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Termite Infestation: 8 Early Warning Signs

Pests are remarkably cunning creatures. Mice can effortlessly slip through tiny cracks to access pantry items. Cockroaches slyly enter through vents, spreading disease-causing bacteria. Spiders sneak into rooms, weaving webs in the corners. Yet, among them all, termites reign as the ultimate masters of stealth.

While the aforementioned pests typically leave visible signs of their presence, termites are experts at remaining hidden, quietly consuming the wood of a home for years, or even decades, without detection. However, there are signs that termites leave behind if you know where and what to look for.

Homeowners must be aware of the telltale signs of termite infestation as it could potentially save them hundreds, or even thousands, of dollars in costly repairs in the future. Termites cause over $5 billion in damages to U.S. properties each year, surpassing the costs of all natural disasters combined. Being vigilant about termite detection can help prevent significant financial losses.

termite infestation

Left unchecked, termites possess an unyielding appetite, continuously devouring the wood of a home day and night, all year round, without rest. This relentless activity can eventually result in bulging walls and floors, doors and windows that become difficult to open or close, and wood that becomes unsafe to walk on. Preventative measures are crucial to avoid such severe consequences of termite infestation.

Here is a list of early signs to watch out for, helping you prevent substantial damage to your home and safeguard your equity.

1. Inspect Termites in Your Yard or Property

Perform an inspection for the presence of termites if you notice rotting stumps or other forms of decaying wood outside your home.

If you break off part of a stump and observe a cluster of small white creatures resembling ants, chances are you are looking at termite workers.

If termites are present in the vicinity of your home, there is a possibility they have also infiltrated your walls and other wooden areas within your structure. Remarkably, termite workers can travel distances as long as the length of a football field in their search for food.

2. Identify Termite Damage on the Exterior of Your Home

Inspect areas outside your home where wood comes into contact with the soil, particularly in moist and shady spots, as these are potential locations to look for signs of termite activity.

If you notice wood that appears to have been carved by knives, with rough troughs to the touch, it is highly likely that termites have been active in that particular area.

Galleries created by carpenter ants, another wood-destroying pest, will have a smooth appearance.

termite infestation

3. Translucent and Shed Insect Wings

Although shed wings can suggest a flying ant swarm, they could also belong to termite swarmers.

Once a termite colony reaches maturity, it will release termite reproductives, also known as alates or termite swarmers, to establish new colonies.

After termite swarmers have emerged and left, you might discover their discarded wings in various locations, such as on window sills, decks or patios, foundation walls, or even entangled in spider webs.

4. Termite Swarmers

Spotting termite swarmers is a rare occurrence as they appear only once or twice a year, and their presence is limited to approximately half an hour during these instances.

If you happen to observe termite swarmers on the exterior of your home, it is a clear indication that there is a mature colony nearby, and there is a possibility that it may even be inside your structure.

Spotting these swarmers inside your home is a definite indication that you already have an active termite infestation.

termite infestation

5. Mud Shelter Tubes

These tubes are constructed by worker termites, extending from the soil to the wood, providing them shelter from the adverse effects of sunlight and air.

These tubes are commonly discovered in concealed, shaded areas on foundations or crawl space cement blocks.

At times, they are even constructed through concrete blocks, making them even more challenging to detect.

6. Notice the Noises Inside Walls

If your home is infested with termites in a specific area, you might be able to hear noises with exceptionally keen hearing or by using a stethoscope.

The noises you might hear originate from soldier termites signaling danger by banging their heads against the walls. This will create a faint clicking noise.

In the absence of perceived danger, you won’t hear any noises at all from the soldier termites.

termite infestation

7. You Have Stuck Windows or Doors

Termites can cause significant damage to your home, often initiating their attack in easily accessible areas like windows or door frames.

Termites feed on these areas, gradually consuming the wood until it can no longer provide support.

You will observe that opening and closing become challenging as excessive force is required at certain points on weakened objects, and you may notice swelling near small gaps between boards caused by moisture seepage, leading to rot.

termite infestation

8. Spotting Termite Droppings

Termite droppings are another indication that termites may be active in the area.

As these creatures consume wood, they digest it and expel it from their colony to prevent buildup, which, upon closer inspection, may resemble dust or shavings.

When to Seek Professional Assistance for Termite Concerns

Numerous DIY measures are rumored to assist in preventing termite infestations. However, these methods can be time-consuming, messy, and potentially dangerous, and they may not entirely eliminate every termite in each colony and satellite colony they have established.

The best time to call a professional about termites is long before you encounter any termites or termite damage. Whether you suspect a current termite infestation, wish to confirm their presence, or simply want to prevent future infestations, Safe-Killer can ensure the complete elimination of termites, providing you with peace of mind and protection from any potential termite-related issues in the future.

Prevention is the optimal approach to avoid termite damage. However, if you notice any of these signs in and around your home, don’t hesitate to Contact Us immediately. Our team will swiftly put an end to termite activity and safeguard your home from further infestations.

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