Termites cause more damage to properties each year than fires and storms combined. The fact that termites are capable of causing expensive damage means that you need to be proactive in protecting your home from these pests. Keep reading to learn how to spot a termite infestation so you can bring in professional help when necessary.
Understand that a termite infestation can go unnoticed
It is important to learn how to spot a termite infestation because termites can go unnoticed for a long time. The reality is that these pests typically spend their time in areas of the house that you do not frequently see. Termites can get in your walls, in your attic, and anywhere in between where wood is available. They leave behind signs of their activity that can be easy to miss if you do not know what you are looking for.
Look for piles of droppings (frass)
As termites eat away at the wood around your home, they will leave behind droppings. The piles of droppings that termites leave behind are called frass. Frass is fine and powdery and is often confused with sawdust. Keep an eye out for any unexpected piles of what looks like sawdust or dirt. If there is no reason for there to be a pile of sawdust or dirt in the area, then it may be termite frass. If you discover what you suspect to be termite frass, the best way to proceed is to bring in a termite professional to confirm your suspicions.
Keep an eye out for mudtubes
Subterranean termites are a type of termite that create their colonies in moisture-rich soil. These termites need to stay in close contact with moisture-rich soil in order to survive. To protect themselves from exposure as they travel between their colony and food source, subterranean termites create mudtubes. The mudtubes typically look like lines of dirt spreading out in various directions. One spot where it is common to discover mudtubes is near the foundation of your house. Mudtubes are a sign that there is, or once was, a termite infestation in your home.
Other warning signs of a termite infestation
Other warning signs of a termite infestation include:
- Damaged wood that is severely blistered or sounds hollow when tapped
- Pin-sized holes in walls and woodwork where termites “kick out” frass
- Live, swarming (flying) termites in your home
- Swarmers flying early in the spring
- Wings broken off near windows
You can keep an eye out for the most common signs of a termite infestation. However, it is important to remember that termites can be difficult to discover even when you know the basics outlined above. The best way to determine if you have a termite infestation is to bring in a professional for an inspection. The pros at Nixtermite can inspect your home for signs of termites and let you know definitively if you have an infestation. Do not risk missing a sign of an infestation – have your home inspected by a termite professional.