What They Are and Why They’re a Problem
Termites: It’s one of the scariest words that most property owners can think of. Just the utterance of it can fill your head with images of crumbling buildings and massive financial losses. This fear isn’t certainly not unfounded. Termites can cause some serious damage to your home or property if the problem of infestation is not handled quickly and efficiently. While any termite infestation can cause havoc, an infestation of subterranean termites may be the worst. Of the three common species – dampwood, drywood, and subterranean – these little pests are the most destructive and the most common.
What Are Subterranean Termites?
Subterranean termites are about an eighth of an inch long and appear brown/black or creamy white in color, depending on which member of the colony you are identifying. They have six legs and can be found throughout the United States. They build tunnels, known as mud tubes, to protect themselves from open air and to reach food. They work tirelessly eating wood 24/7. However, these termites can feed on a variety of other cellulose-based products like books and paper as well as plant-based items.
Typically, subterranean termites swarm in the spring and their underground colonies can contain millions of members. Certain species can make their homes above ground in secluded spots. These pests can often go completely unnoticed and cause catastrophic damage to homes and structures. Knowing how to spot signs of them is key in getting the issue addressed quickly enough to save your home.
How Do You Spot a Problem?
Unfortunately, termites can go years without being detected. In order to spot an issue you have to be vigilant. If you have termites on your property, you’re likely to see some evidence either through damaged wood, mud tubes, or winged swarmers. Winged swarmers are subterranean termites during their reproductive stage. Their sole purpose is to start new colonies. A termite swarm indoors is a dependable sign of an indoor infestation.
Other ways to spot a termite infestation include:
- Finding wood that sounds hollow when you tap it.
- Discovering cracked or bubbling paint on doors or walls.
- Spotting mud tubes in walls or wooden beams.
- Finding droppings near any of these issues.
There are some steps that you can take to prevent an infestation. Prevention is the best course of action in avoiding costly termite damage to your home or property. Things to focus on for prevention:
- Don’t let water accumulate near your foundation.
- Reduce humidity in crawl spaces.
- Don’t bury wood scraps or lumber in your yard.
- Eliminate any and all wood contact with soil.
- Store fire wood at least 20 feet away from the house and five inches off the ground.
- Be proactive with preventative treatment completed by Impact.
How Do You Get Rid of Them?
Getting rid of subterranean termites isn’t a small job. Many people attempt to DIY their way out of an infestation but with such a complex pest on hand, it’s best to go straight to the professionals. The team at Impact Pest Elimination uses the most successful baiting system on the market – the Sentricon System. This system is comprised of a unique cellulous matrix which is strategically placed into in-ground bait stations. The termites feed on the bait, share it, and as a result, the colony dies. The only true way to eradicate termites from your property is to destroy the entire colony.
If you think you might have a termite problem, contact Impact Pest Elimination today. Our certified inspectors know where and what to look for to properly identify the type of termite you are experiencing. You can rest assured that our action plan will include only those materials with proven results to protect you home and property, while meeting your service, safety and budgetary needs.