When it comes to pests that can do damage to the home, subterranean termites are by far the worst culprits. Not only will they rapidly eat through wood, they will also do their best to remain undetected. However, they still leave several signs of their presence, and if you know what to look for, you will be able to prevent a lot of damage.
Since subterranean termites cannot survive out in the open, because their bodies do not retain water and they die of dehydration, they have to build mud tubes whenever they have to travel above ground. These mud tubes are a clear indication that a subterranean termite infestation is present in the building. In terms of appearance, they look just like you’d imagine – tubes of mud. They come out of the ground, go over some material that is not wood, and then connect to wood.
When a termite colony reaches maturity, it will start to produce swarmers, which are winged reproductive termites that fly out and look for a place to start a nest of their own. You might see these swarmers flying out in large numbers during the spring and summer, which will indicate that there is a mature colony nearby, and that an infestation might start near or inside your home. However, when you see these swarmers inside the home, then you very likely have a colony indoors.
Termite damage can be very hard to detect early on, because the termites will eat the wood inside out. When the damage becomes extensive however, the signs become much more noticeable. The wood may sound hollow when tapped, paint on damaged wood will start to bubble and peel, and the wood will look as if it is water damaged.
What to do if you spot any of these signs in the home
The best way to detect a subterranean termite infestation is to work with a pro who will perform an inspection on the building. However, if you manage to notice any of these signs yourself, your best bet is to hire a pro to get the infestation under control. A pro will use either a chemical barrier or a baiting system to stop the infestation in its tracks. Contact us today if you have noticed any of the signs listed in this article, or if you would like to schedule an appointment for a termite inspection.