also occur during dusk hours.
The Presence of Mud Tubes
If you need subterranean termite treatment, you may encounter mud tubes. Also called shelter tubes, these create a bridge between the wood being consumed and the colony’s location.
The mud tubes are made of wood, soil, and debris and are used to conserve moisture and protect the colony from nearby predators.
Watch for Termite Droppings
When termites consume wood, they also leave behind droppings. These small mounds of fecal matter indicate you have a termite infestation or the pests are located somewhere near your home.
Again, if this occurs, termite treatment should be done as soon as possible.
Signs of Subterranean Termites
Subterranean termites can be found across the lower 48 states. The pests will create colonies under the ground and then travel over the land to reach food sources.
In addition, this termite may access your home through unsealed or cracked foundations. Tunnels are also used that are made up of saliva, feces, and mud.
When you see these, they will be dry, brown, and cylindrical in appearance.
If you see these tunnels near the foundation of your home, you likely have an infestation and need termite treatment. In addition, these pests will produce winged swarmers, which indicate the colony is active and full of insects.
Signs of Drywood Termites
Drywood termites are most often found in southern, warm climates. The colonies will be located inside the food that they feed on.
When the termites eat the wood, they create chambers and tunnels in furniture and walls. They will also leave piles of feces that look like pellets where they nest or eat.
If you have an infestation of drywood termites, you may notice sagging ceilings, walls, and floors. There also may be areas of the home that seem to have water damage.
Once these insects swarm, their wings will be shed and located in piles throughout an infested home. Therefore, if you see wings that look like fish scales, termite treatment is needed.
When To Have a Termite Inspection
There are several situations where you should have an inspection done for termites. Some of them include the following:
- If you notice any of the signs that are listed above for subterranean or drywood termites.
- If wings or other insect parts are located near windowsills or in other areas of your home.
- If you have a home at least 10 years old that hasn’t been inspected or treated in at least five years.
- If you notice signs of damage that may be the presence of water damage.
- If you notice mud tubes in the home, nearby buildings, fences, other wooden structures, or in your yard.
The process for termite treatment is largely standard in all areas of the country. However, there may be minor variations based on the location where you live.
Therefore, having an inspection done by someone local is the best way to ensure you handle the infestation the first time.
There are many signs of termites that you may overlook on your own. Pest inspection and termite treatment are the best options to ensure your home is in great shape and no pests are present.
What to Do If Your Home Has a Termite Infestation
If there are signs that you have termites in your home, termite treatment is required. A specialist will offer termite treatment after ensuring this is the pest present in your house.
Without bringing in an expert, it will be much more challenging to get rid of the termite you are dealing with.
Not sure where to get the best termite treatment? The Find a Pest Pro website is the optimal place to start. Fill in your zip code on the site and you will get a list of options for pest control and treatment options. Choose one and have the problem dealt with in record time.
Click here to read our past blog, What To Do if You Find Termite Droppings in Your Household