According to The United States Department of Agriculture, termites cause up to $40 billion in household damages a year worldwide. This does not take into account the costs to get termite control help, which can be up to an additional $5,000 per house.
If you are a homeowner and would rather not have these pests eating and destroying your home, the best thing to do is be constantly aware and take action immediately. Unfortunately, it isn’t always obvious, but by being watchful for these 7 surprising signs of termite infestation, you could end up saving yourself thousands of dollars. Keep reading to learn more.
- Mud Tubes
Mud tubes are tiny tunnels that termites use to travel between your home and their colony. They usually create them in moist places, as termites need moisture to survive.
Though these tunnels are generally very small, look for them around the foundation of your house, near woodpiles, or in your basement.
- Discarded Wings
Once termites discover a new source of food, like the wood in the structure of your house, they will discard their wings and create a new colony. If you see a pile of insect wings in or near your home, such as on window sills or banisters, you can assume you have termites.
- Hollow Wood
Termites eat wood from the inside out, so though your wood beams may look fine, the insides might be completely eaten. Knock on wood structures that connect to the soil, and if it sounds hollow, you can bet that you have a termite problem. If you wait to see cracks in the wood, it most likely is already infested.
- Swollen Floorboards
Because termites need moisture to survive, they will often live close to the surface of your house, such as under your floorboards. They bring moisture with them, causing your floorboards to swell. Though this is similar to having a water leak problem, it is best to check immediately if you notice swollen floorboards.
- Termite Droppings
Just like with any other pests, droppings are a big indicator of an infestation. Their droppings are pellet-shaped and resemble grains of sand. If you notice any droppings, begin searching for other signs and looking for termite control help.
- Peeling Paint
Just as with swollen floorboards, termites will live close to the surface in walls. If they have eaten their way through the wall, you will begin to see peeling paint. The moisture they bring will cause the paint to peel or bubble.
- Swarms of Winged Termites
If you see swarms of winged termites outside your house, generally near a lamp or light, you can assume they are also inside your house. Though they look similar to flying ants, if you can’t decipher the difference, it is best to search for other signs.
Termite Control Options
If you are looking for termite control tips, consider calling a professional. There are a variety of ways to control termites, such as termite baiting and liquid chemical barriers. A professional may even decide to fumigate your house if your infestation has become extreme.
Don’t Wait to Act
The most important aspect of dealing with termite control is catching them early. Though these signs do not always present themselves, if you know what you are looking for, you are much more likely to prevent an infestation.
You do not have to watch for these signs daily, but make sure you are keeping your home protected by looking for them every month or so. You can end up saving yourself a lot of money just by catching them early.
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