If you’re having a little pest trouble at home, you’re among the 80% of homeowners in the country concerned about pest infestations. Sometimes you may have a pest infestation, and you don’t even know it, especially if you have termites. It’s no wonder we call them the “silent destroyers” because these little buggers can wreak havoc in your home, and you’ll be completely oblivious until it’s too late.
However, you don’t have to hold your breath and hope that your shed or cabin won’t crumble any second because of an unknown termite infestation. The first step in termite control is knowing if you have termites in the first place, but it’s not that easy. Termites are silent killers, so don’t expect to see a swarm of termites marching across your sitting room for you to call pest control.
Although it’s hard to spot the termites, some subtle signs could point to a termite infestation. Knowing these signs is imperative for you to get rid of the termites once and for all. Keep reading and find out a few signs that you have termites at home and what steps to take if you do.
1. You Spot Actual Termites
The most obvious sign that you have termites is when you spot actual termites. Be honest with yourself; termites don’t just drop from the sky and into your living room. So when you spot one or two termites, there could be hundreds more beneath your home.
Remember, termites can build their nests both inside and outside your home. That said, if you spot flying termites outside your home, it may be more than just a coincidence. This is reason enough to do more investigation and find out whether you really have termites.
Apart from checking your lawn for holes or cracks where flying termites leave, also check the crevices in your foundation. Flying termites sometimes leave through these small crevices in the foundation.
2. Hollow and Damaged Wood
The reason why it’s so difficult to tell whether you have termites it’s because they eat wood from the inside out. If you suspect termites are munching up some of the wood in your home, then all you have to do is tap the wood. If the wood sounds hollow, you may have more than a few unwelcome guests in your home.
Sometimes the termites might overdo it and eat through the wood. If you see erupting parts on wood, you should tap it to determine whether it is hollow. If it is, then there’s no second-guessing that you have termites.
Furthermore, wood that appears damaged could also indicate termite presence. Termites love to dig into some rotten wood, so don’t be surprised if you find a couple on rotten wood. Subterranean termites are especially drawn to wood with moisture damage, so you should keep that in mind.
3. Discarded Wings
If you spot a few discarded wings on your lawn, front porch, or inside the house, then you might need to call termite control soon. Broken or discarded wings are among the first signs that you have termites in your home. When the swarm reaches a certain capacity, winged termites must leave the colony to establish new ones elsewhere.
Once the winged termites have set up camp, they no longer need their wings and discard them. You can spot these wings in your window sills and front porch because termites are attracted to light. You can also find them on cobwebs around your house.
Discarded wings are a sure sign of termites infestation, so if you find a couple, contact a professional termite control company ASAP. However, first, make sure that they are actual termite wings and not some random flies. Termite wings are longer than the average insect wing, are translucent, and have a veiny appearance.
4. Clicking Sounds Inside Your Wall
Although it sounds outrageous, clicking sounds inside your wall may be termites having a field day with your wood. When termites multiply, they become voracious eaters, and they make a faint clicking sound when eating through your wood. Before you call the Ghostbusters, you might want to call pest control first.
Sometimes soldier termites might bang their heads against the wood or shake their bodies to warn the colony of impending danger. If you hear faint banging sounds, then there a likelihood that you have termites.
5. Frass or Termite Droppings
Termite poop is also a telltale sign of termite presence, but how do you know it’s termite poop? Termite droppings look like pellets that seem like dark marks or a dark powder from afar. Some people say frass looks like wood shavings or sawdust.
Termites leave their droppings in the tunnels they make while chewing through the wood. Frass is barely a millimetre long and is hard to spot. However, termites will push all the frass out at their nest’s entrance. Look through your attic and wood around your home for frass or suspicious-looking sawdust to see if you have termites.
6. Mud Tunnels
Subterranean termites burrow through mud and create mud tubes to connect their homes to their food- the wood in your house. These mud tunnels are found around the termites’ foundation and can lead to the epicenter of the termite infestation.
The mud tubes can retain moisture to prevent the termites from drying. This gives them a distinct appearance that is hard to mistake. Tincture through the mud tubes to find whether you have termites moving through them.
7. Outdoor Indicators
It’s easy to brush off outdoor termite indicator, but when these termites are dangerously close to your home, doing so might not be such a good idea. That said, be on the lookout for signs of outdoor termite presence. While it’s natural for termites to invade a tree and make it their home, you could also be sharing your house with them.
There’s also the possibility that the damaged tree could give in and fall onto your house. Talk a walk outside and check or signs of wood rot, holes, and frass on the tree. Also, check for mud tubes and see whether they lead to your home.
Termite Control: How to Get Rid of Termites
If you happen to have termites, your next move should be to get rid of the termites. If you don’t know how to handle the entire affair, here are a few ways to get rid of those pesky termites.
Use a Liquid Termite Barrier
Use a liquid termite barrier around your house to get rid of the current termites and prevent future infestations. This liquid barrier is an actual poisonous barricade that kills termites when they come into contact with it. All you have to do is pour or spray the liquid barricade around your home’s foundation.
However, you can also use the liquid termite barrier in specific areas where the termites have made their home. You can spray it on wooden posts, furniture, and the likes. Liquid termite barriers are among some of the most effective termite control products you could try out.
Use Poisoned Bait
If the barrier doesn’t work, then poisoned bait ought to do the trick. Poisoned bait is so effective because the termites don’t even have to take the bait. All you need is one or two foraging termites who will take the bait and spread the poison to the rest of the colony.
The poisoned bait method is especially effective for minor infestations or smaller colonies. You should replace the bait stake after every twelve months or if one of the bait stakes becomes wholly infested. You might need some professional help if the infestation is too severe.
Boric acid isn’t the most immediate way to get rid of termites, but it gets the job done. If you want to sidestep the toxic chemicals that come with pesticides, then boric acid is the best solution for you. Boric acid affects the termites’ metabolic process, and they should be dead within five to seven days after the first contact.
Note that using boric acid is not an entirely non-toxic solution. However, it‘s lower in toxicity compared to most of the other termite extermination methods. You can either use the powdered or the solution form of the acid to eliminate the termites.
Direct Chemical Application
When you can see the actual termites, there’s no better way to get rid of them than direct chemical application. All you have to do is spray or pour the chemical into the hole, crevice, or rafters where you see the termites.
Call in the Pros
The most foolproof method is calling in the pros so they can take care of your termite problem once and for all. These pros can carry out a termite inspection and testing, then take the necessary steps to eliminate the pests.
Termite Infestation Is Manageable
Although termites are a handful to deal with, termite control is possible provided you take the proper steps to handle the situation. In case you have termites, you can use any of the above solutions to handle the mess. However, calling in the pros is the surest way of getting rid of these pests.
With the plethora of termite control companies, it might be difficult to find a company worth your time and money. For professional, effective, and practical termite control, contact us today, and we’ll sort you out.