One out of every twenty-five US homes encounters a termite issue every year. In some instances, the damage is so severe that the structural integrity of the house is compromised within months.
Many homeowners ask us how they can prevent termite damage before it’s too late. What’s our expert recommendation?
Awareness and prevention.
Learn about the causes and symptoms of termite infestations and take preventative measures before the problem takes root.
To help you out, we’ve answered all your most frequently asked questions.
What are termites?
Termites are small insects that live in large colonies. They feed on cellulose, an organic compound found in dead vegetative matter such as trees. They prefer to live in dark, damp areas where they can reproduce and thrive undisturbed.
There are three common types of termites: drywood, dampwood and subterranean.
Where do termites come from?
Colonies form depending on the dietary needs of their members. These diets differ between dry, damp, and subterranean surroundings.
Drywood termites usually enter homes via nearby trees, firewood, or new furniture.
Dampwood termites infiltrate your home through small openings on the ground level—these include drainage pipes and pet doors. These termites are strongly attracted to light and damp wood.
Subterranean termites are usually underground, and make their way to houses by constructing underground foraging tunnels—which lead to the foundation of your home. If they see any cracks or openings in the foundation or slab, they start constructing mud tubes into your home.
What are the signs of an infestation?
The signs of an infestation include:
- Mud tubes: These are found underground or around your home near damp locations or in crawlspaces.
- Swarmers: These are winged termites in search of a mate that are attracted to light and damp wood. Once they find a mate, they settle down and build large colonies.
- Papery or hollow sounding walls: If knocking on timber walls produces a hollow sound, it means all the wood on the other side has been eaten away.
- Stiff doors and windows: If you have difficulty opening doors and windows, it could be a sign of termite infestations.
- Termite droppings: Small black marks or a powdery substance along the length of wood fiber could be an indication of termites.
How to prevent termites?
According to the National Pest Management Association, termites cause over $5 billion worth of damages annually in the US. Taking preventative measures is the best way to avoid all the costs associated with termite damage. This includes:
- Fixing damaged roof tiles
- Filling in and sealing any gaps in the home’s foundation
- Fixing any pipes or faucets that leak
- Clearing any tree stumps or dead plants from the yard
- Termiticide spray
How to remove termites?
If a home has termites, it’s suggested that you call a professional immediately. Depending upon the extent of the infestation, a pest controller may advise you to do the following:
- Bait: Administering lethal poison to worker termites which then pass it on to the rest of the colony, such as our Sentricon Termite Elimination System.
- Chemical deterrents: Prevent termites from spreading and eventually slow them down to the point where they can’t survive.
- Fumigation: Blasting chemical spray in every area of the house to kill termites instantly.
If you’re looking to get a professional termite exterminator, Xterminator Pest Control offers thorough pest control services in Pickerington, Zanesville, and Columbus, Ohio.
Schedule an appointment today by calling at (614) 935-3973 or 1-800-948-7378.